Versace shows flexibility with gender boundaries in new menswear collection - GulfToday

Versace shows flexibility with gender boundaries in new menswear collection

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Models present creations for fashion house Versace.

Milan fashion Week for spring/summer menswear previews has started with a slightly different rhythm, with many mainstays not showing this season.

It is a sign of the times that fashion houses are seeking new ways to reach their audiences, and slotting menswear into womenswear shows by now is old hat. Gucci and Bottega Veneta are among the houses choosing that path, and skipping the June round of shows.

And this year, Pitti Uomo in Florence got a boost as the chosen venue for Ferragamo, which normally shows in Milan, and Givenchy, which makes Paris its home. Prada went abroad to Shanghai for its menswear Spring/Summer 2020 preview.

Still there was a lot left to see in Milan and here are some highlights from Saturday's shows:

VERSACE'S NEW SEXINESS

The Versace man is not afraid of playing with his femininity as he looks for new ways to express his sexiness. His also a coming of age story.

Dontatella Versace has tapped the soul of fashion house founded by her brother, the late Gianni Versace, with modern sex appeal, animal prints and loud fluorescents.

The looks play on the fashion house's iconic bondage moment, mixing the shiny leather with more mundane looks, like blazers and jacket. A shimmery leopard men's top embroidered with Gianni Versace's signature in silver peeks out of a knit vest, with black trousers and a cross-body bag that embrace of femininity. Shimmery leopard prints were paired with slim trousers patterned with ancient vases.

"It's not necessarily about femininity. It is more about the confidence a guy has to express himself in a more flexible way," said head menswear designer Ashley Fletcher.

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Versace dedicated the show to Keith Flint of the British band The Prodigy, a friend of Versace's who died earlier this year.

The flexibility was clear as models including Gigi Hadid, her sister Bella Hadid and Irina Shayk exhibited the same looks : Gigi Hadid, for example, wearing a belted leather trench with hardware details over bare legs but with the same blue shirt and tie as the men -- who also showed leg with the same look but with Bermuda shorts. Suit coats and jackets for him and her featured half-and-half Prince of Wales plaid and solid black, worn with a suit shirt, tie and black leather lace-up pants.

Racing car motifs symbolized a coming of age and embrace of grown-up toys. The other repeating motif was the Gianni Versace signature, vertically running on ties and socks.

"For every young man, the first car has a strong meaning." Versace said. "It's independence, maturity, but above all freedom."

Versace dedicated the show to Keith Flint of the British band The Prodigy, a friend of Versace's who died earlier this year. His song "'Smack my Bitch Up" opened the runway show -- and some models wore brightly dyed hair in his image, wearing acid-wash denim and tie-dye tops.

Associated Press