We've arrived at the time of year when parents everywhere are scrambling to find the clothes that didn't get destroyed over the summer, still fit, and are still liked by the kids who wear them. Which often leaves you with...not much. Back to school shopping just got a little easier thanks to Bergen County's kids boutiques, which offer styles and accessories kids -- and their parents -- love.
With the bulk of last year's school being done remotely, for many kids, that meant waking up to put on sweats and T-shirts (if they got dressed at all!) Now, soft and comfortable clothes are still all the rage -- with a bit of a fashionable upgrade. Look for soft and stretchy fabrics, matching jogger and loungewear sets and colorful activewear to complete the comfort chic look.
First Day Fashion
As the saying goes, when you look good, you feel good. For that special first day of school look, kids can stick with the idea of cozy fashion and take it up a notch. Skorts (shorts in the back, skirt in the front) in soft jersey material with stretchy waistbands have made a comeback, and are an easy way to stay comfortable while dressing up their look a little. For boys, skip the joggers on day 1 and dress them in denim, available in stretch material and a tie-dye T-shirt for added comfort.
Where to find: Ginger N' Cream Kids & Tweens, 351 Center Ave., Westwood
Don't forget one of the most important parts of any outfit -- the shoes. A trendy and comfortable pair of sneakers is the perfect accessory to complete a look. For crisp sneakers to pair with that first day of school style (see: above), don't miss out on Westwood's newest sneaker shop for the latest super sweet kicks your kids will covet. Carrying both youth and adult sizes, it's a shopping stop the whole family will appreciate. Now you can truly walk the walk.
Where to find: Private Room, 58 Westwood Ave., Westwood
Sustainability and Nature
The eco-conscious attitude is growing, and now reflected even more in kids' fashion and accessories. Companies are using more recycled materials and increasing awareness of how garments are made, as well as creating themes around the idea of nature and earth, such as earth tones and space themes. Speaking of sustainability, skip the brown bag and invest in a sturdy lunch tote and stainless steel water bottle for snacks and lunches to easily be carried and cleaned.
Where to find: Pumpkin and Bean, 55 N Dean St., Englewood
Mask life will still very much be a part of your child's school experience to start, so let them pick a fun style that reflects their personality. From sports- and game-themed masks to tie-dye and paint splattered, your stylish kid can don a face covering that perfectly pairs with their looks. Mask chains are also a worthy investment for lunch and snack time, recess and outdoor times during the day when the mask can be removed. Chains can be personalized or made to look like a necklace.
Where to find: Marcia's Attic for Kids, 29 N Dean St., Englewood
Getting dressed during fall's in-between time can be tricky, so it's all about the layers. Add some style-sense to your kid's look and help them stay warm as the weather cools with a bomber jacket or biker jacket, both of which are making a trend-setting appearance this year. Your kids will look so chic you may just want one for that mommy-and-me look.
Where to find: Zara and H&M, American Dream, 1 American Dream Way, East Rutherford
Jazz up your kid's school style with the IT item of the moment: fidgets. Look for Pop It keychains to attach to backpack zippers, Pop It hand sanitzer holders, and Pop It pencil cases. For the computers that your child will likely be transporting each day, keep them stylishly safe with a laptop sleeve in trendy designs such as camo and tie-dye.
Where to find: Denny's, 34 East Ridgewood Ave., Paramus
Picture Day Perfect
Match those adorable smiles with stylish duds for the perfect picture day shot. Avoid brights and neons and opt for rich colors such as deep reds, greens, purples and blues. Subtle prints can add some interest without being distracting, and be sure to avoid anything with words! Dress up a sweater with a fun mini skirt or look for subtle stripes.
Where to find: Eat Your Spinach Children's Boutique, 42 E. Ridgewood Ave., Ridgewood
Mixing and Matching
The rules really are this year there are no rules, and it's all about embracing individual style so kids feel confident in themselves and expressing who they are. Oversized sweatshirts can be paired with ruffled skirts or cropped cardigans with lace-up leggings and a cool pair of sneakers. Boys can pair tie-dye with mix and match patterns or mix neutral color tones with a denim jacket.
Where to find: Reform Kids, 15 Broadway, Cresskill