Gianni Versace S.r.l., usually referred to simply as Versace, is an Italian luxury fashion company and trade name founded by Gianni Versace in 1978. The main collection of the brand is Versace, which produces upmarket Italian-made ready-to-wear and leather accessories.
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In 1972, Gianni Versace designed his first collections for Callaghan, Genny, and Complice. In 1978, the company launched under the name “Gianni Versace Donna.” The first Versace boutique was opened in Milan’s Via della Spiga in 1978. Versace was one of the few independent designers who was in control of everything about the brand, from designing to retailing. In 1982, the company expanded into the accessory, jewelry, home furnishing, and china industries. In 1993, Donatella Versace created the “Young Versace” line as well as “Versus.” In 1994, the brand gained widespread international coverage due to the black Versace dress of Elizabeth Hurley, referred to at the time as “that dress”.
Versace was often described as the “Rock n’ Roll designer” because they designed for many famous clients, including Elton John and Michael Jackson, as well as the most beautiful women. Versace designed the stage costumes and album cover costumes for Elton John in 1992. Versace has also designed clothing for the Princess of Wales and Princess Caroline of Monaco. The Versace company is known for using the same models in their ads as they do on the runway.
After the murder of Gianni Versace in 1997, his sister Donatella Versace, formerly vice-president, took over as creative director, and his older brother Santo Versace became CEO.