Can we talk about baby clothes for a second? I don’t know about you, but I swear every time I come across a pair of teeny-tiny baby socks I can’t help but think of the sweet little toes that are going to fill them and get all swoon-y.
One of the best things about having a baby (other than, you know, getting a baby at the end) is stocking your nursery with the sweetest, cutest and tiniest outfits.
What’s less great is trying to understand why something that uses so little fabric costs as much as it does?
And as a first-time parent, you may not be aware of the thriving second-hand kids clothing market out there. So let this be your guide to scoring the coolest pre-loved designer baby clothes on a modest budget.
Why buy second-hand baby clothes?
There are a lot of reasons why used baby clothes are a better alternative to buying new:
1. It’s good for your wallet. Second-hand baby clothes often cost less than half the price of buying new. And given there is a whole heap of expected and unexpected expenses when baby comes along, it’s nice to save a bit of cash here and there.
2. It’s good for the planet. We know fashion is a pretty resource heavy industry. The more wear we can get out of every piece of clothing, the better it is for the environment. Buying secondhand clothes not only stops things going into landfill, but it also means fewer resources to grow and make new ones.
3. You get to have fun with fashion and designer styles. Look, we all know your baby would be happy in a plain-jane onesie, as long as they were warm, dry and comfortable. But, gosh, half the fun of having a little one is being able to dress them up in tiny outfits. And buying second-hand means scoring some seriously stylish outfits at a way more affordable price.
4. You become part of the community. There’s something so lovely to think about a piece of clothing being loved and worn by a series of babies. Whether it’s the cardigan you wore as a baby or your best friend’s favourite pieces from her youngest, passing on clothes is also a way to be part of the community of parents – new and not so recent.
Now, look, depending on where you score your second-hand clothes you may not personally know the babies that wore them before yours. But it feels good to know that you’re part of that story.
And the circle continues when you eventually sell or pass on the clothes that your baby has outgrown for another family to use and enjoy.
What do you need to know about buying secondhand?
You’ll find great quality stuff!
You’d be surprised by the condition of secondhand baby clothes. Babies grow soooo quickly so they only fit into a certain size for a short amount of time. Add to this how many clothes they have and the number of times they need changing thanks to spit up and accidents, and you’ll find their clothes are only worn a few times before being handed on, or depending on the accident- thrown away!
All that to say, is that secondhand clothing is often in as-new condition. At Use Ta! we only accept clothing that’s clean and doesn’t have any stains or rips. So you know you’re getting good condition stuff.
All you need to do is give them a wash
Whenever you buy or receive secondhand baby clothes, give them a wash in an eco detergent and hang them outside (in the sun if possible). This is will get rid of any harsh chemicals that may irritate your baby’s skin and give them a fresh-as-new-feel.
You can still sell them later on
Your baby might be the second one to have worn that cute woollen jumper or organic cotton dress, but chances are even when they’ve outgrown it, it’s still in pretty good condition. If that’s the case, you can get back some of what you paid by selling your outgrown baby clothes at a store like us at Use-Ta!