One part erotica, one part goth, the new season's penchant for fetishism might be slightly unexpected, but it's definitely understandable: thanks to the recession forcing us to believe that staying in is the new going out, designers have taken inspiration from the bedroom and filtered it into our every day lives.
Yes, that's right - all you need to be fashion forward this autumn is a bit of outer corsetry and a gold Louis Vuitton handcuff swinging from your monogram clutch. Designers are feeling saucy this season and they want to see you (yes, you, reader) in their tantalising clothes.
Despite their enthusiasm, I doubt many of us will strut our distinctly pale British legs along Oxford Street in black hot pants and lace-up knee boots (see Kate Moss for Louis Vuitton - a slightly unrealistic reference). I'm also pretty sure that visible stockings at the office are a major no-no in a corporate workplace - or any workplace, for that matter, aside from the obvious. Lunch with the girls probably won't be quite as appetising when wiping gloopy salad dressing from your cropped PVC t-shirt, and your boyfriend's mum is likely to be unimpressed by a McQueen bondage harness at the family Sunday roast. What I'm trying to say is, a bit of fantasy fashion is all very well, but in reality a fetish trend is a little harder to pull off. Or on, as the case may be.
When tackling a difficult trend such as fetish, the key is not to take it too literally: just because Mark Fast is sending his models down the runway in little more than leather underwear, doesn't mean you have to follow suit when nipping to Markies for a pint of milk. Rather than dress head-to-toe in attire suitable for top-shelf publications, introduce sheer blouses into your existing wardrobe for a subtle take on this seductive trend. Super-shiny patent accessories will also work well (a long leather glove here, a knee boot there) because they are perfect for referencing the fetish trend without getting you arrested. If wearing PVC or rubber choose only black, and by all means, indulge in some lace stockings - just keep them tucked safely beneath your leather pencil skirt until you get home.