Versace grew up in Milan within the splendor and craziness of the Nineties’ fashion system. After high school she moved to London, where she currently lives, to attend Central Saint Martins, from which she obtained a degree in fashion design. From her London base, she traveled extensively. In 2014, she started thinking about launching her own bag line, which debuts in Paris with a presentation on Tuesday during the Haute Couture Week.
“It’s quintessentially an Italian brand,” said Versace, describing the idea behind her f.e.v. label. “I was inspired by all the trips around the globe I did with my friends. From each travel, I brought home a series of experiences, feelings and perceptions, which I’m collecting in my bags.”
Produced in Tuscany, the brand’s debut pre-fall 2016 collection includes 10 different themes and about 30 styles, retailing from 300 euros, or $324, to 1,100 euros, or $1,188, at current exchange rate. The bags are crafted from a variety of skins, from delicate suede and supersoft napa to luxury exotics.
A sense of elegant cool marks the collection. A graphic quality runs throughout, delivered in geometrically articulated constructions of single skins as well as designs that combine various textures and colors. The range includes cross-body styles, totes, bumbags and clutches cut to hold iPad minis, as well as an unconventional backpack, shaped like a tote, and a beauty case with a retro feel. The pieces are lined with deep blue silk and come embellished with the brand’s discreet metallic almond-shaped logo. “It reminds me of the symbol of infinity,” Versace said.
Along with the requisite, basic neutrals, Versace is launching with vibrant color — the blue of the sea off the coast of the Italian Calabria region, where the Versace family hails from; the soft pink of the houses of the island of Pantelleria; bright orange and green.
“We have already met many buyers especially from American and British stores and they gave us positive feedback,” Versace said. She also revealed her desire to expand the collection to other products, such as shoes. “But one step at a time,” she said. “This business is tough, but what really counts is to strongly believe in what you do.”