Donatella Versace

Versace revealed on Tuesday it will embrace the coed format in 2020.

Instead of hosting four shows, next year the Milan-based fashion house will organize two main runway events showcasing the women and men’s collections in February and September during Milan’s women’s fashion weeks.

“This is an experiment that for the moment is limited to 2020. It is a known fact that I like change and experimenting and in a moment in which so many things are changing inside the company, I wanted to modify the way I show the collections as well,” said Versace chief creative officer Donatella Versace. “The decision was made to highlight how the collections for men and women are using the same language and aesthetic and that this has been going on for quite a while, hence the decision to use the same moment to show this vision at the same time.”

Versace RTW Spring 2020

Versace RTW Spring 2020  Giovanni GiannoniWWD

Versace also stressed the decision isn’t related to the overall boom in the gender-fluid trend in fashion. “I have been including these concepts [gender fluidity and masculine/feminine duality] in my collections for a while and they are nothing new to Versace. This is a decision that stems from a creative and aesthetic point of view. Will it work? I guess we’ll see…”

However, Versace left the door open for alternatives to the coed format. “I would not have any issue in going back to the traditional formula — or maybe to find a new one that is completely different from both — if doing one show should not live up to our expectations,” she said. “For sure, if you do not give it a try, you’ll never know if it’s going to bring any benefit. I guess we’ll discuss this again at the end of next year…”

Versace’s decision comes at a time when several fashion houses, including Gucci and Salvatore Ferragamo, are returning to stage separate shows to present their women’s and men’s lineups, starting in January. In Milan, Dsquared2, Bottega Veneta and Missoni are expected to continue to host coed events.

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