We had a great back-to-school Facebook live chat with zulily Lifestyle Editor Amy E. Goodman yesterday. Thanks for all your questions on back-to-school fashion trends, organization strategies, and tips for getting out the door! 

In case you missed it, we’ve put together a look at some of the top Q&A from the chat.

Q: Amy, what fashion trends are you excited about for this fall? 

A: There are so many fall trends that are GREAT for kids this season. The first is a toss back to the 90s! Remember those years?? Think motorcycle jackets and lots of plaid! Check out this great motocycle jacket HERE and this plaid button-up HERE


Blank NYC D’Hope Faux leather Moto Jacket, Blank NYC Cherry Lips Plaid Button Up Top  

Another out-of-this-world trend that kids are loving this coming season is GALAXY. Imagine stars and planets printed on everything you can imagine from T-shirts to dresses and more! If you have an aspiring astronaut…check out these galaxy leggings HERE


S.W.A.K. Orange & Yellow Galaxy Leggings 

And, for all those Anglophiles, it’s time get your London fashion on! Think puffer jackets and pea coats, trenches and hooded jackets. Such a classy and fun trend: adorable. Great for slightly dressier occasions this fall. Check it out this cute London top HERE


Ben Sherman White ‘London England’ Union Jack Tee

Q: What is a ‘normal’ amount of new outfits to start school with? 

A: Depends on your budget. Getting locked in with the staple items and making sure you have those covered, and maybe peppering in a FEW nice trend items to start is great. So maybe one new thing for each day of the week! 

Q: Are there any preschool/kindergarten essentials we should be aware of for this school year? 

A: One of the trends that will have new tots start the school year with a roar is the Northern Exposure trend. It’s wild and fun with animal prints on T-shirts for example. And you could pair this animal shirt with some great cargo pants. Also remember that clothes get worn very well in those early years — lots of fun play on the playground.

In addition, a great hoodie, sturdy cargo pants that can withstand a lot of wear, sweet cardigans to keep them warm during the weather changes, these are all must essentials! And great tights for gals. 


Micros Olive Flash Cargo Jogger Pants, Urban Republic Cobalt Blue Four-Pocket Zip-Up Jacket 

Q: My 8 year old has decided that homework is the worst thing ever and has started refusing to do it. How can we make it more interesting for him?

A: I hear you! I have an 8 year old daughter myself. First I would suggest having a designated homework station. It doesn’t have to be a big space, but outfitted with some fun school supplies like pens for getting the coloring work done and funky pencil cases that excite him/her.

Q: My 5 year old loves to dress herself…and choose her own clothing. How can I organize her clothing so she chooses pieces that go together? I love her punky bruster sense of style though. 

A:  I LOVE to hear of children who have their own sense of style! And sometimes when they are young, it is great to not so much correct them, but let their style evolve. That said, you can pair a few things together on hangers to give her several hanging examples in the closet of what you think goes — and then perhaps just let her have at it!

Q: Any recommendations for footwear for the early elementary school age? 

A: We’ve got a wide selection of kids’s shoes on the site – perfect for any outfit. Check them out HERE


Clockwise from upper left: Franco Vanucci Boys Wheat Chukka Boot, Kenneth Kole Black Get a Slip Suede Sneaker, LILY of New York Blue and Yellow Patent Quilted Hi-Top Sneaker, Anna Shoes Leopard Vera Flat

Q: My son has to wear a uniform. How do I get him excited about wearing the same thing everyday? 

A:  I know that uniforms can be really tough in terms of personal expression. Perhaps this where you can get to get him excited about his after school attire. And being creative in that space. But even if you have to wear the same thing every day, perhaps your school allows you to be creative with your accessories: backpacks, lunch bags, etc! There are lots of cool options! You can find some back to school supplies with a lot of personality in this event HERE


Munchin Mike Sharpener, International Arrivals Pink and Purple Monster Mouth Pouch Set 

Q: What is the best way to make homework fun? 

A: Here are my top tips to make homework fun! For something like reading, you could have a timed exercise for them to finish a page or paragraph (all dependent on skill level and reading ability) and then add a star to a star chart if completed in the allotted time. With so many stars…then a treat (maybe a fun eraser!). Or for several stars, an outing with mom. It can be more immediate too…like more time to play outside.Food-based treats and rewards have to be dependent on the family of course. In our household, we prefer non-food related rewards! When my daughter improved her math homework attention, I got her a book that she really wanted — and I love that it was an educational reinforcement!

Q: Any tips on buying school supplies? My kindergartener has a list that’s at least $50, not including backpack and snacks for class. Shop the door busters all over town, or not worth the time and stress?

A: I’ve done both routes where I purchased a pre-packed supply that was a fundraiser for the school, and then done it myself. zulily has great deals on school supplies. No lines and no running to multiple stores! Check out this zulily event HERE


Sarget Art 50 Piece Classic Tip Marker Set, Roselle Paper Composition Book -Set of 6 

Q: My 7-year-old loves leggings and won’t wear anything with a zipper or button at the waist. Any ideas?

