Whether you are looking for some less expensive maternity clothes or to make a few quick bucks, a maternity resale store might be your answer.
Clothes on the Cheap
Maternity resale stores are best known for great deals on clothing. With most maternity clothing only being worn for a few months, the items for resale are usually in good condition and still fashionable. In many cases, you can find gently used merchandise that looks as good as new. Since a woman may buy pregnancy clothing that she doesn't grow into or isn't right for the season, you might even find maternity clothes that still have the original tags on.
Consignment shops are also a great way to find clothes for your entire pregnancy. Retail stores like Target or JCPenney change the clothes in their showroom seasonally, and often make the move from one season to the next months in advance. Since their merchandising options are determined by large corporations, sale managers have fewer opportunities to keep popular items on sale. In a maternity resale store, however, the managers can respond to local trends and weather. This means you can still find a good deal on a winter coat in January after all the other mass stores have packed them away.
Selling Your Maternity Clothes
Taking your own outgrown and no-longer-needed maternity clothes to a resale shop is a great way to clean out your closet and make a little money. But, be realistic about how much money you expect to make. If your favorite consignment shop sells t-shirts for $5, don't expect to get more than $1 for yours. The resale shop, afterall, has to make a profit when they sell it.
If you have extra time on your hands and want to set your own prices, a virtual resale store online might be your answer. For a small transaction fee, vendors like eBay let customers post photos of their own clothes along with an asking price. While this may help you earn extra money, you'll be responsible for packing up the clothes, shipping them, and communicating with the buyers. For women who are still pregnant or just had their baby, this might be too much of a time commitment to make the extra money worthwhile.
On the other hand, using a consignment shop comes with its own drawbacks. Many shops follow these rules when accepting used clothing:
- Appointments may be needed to bring in your clothing. These hours can be limited, so call in advance.
- Clothes must be clean and fresh. Though this seems like a no-brainer, some consignment shops require the clothing to be ironed or dry cleaned before they will accept it.
- Clothes should be seasonal and in-style. Thrift shops like Goodwill will generally sell last year's fashion and are known for having retro items, but most maternity resale stores want to offer their clients current trends.
Many maternity resale stores give you the option of getting cash for your clothing or using the money for store credit.
Maternity Resale Store Tips
Your friends who have recently been pregnant may be your best resource for finding maternity resale stores in your area. If you live within driving distance of a particularly trendy or fashion-forward area, you may be able to find all kinds of clothing options that aren't available in your town. Shops in larger metropolitan areas are also more likely to have a better selection of sizes and styles.
Before visiting a consignment shop, check out their website. Many stores have coupons or frequent shopper cards you can get through their site. Check out their hours, too. Since these stores are independently owned and have a smaller staff than large retailers, they often have reduced hours and may be closed one day a week.
Finally, don't be shy about asking for discounts, especially if you are purchasing a large amount of clothing. Resale shops need to move merchandise quickly to make room for newly acquired clothing. If you are buying all your maternity clothing at once, they might give you a percentage off. These shops also usually carry baby clothing and equipment like bottle warmers, breast pumps, and cribs, so you can shop for yourself and your baby at the same time.