What's next best thing to second-hand clothes given you you for free? Second-hand kid stores of course! While my daughter's closet is far from Suri Cruise's, it is damn cute — and put together on a budget.
With a bag of my daughters outgrown cream-of-the-crop clothing in tow, I ventured out to check out a few of the the most popular East Bay kids' consignment stores to see what I could sell and/or trade. I brought my very favorite sentimental outfits, the ones I wish came in my size. After being reminded by my husband I'm pregnant with a BOY this time around and that I would be a prime candidate for Hoarders if I kept them, I was ready to see what these stores had to offer.
I'll be spending this week sharing my personal experience shopping and selling at the kids' clothing resale shops near Oakland and Berkeley. Please share your favorites in the comments.
My first stop in search of consignment shop deals for my daughter and baby bump was Ruby's Garden in the Temescal neighborhood of Oakland.
The store is located in one of Oakland's food meccas, strategically placed near Bakesale Betty, Dona Tomas, and Genova Deli. Mmmmm, I digress. If you get lucky, you can park in the Walgreen's lot or else pay for street parking at a meter.
A fun whimsical shop with a hip vibe, Ruby's Garden is artfully decorated by an in-house artist, currently with an ocean theme: jellyfish, kelp and silver fish hanging from the ceiling. The decor left my daughter entranced.
We received a friendly greeting upon entering. The shop has a comfortable play area with a sectional couch and tea set for my daughter to stay occupied while I shopped. The layout of the store was very inviting with new clothing in front and used in the back.
They carried local grown kid wear and brands such as new Tea Collection, Oaklandish gear and Goorin Brothers hats. I was able to sell a few items of clothing for about 19 bucks in trade which was great since I was able to buy my daughter a new Oaklandish t shirt, a new Goorin hat and a gently used organic tank top for more than half off.
I was very happy with my purchases and interaction with the friendly staff. Ruby's Garden is a well designed children's boutique with clothing, toys, books and much more. I can see why Ruby's Garden was voted best new children's clothing in 2012 by Parent's Press.
Like you, I want the best education, the healthiest food, and the best opportunities for my kids. But besides all of that, I also want them to look good and feel good in comfortable, long-lasting clothing. Unfortunately, high quality children's apparel comes at a price. That price is even higher when you realize the clothes will be too small to wear in a few months.
5026 Telegraph Ave
Oakland CA 94609
Phone (510) 595-5325
First Fridays 10-8
Gently Used Buying Hours (for Store Credit Only)
Call first to confirm.
Photos by Mandy Chuey and Whitney Moss