House of Versace: 6 Favorite Donatella Versace Moments

Gina Gershon has a wide, downturned mouth that can express disdain, arrogance and sexual mischief. She is never, ever boring.

Put her in a cascading wig of long blonde hair, get her to lower her voice to sound like an Italian-accented bassoon, and you have Donatella Versace.

Versace's Teen Niece to Take Over Company

The fashion world is about to welcome a new empress. When she turns 18 on June 30, Allegra Versace, the niece of slain designer Gianni Versace, will become the most powerful teenager in fashion, reports the Wall Street Journal.

Allegra, daughter of Gianni’s sister Donatella Versace, was left a majority 50 percent of her uncle’s fashion empire, according to the terms of his last will and testament, after he was killed in 1997. At the time, Allegra was 11, and Gianni was said to have always doted upon her.

VERSACE'S DEEP SECRET

Slain fashion designer Gianni Versace had the AIDS virus, if one is to accept the theory promoted by Vanity Fair writer Maureen Orth in her new book, “Vulgar Favors.” Orth contends that Versace, who was gunned down near his Miami home by serial killer Andrew Cunanan in July 1997, was so sick with the virus that by late 1995 he could barely walk a block, a fact known only to his immediate family. The reason for the secret, Orth says, was because Versace was preparing a public offering of stock in his fashion empire.

Versace-Inspired Designs

Two years after Gianni Versace was shot dead outside his Miami home, his longtime companion Antonio D’Amico has started his own fashion line. D’Amico suffered months of depression following the 1997 slaying and then left Versace’s company, where he was head designer for the Istante and Versus Sport lines. “I couldn’t stay there anymore,” he told Out magazine in its August issue. “Every time I looked around, I saw Gianni.” His new headquarters are housed in a former music school set back in a courtyard off Milan’s Piazzale Baiamonti.

SCRAPPED:

A tell-all book about slain fashion designer Gianni Versace, by Little, Brown and Co., even though copies were already shipped to reviewers. Offering no explanation for the 11th-hour decision, a spokeswoman for the publisher said British author Christopher Mason had withdrawn the manuscript of “Undressed: The Life and Times of Gianni Versace.”

Versace's $10 Million Sale

A three-day Sotheby’s New York auction of furniture, art and clothing design sketches belonging to murdered fashion designer Gianni Versace wrapped up on Saturday with $10 million in its coffers, nearly double the expected final figure, reports Reuters. The 600 lots in the auction ranged from 19th-century paintings to the designer’s own creations, “everything from the classical art and neo-classical furniture that Versace decorated his home with … to the things he designed himself for the environment,” said Matthew Weigman, a spokesman for the auction house.