Donatella Versace has hailed her late brother Gianni a "genius".

Donatella Versace

Donatella Versace

The 62-year-old fashion designer - who is the chief designer of Versace, which her late sibling founded in 1978 - has hailed Gianni for making a positive impact on the fashion industry, as she has credited him as the founder of supermodels.

Speaking to the Guardian newspaper, she said: "Not in a sad way, but a very positive way. I saw what a genius my brother was. To me, he was my brother, but to the rest of the world - such a genius.

"This was the period that fashion became famous. It was the beginning of fashion becoming pop culture, of being associated with music and rock'n'roll. Those two worlds were really in contact with one another. When something starts to happen, that is the most exciting moment. It was a huge change. The 90s was a huge change in fashion.

"My brother, of course, was the designer; I was working very closely with him all my life. But I started the relationship with the models that Gianna made 'super'."

And Donatella - who was awarded the Style Icon honour at The Fashion Awards 2017 - believes catwalk stars never used to have a personality and had "no soul", but she thinks Gianni changed that.

She continued: "Before that I don't think many designers let models have personality, nor after. The models should wear the clothes, be very serious, not smile, look in front of you, almost no soul. This was totally opposite: it was about the girls, what the girls were thinking, who they were dating. It wasn't just about the clothes, but about who was wearing the clothes."

Although Donatella has credited Gianni for his impact on the fashion business, she also believed she has played a part in inspiring other people.

She said: "I think, in fashion history, I did a lot. I mean an icon in fashion, not an icon in general, in the world. "

tagged in