Cool Kids’ Back-to-School Clothes That are Cool With Mom, Too

kohls-chapsIt’s back-to-school time already, and you know what that means: Shopping for back-to-school clothes.  If you’re shopping for the younger ones, it’s no big deal.


But, as I recently discovered, shopping for tweens (ages 10-12) is a challenge. You see, what they want to wear versus what I’d like them to wear are two very different things. I may be old fashioned, but skulls on my daughter’s jeans and Led Zeppelin and his graying comrades on my son’s T-shirts are not OK.

There has to be a middle ground—and one that doesn’t break the bank. Here’s what I found:

Kohl’s: Your boys can look like scholarly young men when they return to school with clothes from Kohl’s Chaps collection. Their assortment of cotton polo shirts is unmatched by any other retailer, and at their back-to-school prices, outfitting your boys becomes no-brainer. If collared shirts make your boys itch, Kohl’s has an impressive collection of athletic wear, sporting a number of professional and college team logos in a range of sizes.

Visit for a store location near you.


landsend-yogapant-fleeceLands’ End: Tie dye is alive and well at Lands’ End and according to my 10-year-old, this is “way cool.” Lands’ End has mastered the layered look for fall for both boys and girls. They’ve created a number of separates including these cotton Tie Dye Yoga pants ($18.50). Match the pants with a coordinating short-sleeved T-shirt and this Heavenly Fleece Shawl Collar Top ($19.50), and your daughter will be good to go when the weather cools in September.

The boys’ clothes are equally cute and durable- Lands’ End guarantees all of its items. If a shirt or pants shows wear too early, Lands’ End will replace it.

Visit the Lands’ End Inlet at 7205 W. Dempster in Niles or at Sears’s stores where Lands’ End clothing is sold. You may also visit (watch for free shipping!)



target-bagTarget: Target is bringing back the preppy plaid and argyle for tween girls this year. Coming in a variety of colors, these classic fabrics have a modern edge that will surely please your young stylista. If skirts fail to make your daughter smile, Target has a darling selection of colored denim that is sure to earn you an “Awesome, Mom!” And your daughter can make each outfit her own with a cute belt, necklace or bag from Target’s extensive collection of accessories. I hear the cross-body messenger bags like this Three Laptop Messenger Bag ($27.99) are making a comeback in junior high!

Another tip: Target’s Cherokee jeans are fabulous for boys. With many styles starting under $15, you’ll have money left over for a school week’s worth of cute T-shirts.

Visit for a store location near you.

If you have a favorite place to shop for your tweens back-to-school clothes—especially if it’s a local boutique, we’d like to hear about it in the comments section below or send us a note.