What Donatella Has to Say About the Future of Versace

{Source: Michigan Avenue Magazine /michiganavemag.com}

The mainstay of modern Italian fashion toasts an American future with a new Chicago boutique.

When Chicago’s first Versace boutique opened on Oak Street in 1986, it was the Milanese luxury brand’s largest location in the world. Thirty years later, Versace makes a Midwest comeback with a dazzling, just-opened 5,000-square-foot space at Rush and Walton.

“I’m obsessed with the future,” says contemporary fashion queen Donatella Versace, who oversees the entirety of the brand’s incarnations in her role as artistic director, from ready-to-wear to advertising campaigns to Versace-branded hotels. “I’m not interested in what has been, but what is about to happen. To me, the past is boring.”

Versace’s Spring/Summer 2016 women’s ready-to-wear collection is—characteristically—anything but. Military-style jackets are cinched at the waist and worn as micro-minis, bold prints of leopard and zebra are pieced together like patchwork, and elements of delicate raw edges and lace add a soft finish to more-structured pieces. And while Versace is known for its barely-there styles, there are plenty of options for transitional Chicago weather, including chic suiting in an array of patterns and colors and playful sportswear separates. Slick interpretations of the classic Palazzo bag, in shades of black, olive, and crimson, as well as platform shoes, add the perfect finishing touches.

Supporting the collection is a new Spring/Summer 2016 ad campaign shot by fashion photographer Steven Klein and conceived by Versace, who says she was inspired by the concepts of empowerment and individuality. Featuring models Gigi Hadid, Raquel Zimmerman, and Natasha Poly in the foreground, with martial-arts expert Lukasz Grabowski gazing from the distance, the campaign was shot on the stark white salt flats of California’s Death Valley.

“This is the Versace woman today, an individual who is proud of her own character,” says Versace of the striking images. As for the Versace woman of tomorrow? Without a doubt, the 60-year-old designer— who took over the house’s creative duties from her late brother Gianni, the company’s founder, in 1997—already has a clear idea of where she’s headed.

“Versace is more than just a brand to me. It is family, and its DNA and traditions are in my blood,” she says. “What interests me is taking those traditions and pushing them forward into the future.” 935 N. Rush St., 312-445-9750

{Source: Michigan Avenue Magazine /michiganavemag.com}

Versace Returning To Chicago With Rush Street Boutique

 

{Source: Chicago Tribune / chicagotribune.com}

First Dior. Now Versace.

After a 15-year hiatus, the Italian fashion house is returning to Chicago with plans to open a shop next door to the incoming Christian Dior boutique at Rush and Walton streets.

Versace is leasing a two-floor, 5,000-square-foot portion of the building at 935 N. Rush St., currently home to Urban Outfitters, which is moving to a larger space a few blocks away, said Luke Molloy, a broker at Cushman and Wakefield who represents the landlord. The building was marketed as two storefronts, and Dior said last month it plans to fill one of them with a women’s boutique in 2016.

It is not clear when Versace will open or what kind of boutique it will be. A Versace representative could not be reached. Gianni Versace in 1986 opened what at the time was his largest boutique in the world on Oak Street, but it closed in 2000.

 

{Source: Chicago Tribune / chicagotribune.com}