Staying Ahead of the Trends for Back-to-School

Updated: 07/25/2017

Kohl’s trend team always has an eye out for the next big thing

Kohl’s has a team dedicated to tracking trends that influence amazing products like these..
Kohl’s has a team dedicated to tracking trends that influence amazing products like these..

Kohl’s is committed to delivering Amazing Product for our customers and when it comes to Back-to-School, trends play a big role in expressing individuality, no matter what age you are. Kohl’s has a team dedicated to researching trends and working with partners to bring them to life. Based in Kohl’s New York Design Office, this team brings curiosity and passion for all things related to fashion, culture and technology into their work and helps Kohl’s deliver new and exciting product. Sofia Wacksman, Kohl’s vice president of trend, shares what makes her team so unique and what to look out for this Back-to-School season.

How does the trend team find the “next big thing”? Where does your team go to research trend?We constantly stay open-minded and curious - we watch, listen and seek out anything unique or innovative. The team attends cultural events like major music festivals and art exhibitions, and scouts out what's new in major cities across the U.S. and Europe.  We read a ton, research like crazy and are basically obsessed with fashion and the stories it's telling.

How are you using technology to inform trends through data?
Over the last year we've introduced more analytics into our research, combining the art of trend with the science of data. With this new approach, we are able to pull from sources outside of Kohl's to help us identify what the customer is reacting to and deliver a more global perspective to our teams. In the end, we are able to not only identify trends and opportunities in the market, but create take-aways that are data-informed and actionable.

How do the trends you identify work themselves into the product we see at Kohl’s?
We work very closely with the product development teams and buyers at Kohl’s to inform them of what we’re seeing and how they can incorporate the trends in a way that’s unique to each brand. Our Speed model has enabled us to deliver new and emerging trends across categories faster than we ever have before. It’s an exciting time at Kohl’s!

What are some back-to-school trends we should look out for?
For women and juniors some of our favorite trends are denim, especially the denim jacket, special sleeves (sleeves with bells, ruffles or slits), updated sweatshirts along with mixing prints and fabrics.

Any tips on how consumers can incorporate trends into their own look?
Don't be afraid to try something new - trends can be a great way to introduce you to a different silhouette, color or new way of styling.  Always put your personal spin on it and don't force it if it's not your cup of tea. Feeling great in your clothes can really boost your confidence!

Denim is always big for back to school and denim jackets are on trend.
Denim is always big for back to school and denim jackets are on trend.
Special sleeves are a trend to watch for Back to School.
Special sleeves are a trend to watch for Back to School.
Don’t be afraid to mix your favorite prints, patterns and even fabrics.
Don’t be afraid to mix your favorite prints, patterns and even fabrics.
Express yourself by putting your personal spin on your favorite trends.
Express yourself by putting your personal spin on your favorite trends.