The wonderful thing about back-to-school shopping for tweens and teens? They’ll tell you what they
want need to wear. As in, “Mom, I really NEED a pink lumberjack shirt this year. All the guys are wearing one.”
(Thought you’d never hear that one, huh? But check out the Men’s Superdry Lumberjack Brush shirt in Smith Pink pictured right – it’s actually quite stylish. I’d totally love to see a Bieber-esque dude sporting one of these… especially with low-slung jeans and a pair of killer retro kicks. From To Die For Mens Clothing.)
So why will you LOVE these back-to-school trends? Simple – you can find them readily available, almost anywhere. No worries about pounding the payment to find obscure pieces; just add these popular items to your list of must-haves, pop into your nearest trendy store, and earn your status as back-to-school hero.
(And if you happen to spot a pink lumberjack shirt, do pass along deets or a photo! Dying to buy one for Ryder.)
1. Coloured demin and chinos. Or as I like to call it: The trend that just won’t die. Hence, you may as well grab a pair for both yourself and the kiddos, because as long as Jessica Alba is rotating her collection of likely 46 pairs, bright bottoms are here to stay.
I’m digging these Rich and Skinny Legacy Skinny Jeans available at SHOP.CA. Pair these fun, bright, raspberry-coloured jeans with a simple white or black tee. Rich and Skinny has a reputation for making jeans that give you the longest, leanest legs possible (rich girls need not apply; skinny girls have a slight advantage here).
Other places you can snag a great deal on this back-to-school favourite:
Old Navy – love their Rockstar Super Skinny Jeans
H&M – the same look in a Stretch Twill Trouser – great for business casual
Marshalls and Winners – find a whole rack of options for as low as $19.95
Simons – Flash Colour Skinny Jeans come in an enviable variety of colour options
GAP – iconic and affordable, 1969 Ankle Zip Legging Jeans are a best bet
Express – Zelda Coloured Jeans – their sexiest jean
American Eagle – Skinny Jeans in Teaberry Pink (my fave colour EVER)
2. Go Tribal. Not my favourite trend on the block, but I can’t deny that designers are putting tribal vibes out there… and celebs are lapping it up. Keep it casual and flirty with tribal-inspired accessories: earrings, scarves, clutches and even shoes. Or, go all out à la Blake Lively with a tribal print dress and super high heels – make a statement and look like an Amazon.
I love this purple tribal piece from Forever 21: “Lightweight woven dress features tribal print and pleats at neckline. Sleeveless. Bubble hem. Braided leatherette belt. Fully lined.” Did I mention it is just $21.90? For tweens, pair it up with leggings and you’re school-ready in a flash.
Designer option: If you’ve got a few $$ to spare, why not splurge on this Milly Tribal-Print Halter dress? (CDN $398) I can totally see Miranda Kerr rocking this one.
3. Gypsy Jewelry. One word: bangles. And, you’ll need a lot of them. This season is all about stacking fierce and fabulous pieces in a mish-mash of colours and textures.
Now you could go to a trendy boutique and score a handful for 20 bucks or less, but I actually recommend checking out Etsy for the best in handmade jewelry. Case in point: these lovely Carnival Bangle Bracelets from Black Lodge Jewelry.
In this stack of 16 bracelets (Eight are handmade; eight are thin filler bangles), you’ll find a wild mix of hand twisted metals that have been oxidized for an aged look – plus beads, bells, rhinestones, assorted fabrics, coral and more. Priced at $58, they’re slightly more than your department store grab, but you’ll have the benefit of being the sole owner of these handmade baubles.
4. Bright Backpacks. LOVE this trend! Kids need to sport happy, bright accessories. I just don’t do black, gothic gear…. and neither should a 6-year-old. Make your way on over to American Apparel for a fab selection of basic neon backpacks.
The Kid’s Nylon Cordura School Bag has adjustable straps, just the right number of compartments and 100% nylon construction. Retailing for $39, you’ll have your choice of nine fabulous colour combinations that are sure to brighten up any outfit – especially uniform garb.
Other great places to find colourful bags: check out Walmart, The Children’s Place, Sears and L.L. Bean.
5. Flowered Headbands. The Gossip Girl trend that’s been making an appearance on back-to-school lists for the past five years, it’s simply my favourite pick for little girls everywhere. And, I happen to know where to find the most stunning, handcrafted pieces: Liv and Lily Boutique.
Think hair clips with raw silk rosettes; satin flowers with sweet crystal detailing; stunning organza pieces with hand-sewn, sparkly centers. Then, headbands embellished with sparkling baubles. And, lovely hair ties fitted with Japanese fabric covered buttons.
6. The Jumper. Or sweater, pullover or cardigan; just make sure it’s a fine-knit, and just make sure it’s gray. Then, pair it up with a fitted white tee, faded blue jeans and black casual shoes. Messenger-style man purse is optional.
This H&M cardigan is just $29.95 for men – $17.95 if you want a kiddie version. Other fave places to pick up affordable fashions for men:
Zara – love this Pattered Cardigan
Le Chateau – Cotton Cardigan with Tipping? Yes please.
Banana Republic – my husband needs this Heritage Elbow-Patch Cardigan
Hollister – Grandview Sweater, dorm room anyone?
Tristan – the 7th photo is this Zipped Cardigan w/ 4 pockets
7. Retro Kicks. If you happen to pop by The Vault Store at Vaughan Mills, you’ll feel like you stumbled into a fashion time machine. The latest retro fashion sneakers, limited edition collectable kicks, old school basketball and skate shoes – plus hard to find vintage sneakers fresh from their vault.
“Everything old is new again” has long dominated the fashion circuits – and who would pass on these gorgeous Converse CT Spec Hi Rise? Heck, I think I may want them for myself. Also look for Vans, Air Jordans, Puma Suede and more.
For the young’uns, J.Crew has some gorgeous retro-inspired sneakers and casual shoes.
And that’s it! Seven easy-to-find options that should be at the top of your back-to-school shopping list. For the first time ever, I have school shopping to do – yup, my baby is entering kindergarten this September!