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DONATELLA-VERSACE

Donatella Versace (born 2 May 1955) is an Italian fashion designer and current Vice President of the Versace Group, as well as its chief designer.

 

She owns a 20% share of the business. During the 1980s, Donatella’s brother, Gianni Versace, launched a perfume dedicated to her, Blonde, and gave her his own diffusion label, Versus. Versace took over the label’s design after her brother’s death.

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Fashion debut

In the mid-1970s, Donatella followed her older brother, Giovanni (“Gianni”), to pursue knitwear design in Florence, Italy. She had planned to work for her brother in PR, but was more valuable to Gianni as a “muse and critic”, according to her during an interview with Vogue.

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Through her closeness to her brother’s enterprises, Donatella entered the fashion world. A decade later, during the 1980s, Gianni launched a perfume dedicated to her, Blonde, and gave her her own label, Versus, which remains a well-known Versace line.

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Career

A year and three days after Gianni’s death on July 15, 1997, Donatella Versace mounted her first couture show for the Versace Atelier at the Hôtel Ritz Paris. She built her runway over the hotel’s swimming pool, as her brother had done every season, though this time using sheer glass. She now oversees the production of a dozen collections each year, though these days, she is just as famous for her celebrity entourage and parties whose regular guests include Sir Elton John, Liz Hurley, Rakeem Young, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Kate Moss. Even Prince Charles attends Donatella’s parties for the famous and elite throughout Europe.

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She soon proved to be the public relations giant within the Versace label and spread its name throughout Europe and most of the United States.

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Donatella chose to place some of her good friends, Lil’ Kim,

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Jennifer Lopez, Madonna, Courtney Love, Christina Aguilera, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Demi Moore, and Lady Gaga

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in high esteem in the Versace advertising sector, making them and other A-Listcelebrities such as Beyoncé and January Jones the persona and image of Versace.

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Her popularity grew when she designed the famous Versace Green Dress, also known as the “Jungle-Dress“, which was worn by Jennifer Lopez at the Grammys.

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Branching into other fields, the company has created the grand, luxurious Palazzo Versace resort on the Gold Coast of Australia. Another growing symbol of the Versace style, the Burj al-Arab, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE), boasts a broad collection of Versace furniture and beddings in its expensive and lavish rooms.

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Her brother Gianni Versace was murdered by Andrew Cunanan on 15 July 1997, outside the re-constructed Casa Casuarina, also known as Versace Mansion, in Miami, Florida.

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