Rising Fashion Consciousness & Independent Decision Making in Apparel Choices and Purchases among Young Children Drive the Global Children's Wear Market

The global market for Children's Wear is forecast to reach US$321.6 billion by 2024, driven by factors such as growing exposure of children to media and the ensuing rise in materialism, excessive consumption and impulsive purchases; enhanced role in purchase decisions; growing affluence of parents; and widening range and accessibility of luxury and designer clothing brands.

The global market for children's wear continues to record steady growth led by factors such as improving birth rates, recovering economies, growing consumer disposable income in developing countries, growing affluence of parents, fashion upscale and wider penetration and access to premium designer clothing. The rising trend of nuclear families with lesser number of kids is creating year round demand for children's clothing. Steady increase in women having children later in life, particularly in developed nations such as the US and European countries is also contributing for the growth of children's wear market due to the improving financially stability of parents to splurge on branded merchandise. Over the years, the concept of children's wear has extended beyond comfort dressing to include fashion clothing, which is in line with rising fashion consciousness among parents and children. The rising trend of nuclear families with lesser number of kids is creating year round demand for children's clothing.

Akin to the continuously evolving fashion trends in adults' wear, evolution of trends in children's wear is also a continuous phenomenon. Over the years, the children's clothing segment emerged as an independent fashion industry. Further, growing parental concern about the safety of clothes worn by their children is contributing to surge in popularity of organic and sustainable fabrics that utilize natural resources and are free of toxic chemicals. The segment is currently popular in developed countries/regions such as Europe, Japan, and the United States and is gradually gaining visibility in urban parts of developing countries. Another trend in the children's wear market is the increasing introduction of gender-neutral products. Substantial growth prospects in the market are encouraging leading fashion brands to transition from offering adult clothing to designing children's apparel.

A trend that has been gaining traction lately is luxury brands entering into children's wear segment and making a mark. Boutiques, as alternatives to high-end designer clothing outlets, are becoming increasingly prominent, especially for girls clothing. With the apparel market becoming more overcrowded, retailers are adopting various strategies to differentiate themselves. Some of the strategies include curated offerings, specialist eco-buys, immersive retail experiences, and live video shopping services among others. Rising prominence of plus size clothing for the fast growing number of overweight and obese children is also expected to bode well for the market.

Asia-Pacific represents the largest and the fastest growing market with a CAGR of 7.2% over the analysis period, led by factors such as favourable demographics, development of organized retail infrastructure, growing fashion sense among children and rising awareness over international brands, wide variety of choices in terms of designs and styles, preference for premium apparels among the growing base of affluent middle class population, growing environmental awareness and a parallel increase in the popularity of green designer labels, and increase in the number of fashion shows promoting kids couture.

Key players in the market include Bealls Inc., Benetton Group S.p.A., Carter's Inc., OshKosh B'gosh Inc., Esprit Holdings Limited, Fruit of the Loom Inc., Gap Inc., Gymboree Corp., Hanesbrands, Inc., J.C. Penney Company Inc., Kellwood Company LLC, Kohls Corporation, Macy's Inc., Marks & Spencer, Mothercare Group, Oxford Industries Inc., Phillips-Van Heusen Corporation, Polo Ralph Lauren, Sears Holdings Corp., KMART, Target Corp., The Children's Place Retail Stores, TJX Companies Inc., and VF Corporation, among others.

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