Today I named designer genius Alfredo Versace Fashion Consultant to my PR firm TransMedia Group (www.transmediagroup.com).
Alfredo brings an iconic name sure to cause a stir in the fashion world while he helps TransMedia’s designer clients take off from our firm’s well-worn publicity runways,
It’s about time my suave, multi-talented friend Alfredo steps out of the shadows cast a decade ago when a judge ruled in a lawsuit brought by Donatella Versace that Alfredo can’t use his last name on products.
È pazzesco! It’s crazy. Maybe President Trump will pardon him for using his last name as our fashion consultant.
Here’s an artist craftsman who can stitch circles around most designers, who can turn an animal’s exotic skin into a work-of-art handbag faster than the slinkiest model can slip into one of his haute couture wardrobe creations.
Alfredo comes from the same Italian town as his alleged cousin Gianni Versace, but has been in Donatella Versace’s crosshairs for years. She seemed determined to block him, perhaps because she doesn’t want his talent upstaging hers.
Versace will consult our clients on design and marketing their fashion products. No, he won’t have his famous last name on any products as the court ordered, but he’ll advise our PR firm’s fashion clients like BraCandy and participate in events we promote such as Fashion Week Brooklyn,” said Madden.
Alfredo’s last name is sure to attract attention, and maybe something else that publicists like Madden seldom shy away from—controversy. That’s because Alfredo has that same electric last name as his cousin Gianni who was murdered years ago at the Versace Mansion.
Ironically the Versace mansion today belongs to one of my former clients, Jordache designer jeans owner Joe Nakash. We once promoted Joe’s U.S. Polo Assn Brand until it got us into a war with Ralph Lauren who owned the brand name Polo. Another one of our former clients, the CEO of the global pharmaceutical company AbbVie, had a spectacular wedding there after marrying jewelry designer Chantel Boynton.
Yes, I could drop names of many whom we’ve helped to escape from what talent dreads most, anonymity. Born with such a rare talent for designing clothes to exotic handbags, Alfredo’s being sentenced to a lifetime of anonymity always struck me as cruel and unfair.
Oddly publicists get to know and appreciate their clients’ talents at depths not even their therapists, CPA’s or spouses seldom reach. That’s because the publicist is today a priest preaching for the gates to swing open to a heaven on earth called fame–the forerunner to fortune.
There was only one hitch to Alfredo’s stitch. He was born with a name that became the epicenter of fashion world power and majesty. And while Alfredo Versace was gifted as his famous cousin, he is not able to use his name commercially.
This was the result of a long and costly legal battle waged by Donatella to keep Alfredo nameless and thereby robbing him of an opportunity to perhaps brand a talent that exceeded hers.
The other night Alfredo came to visit us carrying flowers for my wife, Angela, whose recent PET scan results found her breast cancer inactive, a clear sign of God fashioning another one of His miracles.
To celebrate, we took Alfredo to dinner at The Blue, the elegant restaurant at the top of the tower at our club, the Boca Raton Resort and Club.
After a few glasses of vino, we got to talking about the U.S. appeals court decision that bars Alfredo from using the Italian fashion house’s name for any commercial purposes. The conversation led to my offering Alfredo the position of fashion consultant at TransMedia Group. He said he would check with his lawyer and later called Angela to say his lawyer approved.
The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals had upheld a lower court ruling that barred our talented friend from selling clothing, handbags, bottled water and other items that carry the Versace name. Despite the bag order, Alfredo has done well in monetizing his shear talent.
Versace lives well on an estate on long Island, NY where his neighbors are none other than former FOX show host Bill O’Reilly and ex-White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci.
Over the years, Versace has been cited for daring to use his own name, which the court calls an infringement on the famed Versace trademark. Despite the lid on his heritage, Alfredo has created fashion products for his wealthy celebrity and movie star friends.
(Mr. Madden latest book “Is there enough Brady in Trump to win the inSUPERable BOWL?” is available on Amazon)