I know I must sound like a broken record talking about all of the stuff I’ve been getting rid of lately. I apologize. I really do. But you’re going to have to keep hearing about it because it’s consuming a significant part of my time these days. And trust me – this is much more interesting than me writing about what I ate for lunch (turkey sandwich), or what I ate for dinner all these nights my husband’s been at work late (turkey sandwich), or what I got at Panera last time (Sierra Turkey sandwich).
So yeah, anyway, back to the point of this post . . . the purging. The bulk of recent efforts has been centered on all of the children’s clothing I’ve been saving for four years, much of it residing in gigantic Rubbermaid tubs and some of it in piles in my kids’ closets.
Before we finished our basement, it made sense to hang on to all of these clothes in the event that we are blessed with a third child down the road. We had plenty of space to keep clothing in every size and style imaginable, without intruding on our precious closet space.
But now we have about a quarter of the storage space we once did. This means that all unnecessary objects must go.
The first thing on that list of unnecessary objects is clothing that may never again be needed in this family. Although my heart doesn’t want to let go of this clothing, my head knows that most of it has to go.
I’ve been thinking about what to do with all of this clothing, and I’ve determined that there are five options for dealing with kids clothes that are no longer needed.
1. DONATE IT. Take it to your local Goodwill or Salvation Army and get yourself a tax deduction. You can also use Charity Navigator to find other donation sites near your home.
2. SELL IT OR CONSIGN IT. Because kids grow out of their clothes so quickly, there is a big market for used children’s clothing. Consider selling high-quality pieces in good condition in brick and mortar children’s consignment or resale stores, such as Once Upon a Child. Alternatively, you could sell the clothes online through eBay or ThredUp. There are a lot of online options for resale, so do your homework before you list to make sure that you don’t get taken advantage of.
3. HAND IT DOWN. Every time I receive hand-me-downs for my children, I feel like a kid in a candy store. It’s so exciting to see all these “new” items that I didn’t even have to pay for! Since I’ve been on the receiving end, I’m trying to make sure I pay it forward by bestowing my kids’ cute things on friends and family who might feel the same way I do about hand-me-downs. It makes them feel good, and it makes me feel good at the same time.
4. MAKE A KEEPSAKE. If you don’t want to part with all of your kids’ clothes, keep some of the more meaningful pieces and turn them into a keepsake such as a quilt, pillow or shadowbox. Even if you’re not the DIY type, there are plenty of companies out there who can do this for you. For example, Jelly Bean Quilts makes adorable quilts out of old clothing, and Etsy seller Mam Creations will turn those old pieces into a beautiful pillow.
5. STORE IT PROPERLY. If you find that you have to keep more of the clothing than you planned, make sure you store the clothes properly. Ensure that all pieces are clean and totally dry before boxing them up. I swear by Space Bag storage bags (they save space, keep clothing fresh and prevent any little bugs from getting into the clothing during storage), and Rubbermaid containers.
I will actually be doing a little of all of this. It is causing me to have a lot of piles and a lot of mess in my house right now, but I know that in the end, it will make me feel like I did the right thing with my precious babies’ clothing.
– Bre (who will be telling Baby No. 3 (should he or she bless us with his or her presence someday), that I loved him or her so much that I didn’t want him or her to have to wear his brother’s or sister’s old clothes, so I gave it all away.)