We all know that the end of August brings an obsession with things ‘wooly’ and the exciting task of acquiring school supplies and clothing for the kids.  Parents scour busy stores overflowing with pencils in order to outfit their children for back to school.  Not to worry!  The back to school shopping guide features lots of stylish goodies that can be found online.  In hopes you used a bit of the summer to de-clutter and inventory what you already have, you can fill the holes in your kids’ back to school shopping list with a few of our picks.  We’ve shopped around to find the best supplies, gadgets and funky fashions for your little collegiates.

Back to School Supplies

1.  The Spencer Stainless Steel Bento Box Container: Crafted of stainless steel with a spacious bottom compartment, an interior tray for separating snacks and a snug plastic lid, this is sure to be a winner.  Just make sure you check our our healthy snack ideas when you fill it!  $59   Available at www.potterybarnkids.com

2. Text Bands.  Now kids only have to bump fists in order to pass notes.  The text bands allow the message to appear on a friend’s wrist with a light bump.  You can type up to 10 characters and each band can hold up to 24 messages at once. (Turning the band off will delete all messages).  Now that’s a heck of an improvement from note passing.  Hallmark.com

3.  ABC Sigg Water Bottles are BPA and phthalate free. You can recyclable them at the end of their lifetime, and the nonporous interior lining in the bottles ensures that it remains taste and odor neutral.  Know what that means?  You can put grape juice in it (or something stronger for Mom) on the weekend and send it to school with milk on Monday. www.mysigg.com

4.  Fun, Fictional Flash Drives –  From The Simpsons, Family Guy, and Looney Tunes to skateboard USBs, students can transport files with their favourite characters.  Unfortunately, they do not come with your very own Princess Leah hologram.  You’ll have to hit the rides at Disneyland for that. www.staples.ca

5.  The Madbox from Land’s End is the coolest lunchbox we’ve seen in a while.  Five kids from Madison, WI set out to build a better lunchbox and Land’s End liked their idea so much – they produced it!  It comes with an adjustable ice pack that focuses the cold to the food that needs to stay cold and leaves room temperature food alone.  No more soggy crackers.  www.landsend.com

6.  Who doesn’t love labels?   Mabels Labels has a cool new Tween pack that is sure to delight your kids.  They’ve also got a rock-sold back-to-school pack and even preschool shoe labels.  www.mabelslabels.com

7.  New for the fall, the Native ‘Jimmy’.  From the makes of our favourite summer show comes the Jimmy, just in time for fall.  These durable and funky boots will look great with this season’s signature trench for kids.  www.shop.nativeshoes.com

8.  The Lunchkin reusable sandwich bag.  In Hermes orange, or course.  Wait.  That’s for me.  Well, if you want uber-cute, they’re available in crabs, sailboats, soccer balls and school apples too.  And they’re great for the environment.  And cool.  Need we say more?  www.raspberrykids.com

9.  Any flower-lover would eat every bite out out of this adorable PVC-free grab-and-go lunch purse.  But be careful.  Unless you snag a couple you may have a fight on your hands, as we guarantee you’ll want one too!  I think I may grab one and use it for a funky back tie clutch…  www.lavishandlime.com

Funky Back to School Clothing for Kids

1.  Zutano is like the cherries on top of a banana split.  Fun, colourful, beautifully put together, yet tasty.  For the toddler girl or boy headed to pre-school, there is nothing cuter.  Using fun fabrics like this terry dress, great images (owls and dogs are very ‘in’ we’ve been told) you’ll never lose them on the playground with these unique and bright pieces.  www.zutano.com

2.  Rock the skinnies from the Gap.  Not only is winter white a must-do for the moms, but spring’s fun hues in denim are still around for the kids – girls and boys alike.  Gap does a great job.  For girls, Jewel Box Skinnies come in vibrant hues like coral reef, brilliant blue and electric jade.  For boys, Action Stretch Denim, are designed to move for all-day play.  www.gap.com

3.  Too cool for school.  Joe Fresh gives us some attitude with the Girl’s Biker Jacket $39 and Boy’s Skull Sweater.  And with price points of $39 and $29 respectively, we’ll have some cash left over for a skateboard and fedora. www.joefresh.ca

4.  Land’s End Iron Knee Pants.  WOW.  I experienced this first hand and I couldn’t believe the strength at the knee.  I saw a machine try to rip the knees to shreds and, well, the jeans were outlasting the machine.  These will be the only jeans I ever buy for my boys.  Hopefully someone can do the same thing with nylon stockings someday.  www.landsend.com

5.  Blunnies for kids.  You want to ensure the little ones have the support they need – in the classroom and on their feet.  Treat them to these great and stylish Blundstones.  www.blundstones.com


7.  Mini Boden ensures that the British invasion is coming to a school near you.  Don’t miss the boat with these designs from Mini Boden.  The t-shirts are soft and funky, and boys are not left out like with many other fun brands.  Girls can pair fun leggings with dresses and boys have a ton of layering options to rock the schoolhouse.   www.bodenusa.com

8.  Simply Merino underlayers made from 100% merino wool are soft and cozy.  Don’t let the frost disrupt the learning.  Wearing these awesome layers under clothes, as jammies or (as my kids do) as a base layer for skiing is a must.  And they rock the colour spectrum.  www.simplymerino.ca

Want some computer suggestions?  Here’s our round-up for school-aged children.