We've come to expect Instagram-breaking show closures from Donatella Versace: Last season, the Italian designer transported us underwater, and a year before that, she brought us J.Lo. But for Fall 2021, the master of flash didn't have any tricks up her sleeve. The all-star model lineup — which included Gigi Hadid's return from maternity leave — walked on in an industrial-looking, concrete-paved runway lined by wooden block structures made to look like a 3D maze.
The labyrinth-inspired catwalk was an introduction to Versace's new signature print: A more geometric iteration of the brand's iconic La Greca motif, which features sharp angles, clean lines and a strong palette. According to the collection notes, the reworked pattern represents "power and self-confidence."
With a more modern motif came more contemporary daywear: streamlined silhouettes featuring rounded shoulders and cinched waists dominated the womenswear offering. Versace showed minimal shapes on the bottom half with a series of cropped, slim-fit trousers and A-line skirts. The eveningwear was less glam than usual and took on a sensual mood — think slinky metal mesh mini dresses. Aside from a few flamboyant pieces done in electric hues, there were several outerwear and suiting options for those that stick to neutral autumnal color codes, and while most were covered in the updated logo, they still felt like classic winter staples.
The menswear boasted the same body-hugging tailoring and interesting fabric details as the womenswear. There were all-over jacquard suits mixed with lurex thread made using eye-catching materials like shiny vinyl and matte wool.
From structured top-handle bags to mini crossbodys and from roomy totes to cylinder carryalls, there are many potential money-makers on the accessories front. Customers will certainly appreciate the customizable features, which were on full display during the collection debut and include everything from mix-and-match shoulder straps to clip-on accessories and extra pockets.
It wouldn't be a true Versace show without a cast of "supers." The eldest Hadid opened and closed the show, and she was joined by her younger sister and new aunt Bella Hadid. Irina Shayk and Precious Lee also appeared on the pre-filmed runway.
"I have realized that this is the future, the new way of communicating collections," Versace said in the official show notes. "Models are like actors, they bring the designs to life, just like when a performer portrays a character. During the filming of this show I saw how important it is to give the models time to 'feel' the clothes they wear on the runway. Despite living in a digital era of immediacy, taking this time is crucial to form a genuine connection. This is what the present and future look like to me."
See the complete Versace Fall 2021 collection in the gallery below: