Kids don't want to be cute; they want to be cool. What do their parents want? In a word: value. Both parties should be happy with this season's kidswear collections. Not only does kidswear sport edgy freeride looks, but the fabrics and features that adults have come to expect can be found on these pint-sized versions as well. Here's a look at what's hot and priced right for kids in 2002-03.
Betty Rides introduces a collection of clothing for girls age 5-14. The Rainbow parka is the heavyweight of the group, lined with 400 grams of shearling fleece. The Daisy jacket is lined with microfleece and has 80 grams of fiber-flex insulation. The Butterfly is insulated with 120 grams of fiber-flex material.
A maker of performance cross-country gear, Bjorn Daehlie uses the same quality to provide kids' clothes for all conditions. The youth line includes microfiber jackets and pants, polyester anoraks, microfiber tights, and even Lycra racing suits for those with Olympic dreams.
Black Diamond Sportswear
Choices for toddlers have expanded, including a new rear-entry jacket for additional warmth and convenience. The Lizzie jacket is new to the Preschool collection. The kids' line also benefits from an abundance of fabric choices, including new chenille heathers and prints in selected styles.
Burton aims for a somewhat more mature style in its kids' line for 2002-03 while incorporating the same fabrics, features, and insulations used in the collections for young adults.
New corporate parent Black Diamond Sportswear presents Cherry Tree as a kids'-only collection that is as much at home on the slopes as in the schoolyard. New jacquard and chenille designs help accomplish a crossover look. Girls benefit from the new Ice Princess collection, featuring exclusive Glenoit fabrics. Boys get more choices via a bigger selection of fleece and outerwear silhouettes for all age groups.
Bright colors and pieces tailored to each gender define the Columbia collection for 2002-03. Jackets are more tailored in the shoulders and smaller at the hem. For girls there are also fitted silhouettes that taper at the waist. The youth collection features bright, bold colors: blues, greens, and grays outfit boys, while purples, blues, and greens complement girls. The Jr. Glacier parka returns fully loaded.
Freeriding style and a new fabric provide Descente's junior collection with the performance of skiwear and a streetwise flair. The Junior Ox fabric is windproof, lightweight, and rustle-free-but offers 5,000mm of water resistance. Many youth jackets are replicas of those in the adult Performance Sport and DNA lines and offer some of the same great features, including powder skirts and critical seam sealing.
Four distinct collections give little girls, little boys, junior girls, and junior boys plenty of cold-weather clothing options. Little girls' collection styles include the Mush parka, with faux-fur collar and embroidered trim, and the Princess, with floral braid highlights. The Carver collection for little boys sports a racing theme, with bold primary colors and slick stripes. The Flirt collection offers finicky junior girls a wide selection of gear. The line is inspired by ready-to-wear fashion and incorporates stud trimming, quilting, and floral braiding. The line also has influences from Fera's women's collection. The Bamboo collection for junior boys moves out of the dark with brighter Alpine colors and more European styles.
Jolly Tundra/Jolly Kidz!
New materials and designs help the Jolly Tundra/Jolly Kidz! Collection stay focused on kids' comfort. The 2002-03 line looks like it's made of wool flannel, but the fabric is really a polyester/acrylic microfiber. Gls get faux-fur trim on a red snowflake print; boys get a surfaced-textured stallion print trimmed in red plaid. The garments are sized from infant through 14-16.
This Golden, Colorado-based kidswear company offers everything from fleece for kids aged 3-9 months to outerwear for 14 year olds. Molehill was recently named the official supplier of children's fleecewear to the United States Olympic Committee. The Look of the Team 2002 line is designed to emulate the look of U.S. athletes and all are embroidered with the Olympic rings and the USA 2002 Look of the Team logos. Part of the proceeds from sales will go to the U.S. Olympic Team.
Through its Freeride line, Phenix gives kids the chance to dress like team riders Jonny Moseley, Evan Dybvig, and the "three Philippes." New features include 2,000mm polyester oxford-stretch fabric, which allows for water resistance, breathability, and mobility. Smaller snow sliders, and their parents, are served by the return of the Suku-Suku line. A built-in drawstring system allows for eight inches of growth without sacrificing looks. All lines are available in sizes 6-20.
Innovation isn't just for grownups at Obermeyer. One new style, Cobra ($140), converts with ease from a jacket to a vest thanks to zipoff sleeves. The new Jet pant ($100) has contrast topstitching, visually accentuated articulated knee design, and a great fit enhanced by a partially elastic adjustable waist. Bold colors for boys (vivid blue, bright orange, true red, sunflower, black, charcoal) and brights for girls (key lime, sky blue, white) give the unisex styling clear distinction.
Obermeyer's three preschool groups (Alt 2, OBX/Obercross, and Kaleidoscope) are distinctly positioned for young boys and girls in terms of style, design, and color. The boys OBX/Obercross line ($99-$125) is tough and bold in character. Kaleidoscope ($99-$135) for little girls offers a mix of prints, faux-fur trimmed hoods, and even a grown-up-style faux-fur vest. Alt 2 ($89-$115) is a sporty, versatile unisex collection that comes in separate colors for girls and boys.
Knowing that kids don't always like to be treated like kids, Spyder simply makes its adult jackets smaller. The featured garment in the Kyds line is the USST jacket, which pairs Thinsulate insulation with XT waterproof coating and Spylon water-repellent finish to keep the wearer warm and dry. For the youngest winter-sports enthusiasts, Spyder Kyds has Itsy Bitsy (for girls) and Mini Moe (for boys). Garments feature the "Small to Tall" grow cuff to allow for more than one season of wear.
The Stardust girls line from Cold as Ice follows the motto "Little Girls Who Think Big, Go Big!" This year's Queen of the Hill collection offers two new lines, Glam Girl and Tom Girl. Both share a textured, rugged shell consisting of dobby woven nylon with a 2,000-mm waterproof coating and features such as heart or camo-themed pile linings, floral or rhinestone tapings. All pants have grow cuffs, interior rubberized elastic snow cuffs, and adjustable waists.
All Sun Ice garments are waterproof and come with a Teflon DWR coating. A brighter color palette for girls includes shades such as candy stripe and citrine, and colors for boys include dusk and heartbeat red.
Since 1979 White Sierra has offered quality adult outerwear at value prices.The company plans to freshen up colors for 2002-03. The kids (size 4-6x) collection includes four jackets, one pant, and two bibs (one for boys and one for girls.) Three-in-one system jackets for youths include a waterproof-breathable shell with zipout fleece liner and come in muted earthtones like flint, fools' gold, twine, fatigue green, and steel blue.