The new kid on the block is the first-ever premium and super-expensive 0-12 months baby collection launched by the French luxury brand Louis Vuitton. Interestingly, it created love and hate among different strata of shoppers. Many luxury brands are creating the same unrest in societal strata by launching toddler and baby clothes at over-the-top pricing, which many people think is an absolute waste as children dirty and outgrow clothes every few months.
Many hyper-aspirational brands such as Mary Jane, The Row, run by the Olsen twins, John Lewis among others are routinely launching new portfolios of clothes and accessories for babies and small children, where the prices can be in four-figure dollars and they are still being bought by those who can. With bright blue, orange and pink cashmere items and jumpers from The Row for $800 and £360 monogrammed c shoes, these brands have a brand appeal among those who can and want to buy these products that will soon reach their use-by dates.
Social media influences both children and parents
Although for most parents, childrenswear will always mean affordable and sensible clothing, analysts say kid’s apparel market is expected to grow annually by 2.46 per cent. The concept of letting children be children and dirty themselves in age-appropriate comfortable clothes is now gone, replaced by looking good on social media as a more important mission.
Playdates, playgrounds and social media are now full of parents dressing their children in trendy outfits that include UK brands such as The Bonnie Mob, Another Fox and Organic Zoo and European brands such as Bobo Choses, Tiny Cottons and The Animals Observatory from Spain. Scandinavian countries are leading the bandwagon with unique and sustainable kid-friendly trendy prints of Mini Rodini to smart outerwear brands such as Polarn O, and many others such as Osh Kosh B’gosh, and Emporio Armani.Sonia Rykiel. And Guess Kids among others.
Growing popularity in premium segments
Ad per a Future Market Insights (FMI) study, the children's apparel industry which attained a market revenue of $ 187.29 billion in 2022 is anticipated to reach $ 386.19 billion by the end of 2033,at a CAGR of 6.8 per cent. Developing countries like India and China are now expanding global markets. In the short term of 2023 to 2026, the kid's apparel industry will increase with rising nuclear families consisting of working parents able and willing to spend on premium wear. In the medium term of 2026 to 2029, high exposure to various kinds of social media will boost brand awareness among kids and parents with kids also actively participating in buying decision. In the long term from 2029 to 2033, there will be profits from the rising organized retailers and investors in the market, new brands and more innovative strategies that will highlight the right product assortment, better visual merchandising, focused advertising, and promotional strategies.
Sale of pre-loved kids garments on the rise
Premium garments are also preferred because of the high quality of materials used and their durability over the years. This has led to another new emerging market of pre-loved second-hand children's wear with resale value being extremely high for the premium brands on platforms such as eBay and Vinted.
Better quality brands use materials that are more expensive and durable with better washing and stitching and this can be sold or handed down to family and friends, much more than high=street brands. There has been increased demand for rental and subscription services for occasion=specific dressing from premium shops that offer rentals, such as Arket and Selfridges, new brands for specifically rental clothing for kids and many online brands with pick-up and take-back policies.
Increasing brand awareness about children’s clothes lines, rapid urbanization with well-paying city jobs and increased popularity of the post-Covid e-commerce sector are also supporting the kids' apparel industry. It may not be for everyone, but the industry will still thrive with those who can and will spend on luxury apparels for their little ones who deserve premium all the way through life as morning will show the coming day.