DUBAI: Italian luxury label Versace’s runway at Milan Fashion Week was packed with Arab models including Gigi Hadid, Bella Hadid, Imaan Hammam, Nora Attal and Loli Bahia.
Donatella Versace’s collection conveyed female power in a way that only the label can.
“I have always loved a rebel,’’ Versace said in show notes. “A woman who is confidence, smart and a little bit of a diva.”
The show conveyed a strong sense of female ritual as models traversed a runway lit by dark candles and lined with stained-glass windows with the Versace medusa head, before exiting through glass-enclosed spaces where bathrobe-clad men lounged on gilded chairs amid purple columns, underlining a shift in the power dynamic.
Gigi, who is of Palestinian-Dutch descent, wore a dark hoodie dress with a high slink factor, while her sister, Bella, was an unblushing bride in deep purple lace corset and crinkled satin skirt.
Hammam, who is Dutch-Moroccan-Egyptian, wore a shiny black mini dress that featured a hood and a plunging neckline. She also wore a furry coat.
British-Moroccan Attal stepped out in a form-fitting purple dress with fringe details at the hips, while Bahia, who is French-Algerian, graced the runway in a hot-pink dress with a short bridal veil.
The color palette was decidedly dark, rooted in purples and blacks, with some flashes of red, lime and fuchsia.
Emily Ratajkowski, Paris Hilton and Irina Shayk were among the models who walked the runway.
Ratajkowski wore a leather micro-mini with a tough biker jacket and studded handbag.
Hilton closed the spring summer 2023 show in a tropical-pink Swarovski-crystal mesh bridal dress with lace degradé finishes and a deep-cowl neckline. A veil was secured by a tiara, a re-make of that worn by Madonna in the 1995 Atelier Versace campaign.
Hammam and Attal also walked the runway for Italian fashion label Max Mara.
Hammam wore a black turtleneck crop top and a beige floor-length skirt. Her hair was in a slicked-back bun.
Attal wore a beige floor-length dress with a brown floral print.