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What are the hot back-to-school clothes for teens?

These kids are ready to hit the runways of high school.
These kids are ready to hit the runways of high school.
iStockphoto/Thinkstock

If you want to develop your own personal style, this fall is the time to do it. Fall fashions haven't been this colorful, classic, retro, dramatic, flashy or furry in a while, and whatever you think your personal style happens to be, you won't have any trouble finding a sheer skirt, gilet vest, chubby (but adorable) coat or waxed jeans to show off your best assets.

Jeans are big, but then aren't they always? Skinny, bell bottom or retro jeans in classic denim will get you in the door, but to get noticed, try the new slick, resin-coated jeans in rainbow colors. If you've been working on more than just your tan during the summer months, put some shimmer where your curves are in jeans with divine shine.

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But jeans aren't all that's hot this fall season. There's a whole new world of fashion (and some styles that are making a comeback) for your teen to get his or her hands on. On the next page, we'll tell you what are some of the must-haves, and we even have a few tips about how to style them to make the most of your outfit!

We've given you some hints and suggestions. Now let's look at the styles you're most likely to see when you hit the stores.

  • Pick a color - Some of the big colors for fall are crimson (and luscious ruby), persimmon, marigold, deep green, bronze, plum, gray, copper and sienna.
  • Novelty fur in coats, jackets and tunics - They can be long and shaggy or plush and realistic, but your wardrobe won't be complete without at least one faux fur accessory. If this one doesn't appeal to you, even a wool coat or jacket with a removable fur collar will work.
  • Retro prints in patterns and colors from the 1960s and 1970s - If you like orange, green, brown and aquamarine in swirls, flowers and simple geometrics, you'll be right at home.
  • Animal prints - They look so natural and they're easy to incorporate effortlessly into your dressing. Use them in tops and accessories if looking like a big cat on the prowl seems a little too obvious for you. Hint: If you want an outstanding accent, pair snakeskin with an otherwise neutral outfit for a fierce bite.
  • Big knits in sweaters, coats and vests - By big we mean thick and with a large weave. You'll probably be able to find flat knits, but the look here is bold and fluffy. If you've ever missed your favorite fuzzy blanket, this cuddle-up was made with you in mind.
  • Lots of dots in everything from handbags to jewelry - They'll be soooo prominent in stores this fall that you'll be seeing dots in your sleep. Oh, sorry -- those are your new sheets.
  • Tunics with pants - Tunics are definitely in this year. Paired with pants and a lacey top, they are a safe but definitely elegant choice.
  • Dramatic layering - This isn't sloppy styling. It's a pulled together look that coordinates prints, colors and textures to show off your wardrobe smarts. Buy quality layering pieces like scarves and vests, and make them count.
  • Large- and small-scale plaids (sometimes mix and match) - This isn't Professor McGonagall's tartan plaid coat. These plaids are bright and vivacious.
  • Ponchos and capes - In knits and fine outerwear fabrics like wool and cashmere, capes, cape coats and ponchos have a wonderfully fluid silhouette you'll love. They can also be totally comfortable and look energetic and graceful.
  • Statement coats - Long and slenderizing, these coats look like they cost a fortune -- and sometimes they do. With wide-legged pants (another of this year's trends), or a kicky short skirt, they look spectacular.

It's a new year, and one nice thing about going back to school (yes, there is something good about it) is that you can reinvent your style. Retro, preppy, edgy and classically elegant are all great looks for back to school this season, and one of them is bound to fit the new you.

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Sources

  • Cruz, Clarissa. "Legends of the Fall." JCK. 5/2011.
  • Dykes, Daniel P. "Fall 2011 Colour Trends: Autumn / Winter 2011." Fashionizing.com. (7/5/11). http://www.fashionising.com/trends/b--fall-2011-colour-trends-Autumn-Winter-2011-5509.html#clothing
  • Elle. "Fashion Week: Fall 2011 Trend Report." 3/17/11. . (7/5/11).
  • Elle.com. "Fashion / Trend Reports - Fashion Week: Fall 2011 Trend Report." 2/23/11. (7/5/11). http://www.elle.com/Fashion/Trend-Reports/Fashion-Week-Fall-2011-Trend-Report
  • Kelltner de Valle. "View." Teen Vogue. August 2011. 71-80.
  • Lanphear, Kate. "First Look." Elle Fashion. July 2011: 49-139.
  • Moore, Booth. "Five Big Fashion Trends for Fall. Los Angeles Times. 3/15/11. (7/5/11). http://www.vancouversun.com/life/Five+trends+fall/4442302/story.html
  • Slowey, Anne. "Lady Killers." 5/25/11. (7/5/11). http://www.elle.com/Fashion/Trend-Reports/2011-Fall-Trends-Ladylike
  • YouTube.com. "Fall Fashion Trends 2011." Teen Vogue. (7/5/11). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VIBU4hp4jfA
  • YouTube.com. "Vera Wang Fall 2011 Collection at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in New York." 2/15/11. (7/5/11). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NbG8RNOECt4
  • YouTube.com. David Jr. "2011 Nyc Fall Fashion Week + 3D Fashion Shows." 2/16/11. (7/5/11). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1tgo-ecvrWA

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