advert

Best Retailers for Back-to-School Kids’ Clothing

Aug06

by

Back-to-School (BTS) season is in full swing. Some of our friends even started school as early as this week (yes, it’s the first week of August). Most of us though are starting or in the midst of our BTS clothes shopping right now. But for the next four weeks, you’ll be hearing about Back-to-School season much like you would Angelina and Brad during Hollywood’s awards season.

I surveyed a half dozen of Alpha Mom’s regular contributors– scattered around the country– about their favorite retail stores for Back-to-School clothes shopping. They are parents of preschoolers and of students in elementary and middle schools. Though our opinions vary, many of us have very similar views on particular retailers and their children’s clothing offerings. Here are our favorite retailers and why.

Where we’ll definitely be shopping for Back-to-School clothing this year

Most popular: Target
Also popular: Children’s Place, Gap Kids, Justice, Old Navy Kids, and sporting goods stores

Favorite Retailer for Discounts and Deals on Children’s Clothing

Winner: Old Navy Kids
Runners-up: Children’s Place and Gap Kids

“Old Navy is great because you can get a lot for your money. Price! And the sales! Nothing beats an Old Navy sale, either online or in the store. One of team members waits for the sales and STOCKS UP.”

Favorite General Retailer Selling Kids’ Clothing

Winner: Target (by a landslide)
We like Target because it’s a terrific value, rates highly for in-store shopping experience, offers very good discounts, and has a nice selection of clothing for boys and girls.

Best Retailers for Back-to-School Clothing
Girls’ Clothing: Chambray Button-down // Girls’ School Uniform // Printed Sweatshirt

Best Retailers for Back-to-School ClothingBoys’ Clothing:  Button-down Shirt  // Henley Tee   // Champion Long-sleeved Tee

“Target is where my family does the majority of our general household shopping, so it’s convenient to check out the kids’ clothing section and pick up whatever the boys need. I like that Target carries a mix of simple basics as well as the licensed character/logo-centric clothing. My kids love getting fun shirts with their favorite characters on them, but I also like them to have some plainer (but still stylish) stuff and I can typically find both at Target. The clothing all holds up pretty well, considering the fairly low price.”

“Target has regular sales, nice athletic clothes–namely Champion–and the clothing department is laid out nicely and not too crammed. It is convenient and easy and my kids know they’ll find something they like. It’s pretty much our go-to clothing store. My only criticism would be that our Target sometimes runs out of various sizes that we need.”

 

Favorite Clothing Retailer with Kids’ Departments

Winners: Gap Kids Old Navy Kids (Tie)
We like Gap Kids and Old Navy Kids because both offer a nice selection of clothes that are very good quality (especially Gap). Their clothing fits very well, and they offer very good sales and discounts (especially Old Navy). It also gets a thumbs up for their online and in-store shopping experiences.

“We love the style of the clothes from the Gap (both myself and the kids) and the quality is great.”

“I like Old Navy because you can get a lot for your money.”

Best Back-to-School Clothing at Gap Kids
Top Row: Rugby slub dress //  Hi-top sneakers  //  Quilted Denim Bomber Jacket
Bottom Row: Cargo Pants  // Baseball Tee //  Ombre Striped Sweater

 

Favorite Department Store

Winner: Nordstrom (Kohl’s is a close second)

Nordstrom scores very high with us on quality of clothing, selection and in-store shopping experience. Main issue is that for most of us, its prices are too high for our BTS budgets.

Best Retailers for Back-to-School Clothing
Floral Print Dress // Skinny Jeans //  Under Armour Heat Gear Hoodie

 

Favorite Retailer for Boys’ Clothing

Winner:Old Navy Kids
Runners-Up: Target, Gap KidsChildren’s Place
We think Old Navy is great for boys because… “The styles and selections offered for boys are very good. These are clothes kids can be kids in — something gets ripped or stained, it’s okay. If something survives long enough to be handed down, that’s great.”

Best Retailers for Back-to-School Clothing
Striper Jersey Hoodie  // Plaid Short-sleeve Shirt  // Boys Shirt & Tie Sets

Favorite Retailer for Girls’ Clothing

Winner: Old Navy Kids
Runners Up: Kohl’s,  Children’s PlaceGap Kids

We really like the selection and fit of its girls clothing offerings.

Best Retailers for Back-to-School Clothing
Rockstar Glitter-Dot Skinny Jeans  //  Polo Dress // Plaid Flannel Shirt

“Inexpensive and trendy. They have the cutest styles.”

“I love Old Navy for girls because they offer cute, trendy styles for a fantastic price. Old Navy is constantly offering discounts so affordable clothes are even cheaper. You can actually go on a shopping spree (and buy lots of items) without spending too much money. Plus, if your daughter ends up not loving one item – it’s no big deal because you didn’t spend too much money on it.”

