Friday, March 10, 2006

Kid Consignment Sale Secrets

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I’m new to the consignment sale circuit. My neighbor convinced me to join the great spring rush.

Unfortunately, I don’t think I’m cut out for the competition! After years of thrifting, these sales seem like “secondhand lite,” or a more socially acceptable—if politely cutthroat--method of buying used.

For someone looking to equip a nursery and first wardrobe, consignment is preferable to new. I don’t think I’ve ever seen so much gear outside Babies ‘R Us. There was also a wealth of hardly worn smocked dresses at one-fourth the boutique price. Otherwise, the quality was comparable to the better items from Salvation Army.

I found the greatest variable for the inveterate bargain hunter is in the pricing. Each consignor prices her own items; consequently, there are items marked far higher and far lower than usual.

I did pluck a few good buys: two new boxes of Medela nursing pads (50 cents each) and the two Target maternity skirts pictured above (marked $1, then discounted by half). They’re not designer Mimi, but I’m hoping they’ll be cool and breezy this spring. There’s no way I’m squeezing my bottom half into a pair of shorts while pregnant!

What are your thoughts on finding the best deals at consignment sales? Any tricks? Best buys?


TheNormalMiddle said...

Quite a few of the consignment sales here have turn into snob-nobbing it seems. It has become oh so chic and trendy to shop consignment. I used to participate in a great kids consignment sale until the lady who organized it got extremely greedy. I was okay with the 60/40 split in profit, but she started a set up fee, required all left over items to be donated (and no one could verify they HAD been donated somewhere), and had minimum prices...get this, minimum of $3.00 for pj's. Call me crazy but I won't pay $3 for a pair of pj's on consignment that are pilled and worn. You can practically buy NEW pj's at walmart or target for that price if you're good.

Baby toys do seem to be a good buy at consignment sales because there are so many of them.

Mom2fur said...

I'm more of a garage saler than a consignment shopper, but we do have one really nice place near here that I've been meaning to 'hit' again.
I just want to say I love your skirts. You can get a lot of use out of them, and skirts are so much nicer than shorts!

Molly said...

There is a twice a year consignment sale here in Northern VA, that I USED to love. My shopping was mainly done on the half-price day. I always found great bargains. (Our thrifts in this area are not the best.) But, unfortunately, this year they have stopped the 1/2 price day, so I am not going to drive the distance any more. I don't feel it is forth it at the regular prices. LOL

There is a smaller less-known one close to where I live now, that I might check out this year. But I have also found that unless I want name brand (which I don't) I can do better at Target with their clearances.

Anonymous said...

I've had much more success with clothing at yard sales, but because I am not a skilled yard saler (yet) I am willing to pay more at a consignment sale if it has what I need. The trade off of spending entire Saturday mornings for weeks on end is not worth it to me if I can pop in to one or two consigment sales and have my Saturdays with family. :)I go yard saling 2 Saturdays each spring. This is all because I am not great at finding just the right yard sales, but when I do, I stock up on savings and am so thrilled!