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The Biggest Trends of London Fashion Week Autumn/Winter 2020

Lace or Latex? London Fashion Week's 2 Biggest Trends Couldn't Be More Polarising

The Biggest Trends of London Fashion Week Autumn/Winter 2020
Image Source: Getty / Mike Marsland

The dominatrix and Disney princess reigned supreme for London Fashion Week's Autumn/Winter 2020 season. It seems the style set is split right down the middle, with half of the runway collections celebrating a sugary-sweet girlish fantasy, and the other half seducing us with head-to-toe leather looks. For Autumn/Winter 2020, it's not about choosing sides but engaging with both versions of feminine power.

Fashion loves an aesthetic divide. Remember the great minimalist/maximalist battle of 2017? Alessandro Michele had just shown his third successful season at Gucci within months of Phoebe Philo walking away from her design legacy at Céline. While Michele convinced us that gaudy maximalism was actually the next big look, we mourned Philo's exit from minimalist "Old Céline". Fashion's longterm relationship with minimalism had its head turned for the first time in a long time by Michele's over-the-top geek-chic aesthetic. London Fashion Week's recent runway shows have put us in a very similar, polarising position with pretty vs. punk looks duking it out for the dominant aesthetic of Autumn/Winter 2020.

The pretty aesthetic that we'll call "storybook" is an evolution of the prairie dress trend from 2017. The recent popularity of period dramas, a fascination with all things royal, and a curiosity about the meaning of modern femininity fuels this revival of sartorial gentility. Puff sleeves, ruffles, princess tulle, chantilly lace, and floral prints make a case for this A/W 2020 trend. On the runway, Rixo, Simone Rocha, Molly Goddard, Yuhan Wang, and Shrimps did the storybook trend exquisite, romantic justice.

But no fairy-tale princess is complete without a wicked witch plotting against her. Erdem, Richard Quinn, Rejina Pyo, MM6, and Pam Hogg's A/W 2020 shows completed the fantasy with some devilish designs — specifically black shiny leather looks with strong, structured shoulders, which were some of the most wearable pieces at London Fashion Week A/W 2020.

Ahead, take a closer look at the two biggest aesthetic trends from London Fashion Week Autumn/Winter 2020. Whether you're into leather, lace, or a little bit of both, there's sure to be a showstopping outfit to inspire your 2020 wardrobe.

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