 

Favorite Retailer for Kids’ Jeans

Winner: Old Navy Kids
Runners Up: Gap Kids (a close second) and Target

Best Retailers for Back-to-School Clothing
Top Row: Rockstar Pop-Color Jeans // Dark-Wash Super Skinny Jeans //  Boyfriend Floral-Print Skinny Jeans
Bottom Row: Boys Super Skinny Jeans //   Boys Straight-Leg Jeans // Boys Pop-Color Skinny Jeans

Favorite Retailer for Kids’ Shoes

Winner: Zappos
Runners Up: Target and Nordstrom

Best Retailers for Back-to-School Clothing

Top Row:   Cienta Kids Shoes // Pampili Fiorela Leopard Shoes // Nina Kid Bronze Shoe
Bottom Row:  Hanna Andersson Nils Shoes //  Bogs Kids Chocolate Shoes // Polo Ralph Lauren Kids Shoes

 

Favorite Retailer for Kids’ Sneakers

Winner: Zappos
Runners Up: Nordstrom & sporting goods stores (Academy, Nike and Dick’s Sporting Goods)

Best Retailers for Back-to-School Clothing
Top Row: Superga Kids // Converse Chuck Taylor Stars // Puma sneakers
Bottom Row: Adidas Originals Dragon // Under Armour Kids Torch Sneakers  //  Puma Kids Suede Straps Sneakers

Favorite Retailer for Kids’ Outerwear

Winners: Old Navy Kids, Lands’ End and North Face

Best Retailers for Back-to-School Clothing
Top Row: North Face Oso Hoodie   // Lands End Expedition Parka //  Old Navy Varsity-Style Fleece Jacket
Bottom Row: Lands End Stormer Jacket  //  North Face Gonzo Insulated Jacket // Old Navy Uniform Windbreaker

 

Favorite Retailer for Kids’ Undergarments

Winner: Target (by a landslide)
Runners Up: Gap Kids and Old Navy Kids

 

Favorite Retailer for Kids’ Fancy Clothing

Winner: Gap Kids
Runners Up: J. Crew Kids and Nordstrom

 

Favorite Retailer for Girls’ Dresses

Winner: Nordstrom
Runners up: Children’s Place, J.Crew Kids and Macy’s

 

Favorite Retailer for Boys’ Blazers

Winner: J.Crew Kids

 

Favorite Retailer for Gender-Neutral Clothing

Winner: Hanna Andersson
Runners Up: Gap Kids and Target
“Hanna Andersson clothes last forever, they still look brand new after a couple of hand me downs. We love the bright colors and general look of their clothes.”

Final Thoughts

I was surprised to see that some popular clothing retailers like H&M, Gymboree, and WalMart didn’t rank well in our survey (and no one brought up TJ Maxx).  In our survey, H&M is most remarkable for decent value for clothing prices; Gymboree was liked for its excellent quality in clothing but we think its a bit too expensive; no respondent had anything nice to write about the back-to-school clothing available or shopping experience at WalMart (ouch).

What are your favorite retailers for Back-to-School clothing and why?

About the author

Isabel Kallman

http://www.alphamom.com
Isabel Kallman is the founding mom of Alphamom.com.

Feel free to send nice emails to isabel[at]alphamom[dot]com.


Subscribe to posts by Isabel Kallman

7 Responses to “Best Retailers for Back-to-School Kids’ Clothing”

  1. Ally Aug 06 at 2:16 pm Reply Reply

    For my daughter I get almost all of her clothes from Carters. She is very very tiny and only wants dresses and leggings. Carters always has great prices on those. For the boys it’s almost solely Gap and Gymboree. I love Gap jeans and they last a really long time. I really want to like Target, but I just don’t. The clothes don’t really appeal to me, and I would much rather shop at small stores. Zappos is definitely the best for shoes. I really like the Pediped brand. 

    • Isabel Kallman
      Isabel Kallman Aug 06 at 2:39 pm Reply Reply

      I was surprised that we didn’t get more love for Carters/OshKosh in the survey.

      Thanks for chiming in with your specific thoughts. Appreciate it!

  2. Jean Aug 06 at 3:33 pm Reply Reply

    When my son was younger (he’s 10 now), I was all about Carter’s and Osh Kosh…especially the outlets.

    Since he has been 6 or so, it’s really Old Navy for pretty much everything, with a side trip to Target here and there.

  3. Bea Aug 06 at 7:46 pm Reply Reply

    I really love Crazy 8 for their jeans. They are the only jeans that fit my skinny-butt daughter (in the slim size) and they usually sell them for $12 at back to school time. I also like their jeans for my boys.

    • Isabel Kallman
      Isabel Kallman Aug 06 at 7:47 pm Reply Reply

      Thanks for chiming in about Crazy 8. I surveyed our writers about Crazy 8 and didn’t get much response about it.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. 5 Of The Best Retailers For Kids - Aug 09

    […] Alpha Mom named Target (NYSE: TGT) this year’s favorite and most popular general retailer for back-to-school kids’ clothing. Cited were overall value, in-store shopping experience, great discounts and selection of clothing for both boys and girls. […]

Follow us on Google+

Close