No longer behind the scenes, today’s generation of celebrity children — from Prince George to North West to the Beckham boys — are splashed across magazine pages and blogs, seen at high-profile events and runway shows and featured in major fashion campaigns.
These famous youngsters and their parents wield formidable power, which is helping to fuel a booming children’s-wear business that’s forecast to top $290 billion in sales by 2018, according to the Global Industry Almanac on children’s wear.
With today’s ever-present paparazzi and social media machines humming, the public now has a voyeuristic window into the gilded world — and wardrobes — of these globe-trotting kids.
Here, FN spotlights nine style influencers and reveals how key footwear brands are capitalizing on their fame.
When your parents are headline-generating Kim Kardashian and Kanye West, you’re practically born in the spotlight.
Since her arrival in 2013, North has had the world watching her every move. And she’s already getting quite the fashion education.
For her first Christmas, the 18-month-old was showered with designer swag, including custom Hermès, Céline and Giuseppe Zanotti shoes.
Last fall, she attended her first Fashion Week in Paris, sitting in the front row with her mom at Givenchy. And little North reportedly has her own personal stylist.
Spotted in: Earlier this month, aunt Khloé Kardashian posted an Instagram of North West in Charlotte Olympia’s Kitten slippers from her Incy line. The trendy toddler has stepped out several times in Timberland boots, including a custom-decorated pair.
It factor: “North has an edgier baby style, which appeals to the more alternative moms. She’s never in pink,” said Bonnie Fuller, editor-in-chief of Hollywoodlife.com, owned by FN’s parent company, Penske Media Corp.
“Kim has said that she likes black and darker colors. She doesn’t like girly stuff.”
In her free-spirited flair, Honor takes after her well-dressed mom, Jessica Alba. The 6-year-old manages an interesting mix of high-fashion and everygirl style. With her ever-changing look, she’s become a barometer for the latest kids’ trends.
And it’s not all pricey designer pieces for this Hollywood kid: Honor takes a high-low approach, wearing brands from Gap to Gucci.
Spotted in: Dr. Martens boots are a favorite of Honor’s, and she often pairs them with dresses to add a little edge. She also has a collection of Converse sneakers in a rainbow of colors.
It factor: “What’s great about Honor is that you might see her in a feminine dress from Armani one day and then the next day in a rocker look from AllSaints,” said children’s wardrobe stylist Natalia Caver.
“That’s what draws the attention of parents who follow her style. Many of them don’t want a girly girl 365 days a year. They prefer to mix styles, allowing their daughters to experiment with how they dress.”
The offspring of one of Hollywood’s most fascinating and scrutinized marriages, Suri has sparked plenty of controversy with her precocious, grown-up style.
By age 3, she was seen regularly in kitten heels, with mom Katie Holmes [Suri’s dad is Tom Cruise] commissioning custom-made pairs from Christian Louboutin, Roger Vivier and Marc Jacobs.
The web is filled with tribute blogs devoted to dishing on Suri’s style moves. Many even credit the 8-year-old with triggering the mini-me trend that’s so prevalent in kids’ fashion today, dubbing it the Suri Cruise effect.
Spotted in: Ballet flats are a staple for Suri, who seems especially smitten with her cherry-red Viviers. The trendsetter has also worn Toms slip-ons in several colors and patterns.
It factor: “What’s interesting about Suri is that she has [shifted to] a much more down-to-earth lifestyle since her parents’ divorce, and her fashion sense reflects that.
“Instead of wearing $500 shoes and carrying $1,200 purses, which is something we saw when her parents were together, she has become just like any regular young girl, dressing in feminine, fun, wearable clothes,” Fuller said.
TABITHA AND MARION BRODERICK
Sarah Jessica Parker’s love affair with shoes has been well-documented, both on screen and off. So it’s no surprise that the “Sex and the City” star’s twin daughters, Tabitha and Marion, have major footwear collections of their own.
Often seen around New York walking to school or getting ice cream, the 5-year-olds turn heads in everything from colorful rainboots to glittery ballet flats.
And while many celebrity kids are dressed well beyond their years, Parker, who is steadily growing her namesake footwear line, styles her girls in a refreshingly whimsical way.
Spotted in: The twins have been seen several times in coordinating pairs of Ugg Australia’s butterfly-print Bailey Button boot. For rainy days, the Broderick girls often wear Stephen Joseph’s printed rubber boots.
It factor: “Marion and Tabitha always dress cute and comfortable and completely appropriate for their age and season,” Caver said.
“They are a perfect example that you can choose different [rather than matching] outfits for your twins, even by just changing the color of the same piece. Like most girls, they love shoes and accessories and [use them to] explore their own individual style.”
Since her breakout performance in “Beasts of the Southern Wild,” which made her the youngest Academy Award Best Actress nominee, Quvenzhané has taken Hollywood — and fashion — by storm.
In her many red carpet appearances, the 11-year-old has demonstrated the right balance of movie-star glamour and down-to-earth style, making her relatable to her young fans.
The fashion world has taken notice: Last year, Armani named Quvenzhané the face of its Armani Junior children’s label.
Spotted in: Converse kicks are a go-to for the “Annie” actress, both on and off the set. For dressed-up comfort on the awards-show circuit, the Armani spokesgirl opts for the brand’s ballet flats.
It factor: “Quvenzhané is so talented, despite her young age,” designer Giorgio Armani said when the young star was tapped for the brand.
“It’s for this very reason that I wanted her to be the face of Armani Junior. With her unstoppable energy, [she makes] the clothing come alive, interpreting it in her own singular way.”
Arguably the most famous child in the world, Prince William and Kate Middleton’s 18-month-old son has single-handedly boosted the luxury children’s-wear business, sparking a shopping frenzy every time he steps out in public.
Brands lucky enough to make the royal cut have garnered priceless global exposure and seen their sales skyrocket to an almost surreal degree.
But George isn’t like every other celebrity kid: Bucking today’s mini-me trend, he’s brought traditional dressing back in style with his smocked rompers, Peter Pan-collared shirts and classic T-bar shoes.
Spotted in: Early Days is a favorite of the little prince, who has sported numerous pairs of the British brand’s simple leather shoes.
For his Christmas portraits in December, George donned navy blue shoes by Start-rite, a brand worn by generations of Windsor children.
It factor: “[With George wearing them], our classics range is seeing a big resurgence and has been gathering a strong celebrity following, with Harper Beckham also [spotted] in our shoes.
Being trusted by such discerning, fashionable parents can only enhance our reputation,” said Denise Aldous, brand manager for Start-rite.
Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale’s rocker style has definitely rubbed off on son Kingston. Blending grunge and punk influences, the fashion-forward 8-year-old keeps it cool in retro concert tees, denim cutoffs and black leather jackets.
He loves to experiment — whether it’s mixing clashing prints or changing up his hair color. And, like his dad, Kingston has a serious collection of sneakers.
Spotted in: Touching down at LAX airport earlier this month, Kingston wore Nike’s KD 7 basketball shoe. Vans’ Checkerboard slip-ons are also a staple for this kid.
It factor: “Kingston has such a unique sense of style — we love how he pairs his Vans with suits. His ability to creatively express himself through fashion is very inspiring to our consumers and shows them how accessible brands like Vans can be,” said Maddison Ek, kids’ product manager for Vans.
CRUZ AND ROMEO BECKHAM
They’re Britain’s other royal family. The Beckham brood, including 9-year-old Cruz and 12-year-old Romeo, are proving they’re just as fierce at the fashion game as their famous parents, David and Victoria.
The two regularly top best-dressed lists with their effortlessly cool look, which leans heavily on skinny jeans, vintage tees and edgy sneakers.
Mix in model good looks and it’s no surprise that the brothers are already in hot demand in the fashion world. Last year, Burberry tapped Romeo to star in its holiday campaign.
Spotted in: Romeo has rocked plenty of Vans slip-ons, including the brand’s skeleton-print Bones style. Cruz has also been photographed in several Supra high-top styles, including the Vaider and the Skytop.
It factor: “[Cruz and Romeo] are definitely the sons of David Beckham. They completely mirror his taste and style,” Fuller said. “They wear a lot of athletic clothes, T-shirts and jeans — but they’re not just thrown on.
“The outfits are always interestingly accessorized with sneakers and baseball caps. [The boys are] very fashion-aware for their ages and always add that extra little twist.”
The son of Rachel Zoe, Skyler is bringing serious flair to the sandbox. Since his baby days, the almost 4-year-old has impressed fashion watchers with his lavish designer wardrobe, which is carefully curated by his celebrity-stylist mom.
But forget your typical boy fare. Skyler has developed his own distinct look — an easy, boho-chic vibe, with lots of one-piece rompers, cardigans and cuffed jeans. Favorite accessories include fringed moccasins, moto boots and his signature fedoras.
Spotted in: Skyler has worn Frye’s Engineer Pull-On boot during several recent outings. The California boy also has lots of simple leather sandals, including custom-made pairs by Casadei.
It factor: “If you’re looking for the must-have fashion items for boys, look no further than Skyler. He inspires parents to have some fun with dressing their boys,” said Jenny Schafer, senior editor for CelebrityBabyScoop.com