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Style files get younger

Style files get younger
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Trendy apparel are no longer just for grownups and youth. With the family size shrinking drastically and lots of disposable income, most urban parents...

Trendy apparel are no longer just for grownups and youth. With the family size shrinking drastically and lots of disposable income, most urban parents are vying with each other to get their kids the prettiest looks in town. Exclusive kids' store are mushrooming at swanky malls and busy shopping areas and parents are on a shopping spree as summer is going to bid adieu soon
Askari Jaffer Even a decade ago, shopping for kids meant that the family discusses the budget, justify the reason and finally choose a fair price shop that gives clothes that last for two seasons (children grow drastically right) and is durable. But now, it is about having the latest in your kid's wardrobe. If United Colors of Benetton has launched something new, it better be on your son this weekend. If it is a new ten-in-one dress which can be worn as a top, short skirt, shorts etc combination, it has to be bought for your daughter.
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Hyderabadi parents of course love to adorn their kids with the latest trends, be it the rough-n-tough look or the sporty look. Both gals and boys are becoming increasingly open to new combinations and dress codes. The buzzing bazaars of the twin cities are never short of stuff that is in vogue and kids want to shop till they drop for their new session! Chic malls like Lifestyle, Lilliput, Hyderabad Central or Shoppers Stop or the numerous roadside shops of General Bazaar, Just for You or Pramodh, the attractive collections are a crowd-puller. Neha Sachar, Joint Managing Director of Kidology, a kid's brand, says, "There has been a dramatic change in the buying behaviour of the 'tween' segment (as children between 8-11 years are called) have adopted the sophisticated buying preferences of their 12 and 13 year-old predecessors. The challenge is to keep it trendy, bubbly and stylish at the same time. An increase in the number of double-income families, peer pressure, global retail formats, and awareness of international brands are key drivers for the growth of this market. The industry is worth Rs 38,000 crore, and growing at a compound annual rate of about 20 per cent to reach Rs 80,000 crore by 2015." In kids wear, comfort is of essence. The best of outfits will never be worn if they are not comfortable. "I buy clothes for my daughter from Lifestyle, Lilliput and Just for You etc. Although the focus is on trendy clothes, I also make sure that the collection is not repetitive. For me, her comfort is important," says Kahekashan Nizam, mother of a four-year-old Naurish.
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"These days, one doesn't need any occasion to splurge clothes. I buy for my daughter almost every month and whenever I find something good. The range goes beyond Rs 1,000 for single dress and Rs 2,500 for a pair, which I feel is reasonable. For a special wedding in the family, I don't mind spending even Rs 5,000. We go to Malaysia, Dubai and Germany very often as my husband has overseas assignments. I found that Hyderabad is the best city to get good kids outfits at a reasonable price," says Kahekashan. "This season is all about mixing and matching comfortable, stylish garments that can be co-ordinated to wear when the weather is still a little cool and or when the sun shines. Classic stripes, soft denim, bold prints and easy-care linen for boys and girls, and sweet embroidered cheesecloth and pastel coloured jeans just for the girls," says Pooja Shah, creative head of More Mischief, a kidwear brand. Rahul Kavirayani, a Class VII student of Delhi Public School, Diamond Point, loves brands and wears US Polo, Louis Phillippe and Sketchers for shoes. He shops in India and in Switzerland where his mom goes for overseas assignments. "It costs me around Rs 4,000 to get the entire look - a T-shirt or a formal shirt, trousers or jeans, fancy bracelets and shoes to match." He shops at Max. Shoppers Stop, Cotton Shop etc. No unbranded stuff our out of fashion outfits for this single child of two working parents. If it is older than six months, off it goes to a younger cousin! Kids' fashion has become serious business and fashion houses are launching the latest trends for enthusiastic parents who are busy skimming through fashion outlets. The coming years seem to be a very promising years for kids' fashion. "It is difficult to find clothes for new born babies and kids up to seven years old, in branded stores. The dresses are expensive � as much as Rs 3,000 for a nice one with comfortable fabric. It is too much to spend on a child who is growing every few months," says Venu Gopal a software engineer. Bina Tantia, a housewife from Kukatpally, says, "There are many stores where we can get good collection. I buy dresses for my son from Big Bazaar or Bony Collection (A kids store in Secunderabad). While buying dress for my son I will make sure to take him along with me, so that he can try the dress, there should not be a size problem." Whereas Rashmi Jain try to go with the trend for her kid, she says, "I always keep an eye on other kids what they are wearing and if I found something new then I buy for my kids. And sometimes the shopkeeper will tell us, "Madam yahi chal raha hai aaj kal" and I buy that." Is it an offshoot of a regular trend? "Kids trends draw inspiration from adult wear to a great extent. So naturally what is hot and happening for men and women transcends into junior wear since most young adults idolise their peers, one of whom are their immediate adults. Many designers don't create separate fashions for kids considering there's not a lot of promotion in that sector apart from one off fashion weeks," says Pooja.
Fashion trend for the year
fashion"Trapeze lines will make its presence prominent on the kids fashion scene. Fluidity of the fabrics will take precedence over all else in 2013. Kids wear will see a burst of colours like pretty pinks, not so mellow yellows, sorbet pastels, metallic shines, navy and icy greys, along with pop neons. Neons and lace are two trends I feel that will stay through the year," says Seema Manney, Hyderabad- based kid's fashion designer.
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