Donatella Versace and Dua Lipa joined forces at the Cannes Film Festival to launch their exciting fashion collaboration in the form of Versace Pre-Fall 2023. This partnership sent waves of excitement through both the fashion and entertainment worlds. The partnership between Donatella and Dua represents a fusion of talents and a celebration of contemporary femininity.
The see-now buy-now collection, titled "La Vacanza” was shown at a private villa atop the hills surrounding Cannes Bay. A slew of powder pinks and blues were shown off on the runway perfectly cementing the hype already building around Dua’s role in the Barbie movement with some Barbie adjacent colors. Fans are adamant about the looks being Barbie coded, which brings everything full circle as the two brands collaborated back in 2004.
Ignoring any allusion to the doll brand on everyone's minds, the whole collection feels like a contemporary ode to past Versace. Right off the bat, we see Versace's signature skillful tailoring highlighted by that powder pink color making its way onto jacket and miniskirt combos. These felt like a continuation of some of their Fall/Winter 2023 looks, although this time the tailoring is much more relaxed and ready to wear for the summer. A few of the tailored pieces also came down the runway in a powder blue color as well.
The brand also brought back the famed metal mesh we have seen so many times. Revamping the material into miniskirts, dresses and bodysuits. This time that brand played with adding print and crystals to make the metal mesh stand out from past uses. With these looks, we saw the duo make use some reoccurring trends in the show, like huge 60s hairstyles, and a spiraling pair of sandals.
Versace also recalled the 1995 butterfly and ladybug motifs, being so committed to this theme, that the flying insects actually follow your cursor around when browsing the website for collection. The duo made this year's use of the motif unique by plastering them mostly on a polka dot background or by fashioning the insects into adornments on several looks.
During a press conference prior to the show, Donatella and Dua expressed their admiration for each other's work. Donatella praised Dua's talent, and empowering presence, saying “I’ve known Dua since the beginning of her career, what I saw was a super-talented young woman who projected passion, strength, and drive, truly inspiring for lots of women. And she knows about clothes.”
Dua commended Donatella's attention to detail and her commitment towards inspiring women, saying “Donatella really cares about how you feel in a dress, she wants to make sure that it’s right for you, it empowers you and makes you feel not only beautiful but also confident.”
The collection speaks to the power of the two women working together and celebrates femineity. it's a collection that screams Versace and made ample use of nostalgia and recognizability, giving us a glamorous reinterpretation of styles vital to the brands core identity.