Surprise! After a first season in New York, it was in London that Anthony Vaccarello, now confirmed in his post as artistic director of the Versus line, decided to show his second collection. For the first time, he mixed masculine silhouettes with feminine ones – sexy looks featuring the miniskirts, asymmetry and high-precision cuts that only he knows how to do, but also trousers and tailoring, which are another aspect of his vocabulary. Indeed Vaccarello is a specialist in unusual, tomboyish, sporty looks combining Bermuda shorts with little jackets. While all the traits his fans love about him were present in this season’s Versus collection, there was also a more pop side to things, with vinyl textures, more casual looks, and some rather audacious prints. Numéro talked to the designer after his runway show.
Numéro: Your silhouettes are instantly recognizable in this Versus show. How do you go about designing a collection like this?
Anthony Vaccarello: I very much enjoy digging around in the brand’s archives, but I want to put a lot of myself into these Versus collections. It’s not a parallel project for me - I treat it like a collection in its own right, to which I give my all without holding back. If people recognize my own personal signature in my Versus collections, it’s because there’s also certainly some Versace in me.
So it’s an ideal marriage?
[Laughs.] Yes, I don’t see how else to describe it.
Does Donatella Versace supervise the collections?
She’s present in order to help things along, but she leaves me total carte blanche. Donatella brings her energy and dynamism. What’s more, she pushes me to create clothes in colour, but as you just saw, I resist. [Laughs.]
Still, there were a lot of prints that you wouldn’t expect to see in your own collections.
Versus gives me the chance to explore avenues I wouldn’t go down spontaneously, it’s true. Here I started from a 90s print designed by Donatella and Gianni called “Istante.” I wanted to make a darker and more aquatic version.
Why did you decide to show in London this time?
We may go back to New York next season. But we like the idea of surprising people. The way the brand is run means this kind of thing can be decided on quite late - it offers real freedom, a lightness. And that’s what I like.