Have Bruno Mars and Zendaya made Versace cool again?
Return of the Medusa
Truth be told, Versace hasn't been a name on the fashionphile's lips for a long while now. Given the house's steady decline in the '00s — with the wilting of the brand image and its stores pulling out of famous shopping belts the world over after Donatella took over Gianni, brother and founder — Versace spent a good decade or so in fashion exile.
The provocativeness and Old World decadence that were once much adored have not been met with kind words. But in the last few years, the brand has rebounded, rebutting denial that they're again enjoying a bit of a moment.
For one, Versace's couture arm, Atelier Versace returned to Paris Couture Week in 2012 after eight years off the calendar. Then, the company promptly sold 20% of its stake in 2014 to re-build its brick-and-mortar presence — a powerful decision that played a part in the return of the seductive house code. Its presence on the red carpet, palpable again, by way of heavyweights such as Scarlet Johansson, Karlie Kloss and Blake Lively.
On the airwaves, we're constantly reminded of the house, what with Migos and Drake rapping about Versace and most recently, Bruno Mars in his infectious single 'Versace on the Floor'. With the exception of a dip in 2016, a speed bump largely attributed to the general flailing brick-and-mortar scene of retail globally, sales have climbed steadily since their comeback.
Versace is enjoying more support this year. Barely a week since Mars' drop of his music video featuring Zendaya — both decked in unapologetically decadent custom-made Versace — it has garnered 14 million views and counting. Its rapid success (driven by Mars' appeal and without a doubt, Versace's sex) begs the question: Could this be the linchpin Donatella needs to fully restore the glory of Versace?
For the foreseeable future, the cool kids of the moment will continue to play a different game; sexy is simply not a buzz word in 2017. But on a mainstream level, only time will tell if Bruno Mars' reach, coupled with Donatella Versace's influence, will wield over the younger set to complete the rehabilitation of the brand.
What's certain, is that the carnal music video shining the spotlight on Versace's brand of luxe drills home a specific message: That the house founded upon the principals of baroque and roccoco is truly enjoying a renaissance. And that will help sell a couple of dresses and then some.
Watch Bruno Mars' 'Versace on the Floor' video below: