3 Rules for Back-to-School : Functional, Fashionable and Fun

Back-to-school shopping requires research and a well thought out plan to find what’s trending in school supplies and styles.  Parents are often overwhelmed with long lists of educational materials that every school-aged child in the household is expected to have for the upcoming academic year.  Searching for the best deals and making decisions on which brands to purchase can take the joy out of shopping when it should be a time filled with great excitement.  There are so many factors to consider, such as, will the items last the entire school year, will the child love using the products, and will the items be the latest and greatest back-to-school must have?  Every child is unique. Therefore, it’s important to consider three simple rules.  Purchase items that are not only functional but fun and fashionable at the same time.  There are so many options available and there is no rule that says you must purchase everything all at once.  Get creative and revamp old jeans by using inspirations from the latest styles featured in back-to-school advertisements.  Refresh school supplies that still function well and decorate them with your favorite theme, pattern or fabric.  Don’t be afraid to create your own unique back-to-school gear.  If you are still not sure how to create your own style, search the Internet.  There are so many amazing retailers, designers, crafters and artists all over the world that can help you design functional, fashionable and fun school gear.  Here are some of my favorite items for Back-to-School:

(None of the items featured are paid endorsements.)

Custom Graduation Cap Designs

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From high school seniors to upcoming college graduates… I applaud you, Class of 2020!  I am honored to be graduating this year from high school and I’m planning every single moment of this journey by commemorating my academic success through my journals, planners, calendars and custom graduation gear.  There is no limit to the creative ways the graduating class can celebrate this major milestone.  One of the artists I follow on Instagram is @BriaPaints.  She designs and paints graduation cap toppers that are fun, functional, and fashionable. As a performing artist, I think it’s fascinating how Bria Swafford can transform a traditional cap into a graduation cap that’s designed uniquely for the individual. I also encourage every upcoming graduate to design their own cap to make this moment memorable. Come up with creative ways to jazz up your ceremonial gear and trust me, it’ll be fun, fashionable and functional.

Wizard of Oz 3 Piece Journal Set
Back-to-School Supplies
Paper House Productions offers unique stationery products that are fun, functional, and fashionable. I found this set for a great price on Zulily.
Memory Keeper
Happy Memory Keeping
The Happy Planner® is a customizable disc-bound planner system that combines your LOVE for CREATIVITY with your NEED for ORGANIZATION!

The Happy Planner has so many fun, functional, and fashionable ways to document your personal stories.  I love this set because it is a great way to use all those photographic memories on your cell phone to create a personalized story that can be shared with family and friends.

Vision Board 2020 Calendar

Vision board parties have been a huge trend for several years now. For those of you who have no idea what vision board parties are, I’m here to help. It’s quite simple, all you have to do is get some of your friends, meet at one of your favorite spots, and sit down and enjoy learning about each other’s dreams and aspirations. Make sure you have plenty of snacks and supplies for everyone. Your friends can bring magazines and supplies as well to maximize the success of your vision board extravaganza. T F Publishing has taken this concept to the next level with this monthly vision board wall calendar. This back-to-school staple can be used to set goals as an individual, as a family, or as a school club. College students, this item is a must have to keep track of your personal, academic, and financial goals.

Lipstick Shaped Ballpoint Pen

School supplies should be a reflection of the student’s unique personality and interests. This pen set is an item I need to add to my collection of writing tools.  They are fashionable but the colorful pallate serves as a reminder to always put your best face forward.  The functions for this item are endless.  Who would suspect a pen to be inside of a lipstick container?  It may also prove useful as a self-defense tool.

MacBook Compact Mirror

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This back-to-school item is fun, functional, and fashionable for any student. Techies to Fashionistas can all enjoy this one-of-a-kind mirror as they prepare to post their latest selfie or check that every hair follicle is in place before uploading the next video.

Calling All Fashionistas

Betsey Johnson designs functional, fun, and fashionable accessories that every Fashionista can “call” their own.  Have you been looking for the perfect fashion piece to make your look stand out?  Betsey Johnson has so many options for you to choose from.  I’ve been a big fan of this phone bag for quite some time now.  The handset actually works when connected to your mobile device.

Word Hair Clips

Fashion hair accessories are must haves for the 2019-2020 back-to-school list.  They definitely pass the 3 rules for function, fashion, and fun.  Design your own version of these glamourous pieces or purchase your custom hair art from Bling Babes.

Phone Card Holder & iPhone Case

Cell phones are a mainstay and educators are using them to connect and collaborate with their students through apps and other creative mobile teaching tools. Shutterfly can help you create a case and a card holder for your cell phone.  It’s a great way to showcase your favorite photos, quotes, etc.  And if you need to readily access your student ID or credit card, this cell phone card holder is the perfect find.

Remember…Functional, Fashionable and Fun

Back-to-school shopping should be a time to bond with your family and friends.  Have fun designing your own unique styles and searching for the right tools that will help you succeed. There is no right or wrong because fashion is about your individual expression.  I personally love seeing how everyone comes back-to-school and has transformed their looks and styles.  While all these things are nice on the surface, please don’t forget to revamp your mindset, your goals and most importantly take time for self-care.  You are more important than the latest trend.  Trends come and go but the world needs you and all that you have to offer. Just BE YOU!!!

August 2-4, 2019. The 3-day sales tax holiday starts the first Friday in August at 12:01 am and ends the following Sunday at 11:59 pm.

For more information about Virginia’s Tax Free Weekend: https://www.tax.virginia.gov/virginia-sales-tax-holiday

Gabrielle "Bri" Pinkney

I love sharing my love of life and fashion by writing my stories about life experiences and my favorite trending styles.

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