Spring/Summer 2020: 7 Most Prolific Runway Trends

The Spring/Summer collections of some of the most talented designers and well-loved fashion brands have been showcased on runway after runway, and now it’s time for a review of the trends that emerged.

There were 7 trends that stood out from these collections so here are some tips on how to integrate them into your own wardrobe.

1) Bright colours and bold prints

The Spring/Summer collections that graced the runways showcased bright colours and eccentric prints showing us that 2020 is the year to be garish.

Patterns in the collections reflected nature and culture. For example, we saw creative uses of ​wildflower imagery​ from Christopher Kane, ​East-Asian inspired florals​ from Comme des Garçons and jungle prints by ​Dolce & Gabbana​ and ​Valentino​.

Preen by Thornton Bregazzi also incorporated floral designs into stunning looks like the frill bralette with high waisted trousers (​Look 34​) and their striking red dress with a matching neck scarf (​Look 17​).

This trend for all things neon, bright and bold should encourage us to push the boundaries of our day-to-day style. We can use more daring colours and patterns to spice up neutral outfits and incorporate more unusual accessories into our looks by being consistent with the colour palettes we use.

2) Loose fit

Puffed sleeves were all over the runways this season and this year designers have fully embraced a loose-fitting, comfortable silhouette. Christopher Kane showcased layered frills (contrasted with some delicate metal studs) (​Look 12​), Valentino presented flowing mini and maxi pieces (often paired with full sleeves) and Zimmermann incorporated puffing sleeves onto low rise, mini and cropped items (Looks ​1​, ​3​ and ​10​). I predict that it won’t be long before we are all looking through our wardrobes for some big sleeved pieces to style.

East-Asian inspired silhouettes were also often featured, but tended to conform to the trend of being loose-fitting. We saw full sleeves and loose trousers on an East-Asian style jumpsuit by Christopher Kane (​Look 15​) and oversized jackets and skirts- with a nod to the traditional kimono and cheongsam- from Comme des Garçons (Looks ​1​, ​8 and ​10​).

This season why not style your less fitted pieces with simple accessories like a plain belt, strappy shoes or a delicate metallic necklace. This is definitely the time to break out your frills and loose silhouettes. It is the perfect opportunity to guide attention where you want it and to experiment with daring pieces and fits.

3) Workwear with a twist (shirts, blazers etc.)

On the catwalks workwear styles were defined by exaggerated shapes and a vintage twist. From Valentino’s sheer, maxi blouse (​Look 12​) to Christopher Kane’s intricate blazer with oversized buttons and lapels (​Look 13​), we saw designers transform basics into statement pieces. This trend was evident in many collections and could also be seen in Victoria Beckham’s elaborate frilled blouse (​look 16​), Salvatore Ferragamo’s blue blazer with button-on oversized white lapels, styled with tracksuit bottoms ​(Look 8​) and Jacquemus’ bulky oversized blazers which were paired with natural or pastel colours and minimal under garments (Looks ​1​, ​4​ and ​32​).

This trend is defined by contrasts. This spring and summer why not try to re-imagine some of your workwear pieces? Try contrasting light colours with darks and oversized pieces with bralettes, sheer items or shorts.

4) Monochrome

Alongside the vibrant prints, we saw a lot of monochrome designs make their way down the runway this year. Alexander McQueen exhibits this trend perfectly through his collection (which also embraces other trends like large sleeves and workwear with a twist) (Looks ​1​, ​4​, ​9​ and ​20)​ while Versace also showcased a striking range of chic black and vibrant neon ensembles (Looks ​1​, ​8​, ​26​, ​27​ and ​60​).

If bold patterns aren’t quite your thing then don’t worry, monochrome might be right for you. While you might still consider incorporating more daring silhouettes into your outfits this season, keeping the clothes monochrome will offset some of the drama and keep you looking effortlessly chic. Use different shades of the same colour or a black and white colour scheme to compile some of your looks, and use different materials and textures to create interesting contrasts.

5) Shorts

Bermuda shorts were definitely the item that surprised me the most by trending on the runway. Shorts featured heavily this season but a general theme was that they were often either very long or very short. Chanel (Looks ​11​, ​15​ and ​40​) and Saint Laurent (Looks ​3​, ​11​ and ​19​), among others, showcased a host of outfits showing us that shorts are possibly the most versatile item to come off the runway this season.

The runways have taught us that shorts look great when styled in a smart/casual way. For example, Saint Laurent styled various looks that included shorts with a shirt and blazer (not so discreetly mixing trends).

6) Cut-outs

This season we learnt that cut-outs can change a classic look into something daring and modern. My favourite examples of this are Alexander McQueen’s cut-out grey suit (​Look 9​), Preen by Thornton Bregazzi’s floral dress (​Look 35​) and Gabriela Hearst’s white summer dress and white top and trouser combo (Looks ​5​ and ​32​) which are at the same time both simple and ordinary yet also original and striking. A total contradiction, but they make it work beautifully nonetheless.

We also saw this trend in the work of other designers including Christopher Kane (Looks 6​, ​20​ and ​49​), Gucci (Looks ​8​ and 4​ 3​) and Rick Owens (Looks ​2​, ​17​ and ​20​).

With this mind, now would be a great time to break out your cut-out-style clothing. Looking at the work of some designers, we can infer that cut-outs look particularly good in monochrome outfits or outfits that incorporate neutral colours like black, white, greys and browns.

7) Wrapping up

Contrary to what I expected from the Spring/Summer runways, there has been a reemerging theme of coats and jackets. Leather jackets and trench coats in particular were featured by various designers: Christopher Kane (Look 9​), Sportmax (Looks ​1​, ​6 and​ 20​), Alexander McQueen (Looks​ 16​ and 22​) and Balenciaga (Looks​ 22,​ ​32​ and​ 41​).

As we continue into February, the runways have taught us that using a coat or jacket in a monochrome ensemble is a definite ‘do’. By mixing up textures e.g a pleather jacket, a lace or faux suede skirt and accessories with metal details, we can create an interesting outfit while also keeping things classic. In terms of layering this season, it looks like keeping a simple colour palette is on trend.

Anjula Nathan

All Images sourced from Vogue Spring/Summer 2020

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