Donatella Versace was back in her element Thursday, overseeing a re-creation of the fashion house’s Milan runway show in the Chinese capital.
Versace spent a day earlier in the week with earthquake survivors in the muddy, remote mountains in Sichuan Province working with the Jet Li One Foundation to raise awareness of the plight of victims. The actor Jet Li and Versace capped off Thursday’s show with a high-energy live auction that raised an additional $100,000 for earthquake relief work.
“What appeals to me is the energy in China, especially in this city Beijing. There are a lot of young people, creative people, a lot of art — it’s very inspiring,” design head and vice president Donatella Versace told Reuters.
“Chinese people like luxury brands,” added Donatella, looking stunning in a flattering, figure-hugging black dress and black stiletto shoes.
Versace displayed its spring/summer 2009 collection at the show, which had previously debuted in Milan, in front of an elite audience of socialites, executives and celebrities, including Chinese and Hollywood action star Jet Li.
Donatella said she would like to make China a regular stop on Versace’s fashion show calendar.
“If the economic crisis permits, yes I’ll come every year,” she told reporters ahead of the show.
“I have to say that doing it here in Beijing has been amazing because of the enthusiasm,” Donatella added. “I think the Chinese people love fashion — that’s what I can feel.”