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Five key fashion trends for AW20, showcased virtually by Brown Thomas

by Edaein OConnell
14th Sep 2020

Brown Thomas showcased its AW20 collections online last week – here are five trends from the launch that will be big news over the coming months 

Gone are the days when editors and fashion insiders gathered together in a room to view the newest collections.

For last week’s Brown Thomas AW20 season launch, I watched the proceedings from the comfort of my own bed. Instead of meticulously planning my outfit the night before, I rolled out the duvet and put on my best pair of leggings and my beloved oversized vintage Nike jumper. Instead of mini muesli bowls and orange in champagne flutes, I had a simple cup of tea and a slice of soda bread from Supervalu.

And it was bliss.

Psychologically, the experience worked in my fashion favour. Because I was wearing my go-to relaxation outfit, seeing the trends of AW20 through the lens of some of the world’s best designers made me yearn to dress up. Since March, my outfits have consisted of loungewear and nothing else. The world is uncomfortable but my clothes are not. However, there is a part of me that will always want to put my best sartorial foot forward. The new collections at Brown Thomas were showcased in a fashion film that was directed by Perry Ogden and styled by Darren Feeney. Instead of watching clothes on a runway, we saw a story play out with real characters. Shot in some of the most beautiful parts of our country, I wanted to be those girls wearing Dries Van Noten and Balenciaga in the wilds of Ireland.

Covid-19 restrictions have meant that the fashion industry has had to adapt and while I still miss the thrill of seeing the swoosh of a garment walking in front of me, the virtual world isn’t too bad either.

Here five of the key trends for this AW season.


Alexander McQueen 

JW Anderson 

Isabel Marant

Knitwear is always an autumn and winter staple, but this year it is everywhere. Synonymous with cosy jumpers and throw on cardigans, knitwear is being reimagined in dresses by designers such as Isabel Marant and Alexander McQueen who are taking comfort dressing to a high-fashion level.

Back in black 

Jill Sander



Is there anything more-chic than an all-black outfit? We think not. Valentino and Jill Sander are just some of the designers bringing us back to black. As the pandemic brings us home to the simpler things in life, it was only a matter of time before our clothes did too. If ever in doubt of what to wear, an LBD will never do you wrong, while a black coat is an investment that will last a lifetime.

Feminine fancy



Victoria Beckham 

Relaxed feminine shapes are dominating dress trends this season. Thinks cinched in waists met with flowing skirts and flattering cuts. Victoria Beckham’s mustard midi dress with longline frill detail is a wonderful way to play with feminine silhouettes but still keep it office appropriate.

Suit up

JW Anderson 


Alexander McQueen 

Suits are the ultimate power play and designers are giving you a choice with a wide range of interpretations. JW Anderson is producing his signature directional fits with suit pants that cuff at the ankle. Celine is going 1970s businesswoman with its relaxed shape and city shorts. And Alexander McQueen means business with a treble collar grey and pinstripe mix.

Go big or go home

Bottega Veneta



When it comes to coats this season, designers are saying the bigger the better. Exaggerated shoulders with conceptual takes on fits mean coats are oversized, offering a much-needed hug from the harshness that 2020 has directed at us. See Balenciaga for the best take on the trend.

Read more: Meet the O’ Riordans, two of Ireland’s most exciting fashion design talents

Read more: These are the five pieces I will be investing in this season

Read more: 8 vintage wedding gowns inspired by Lily Allen’s Vegas dream dress

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