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consignment_season.pngIf you’re a parent of a baby or young child, you’ve probably heard of consignment sales. Pre-kids I sort of turned up my nose at the idea of these sales. Why would I want to spend money on stuff that’s been used before?

But then I got pregnant and, because my circle of friends had been gushing over the deals they’d gotten at local sales, I decided check one out. I was so, so wrong about them. The first sale I went to I came home with a Boppy pillow. I got it for $5. And it wasn’t ratty or lumpy or stained. It looked new! This $5 nursing pillow (retail price $40) is what got me hooked on consignment sales.

Each sale has their own set of rules for what is allowed and isn’t. Volunteers inspect each item to make sure items are stain and tear free. Recalled items are not allowed (I’ve been to some drop-offs where consignors are asked to pull up their item’s information on phones or computers to ensure it isn’t a recalled item). The standards are much higher than garage sales or Goodwill.

When consignment season hits (spring/summer and winter/fall) I start paying more attention to the sales I frequent most on my Facebook feed. I start planning around the dates these sales take place. I start making notes of what clothes fit and what doesn’t (or what I plain don’t like).

I think G was about a year old when I signed up to consign at my first consignment sale. By then we had moved and organized his clothes and accessories and gear. I knew what I would probably use and wouldn’t use for baby #2. I didn’t want to donate most of what we wouldn't use because by then I knew there was money to be made in the barely-used (or new!) items. We needed that money to 1) get new clothes for an ever-growing G and 2) purchase big things for baby #2.

Consigning isn’t just about making money. There are some other perks too.

Consigning often gets you in the door before the public. When you drop off your items it allows you to scope out some of the inventory. Consignors usually get a pass to come in the day before the sale opens to the public. During Weecycled Wardrobe’s spring sale, I was able to take a quick look at jogging strollers when I dropped off my items to get an idea of their condition and cost. It made choosing one so much easier when I went back the next day to shop early (and whoa, did those things get picked up fast).

If you consign and can carve out time to be a volunteer, your consignor earnings are often higher and you get passes to shop even earlier than consignors.

Which sales do I like best? Here are my top three and a little bit of information about each one.

Weecycled Wardrobe

  • Where: Fredericksburg, Stafford, and Virginia Beach
  • Cover charge: free
  • Consignment fee: $5 
  • Consignor earnings: 55% if you tag your own items. 35% if you use their Busy Moms Service. You can earn 60% if you volunteer
  • Ability to donate unwanted items that didn't sell: Yes

Classy Kids Consignment

  • Where: Manassas and Woodbridge
  • Cover charge: free
  • Consignment fee: $10
  • Consignor earnings: 55% and up, depending on whether or not you volunteer.
  • Ability to donate unwanted items that didn't sell: no

Just Between Friends

  • Where: Loudon County, Eastern Fairfax County, and Prince William County
  • Cover charge: $10-$20 depending on what time of day you’re shopping (Click here for a free admission pass to the Loudoun JBF sale valid October 3, 2015 from noon-6pm)
  • Consignment fee: $10
  • Consignor earnings: 60% and up, depending on whether or not you volunteer.
  • Ability to donate unwanted items that didn't sell: yes

For a larger list of consignment sales in Virginia, you can visit the Consignment Mommies website.

Where do you like to shop for the best deals on children's clothes and toys? What has been the best deal you've gotten on a needed or wanted baby item?

Update! I managed to get some great deals on clothes for the boys at Weecycled Wardrobe's sale last weekend. Check out this post on my personal blog to see what those were!

 

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About Emma

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Emma is married to her high school sweetheart and is a stay at home mom of two boys: G and L. A wanna-be professional writer and photographer, she can often be found following her boys around with a camera. When she isn’t chasing after her kids, Emma writes about her motherhood journey on her personal blog, Muddy Boots and Diamonds.

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