Best Patterns To Wear for the Back to School Season

Best Patterns To Wear for the Back-to-School Season

When the dog days of summer roll around, the scent of a new season starts to waft through the air — sharpened pencils, bag lunches, and playground grass. That’s right; it’s the scent of back-to-school season quickly approaching. Maybe you’ve already gotten the kids set up with their backpacks, pencil cases, and lunch boxes, but who have you forgotten to shop for this year? You, of course! It’s time to find some brand-new outfits to help you look and feel great at every back-to-school activity coming your way.

We’ve got so many ideas for new patterns to try this back-to-school season. Not sure where to start with your shopping? Read on for pattern and color suggestions for your own wardrobe that's ready for the new school year. When you find clothes that work with your style and schedule, you’ll look forward to the back-to-school season.


Fall back to a classic fall pattern: plaid. You really can’t go wrong with plaid for any activity. Plaid wool pants can take you from waving goodbye at the bus stop to making decisions in the boardroom. A plaid flannel shirt can go around your waist at a swimming lesson or around your shoulders at a Friday night football game. A plaid dress can get you through all those recitals, school plays, or band practices.


Floral patterns can take you effortlessly from the first day of school through the first chilly days of winter. Since the back-to-school season starts in August, you’ll want to choose florals that can transition from summer to fall, such as ditsy florals or patterns with muted tones. For example, a tropical print is probably best left for your beach vacations and summer pool parties; however, a top with a muted pattern of wisteria will transition seamlessly. Florals will look especially put together when you opt for a floral maxi dress paired with a medium wash denim jacket and boots.


Much like florals, paisleys are a great transition pattern from summer to fall, particularly given the breadth of colorways available. Opt for richer tones like red, orange, and yellow or magenta, navy, and violet for a moodier color scheme to take you through those crisp fall evenings at back-to-school bonfires or cross-country meets. Pair a paisley cardigan sweater with straight-leg jeans for a casual “Cool Mom” look.

Animal Print

Other patterns that transition nicely from summer to fall are animal prints like zebra, leopard, and cheetah. Known as the “new neutral,” animal prints are here to stay, and they’ll look killer paired with leather, suede, or other classic fall staples. There's no doubt you will stand out from the crowd at after-school pick-up with a bold zebra print dress, a cheetah print long sleeve top, or a leopard print scarf around your canvas tote bag.


If you love a great, classy pattern to wear anywhere, geometric prints are the angle for you (see what we did there?). Whether it’s triangles, hexagons, chevrons, or diamonds, opt for a top or sweater in your preferred pattern to mix and match your other wardrobe staples. Geometric patterns will look especially sophisticated as a sheath women’s dress at your school’s silent auction or fundraiser.


Are you the mom who just wants to bring a smile to all the kids’ faces? Try a novelty print, like dogs, horses, or another kid-favorite theme, and you’ll have all the 7-year-olds gushing over your outfit. Just because you’re going novelty, it doesn’t mean you have to dress like your kid, though. There are plenty of upscale novelty prints that are perfect for your next volunteer shift in the cafeteria or driving all the carpool kids as they sing along to Kidz Bop.

Have we sparked your creativity with all of these ideas for patterns for your back-to-school season wardrobe? With this blueprint, you’ll have a fun, new pattern to wear to all of your school events, from playground duty to the class concert. If you’re ready for a challenge, you can take it one step further and start mixing and matching your new patterns.

All your friends on the PTA will be begging to take your School Style 101 class when they see you strutting your stuff at the next meeting. You can thank us later.


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