Keep These Tips in Mind to Thrift High-Quality Baby Clothes
My favorite place to buy Alden’s clothes? Facebook Marketplace. I’m serious! I’ve always loved thrift shopping and having a baby has opened up a whole new world of thrifty opportunity. Babies grow so fast (it’s honestly unbelievable), which means they are always in need of new clothes. if you’re like me, this is fun and exciting because it means constant shopping. But (again, if you’re like me), it also means looking to save some money. Brand new baby clothes do not come cheap! Especially if you’re looking to buy organic.
Why Thrift for Your Baby?
If you’re reading this post, then you’re probably already considering thrifting clothes for your baby or child. Or perhaps thrifting is already a part of your lifestyle, but you’re looking for some tips to improve your shopping ventures. Here’s why you’re absolutely right to thrift for your children:
- Thrifting will save you money!
- Thrifting is fun!
- Thrifting is a great way to try out different brands and styles.
- Babies grow really, really fast and it’s an easy way to keep up with them so they’re always clothed (an important societal standard).
- Babies outgrow their clothes so fast that many used items are basically brand new.
- It’s good for the environment — seriously!
- You’ll care less when they have a diaper blowout.
- You’ll care less when they spill food on their clothes.
- You’ll care less when… (OK, you get the picture).
Here are some of my favorite tips for thrifting baby clothes, both in-store and online:
Tips for Thrifting Online
Make Sure It’s a Smoke-Free Home
Be sure to check out the description to see if the seller has listed the item as coming from a smoke-free home. If it’s not explicitly written in the description, feel free to message the seller. This is a fairly common question, so they probably won’t be too surprised by your inquiry.
Pay Close Attention to Images
Most sellers will disclose any imperfections such as holes or stains, but it’s always smart to give the posted images a thorough once-over. If something is on the pricier side, it also doesn’t hurt to ask the seller to provide more images.
Check the Seller’s Rating
Most platforms allow for users to rate one another on their buying and selling experience. I’m always much quicker to buy from sellers who have a higher rating because it tells me that other’s have had a positive experience working with them in the past. Sellers receive high ratings for describing items accurately, quick responses and timely shipping.
Sellers with high ratings also tend to have a lot of listings available at any given time. Bundling multiple items from the same seller is a great way to save on shipping.
Look High and Low
Facebook Marketplace is definitely a great place to start. Facebook is a widely used platform, so chances are, there is going to be a wide selection in the gender and age you’re looking for. That being said, it’s also worth checking out thrifting apps like Poshmark and Depop. I thrifted this cute gnome shirt for Alden on Poshmark and the hat on Depop!
Think Ahead for Holidays
I can’t tell you how many brand-new, holiday-themed outfits I’ve found thrifting online. I can only assume the parents either purchased or received the items based on an incorrect assumption of how big their child would be when a specific holiday rolled around. I quickly learned that Alden was always about one size ahead of his actual age. This has helped me snag many holiday pieces with tags still attached.
Look for Sets
The beautiful thing about two, three, four (or more!) piece sets is that the pieces can be separated. Sure, this shirt and hoodie are meant to go together, or these pants are made for this onesie (both demonstrated in the images above), but chances are they can also be styled with separate pieces. Sets are usually priced competitively so you get more bang for your buck, so to speak. The Hanna Andersson set in the photo below is probably one of my favorite baby thrift finds to date!
Try Different Search Terms
Searching the same terms and phrases will yield similar (if not identical) results. Try changing up what you’re searching. I use all kinds of keywords when I’m searching for baby clothes, including: brand name, age/size, color, gender, pattern and more! Some of my favorite brands to search include:
- Hanna Andersson
- Cat & Jack
- Little Planet
- Old Navy
- Baby Gap
Tips for Thrifting In-Store
Check for Stains and Holes
Same as above except in-person you have a much better chance of catching stains and holes. Give everything a good once over before hitting the check-out line!
Give the Item a Sniff
This may seem odd, but giving the article of clothing a quick sniff will help you determine if the piece is harboring a mere thrift-store odor or if there is a residual smoke odor that won’t be removable with a wash cycle. If clothing has even the faintest smoke smell, put it back. The odor is near impossible to remove.
Keep Functionality in Mind
True story: I have thrifted almost all of Alden’s PJs to date. Why? Because, frankly, I don’t really care if his PJs are a little faded or worn. They get the job done by keeping him warm and cozy at night — that’s pretty much all that matters in my mind. If an item has a small stain or shows signs of wear, consider if it might make for an appropriate play shirt or as a nighttime outfit that – frankly – no one is going to see or care about.
Check the Clearance Rack
Some thrift stores have sale racks or offer up special deals like, “fill a bag for $20.” Take advantage of these super sale items and events! This can be a great way to stock up on play clothes and jammies.
Above All Else, Have Fun!
It’s true, shopping can quickly become a chore. Especially when your child is growing so fast you feel like you can’t keep up. But by thrifting some of your baby’s clothes, you can make the experience fun. Enjoy looking for bargains and picking up fun patterns from different brands. There’s nothing quite like snagging a great thrifted find!