One of the most electric moments from this season’s Fashion Week was when Donatella Versace was joined on the catwalk of her own show flanked by five world-famous supermodels, to mark the 20th anniversary of her brother’s untimely death.
Carla Bruni, Claudia Schiffer, Naomi Campbell, Cindy Crawford, and Helena Christensen held hands with Donatella, as they walked to the tune of George Michael’s hit Freedom.
The mesmerising finale was staged in honour Gianni Versace, who was gunned down outside his Miami home 20 years ago this year, and followed a show that featured many of his original prints.
The two fashion labels have joined forces to unearth over 500 rare designs spanning from 1977 right through to Versace’s final show of 1997.
The spectacular online showcase features iconic pieces from the designer’s Warhol-inspired Pop collection of 1991, his Bondage themed line of AW92, and his legendary Punk vision of SS94.
While the prices are as steep as you’d expect for such unusual pieces, it’s worth a browse anyway, for the sheer joy of the experience.
Versace was famed for his opulent, out-there aesthetic. Striking bondage designs meet extravagant printed jackets and baroque cocktail gowns. You can shop an Andy Warhol-print suit or an Oroton metallic tunic dress that once appeared in Vogue in 1983, photographed by Helmut Newton.
The collection was curated by models, stylists and fans of Gianni, who was adored for his maximalist approach.
William Vintage founder William Banks-Blaney heralded Versace’s “real unapologetic sense of dress up”.
“His absolute love of women was so obvious,” he tells the Telegraph. “To see a woman who was in charge of her own destiny, who was strong, who was confident, who was kind of grabbing life by the balls. I think that that is a really important message.”
Donatella Versace agrees with this sentiment.
“Gianni, you always recognized how powerful women are,” she wrote in an Instagram post, following her tribute show (above). “You helped women reclaim their own voice and be themselves, thank you Gianni, we love you.”
Photos: Versace and Rex Features