Thrifty Shopper - Buying Kid's Summer Clothes

To get the best deal on Kid's Summer Clothes or any clothes is to buy at the end of the Seaon for the following year. With that said if you did not get a chance to buy up at last years end of season sales here are some tips on saving money this year:

Buying Second Hand from Thrift Stores

I do this all the time. I head out to Goodwill, Salvation army and some local thrift stores before going to the mall and I go more then once as they are always repleneshing their stock. I'm lucky to have all of these fairly close to me. You'll have to sift through alot of racks for the right size (they're not always organized) and for things in good condition, but if you like a "treasure hunt" this could be fun.

Here are some tips:

  • Know your stores return policy, some of the thrift stores will not allow returns so beware
  • Are there changing rooms? Not all stores have these, find out before you have a cartload of "try ons"
  • Are there certain days of the week you can get an additional discount? If so shop those days
  • Call first for store hours before heading out
  • Don't be afraid to buy something worn if it's a good price - use it for "play clothes"
  • Your thrift store's merchandise will often reflect the area it's in more affluant areas tend to have the best picks for the obvious reasons
Here are some links:
Goodwill Industries
Salvation Army
Thrift Store Finder

Garage Sales

Obviously you'll get the best prices here. It can be hard to find boy's clothes in good condition but you'll find lot's of girls clothes.

Here are some tips:
  • Obviously you can't try on anything and there is no return policy so buyer beware
  • Try to hit ones that advertise kids items or clothes
  • Be aware of your mileage with gas prices driving all over town can add up
  • Try to hit "Neighborhood Garage Sales" you'll hit alot w/out using up gas & time
Here are some helpful tips for finding garage sales:

Garage Sale Finder
Craigs List (look under garage sales)
Follow the Signs
Look in your local paper/advertiser

Resale Shops

These are great places to find higher quality clothing and designer brands...but you'll pay extra for it. People will drop off their gently used clothes and make a percentage of what sells. However, if you have some in your area it's worth stopping and looking. Again call ahead and check hours before heading out.

Have a teenager? You'll want to check out Plato's Closet - it's a teenagers dream lot's and lot's of brand names for alot less!

Shop E-Bay

I've had great luck shopping ebay for clothing you can get some cute oufits for a steal. You'll usually find your best deals on clothes in Excellent Used Condition (EUC), that's what I look up. NWT means new with tags and will typically cost more. This is a great place to find matching pieces. Did you buy a Gymboree Top in excellent condition at a garage sale? Chances are you'll find some matching pieces on e-bay. Don't know what its called? Go to to find out.

Buy in lots - sometimes you'll get the best deal buying in lots - that means you'll buy alot at one time (you can use lot's in the search). Buyer beware: know your seller, their return policy and their reputation before buying. Also, realize you can't try these on first obviously so you need to know your sizing.

Check shipping costs, sometimes a good deal is not such a good deal if you are over paying after shipping. If you are buying from an iternational seller this will often be the case.

Craigs List - Great place to find new and used clothing!

Last year I became obsessed with Gymboree, I bought an outfit at a garage sale and was hooked. I stalked Craigs List for weeks and it paid off I found two women selling their daughters gymboree clothing for a steal, barely worn clothing for garage sale pricing, it was worth all the time I spent searching the site! I then went on ebay and ordered matching pieces to make more outfits!

Trade your clothing with friends!
Belong to a Mommy group? Have friends with kids younger and older then you? Host a "swap" and swap between you....this is FREE and we all love FREE - everybody wins!


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