In a year like no other, we looked to Vogue Runway’s Instagram followers—6 million of them, in fact—to determine 2020’s definitive fashion moments. Unsurprisingly, the photos our followers liked, commented on, and shared the most corresponded to some of the year’s biggest stories.
Let’s start with one that surprised us: Netflix’s Emily In Paris, which snuck to the top of our list. Questionable fashion aside, something about the Paris scenes and oh-so classic forbidden love story kept our eyes glued to the screen—and we’re counting the minutes til season deux.
Before we were spending so much time on Netflix, all eyes were on Bottega Veneta’s Daniel Lee. The designer continued to influence fashion amid the pandemic—his weatherproof Puddle Boots and cozy knits were must-haves this year—and 10 months later, a video from his fall 2020 show keeps getting double taps.
Other ’grams on our Top 9 list include a prescient backstage photo from Richard Quinn; a few epic red carpet looks, like Zendaya in a sculpted Tom Ford bustier; *Vogue*’s December cover star Harry Styles in his custom Bode corduroys; and throwback runway photos from Chanel’s spring 1995 show, digitized by our own Laird Borrelli-Persson as part of In Vogue: The 1990s, our new podcast series dedicated to fashion of the era.
Scroll through all of 2020’s most trending Instagrams below, and be sure to follow @VogueRunway to stay current on our coverage in 2021.
Post date: November 13, 2020
The event: News that Netflix’s viral hit Emily in Paris would return for season 2
Who’s photographed: Lily Collins as the protagonist, Emily Cooper
Why you loved this image: Emily In Paris was one of the most-watched Netflix shows of 2020. We loved it, we hated it, we hated to love it… and we are definitely turning in for season deux.
Post date: January 12, 2020
The event: The 25th Critics’ Choice Awards
Who’s photographed: Zendaya
Why you loved this image: As soon as we saw this metallic breastplate on Tom Ford’s spring 2020 runway, we wondered who might actually wear it. Who else but Zendaya could make it look this effortless?
Post date: February 2, 2020
The event: The 73rd British Academy Film Awards
Who’s photographed: The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge
Why you loved this image: The dress code for this year’s BAFTA awards encouraged guests to wear a sustainable or “recycled” ensemble. Kate Middleton, a celebrated outfit repeater, chose a gilded Alexander McQueen gown that she first wore on a trip to Malaysia back in 2012.
Post date: July 5, 2020
The event: Balmain’s fall 2020 couture show
Who’s photographed: Models floating down the Seine
Why you loved this image: Balmain’s Olivier Rousteing never fails to deliver an extravagant fashion moment. For his archival couture event, he traded an indoor show for #BalmainSurSeine, a mirrored barge carrying 50 dancers in head-to-toe couture.
Post date: November 13, 2020
The event: Vogue’s December 2020 issue
Who’s photographed: Harry Styles, the cover star
Why you loved this image: Harry Styles broke the internet and made history as the first male to appear solo on Vogue. You loved one image in particular from his shoot: a shirtless Styles in a custom pair of Bode cords illustrated with a few of his favorite things.
Post date: February 22, 2020
Who’s photographed: Model Kateryna Zub in a sparkling dress and flat boots
Why you loved this image: In just a few seasons, Daniel Lee has made Bottega Veneta the brand to beat with his unique mix of elegance and quirk. Testament to his influence is the fact that this video from February—several weeks before the pandemic set in—continues to be one of your favorites.
Post date: February 15, 2020
The event: Richard Quinn’s fall 2020 ready-to-wear show
Who’s photographed: Models backstage in Quinn’s opening looks
Why you loved this image: Head-to-toe pearl looks emblazoned with “God Save the Quinn” opened Richard Quinn’s fall 2020 show, complete with baroque face coverings that feel newly relevant amid the pandemic.
Post date: February 26, 2020
The event: Paris Fashion Week Fall 2020
Who’s photographed: Akimoto Kozue, Indira Scott, Nina Dobrev, and other street style stars
Why you loved this image: Akimoto Kozue’s moon-printed Marine Serre mask was one of the first we saw at Paris Fashion Week, when talk of the coronavirus was just beginning to circulate in Europe. Serre’s masks have only become more popular since, and almost all of our street style photos now include a mask.
Post date: October 10, 2020
The event: Chanel’s spring 1995 ready-to-wear show
Who’s photographed: Linda Evangelista, Naomi Campbell, Claudia Schiffer, and Helena Christensen
Why you loved this image: Fashion’s recent obsession with the ’90s inspired our new podcast, In Vogue: The 1990s. Our Instagram followers loved any flashbacks to the era, especially this slideshow of supermodels at Chanel. Images like these are all thanks to Vogue’s archive editor, Laird Borrelli-Persson, who digitized countless pre-internet shows for your viewing pleasure.