Cheap baby clothes are about give and take!

Girl sorting through her wardrobe of used baby clothes

One of the best sources of cheap baby clothes can be gently used baby clothes. If your friends have children older than yours, chances are they will offer to give you some items when their kids have outgrown them. For young babies, it makes perfect sense to accept these gifts. Don’t feel offended: some people tend to think that they are having a bunch of old clothes dumped on them, but the fact is that used baby clothes are only used for short periods of time. Babies have their clothes changed regularly, due to spills or other accidents, and they outgrow them quickly too. The result: used baby clothes are generally in excellent condition!

The reverse is also true. When your baby outgrows their clothes, you’ll probably want to do something better than simply throwing them into landfill. Because there is a great demand for used baby clothes, you’ll be glad to know that there are many options available.

Giving used baby clothes away

First option is for those who plan on having more children. Handing clothes down can be a great way of saving money. The things to watch out for are gender specific items, like dresses. But there are many cute gender-neutral items too, like bodysuits and bibs.

After that, it is often a great gesture to simply give the unwanted clothes to someone who needs them. Start with your friends and family who may have (or are expecting) a new baby. They would be delighted with the offer, and you’ll be confident that they’ve gone to a good home. If they’re not interested in used clothes, don’t worry, there are plenty of others who’ll appreciate them.

Another option is to give your baby’s clothes away to the wider community. One easy way of doing this is to simply post a free ad on Craiglist or Freecycle. These sites have become incredibly popular, largely because they have pages that are dedicated to particular localities. Just post an ad offering to give your unwanted items away to the first person willing to collect, and you’ll usually get a few offers within a short space of time.

One issue people sometimes have with the free online classified sites is the worry that unscrupulous people may be taking your precious items, then selling them for profit. Of course, other people don’t mind this at all, as long as their house has been cleared of unwanted clutter, but if this does concern you, consider donating the clothes to charity instead. Many charities have, or are associated with, secondhand stores, and will be happy to accept your donations. Others may have collection bins in public spaces, which may be more convenient for you. Either way, make sure you only deal with charities that you are familiar with, or that you can find good information about. Some for-profit stores have been known to exaggerate their connections with particular charities, meaning that your good intentions may only be having a minor contribution to a good cause. Check out CharityNavigator to learn more about your intended recipient.

Make money from gently used baby clothes

On the other hand, there’s nothing wrong with selling your gently used baby clothes, and it has become quite popular to do so, especially on eBay. If you choose to do this, there is a little more work involved, because you’ll have to take photos, write an ad, and work out shipping costs. There are also some specialized auctions online, such as MommyAuctions.com, which are often more focussed. And if you want to stick with selling locally, but online, try HandMeDowns.com.

You may also find that your local baby boutique will accept used clothes for cash or in-store credit. For example, Once Upon a Child have stores in many locations, and will pay you in-store. Often, retail stores are quite fussy about what they’ll accept, so don’t be offended if they don’t take your offering. Do ask them what kind of clothes they’re looking for at the moment, because it may influence what you buy next.

Finally, if you’ve exhausted all other possibilities, consider having a yard sale! Make sure you let people know its on, or check out one of the online services that lets you register your sale for free (for example, GarageSaleSource.com and, of course, Craigslist).

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