Fall 2016
Tyke Trends By Zeke Jennings

Baby product buyers gravitating toward soft colors, pastels

If you carry products with children’s names printed or embroidered on them, it’s important to have a well-rounded and up-to-date selection. While stalwart names like Michael and William remain popular, the trendy baby name list tends to change rapidly. We checked in with NameBerry.com, which tracks such information, to see what’s trending this year to help plan your stock for the coming years.


  1. Ezra
  2. Asher
  3. Atticus
  4. Declan
  5. Oliver
  6. Silas
  7. Levi
  8. Milo
  9. Jack (or Jackson)
  10. Jasper


  1. Olivia
  2. Amelia
  3. Charlotte
  4. Ava
  5. Isla
  6. Arabella
  7. Aurora
  8. Adeline
  9. Eleanor
  10. Penelope


— NameBerry.com

Acquiring a fashion sense usually comes after things like potty training and eating without a bib in a child’s development. However, the ideas of parents and grandparents on how baby should look and play are already in the works even before they come home from the hospital.

The Classic Andover Bear comes in an artistic ABC block gift box.
The Classic Andover Bear comes in an artistic ABC block gift box.

Insiders from companies that make clothes and toys are for babies and toddlers provided some insight as to what new parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles are seeking for tots these days.

Q: What are the hot colors for baby clothing, accessories and toys?  “The palette for baby clothing and accessories is definitely trending softer and more neutral — soft pinks and blues, grey, and cream. Grey is definitely the new gender neutral.” — Ellen Fruchtman, director of public relations, Mud Pie

“Pink, blue and white are the safe colors that you will usually find in most collections. The hot color combination for right now is black and white with pops of gold, similar to the home decor trend.” — Jennifer Newman, product designer, Manual Woodworkers & Weavers

“This year, you’ll see more emphasis on pastel colors, as well as soft vintage palettes. That’s colors like dusty rose, light jade, soft pinks and golds.” — Nadine Avola, SheKnows.com

“As a company we focus on play value and bright colors with high contrast, which have always been and continue to be in style, as well as natural companions to children. Over time we have consistently added products made of different materials to broaden our appeal. For example we started with, and still use natural materials such as beech wood, and have expanded to innovative silicone and safe plastic rattles which allow for diversity in design and hygiene.” — Andrea Elliott, HABA USA/Habermaass Corp. Inc.

“This fall, I would say dustier pinks and purples for girls. For boys, earthier tones and more muted blues.” — Anna Schwengle, founder, Finn + Emma

Q: Are baby and infant color trends typically the same as adults and teens? “There is a distinct difference between our children’s apparel and our women’s fashion. Our kids collection tends to be softer and sweeter — pinks, blues, grays — or whimsical with detailed appliques and brighter colors and prints. Our Women’s Fashion tends to be print driven or neutrals with pops of color.” — Ellen Fruchtman, Mud Pie

“I think that in baby fashion, we definitely get inspired by the general feel and color of the adult market. Other than that, however, we are in our own little world when it comes to trends.” — Anna Schwengle, founder, Finn + Emma

“Baby and Infant color and design trends are not much different from adults and teens anymore. I find more parents want to dress their children with more trendy looks. I also see a lot of ‘Mini Me’s’ walking around with their parents. The Parents and the children will wear similar clothing.” — Jennifer Newman, Manual Woodworkers & Weavers

“Designers have decided that kids deserve not only comfortable but also stylish outfits. The materials from which it is proposed to sew fashionable kids clothing, accessories and used trends looks like they’re copied from adult magazines.” — Dress-Trends.com

Left to right: Orange Twist's "Peanut" organic cotton baby one-piece is made in the USA and screen printed by hand with eco-friendly, phthalate-free ink. BooginHead's Blanket Grip attaches to any stroller to keep your baby's blanket off the ground and clean. Gray Quatrefoil anchor leggings from Doodle Pants fit diaper-bottomed tots perfectly

Left to right: Orange Twist‘s “Peanut” organic cotton baby one-piece is made in the USA and screen printed by hand with eco-friendly, phthalate-free ink; BooginHead‘s Blanket Grip attaches to any stroller to keep your baby’s blanket off the ground and clean; Gray Quatrefoil anchor leggings from Doodle Pants fit diaper-bottomed tots perfectly

Q: Are any animals particularly popular right now? “Rhinos, hedgehogs and foxes are popular right now in baby/toddler toys, gifts and clothing.” — Jennifer Newman, Manual Woodworkers & Weavers

“Dinosaurs always tend to top the list. Farm and zoo animals are always popular with children.” — Andrea Elliott, HABA USA.

“Zoo animals such as elephants, giraffes and zebras are really popular at the moment.” — Anna Schwengle, founder, Finn + Emma

“Elephants, giraffes and puppies are perennial favorites, as are mermaids, sharks and alligators. We are also seeing a resurgence of classic farm animals designed with a vintage cottage feeling.” — Ellen Fruchtman, Mud Pie

Q: Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers? “Moms are definitely looking for more modern and sophisticated colors and prints. There are plenty of cute ducky prints on the market, but not a lot that is more modern and fashion-forward. Also, moms are increasingly more eco-conscious and look closely at where products are sourced. We work hard to create an organic and sustainable collection of apparel and toys for the baby market that is non-toxic and ethically-sourced.” — Anna Schwengle, founder, Finn + Emma

“(There is) a trend toward hand-drawn, painterly prints versus bold, graphic prints.” — Ellen Fruchtman, Mud Pie

“Play is about developing the brain to be STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) prepared, so it is playing with the simplicity of things like blocks, games, puzzles and construction toys. Some refer these to these as ‘old-fashioned toys,’ simple toys, battery-free or unplugged. STEM toys develop the parts of the brain that will help children to excel in school and in life.” — Andrea Elliott, HABA USA

“I have found that the animal theme that was so popular for years in nurseries and toddler bedrooms has been replaced by color themes with pop of animals. Plush animal heads are still hot in nursery/toddler room decor.” — Jennifer Newman, Manual Woodworkers & Weavers


Zeke Jennings

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