A: That’s a tricky one! Keep her comfy in what she loves, and think about clothing that has this new trend of decorative hardware sewn onto the clothes — so that’s a way to “get” the look of hardware if YOU want it! i.e. a zipper that’s just for show on the panel of a jacket. Or zippered pockets on boys’ pants.

Q: I am a mother of just one, and she’s leaving me to go to Kindergarten! I am soooo sad.  This is new for both us, and for me being a bit unorganized, what are some tips to make the morning routine everyday easy? I would love to not rush, and to have some time with her before she heads off…

A: So the key for having extra time in the morning, is waking up 15 minutes earlier than you really need to, having some breakfast pre-laid out or cooked (I love slow cooker oatmeal that’s ready in the morning); putting out her outfit the night before so there are no surprises. In addition, contact her teacher before the first day and ask about that first drop off. You’d be so surprised how much great info teachers have that may be insightful about those first moments!

Q: My daughter is long and skinny. What are the best short options that are not TOO short. That seems to be all that’s out there right now!

A: A long legged girl, what a blessing! Look for Bermuda shorts options — they are longer and usually end like above the knee of so, and that is the perfect solution for her! Check out these adorable Bermuda shorts (not too short, not too long) HERE


Crystal Vogue Turquoise Dip Dye Star Shorts, Crystal Vogue Fuchsia Dip Dye Star Shorts  

Q: What about short shorts to wear under school uniform skirts?

A:  With a young girl who adores and basically lives in skirts and dresses all year long, I have to say I take advantage of end-of-summer sales and stock up on shorts for this VERY reason. My daughter knows she cannot hit the jungle gym without her “kick pants.”

Q: What is the best hair accessory to hold hair in a pony-tail?? I put my daughter’s hair up, looks perfect…she comes home from school and its all fallen out!

A: These hair ties have a special knot that helps reinforce the sturdiness of the pony. Ponytails in all varieties — low, high, etc. — are very popular right now! Check out these hair ties HERE


Sweet Ties Hair Ties and Headbands Purple and Blue Summer Tie Dye hair Tie Set, Queen Bee Barrette Orange ‘Be Different’ Hair Tie Set 

Q: With preteen boys, what is the trend for school this season?

A: Look out for some great color-blocking, especially in black against white and also within colors: blue to blue. It’s not too loud and just the right statement for these stylish young men! You can find some great color-blocking for your pre-teen HERE


Red & Grey Asymmetrical Hoodie, dark Blue Stripe Hoodie

Q: We have a tough time getting folders/notebooks to last the year with a rough little boy. Any suggestions?

A: We have this really cute camo personalized folder that might fit the bill!  If you want to reinforce something you already have, I feel you, and consider duct tape bandaging — which is a very popular thing right now. And the duct tapes — you wouldn’t believe all of the fun patterns. With any new folder you can of course reinforce corners and edges of folders and this will definitely help them last longer. I also get folders in sturdy plastic for my daughter. They’ve lasted two years, and a delicate dame she is not!

Q: What is the favorite cartoon character theme this year?

A: Frozen is obviously still white hot right now, but don’t forget about retro throw backs. Personally my son rocks out in his Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle-wear, and he’s 4. You can find all the character favorites for back to school on zulily. Check out the event HERE


Green TMNT Zip Up Hoodie, Brown ‘Curious George’ Zip Up Hoodie, Classic Red Just Minnie Zip Up Hoodie, Pink My Little Pony ‘Lets Have a Party’ Zip Up Hoodie 

Q: Any trends in jackets or raincoats? I always have trouble in those seasonal changes with a coat that can go from hot to chilly.

A: Light puffer jackets! They are great from early fall chillies to colder winter days and they can be layered with a sweater before you start hauling out the major winter coats. Also puffers and quilted jackets this season for sure! Check out this Steve Madden coat event HERE


Steve Madden Olive Quilted Moto Jacket, Steve Madden Black Faux Fur-Trim Parka

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Amy Goodman

As zulily’s lifestyle editor, Amy is a pro when it comes to just about anything a mom could need to know including fashion & beauty, home & entertaining, fitness & family and red carpet.

Amy has appeared on NBC’s Today show over 100 times as well as Good Morning America, CBS This Morning, The View, The Rachael Ray Show, The Talk, CNN, Access Hollywood, ET! and VH1. Amy is the author of Wear This, Toss That! (Atria Books, Simon & Schuster) and has a career grounded in women’s magazines, having been an editor and correspondent at In Style, a senior editor at All You and an editor-at-large for Southern Living and Coastal Living. And she has contributed to countless other publications.

This über-busy working mom cherishes her two kiddos and has a strict policy of keeping it real: e.g., chucking any notion of “balance” out the window and taking conference calls in carpool. Amy practices yoga and is a classically trained Japanese dancer and tea ceremony student. She cultivates an herb garden, makes a wicked guacamole, adores travel and treasures home-cooked meals with friends.

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