Celebrity Versace Lover's Designs By People Staff Published on May 17, 1999 12:00 AM Share Tweet Pin Email The partner of murdered Italian fashion king Gianni Versace launched his own career as a designer in Milan on Monday with a collection dedicated to his former lover. Elton John whooped and applauded as Antonio d’Amico made his debut during Men’s Fashion Week, presenting his first men’s and women’s lines in a leather-dominated collection modeled by close friends. “This is all for Gianni. I dedicate this collection to him,” the handsome d’Amico, 40, said after the show. “Gianni would have been tough with me if he’d been here and probably said I could have done better, but he was strict like that.” D’Amico first met Versace at Milan’s opera house La Scala in 1982 and was soon hired by the Italian fashion guru. A year later they became lovers and remained companions for almost 14 years until Versace’s death in 1997.