MILAN - Donatella Versace doesn't seek to revisit punk so much as to interpret what it would be if it were born today.
She may have nailed it in the women's collection for winter 2013-14 presented Friday on the third day of Milan Fashion Week. In fact, many of her creations were accentuated by clusters of silver spikes — some placed to make any moves toward intimacy a daring feat — or fastened together by long nails.
Versace called the collection "sexy, strong, brave and full of energy."
While the designer claimed a musical inspiration for her "Vunk" line, many of the looks had a distinct women warrior energy. Leather body suits were sculpted to look like armour, spikey leather bras were worn over dresses, and those spikes and nails certainly suggest a woman who can defend herself.
The favourite material was vinyl and the colours monochromatic: white, black, fire engine red and canary yellow, for the girl who always wanted to shine. Vinyl was crafted into form-fitting dresses with spikes fitted down one arm, or perhaps as earrings or a choker interspersed with jewels — with some strategically placed spikes easily measuring several inches (centimetres).
The collection was decidedly edgy, but Versace did make one nod to current trends, incorporating plaid into pleated miniskirts, often with vinyl panels or buckles. Cashmere sought, perhaps in vain, to give some softness to the studded leather.
Fur coats were dyed into artificial animal prints mimicking a zebra or a yellow and even red leopard, materials developed by American artists The Haas Brothers.
Evening gowns of vinyl incorporated transparent panels for a look of exposure, while more classic materials were provocatively draped and wrapped around the body — always leaving a sexy slit.
Shoes were either studded mid-calf boots with silver stiletto heels, or thigh-high boots.