Archive for November, 2009

Fashion Disaster

Tuesday, November 10th, 2009

How the House of Versace went from rags to riches—and back again.

TONI THORIMBERT / SYGMA-CORBIS

TONI THORIMBERT / SYGMA-CORBIS

Donatella Versace, tiny, sculpted and forever blonde, was standing backstage after her menswear show at the Teatro Versace in Milan in June, receiving polite congratulations from a handful of editors and friends. The scene was positively dead compared with Versace shows a decade ago: no celebrities posing with Donatella for paparazzi, no bodyguards holding back the throngs, and no pals swilling champagne. Donatella’s brother Santo, in his usual charcoal suit with black turtleneck, came back for a few minutes to shake some hands. Her husband, American-born Paul Beck, tall and tan, stood alone in the corner; no one even noticed him. It all felt feeble, pathetic—a sad, soulless charade to promote something that no longer exists.