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Smart, classic and wearable. Here’s how to add a touch of dress-up to their style that works for outdoor adventure too
An easy upgrade to the preppy look, chinos are a great addition to a boy’s closet for those moments (particularly coming up to Christmas) when he needs to add a touch of smart. Plus, these are cotton mix which makes them perfect playtime wear as they’re stretchy and (thank goodness) supremely washable.
There’s something about a boy in a button-up shirt that’s just adorable. Whether you choose from check, gingham, plaid or plain, worn open over a plain tee in early fall and, come winter, worn under a sweater, they will look brilliantly smart.
Don’t be afraid of borrowing staples from the school uniform range. Pretty blouses and classic sweaters and cardigans are the epitome of preppy and look great mixed with cool skirts. And, because it’s schoolwear, you get all the added innovations (like non-iron shirts), so they’re super-durable and easy to wash.
Whether it’s a shirt or skirt, tartan is a key addition to the preppy look. But there are a couple of rules to follow: don’t overdo it, one item is enough. And pair with neutrals (grey, black, white) to keep the look sleek. This skirt is actually a skort (a skirt panel at the front over shorts) making it brilliant for tree climbing and handstands.
Polo shirts add instant prep to jeans and they’re just as durable and comfortable as a tee. The secret to ours is the cotton mix which gives them extra stretch, adding to the comfort factor and making them easy to wash and tumble-dry too. Top tip: if he’ll let you, do up the top button to be extra smart.
Timeless, durable and preppy, cord is having a moment in kidswear. It’s a great fall material and this green pinafore is the perfect piece to buy now as it’s easy to layer and will look just as cute in the winter worn over a sweater with tights and ankle boots.
Kids look brilliant in bright colours, but if you wish to keep the look very classic, go for fall shades (navy, deep red, bottle green, mustard yellow and rust). An added bonus: these colours don’t show up dirt as much.
Ballet pumps, monochrome high-top sneakers, plain ankle boots and brogues are the preppy footwear of choice. For your peace of mind our suede shoes and boots are treated so they’re water-repellent, meaning they’ll stay smarter for longer.
Glitter and sequins are too fabulous to leave out of the preppy look, so add in sparkly sneakers, bags, gloves and scarves. If the outfit is simple and classic, like this awesome spotted romper, adding some sparkle won’t stop the look from being smart.
That college style of baseball jackets, cardigans and sneakers with contrasting trim works fantastically on kids. It never fails to look cool and gives their outfit a smarter vibe.
Preppy is a very practical style trend in fall and winter as it’s all about layering, particularly for boys. Whether it’s shirts over tees, cardis over polos or sweaters over button-ups, layering takes their look smart and adds detail. As a general rule, only have a pattern (check or stripe) on one of the layers and keep the block colour neutral – blue, black, grey or white. And layering means you can strip off or add on – very handy for active kids.
Editor: Claire Askew / Creative Director: Tom Usher / Photographer: David Burton at Sarah Laird & Good Company / Stylist: Grace Poulter at S Management / Styling assistants: Liv Burch and Hannah Last / Hair and make-up artist: Rose Angus at S Management using Liz Earle and Kevin Murphy / Hair and makeup artist assistant: Lucy Ridley / Digital technician: Adam Goodison / Lighting assistant: Richard Bartram / Seamstress: Leah Hall at Chapman Burrell / Casting and Production: Amelia Trevette at AT Casting and Production / Models: Isaiah, Jacob, Isla, Aubrey, Ava and Belle at Kids London