Gilles Delaine

Photo: Brad Paris

The Versace aesthetic has been described as “happy hooker.” Is that accurate?
I see that. Remember Jennifer Lopez’s dress? We didn’t know it was going to be such a sensation. All types of women bought that dress.

Do you feel glamorous working there?
We have a lot of celebrities, so it does feel glamorous. Tim Robbins is a very good client of ours.

Do you have to like techno to handle it?
I wouldn’t say we just play techno. Right now it’s a blend of house and what we call “world music.”

Where do you go clubbing?
I used to wear colorful, patterned silk shirts and leather pants to Studio 54. Now I live in Port Chester.

You have to be pretty self-confident to wear Versace.
I can tell right away if I’ve put something on a man who doesn’t like it. His eyes get kind of clouded, and you say “Ooh” and move away from that quickly.

Did you ever go to Versace’s South Beach mansion?
Yes, way back at the beginning. It was almost a Shangri-la type of thing—the swimming pool with the Medusas on the bottom, the mosaic stone.Now it’s a club-hotel, and I can’t afford it.

Did you bid on his possessions at Sotheby’s?
I didn’t, but my customers did. One gentleman bought Gianni’s desk. I have people whose entire home and wardrobe is by Versace.That mustache is a good look for you. Since I grew it, it’s stayed. I’ve tried different shapes.

Gilles Delaine