I’m no fashion queen. The best I can manage these days is a scruffy top knot (thank god these are in fashion!) a slick of blusher and a jumper that doesn’t (always) have baby vomit on. I’ve never been bothered about dressing my children in designer clothes either; it just doesn’t interest me. But I do like a lovely quality baby grow, and do think there are certain brands on the market that deliver super cute prints with a high quality cotton fit and feel.
I’ve recently become a serious dab hand at finding some pretty good baby clothes and items online at half the price. The secret? They are mostly second hand. Now I can imagine there are certain people out there reeling in horror at the thought of dressing their most precious ones in second hand clothes, and granted, it’s not everyones cup of tea. But when you are on a statutory maternity leave budget, it makes the thought of second hand slightly more appealing. And means you can get good quality clothing, which let’s face it they will out grow in no time just like someone else’s baby has, without breaking the bank.
I’ve got some really amazing buys (often at 3am in the morning during Baby J’s feed) and actually not all are second hand. Some items are brand new with the tags to prove it. My best buys have been a brand new Joules baby grow for 99p, and a bundle of Jojo Maman Bebe onesies for £3.00. As pictured above, I also got some lovely John Lewis onesies (one brand new) for just 99p each. Excuse the slightly none ironed look in the photo; my fault not the sellers! (I hate ironing with a passion) I stick to rigid rules about buying and rarely go wrong now.
My love of a second hand bargain isn’t just restricted to clothes. Baby J’s dove grey snuz pod was an absolute bargain at just £70 (they currently retail at over double that price) and even after buying a brand new mattress to go with it; I still saved a pretty penny or two.
Here are my fail safe tips to help you grab some serious online bargain and hopefully help dodge some second hand nightmares!
- Know Your Brands – I know the brands I like; I know the brands which are a better fit or quality (in my opinion) and I know what I like. So I stick to these brands to avoid any unknown nasties; after all, it’s not a bargain if you don’t like it and won’t use it! My fail safe baby clothing brands? John Lewis, Joules, Jojo Maman Bebe and Marks and Spencer. I also found that in the very early days of wearing premature baby sized clothing that John Lewis and M&S did some lovely 4lb sized suits.
- If You’re Not Sure, Don’t Buy! – Well this is fairly simple. Again, it comes back to the fact that it not a bargain if you’ll never use it.
- Know Your Market – There’s certain sites which are safer to buy on in terms of payment protection etc, and have a large range of items to browse through. EBay and Depop (if you have’t heard of Depop then I HIGHLY recommend you check it out) are my two go to places. You can also check out seller ratings if you’re unsure who you’re buying off. My Snuz Pod was bought from Facebook Market place – it happened to be a local seller so didn’t cost me on delivery or much in petrol, but I did take my lovely husband with me to pick it up. Safety first and all. It also gave me the opportunity to view it first – if it hadn’t have been what I wanted I would have simply said no thank you and walked away.
- Look for Quality – If the item looks like it’s of poor quality on the photo, then walk away. Or ask to see more photos. I’ve bought items before which are more bobbled than expected for example and I’ve only felt disappointed and not used the items. In hindsight, I could see the quality wasn’t great on the photos and should have not bothered.
- When You’re Done, Sell Them On – Unless you plan on saving them for the next generation, why not sell your unused baby items when you’re done. As long as you’ve looked after them well, most items should sell on again and it’s another way to save some pennies. Yes it can be a faffing around going to the post office etc, but if that doesn’t bother you then it’s another way to be quids in.
- Wash All Items First – Despite the fact that I looked for good quality items from decent sellers; I ALWAYS wash my items first before putting them on Baby J. No only do I like to use Non Bio washing gel; I can also get them smelling as I like too. For none baby clothing such as high chairs etc; I always clean and disinfect items first before dousing them in Dettol All In One Disinfecting Spray which is great on upholstery and hard to reach places too.