Tuesday, March 31, 2009

2nd hand thoughts

1. There are 4 basic sources of used clothes.
a. Someone gives them to you. Selection is limited but the price is right. Always show appreciation for anything anyone gives you and remember them when its time for you to give stuff away.
b. Garage sales. These are the cheapest places to find clothes. Usually 1/2 price of thrift shops.
c. Thrift shops. They charge more for clothes but have a better selection. Ask for specials, and clearance racks. 
d. Consignment shops. They have the best selection but higher prices. This is best for adult business clothes. Buy designer clothes at a fraction of the price. Good place to take your goods to get money too.

2. Change your method of shopping. If you shop retail, you always get your size when you want it. Remember to leave that attitude at the door when you shop 2nd hand. Instead think about what it has. 

3. Keep a small notebook with you at all times. Record size and measurements for all members of your household. Measurements are important just in case something doesnt have a size tag in it. 

4. Examine all clothing carefully for defects. Most places dont have a return policy and everything is as/is. Dont be put off by flaws, might be worthwhile to restitch a seam. Every single Hanna Andersson dress my girls wear have some sort of flaw but due to the busy design on them, you cannot see them or ive fixed them. I pay $1 a dress verses buying it new for $50.  

5.  Dont be discouraged by poor quality clothing you find. Remember if something made it to the thrift shop and still look respectable, its is likely to be a garment that will hold up well. Who hasnt bought a new garment that hopelessly pilled, shrank, or fell apart after a few washings. UURR! 

6. Look at a used item and think of it as a new things thats been washed 10 times. 

7.  Many of the same rules applied to new garments apply to used ones. Buy classics. Know what colors look good on you or your family. Learn which brands hold up well.

8.  When buying childrens clothing, buy a few years in advance and start a storage system. I have a box for each child for larger items. I go through it every 6 months. I give my oldest clothes to my middle daughter, my middle daughters clothes to my twins. I always have stuff stashed away. Same goes for seasonal clothes. 

9. Know that there might be things you wont find in a 2nd hand shop. My husband is rough on his jeans and I rarely find jeans for him. So if you find alot, get them all. You never know when your gonna run accross more again. 

10. If you have a picky child, try to show them the "cool" clothes" at thrift stores. Or let them look at the newest styles online and try to put together a outfit at home like it. Its fun for my girls to do this. Plus they like that its not expensive. 

And remember, you can find just about anything in a 2nd hand shop. Decorative pillows, blankets, candles, kitchen items, towels, etc. Instead of buying something new, try 2nd hand. Saves you a bundle and saves our landfills. Try the "No Spend Challenge" and buy only 2nd hand. Undergarments and food new of course. lol!

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