Versace Just Shut Down Milan Fashion Week

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If you were wondering who was going to give Milan Fashion Week its most epic runway model moment, the question has been answered. At Versace’s Spring 2018 show, Donatella shut it all down with a supermodel reunion of epic proportions. By bringing back Cindy Crawford, Naomi Campbell, Claudia Schiffer, Carla Bruni, and Helena Christensen, in glittering gold lame no less, to the cheers of the audience—and reviving the house’s signature silk prints in the same fell swoop—Versace reinforced its reputation for showmanship. Other brands may cull inspiration from the ’90s, but Versace was part of what defined the era. While nothing can ever recreate the spark of Evangelista, Turlington, Crawford, and Campbell lip-syncing down the runway to the strains of “Freedom! ’90,” the reemergence of the original supermodels provided Milan with a welcome jolt of energy.

Versace - Runway - Milan Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2018
Photo: Getty Images

Nostalgia for the supermodel era has never been stronger. With second-generation stars like Kaia Gerber capturing the public’s attention and a growing push away from the social media–centric ethos that has dominated casting the last few years, the public seems hungry for models who are reminiscent of the ’90s. At Versace that desire was evident with the presence of newer stars like Birgit Kos, Tami Williams, Nora Attal, and Faretta, all of whom adhere to old-school ideas of what a model should look like. Tall, toned, and unapologetically feminine, they look like adults rather than children playing dress up. Joined by household names Kendall Jenner and Gigi Hadid—newsflash, they could be called supermodels, too—and regulars like Binx Walton, Natasha Poly, and Mariacarla Boscono, Versace put its ideal woman front and center.

The keyword here is woman. At 51, 49, and 47 respectively, women like Crawford, Bruni, and Campbell are a rarity on the runways. With countless models used this month under the age of 20, the presence of stars with real-world gravitas to back up their good looks was a welcome change of pace—one that other brands ought to take note of. Versace and casting director Piergiorgio Del Moro’s choice to fill the show with multiple generations of beautiful, powerful women was refreshing. Age doesn’t dictate style, and the runways should reflect a vision of beauty that isn’t solely focused on youth. When you can have girl-of-the-moment Kaia Gerber and her mother Cindy Crawford walking the same collection, it shows exactly how relevant those clothes are.

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