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The Newest Lingerie Trend Is Sneaky Erotic Prints

Toile may be from the 19th century, but it's gotten a modern makeover.

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Agent Provocateur Cinta Pajamas
Agent Provocateur Cinta Pajamas ($250)

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Toile prints, a type of patterned fabric that originated in the 19th century, were famous for their pastoral scenes depicting whimsical countrysides. While toile was once a popular decorating fabric that appeared on everything from furniture to aprons, nowadays it feels old-fashioned — even "busy" in an era that prioritizes minimalism above everything else.

But despite falling out of favor in design circles, toile still has a quaint, fanciful charm all its own, which perhaps explains why it's seeing a resurgence in, of all places, lingerie.

Though most major lingerie brands today are obsessed with basic, unfussy staples like cotton bralettes and briefs, a few smaller indie labels have rediscovered the nostalgic joys of toile. But since this is still lingerie we're talking about, there's a provocative twist.

These toile patterns aren't innocent rustic scenes of shepherdesses and water wheels. Instead, they’re a playful, tongue-in-cheek take on the classic pattern that are safe — demure, even — from a distance, but wickedly naughty up close.

Dita Von Teese poses in her XXXtian collection

Dita Von Teese XXXTian Collection

Of course burlesque icon Dita Von Teese would take full advantage of this trend. Her collaboration with the equally iconic shoe designer Christian Louboutin features a bra, briefs, a garter set, a floor-length dressing gown, a nightgown, and a guipere (a type of bustier), all accented with Calais Lace. Most of the pieces from this line are sold out, but you can still find a few at the French retailer Glamuse.

A model wearing Kiss Me Deadly Kliterati Collection lingerie and holding a tea cup

Kiss Me Deadly Kliterati Collection

A smaller label out of the UK, Kiss Me Deadly is known for its vintage-style girdles and garter belts — wardrobe staples for anyone who wants that authentic pinup look. But with the latest collection called Kliterati, Kiss Me Deadly pairs illustrations of flowers with the female form in a print that's as artful as it is erotic — and a play on the concept of the genitalia as a flower unfolding its petals.

Only Hearts's Lazy Mayzie Pajama Top

Only Hearts Lazy Mayzie Pajamas

Only Hearts's Lazy Mayzie Pajamas feature a sweet-looking erotic pattern of couples in a variety of genders kissing (and otherwise enjoying themselves) on the grass. If you want to dip your toe into the toile trend, start here.

A model wearing Agent Provocateur pajamas

Agent Provocateur Cinta Babydoll Multi, $250

What is any lingerie trend without an appearance from Agent Provocateur? While this playful pinup print doesn't quite rise to the level of an "authentic" toile, it certainly feels inspired by the traditional motif. Flirty, frilly, and floaty, AP's Cinta babydoll set is just the right blend of coy and racy.

A model wearing Sin in Linen's Fetish Al Fresco Pajamas

Sin in Linen Fetish Al Fresco Pajamas, $59

Another pajama set (because, let's face it, pajamas are great), Sin in Linen's PJs display spanking, whipping, and a bit of good old-fashioned bondage, all shown in John Willie-esque pinup style. These pajamas are also 100 percent cotton, which makes them perfect for keeping cool if things heat up.