Top Kids Fashion Trends for Back-to-School

Find out what southeast Michigan retailers have to say about this year's kids' fashion trends and coolest back-to-school outfits.


It’s almost time for that phrase that parents either love or loathe: back-to-school.

Whether your family is stretching out every last bit of summer fun or ready to embrace the return of the school-year schedule, shopping for back-to-school outfits is probably on your list of things to do this month.

Fortunately, this aspect of back to school can be fun for everyone. Wondering what the kids’ fashion trends are this year? We asked some local retailers for advice on keeping your family fashion-forward this fall. Here are the clothing trends they recommend.

1. The bohemian look

Girls will see a lot of bohemian-style choices in stores for back-to-school again this year, says Denise Kort, owner of Connie’s Children’s Shop in St. Clair Shores. The boho look includes features like flowy fabrics, ponchos, lace or fringe in taupes, browns, and khaki.

“I’m starting to get all of my fall merchandise in (the shop) now and that Bohemian look is definitely still in for girls,” she says.

2. Plaid is rad for boys

Boys can’t go wrong with a plaid button-down this year but for girls this trend is on it’s way out.

“I don’t see plaid as much this year,” she says. “I’m still seeing it for boys but not for girls.”

3. A straight-forward choice

The ultra-skinny jeans you’ve probably seen in recent years aren’t as common this year, Kort says. Instead, straight leg is always a good choice.

“The real skinny isn’t as popular as it used to be,” she says. “You can never go wrong with the right pair of jeans that you can always pair with anything.”

And ripped jeans are back in style, too, according to Kort.

4. Stand-out slacks

Another trend you might notice for kids this fall is brightly-colored pants for boys.

“If they’re going to wear a navy blue blazer and white dress shirt they might put a red pair of pants on. That’s different but they’re definitely showing that now,” Kort says of designers.

However, she’s seeing more muted colors choices, like mustard and cranberry, this year.

5. Shoes on point

After a summer in sandals, parents and kids are usually looking for a solid pair of sneakers to start the school year.

“Shoes that have lots of arch support is always a trend every year, Leeann Grunland, manager at Goody Two Shoes in Northville says.

Stride-Rite and New Balance are coming back in style this year, along with the new up-and-coming brand, Tsukihoshi (ski-hoshi), in bright colors for boys and more understated colors for girls.

“Bright colors like red and orange are huge for boys,” Grunland says.

Meanwhile, for girls, hunter green, dark purple, nave and rose gold have become widely popular.

6. Vest for the weather

Quilted vests and other layering pieces are classics for fall – and a great layering staple for the changing weather. The 2017-18 school year will remain true to this look with styles for back-to-school including bright colors, winter vests and more.

7. A smiley trend

Possibly the most LOL-worthy trend returning this year? “Anything with emojis,” Kort says.

You’ll find a variety of options to choose from that fit in this trend — from emoji graphic tees to sweaters, pullover tops and even jeans.

This post was originally published in 2016 and is updated regularly. 

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