Runway Retrospective: 90’s Versace

Heralded by sexy silhouettes, cheetah prints, and gold, Versace is long known as the brand serving confidence and effortless femininity. As the runways today draw inspiration more than ever from the staple brand, and nostalgia is on the rise, a retrospective is to be had of Gianni Versace’s best looks of the 90’s preceding his devastating passing. Forever ahead of his time, his designs still inspire trends today.
Versace’s classic prints came alive in the 90’s, starting with the powerplay suits of FW/91. Who could forget the gaudy gold jewelry and figure flattering two-pieces that sparked the flame of Versaci’s influential prints. In the Spring of 92 show, waists were kept high, and the white Versace jean made a splash. A notable trend here is the gold chain belt - see this anywhere lately? FW 92 saw a BDSM power suit, adorned with leather fringe and corseting. Recent season’s fringe fest draws clear inspiration. Pattern mixing and emphasis of the decolletage makes it clear that Gianni Versace knows how to style a woman’s figure. These motifs remind me of recent milkmaid trends mixed with modern pattern collaging - quite popular today. In one of my favorite seasons, FW 93 saw a number of influential styles, with lingerie inspired gothics being the most influential. Smells like recent Givenchy to me. Let’s also not forget - the chainmail dress that’s been recreated so many times in the past 10 years (but most recently a celeb-birthday favorite) was first spotted on a Versace SS ‘94 catwalk. Also, the whole butterfly trend? It’s nothing new. Rainbow butterfly patterns first emerged in SS ‘95. We see you, fast fashion, and raise you Gianni Versace! And finally a look at SS ‘96- the days of monochromatic suiting and slip dresses have been brought back, but let’s not forget where they came from.
By Adi Shoham