My Amazing Garage Sale Finds!

Foreign Service LifeMinnesota
June 12, 2011

Little did I know that when I got back to the States I’d become a garage sale addict, but boy is it intoxicating to find great deals on barely-used baby stuff.  Seriously, for those who haven’t thought of purchasing baby clothes at a garage sale before, contemplate this: 1.)  Most baby stuff is worn less than 5 times, 2.)  Many things still have tags on them and 3.)  Friends and family spend absurd amounts on gifts which don’t get worn and you can reap the benefits of (like this Baby Gap outfit above which I’d guess cost around $75 and I got for $4!)

My current routine is to scour the Wednesday newspaper in addition to Craig’s List and highlight my top picks (FYI for those new to garage-saling: Most sales start on Thursday now, with a few on Friday.  If it’s a really good sale, you want to get there right when it opens or as close to opening time as possible).  I plot the sales out on a map and determine which one is my top pick (since most sales start at 8 AM and you can’t be in more than one place at a time) and create my route from there.  I find that 4-5 a week ends up being a good number for me.

Another thing to remember is that you can always barter if you think the price is too high.  They may or may not take it, but it’s always worth trying, especially if you’re buying a lot.  If they won’t go down, you can ask them if they’ll be more flexible with prices on the last day of the sale.  Often they will because they want the stuff gone.

These are just a few of the adorable clothes I’ve collected over the last two Thursdays.  One more tip is to get to know the neighborhoods that you’re saling in.  The high end ones are often heavy on the brand names, though since so many baby items come as gifts, you can usually find nice things almost everywhere.  There is just usually a greater quantity of high quality stuff in one spot in upscale neighborhoods.

In addition to clothes, I also came away with some great baby stuff.  I’ll show you a few of my best finds today.  The first is a electric double breast pump in a nice carrying case.  It had only been used for 3 months.  It retails for $325 new and I got it for $125!  YAHOO!!!

Here’s a Fisher Price Cradle Swing (that swings in 2 directions!) that I got for $60 ($160 new).

And finally, I found a Bumbo seat (which helps kids learn to sit) and a Baby Bjorn.  I only paid $20 for the Baby Bjorn, which is $85 new!  Let me know what you think of my finds… I’m pretty proud.  Hope I’ve convinced you to give garage sales a chance if you’ve never shopped them before!

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  1. Yvonne says:

    Girl! YOU SCORED BIG TIME!!! I LOVE garage sales too….things really are a steal and by the way….good garage sale planning! You have it down girl!! :)

  2. alex says:

    I have the same pump (although in a different case). It’s working well for me so far. I did tons of research before getting it too, and it seems to be universally thought of as the best. So good pick!

  3. Bethany says:

    You scored on ALL your finds! We loved having the Bumbo seat and Will carried around Seth in the Baby Bjorn. I especially LOVE the little blue pants with the white flowers and white top. Absolutely precious!
    xoxo Bethany

  4. Sara Roy says:

    I also got my Baby Bjorn for $20 here at the yard sale. It was my second day at Post and I still remember it fondly. The Bjorn itself is amazing – I can’t wait for Coen to be big enough to use it.

  5. Mandy says:

    I’ve been a total lurker for about 2 years now. Here’s me coming out of hiding “Hi!” We got our first overseas assignment around the same time you did (Seoul) and I’ve been addicted to your blog ever since.

    We’re currently on our 2nd child in a tour. I found the book Baby Bargains very helpful in narrowing down necessities and getting reviews on items. I also found out about Just Between Friends It’s a giant consignment sale and we got tons of stuff for our 1st one there. (some stuff we bought just for use in the states and then sold back when we were done.) I also have my parents scour consignment shops and used bookstores for toys and books. So don’t forget about consignment shops either!

  6. Sarah Novak says:

    Thank Yvonne- I’m quite proud!!!

  7. Sarah Novak says:

    Yay- that makes me so happy!!! Did you buy it new or used? I know I have to sterilize it and get a few new attachments since I got it used. U know anything about that?

  8. Sarah Novak says:

    Yay, yay, yay! It’s so hard to know what to ask for/get. I love all the insider information from other moms!

  9. Sarah Novak says:

    Nice work! We got an Ergo too and I’m putting a sling on my registry, so I think we should be covered… :)

  10. Sarah Novak says:

    Well hello lurker! It’s nice to meet you Mandy! :) Thanks for being a devoted reader. Thanks for the suggestions. I have the book but hadn’t heard of the website, nor thought of consignment shops. Brilliant ideas! Hope to hear more from you… don’t be shy!

  11. Carly says:

    My mom is an EPIC garage sale-er and thrifter. I think she thrives on finding those buried treasures (and sometimes they are indeed buried). Just thinking about it makes my head hurt, but I’m so impressed by all your scores that I just might have to reconsider!

  12. Sarah Novak says:

    Yay- I converted someone!!! I don’t like to do it for a lot of other stuff, but for baby clothes & things it just makes a lot of sense… Miss you!

  13. naomi says:

    You’re a goober garage sale-er !! I love it :) I am too … and actually love thrift stores for the same reasons ….

    Good score, lady!

  14. Sarah Novak says:

    Thanks – I’m quite proud of my finds…

  15. You had great finds!!! The color of Bumbo seat is so cute!! You did so well!!

  16. Sarah Novak says:

    Thanks – I’m very proud of my efforts!

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