The children’s clothing industry is past its pandemic growing pains
The promises of a new back-to-office wardrobe could still be months away (?)
Dopple, a children’s clothing subscription service that raised $ 9.8 million in seed funding in April, saw 2021 revenue increase 5 times over last year, CEO Chao said. Wang at Retail Brew. (She declined to share specific numbers.)
âPeople haven’t had the chance to wear normal clothes, either for themselves or for their children, so it’s the most important thing we’ve seen,â Wang said.
- Dopple has teamed up with Bonpoint, a luxury children’s clothing brand, to add more high-end items to their boxes before school starts for high-end occasions like Photo Day.
- Pajamas and comfort clothing are still popular items, Wang noted, but the category has fallen from its pandemic highs.
One of the benefits of the industry is that parents are constantly shopping for clothes for their children, said Sucharita Kodali, senior analyst at Forrester.
âThere isn’t a lot of high-quality children’s clothing. There are exceptions … but many are not made to last, so they can have low prices, âKodali said. âThe frequency of purchase is higher because children get too big for their clothes, but the size of the children’s clothing market is much smaller than that of adult clothing. “
- Sales of children’s clothing in the United States reached $ 34 billion last year and are expected to reach $ 40 billion in 2021, according to Mordor Intelligence. The overall US apparel market, meanwhile, is expected to exceed $ 523 billion this year, per eMarketer.
The present meets the past: Kodali noted that children’s clothing is now heavily influenced by streetwear, citing Nike, Lululemon and Golden Goose as examples.
Oshkosh B’Gosh picked up on the same trend: the children’s clothing company teamed up with lifestyle brand Kith in September for an exclusive collection. Jeff Jenkins, executive vice president of global marketing at Carter’s (parent company of Oshkosh B’Gosh), described the collaboration as a âclassic and modern partnership,â combining the nostalgic aesthetic of Oshkosh’s workwear with the contemporary design elements from Kith.
- The collection is also part of Oshkosh’s new creative campaign, which targets millennials, who in 2018 were parents to 50% of children in the United States, according to the National Retail Federation.
âWe thought, what better time to launch than when parents are shopping and looking to raise the wardrobes of their babies, toddlers and children,â Jenkins said. âIn order to stay at the forefront of the next generation of parents, we will continue to align with the brands, artists and celebrities who shape the culture. “
Can you keep a secret?
A unique facet of the children’s clothing industry is that styles, for the most part, don’t really go out of style, explain Janie and Jack’s president, Shelly Walsh. (Wang of Dopple echoed the same sentiment.)
That’s one of the reasons the children’s clothing brand, which Gap Inc. sold to Go Global Retail earlier this year, continues to focus on classic styles. He always has his eyes on emerging trends, but they must make sense to Janie and Jack.
âWe take most of our inspiration from trends in the men’s and women’s markets,â Walsh said. âIf you were to go to our online store, you would see that our palettes are very sophisticated and they would line up with the high end women’s brands. We’ll hear a lot of women say, âI wish it was my size. “