With a celebrity-packed front row and lavish Ritz-Hotel backdrop, Donatella Versace did what she does best this weekend: create a jaw-dropping haute-couture show dripping with sex appeal.
After eight years of understated presentations inconsistent with the designer's flamboyant personality, Donatella decided to return to her late-brother Gianni's roots, presenting an opulent collection at Paris's iconic Place Vendome.
"It was very emotional," Donatella said after the show. "I had to get up my courage to come back."
Come back she did. Flaunting curves with corsets, cutouts and strategically placed crystals, Donatella wooed front-row power players like Jessica Alba, Christina Hendricks and Lea Michele. Billowing, Cellophane-like skirts, cascading prints and gilded up-to-there minis redefined femininity in a way few designers can.
Jessica Alba described the looks as "sexy, strong warriors." A metaphor for how Donatella has fought back against naysayers who believed she wasn't as talented as her late-brother Gianni, who died in 1997.
Scooping Vs in back and intricately crafted bodices pointed to new erogenous zones. The waist was key as it always is for Donatella. After all, how can you create an hourglass without pointing to the midsection?
Punctuated by Donatella's new couture cocktail rings, the dresses were instant showstoppers. It's likely that Versace fans like January Jones will choose one of these designs for the Emmys in September. Our picks for the Mad Men star? This frothy blue confection or the ethereal coral halter. Any which way, it would be hard to go wrong.
When the show was done, celebs and editors headed to the glamorous Ritz pool, which was converted into a disco. There was much to celebrate, and Donatella knew it.