There’s been a lot of talk about hemlines this season. Behold, the New Length, resurrected from the Nineties! Below the knee! How exciting. And after the first three exits at Donatella Versace’s show, it was clear that she is right on point for spring. Out came a sheath dress, a trim jacket and skirt, and a halter tank, all white, all flaunting this new, sophisticated length that’s been celebrated for its grown-up appeal. But prim and prissy aren’t Versace’s thing. So she packaged the longer proportion in a slick, skin-tight silhouette that felt fresh and very sexy.
Sporty dresses in clean colors — solid white, red, black, turquoise — were piped in shiny brights and clear PVC with cutouts on the shoulders and back. Some were done in a harness-like construction of thick straps fastened with big plastic buttons, a playful detail on an adult look. The skirts were high-waisted and worn with cropped jackets and shells that tastefully teased a slim line of midriff.
There was enough abbreviation to match the elongation. Mini dresses were fitted up top, A-line on the bottom with piping, cutouts, etc. consistent with the rest of the collection.
One of the most prominent decorative details was the house logo, Greek keys, which appeared as appliqué, traced waistlines and inspired the transparent, linear trims. It was a risky move that could have self-destructed the collection, but Versace positioned the emblem wisely. Nowhere more so than in the abstract prints, vertical slashes of bright, painterly stripes that brought a modern pop to pared-down shapes, and a terrific tribal flare to fringed styles.