Gianni Versace. What more really needs to be said than just his name, we'll tell you there is so much. A brand so synonymous with decadent luxury gilded in gold on all of its edges was actually built upon the shoulders of one of the 20th century's most brilliant designers. In 1988 the jury of the Cutty Sark Award named Versace "the most innovative and creative designer in the world." This was several years before he even touched a baroque scroll. His early work draped on the body as if origami, from heavy silk ottoman to linen, wool jersey and his early love metal mesh. No internal bustiers were needed then. Just take a look at the relaxed wardrobe of the cast of Miami Vice, all dressed in Versace.
Versace's early work is coveted by today's designers for his ingenuity in cut and fabrics. His work took a completely different turn in his now famous early 1990s collections. In fact the much coveted gold studded pieces were only made for a period of two short years. His signature prints and bold gold were so knocked off that he immediately took a softer note, introducing pastels, silvers and grays. In his last collection shown after his untimely death he returned to the glitz however in a much more sophisticated and structured way. Pre-empting the minimalism and hard edges which would become the signature of the late 90s fashion. That mood was changed when Donatella took over and it's her brand of sexual allure at the highest luxury that we know the company for today. Whatever period it may be from, a Versace piece will always be an important piece of fashion history.
See Also: Valentino, Chriatian Dior, Yves Saint Laurent