Press Release

Zulily Launches 2021 Back-to-School Fashion Forecast

July 7, 2021: A New Trend Report and Mom Shopping Guide Informed by Kids

With DIY self-expression and retro styles emerging as key trends, Zulily is helping budding designers’ dreams come true: Six kids will win $6,000 and an opportunity to help design their very own clothing collection for Zulily’s new Back-to-School Shop 

SEATTLE, July 7, 2021 – This Back-to-School season, kids are helping steer the virtual shopping cart with greater influence over parents’ purchasing decisions. For Gen Z, this moment is an exercise in self-expression and personal identity. A new trend report curated by online retailer Zulily – informed by a survey of 1,000 kids nationwide – shows that kids are not just dressing off the rack, they are taking Back-to-School fashion into their own hands with personalization as the lead theme.   

“At Zulily, we’re constantly focused on making Back-to-School shopping easier and more fun for mom – this year, we talked directly to the ones who are helping mom shop – her kids – and got to the root of what’s trending,” said Kelly Staponski, Director of Merchandising for Kids Apparel at Zulily. “Kids are looking to shed the sweats they lived in throughout the pandemic and express their personalities through outfits that invite creativity and spark feelings of empowerment and confidence at school.” 

The 2021 Back-to-School Fashion Forecast  

According to the survey, 99% of parents say it’s at least somewhat important to involve their kids in purchasing decisions when it comes to Back-to-School shopping. Zulily’s 2021 Back-to-School Fashion Forecast put kids in the shopper’s seat to identify three emerging trends that show not just what kids are shopping for, but why 

  1. Movers & Shakers – Kids are using style to help them feel their best, and see style as a means to channel confidence and boost performance at school. Ninety percent (90%) of kids say being able to express their personal style helps them feel more productive at school. Kids also say that fashion has a direct impact on their moods, with happy, confident, and strong ranking as the top moods kids feel when they’re sporting a new outfit.  
  2. Glue Guns & Glitter Bombs – It’s not just about feeling confident, but feeling creative. Kids are customizing their clothes with glue guns, bedazzlers, scissors and more – to create styles that are uniquely them. Seventy percent (70%) of kids say they add personal touches to articles of clothing to make them feel more distinctively special.  
  3. Retro & Reimagined – Retro styles are back (hello mom jeans!), and kids are turning to mom and dad for inspiration. Sixty-four percent (64%) of kids aged 9 – 18 agree that they love retro fashion and it inspires their daily school outfits, and 59% of kids in that same age group say they have raided their parents’ closet for clothing. But they aren’t quite ready to throw it all the way back to the 60s or 70s. Nearly half (47%) of kids say the 2010s were the coolest decade. 

“In addition to apparel, expressing one’s personality impacts trends in Back-to-School accessories and supplies – practical and personalized,” said Sheila Nugent, Director of Merchandising for Kids Accessories and DIY at Zulily. “We’ve seen significant growth in the DIY category over the past year, which is no surprise since kids want to demonstrate their individuality. You’ll see this trend of personalization when it comes to kids’ top three essential needs for school success: new supplies, shoes and backpacks.” 

Inspiring Budding Fashion Designers – A Contest for Kids 

To give kids even more ownership over what they wear – and bring to life fresh, unique new styles inspired by kids for kids – Zulily is launching the Back-to-School #UniquelyZu Contest that will give six kids a chance to be the trend setting inspiration for an exclusive capsule collection.  

Open now through July 31, 2021, the contest calls on parents across the country to submit an Instagram post on behalf of their kids ages 5 – 14, reflecting their child’s unique sense of design and fashion. Six inspiring designs will be chosen to win a $6,000 Back-to-School prize package, and a bonus opportunity for the winning parents and children to participate in a design session with Zulily, providing creative inspiration for an exclusive Zulily capsule collection to be launched in 2022 that will range from swimwear to Back-to-School styles. 

For details on the contest, how to enter, and full terms and conditions, visit 

The Zulily Back-to-School #UniquelyZu Contest and 2021 Back-to-School Fashion Forecast accompany the launch of Zulily’s latest Back-to-School ShopWith millions of unique outfit combinations for kids available to mix and match, the shop invites kids to customize, mix, match and express their individuality like never before. Complete with must-have brands like adidas, Crayola and S’well, the shop will be live through September 15, 2021. 


Survey conducted by OnePoll for Zulily with a sample of 1,000 U.S. parents and their children ages 5-18 in June 2021. 

About Qurate Retail Group

Qurate Retail GroupSM comprises seven leading retail brands – QVC®, HSN®, Zulily®, Ballard Designs®, Frontgate®, Garnet Hill®, and Grandin Road® – all dedicated to providing a Third Way to Shop®, beyond transactional ecommerce or traditional brick-and-mortar stores. Globally, Qurate Retail Group is a world leader in video commerce, among the top ecommerce retailers in North America (according to Digital Commerce 360), and a leader in mobile commerce and social commerce. The retailer reaches approximately 218 million homes worldwide via 14 television networks and reaches millions more via multiple streaming services, social pages, mobile apps, websites, print catalogs, and in-store destinations. Qurate Retail Group combines the best of retail, media, and social to curate products, experiences, conversations, and communities for millions of highly discerning shoppers – bringing joy, inspiration, and humanity to shopping. Qurate Retail Group also curates large audiences across multiple platforms for thousands of brand vendors. Headquartered in West Chester, Pa., Qurate Retail Group has 26,000 team members in the U.S., the U.K., Germany, Japan, Italy, Poland, and China. For more information, visit, follow @QurateRetailGrp on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, or follow Qurate Retail Group on YouTube or LinkedIn.

Qurate Retail, Inc. (NASDAQ: QRTEA, QRTEB, QRTEP) includes the Qurate Retail Group portfolio of brands as well as other minority interests and green energy investments.

About Zulily

Online retailer Zulily helps moms around the world discover incredible deals and fresh style for themselves, their families and their homes. Zulily launches thousands of products at amazing values each day, curating personalized shopping experiences that include apparel and footwear for the whole family, toys, home décor, and so much more. Zulily’s app uses compelling video and imagery to bring more than 15,000 big name brands and boutique finds to life on mobile.

Zulily is headquartered in Seattle, Washington, with locations in Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and China. With expertise in technology, merchandising, creative production, logistics, marketing, customer service, and more, Zulily team members work together to deliver a fun and engaging shopping experience that sparks discovery, connection and entertainment. Zulily has passed millions in savings onto its customers since its first sale in 2010. For more information visit 

Zulily, LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Qurate Retail, Inc.

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