How to dress your kids cute—–garage sale style

This is Sofia’s total fake laugh face.

Miriam proudly showing off her garage sale outfit. Okay, maybe Miriam doesn’t care, but doesn’t she look cute?

Okay, this picture has nothing to do with garage sales, but isn’t this Wisteria from our yard beautiful?

Gabe dressed in his garage sale clothes from head to toe.

Hi, my name is Kara, and I’m a garage sale-aholic.  Yes, I totally own that I am “that weird garage sale lady.” It is funny when I run into people in town who say they recognize me and I remind them of what I bought at their garage sale. A good portion of our stuff has come from thrift stores, craigslist , or garage sales. Some of you have probably nodded your head politely while I told you the tale of a wonderful garage sale that I just went to. For example, wouldn’t you all like to know that I got a pair of children’s Uggs for $1 last weekend??!!

Because garage sale season is upon us, I would like to share some of my great finds with you all throughout the summer.  I would say that at least 75% of my children’s clothing comes from garage sales. I am kind of a snobby garage saler (if that is really possible).  I am not looking for junk. I am looking for nice quality items. In the above pictures, my kids are dressed head to toe in garage sale clothes. After doing some research online, I would like to share with you what each of the outfits my kids are wearing would retail for and then what I paid. Aren’t you excited??!

Like new Gymboree dress:
I paid:$5
Gymboree Leggings:
I paid-$2
Lelli Kelly Shoes
I paid-$5

Total retail value:$104
I paid:$12

Gymboree Dress Shirt:
I paid-$3
Old Navy Khakis:
I paid: $1
Like new Keen Sandals
I paid: $6

Total retail value:$80
I paid:$10

Toni Tierney Boutique top and pants
Total Retail: $50-60 (yes, some people really would pay that much for baby clothes)
I paid: $3

I would like to give a huge shout out to the Corvallis parents who pay full price for all of these things and then sell them to me at a fraction of the price. Whether or not you like it (this is my blog after all), there will be more garage sale talk this summer. My question for you all is: “Do you enjoy going to garage sales,” and if so, “What is the last great deal you got at a garage sale?” If you won’t shop at garage sales, why not?

EmmaJ - May 26, 2011 - 6:54 am

I would like to shop at garage sales, but I have never had much luck at them, so now I just don’t bother. It seems like the ones I go to just never have nice quality stuff.

Elisabeth@SimpleGreenishLiving - May 26, 2011 - 11:05 am

I love when there are garage sales in or around my neighborhood, that way I can just check them out when we’re on a walk, rather than making a special trip. Last weekend we found a Sandra Boynton board book for just 25 cents! She is one of our favorite children’s authors so this was a great find for us (especially considering the books cost around $8 new). Now that we have a little one who seems to grow out of things so quickly, I will definitely be garage sale-ing more often :)

Sarabeth - May 26, 2011 - 11:33 am

I love the idea of garage sales, but it seems like every one we go to just has a bunch of, well, junk. The kids clothes always seem worn and stained. It sounds like garage sales in your area are much better!

Rachel - May 26, 2011 - 1:16 pm

By best score was a $150 authentic all wood Bocce set for $10. But, I’m kind of over garage sales. I am more of a Craigslist person. The stuff seems to be better quality, you know the price up front, and you can shop or sell from your couch. You don’t get the SUPER good deals, but I got a Pump in Style for $50, a Moby for $20, tons of cloth diapers, etc. Every time I do a garage sale, I spend two days setting up and tearing down and make about $50. But, I sold about $1500 worth of stuff on Craigslist when we moved to Corvallis all out of my garage. I love CL!

Diana - May 26, 2011 - 1:33 pm

My favorite garage sale find was Hazel’s brand new condition highchair for $5 and her baby gym for $2. I think I saved over $50. I love Craigslist and the best story I have is that I was selling my brand new medela pump in style and no one would bite, so I lowered the price well below what I knew I could get because I needed the money. Sure enough a woman called and asked why I was selling it so low. I told her and she said she wanted it for her newborn son who had a cleft palette and couldn’t feed from the breast. I felt so good about selling it low price to her, but when her husband showed up he gave me $60 extra dollars!

kara - May 26, 2011 - 2:53 pm

Emma, there have to be some amazing garage sales in D.C!! You just have to find the right neighborhoods. That is a huge part is just knowing what areas to search.
I have found some good garage sales in your neighborhood!! Don’t they have a weekend where a bunch of people in your neighborhood have sales?
Are there any major universities in Tacoma? Find out where professor families live.. those are usually good sales :). Or big fancy suburbia neighborhoods where people buy their kids lots of stuff.
I totally love craigslist too. We bought our little play wooden house, our play structure from our yard, and even our van off of craigslist :)
That is a great story. How nice!

adrienne w - May 26, 2011 - 4:04 pm

Love the deals you got! I’m not into garage sale-ing very much, because it often ends up being a lot of work for very little end result. But a couple of weeks ago we got 2 bikes and 2 scooters for $65, which may not sound like a great deal, but it was. I love second hand shopping more than garage sales though!! I have scored some great deals. I am willing to try more garage sales though in the right neighborhood.

Claire - May 26, 2011 - 9:16 pm

Since you are the self declared garage sale goddess…you will need to set up a ‘killer garage sale’ notification service!

Elisa - May 26, 2011 - 10:24 pm

YES…Garage Sale Goddess!!! I love that!

Elisa - May 26, 2011 - 10:37 pm

By the way….Sofia is a your “mini-me” !!!!!!

kara - May 26, 2011 - 10:53 pm

That does sound like a good deal considering you could pay at least that much for one of those items new. I love thrift stores too. My sister Heather is the thrift store goddess. Eugene has way better thrift stores than Corvallis (our goodwill is super spendy for some reason).
I so wish I could alert everyone. Do you know how many times I have gone to a garage sale and found things that were amazing but that I didn’t need? I sit there and try to think of who I should call!! Maybe I should have a garage sale twitter club :).
I really will keep my eye out for some stuff for you. Oh, and could you email me the dates you will be here again?? I’m not sure if Sofia is my “mini me” in looks exactly, but it will crack you up when you are here to see how much she acts like me :).

E - May 27, 2011 - 11:52 am

Will you be my family’s personal shopper?

kara - May 27, 2011 - 3:28 pm

I totally should become a personal shopper and charge like 20% commission :). It would still be a good deal for the client :).

Amanda O. - May 27, 2011 - 4:19 pm

Hey I’d LOVE to hit yard sales but need a partner to sit in the car with the baby haha. Do you leave the kids at home or take em in and out of the car each time? Sounds like a lot of work to do that ;)Do you get your yard sale leads from CL or the newspaper or word of mouth?

kara - May 27, 2011 - 5:15 pm

I usually have to bring my kids since Chris has weddings most saturdays in the summer.. which means I will probably be doing less garage saling this summer. I usually do drive bys to see if it looks like a good one before I drag my kids out of the car with me. I do newspaper, cl, and word of mouth :).

Sonia - June 1, 2011 - 4:19 pm

I’m the sucker who just paid full price for a pair of kid’s Keens…that said, I love yard sales, goodwill, and replay for children’s items. Nice finds!

garage door - June 5, 2011 - 11:57 am

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