At every age, there’s a reason not to pay retail for awesome kids’ clothes. Babies grow lightning fast. Toddlers really do a number on their duds. And big kids? They actually have opinions! (That feeling when you order the most adorable—and expensive—dress from a boutique catalog and your daughter refuses to wear it? Not great.) Happily, here in the Bay Area, we live in a veritable smorgasbord of fabulous kids’ consignment stores. No matter where you live, you can find a local shop packed with used baby and children’s clothes, gear, and toys, for a fraction of the brand-new value. And better yet? Get an even better deal by bringing in your own gently-used items to consign for cash or store credit.
San Francisco has a dearth of kids’ consignment shops, so budget-conscious locals all cheered when this hip and friendly new boutique, decorated with vintage toys, opened last summer. The owner, a former buyer for fan favorite Chloe’s Closet, has an eye for sourcing cute, cool, high-end used kids’ clothes (sizes newborn to 12), which she sells back at incredible prices. You can also find unique toys, mobiles, locally-made art and children’s jewelry. Keep kids busy in the reading nook, complete with comfy bean bag.
Insider tip: The owner buys used clothes on the spot for cash or credit (no consignment, no waiting!). Call for an appointment.
1523 Irving St.
San Francisco, Ca
Hours: Tues.-Sun., 9:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
This San Francisco consignment favorite has three locations. The Bernal Heights store has long been a go-to for city moms and is on pretty much every “Best Kids’ Clothing Store” list in the city. From toys to costumes to maternity clothes, parents will find everything they’re looking for and will likely go home with much more. The Bernal location sells clothes for kids (from newborn to size 12) and moms, while the Inner Sunset location sells only kids’ items (newborn to size 10). The Berkeley location features kids’ sizes newborn to 12 as well as women’s maternity. (Note that you can consign women’s maternity and non-maternity clothes at all three locations, whether or not they can be sold there.) Be sure to check out the detailed “How to Consign” section on the website before you go. No appointment is necessary, and they buy anytime they’re open.
Insider Tip: The store’s Twitter feed occasionally offers coupons or call-outs for in-demand items.
451 Cortland Ave.
San Francisco, Ca
Hours: Mon.-Sun., 10:30 a.m.–6 p.m
616 Irving St.
San Francisco, Ca
Hours: Mon.-Sun., 10:30 a.m.–6 p.m
1545 Solano Ave.
Hours: Mon.-Sun., 10:30 a.m.–6 p.m
Nestled in the heart of the Outer Sunset, Hunter’s Threads offers a plethora of second hand scores for your children, AND doubles as a resource for families seeking therapy for developmentally delayed kids. Unique to the consignment world is Hunter’s Threads approach to ascertaining their inventory. Unlike other shops where you are compensated for your hand me downs, HT accepts clothing on a donation basis. This means, you can clear out your clothing without worrying about the re-sale value or the label. The result? An easy KonMari session—clean, clear and donate. Your closet is left with the appropriately sized delicious duds for your wee one. It also means that HT can resell clothing at a lower cost (think Goodwill pricing vs. Chloe’s Closet) as they do not have a consignment fee. Hunter’s Threads also has their own line of clothing, adorned with their logo to drive awareness to the cause.
Good to know: Hunter’s Threads closed on Mondays
2124 Taraval St.
San Francisco, Ca
Do you crave stylish, fun and affordable clothes for your kids (ages 2-12) but dread paying retail prices and lack the time to browse consignment stores? You might be a great fit for Mox Box, an innovative and convenient personal shopping service for kids, founded by two San Francisco moms. Fill out an online form describing your child’s age, size and taste, then wait with bated breath for a box packed with 14-17 used and new (or all new—your choice) pieces, with brands like Mini Boden and Tea. (Shipping is free!) See the website for pricing and details.
Insider tip: Send back your kids’ own outgrown, gently used clothes for a credit on your next box.
Snickerdoodles is a locally owned, family-operated consignment shop specializing in a wide range of high-end but affordable used clothing, shoes and toys. Fabulous deals can be found here. They pride themselves on great service and new sellers are always welcome. The shop is located in charming downtown Danville close to other fun shops and restaurants so you can make an afternoon out of the outing. The consignment hours are limited; see website for specifics and guidelines.
Insider Tip: The owners recommend bringing in clothing laid flat (such as in a laundry basket) for faster service.
442 Hartz Ave.
Hours: Mon. 12 p.m.-5 p.m.; Tues.–Sat., 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
A Wee Change
Don’t want to spend a fortune on maternity clothes? This well-stocked store in a shopping mall (plenty of parking!) in Walnut Creek has one of the largest selection of used pregnancy gear around, ranging from posh working outfits to nursing bras. They also feature all styles and brands of kids’ clothes up to size 16. It’s easy to keep kids entertained here with the toys they’re welcome to play on and try out, and a TV to distract if all else fails.
Insider tip: Don’t forget to browse the clearance rack, with last-chance buys as low as $1.
1551 Palos Verdes Mall
Walnut Creek, Ca
Hours: Mon., 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Tues.-Sat., 11 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sun. 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
Located in an unassuming strip mall in Concord, tiny, pleasantly-packed Growing Pains is a treasure trove of gently used clothes and toys for the very young. You may not find as many items for older kids and teens, but babies and toddlers are extremely well represented. One of the biggest selling points is that unlike many chic consignment shops, this one is happy to buy and sell lower-end brand like Carters and Target, to mix in with the pricier items. Super friendly service makes selling and shopping here a pleasure.
4425 Treat Blvd., Ste. K
Hours: Mon.-Fri., 9 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sun., 12 p.m.,-5 p.m.
Berri Kids Boutique
While their brick and mortar boutique in Pleasanton has closed, you can shop an even wider selection (and consign by mail) at their sleek website. They have a fantastic inventory of new and like-new children’s clothing, books, toys and gear at 40-60% off retail prices. They buy clothing outright, and accept baby gear on consignment. Clothing items range from 12 months to 10 years. Note that they do not accept clothing brands from big box stores including Circo and Cherokee from Target and Arizona from JC Penny. They also won’t take cribs, mattresses, stuffed animals or car seats. Favorite brands recently found here are Baby Gap, Crewcuts, Tea and Janie and Jack. Check their website for all their detailed guidelines.
Grove Street Kids
Grove Street Kids has been a popular spot for moms with growing kids for over a decade. Owner Anne Marie Elliott is a mom who loves giving back to the community while combining her passions for eco-responsibility and fashion. The efforts have paid off: Her shop has received numerous “Best Kids Boutique” awards in the Bay Area. The charming window displays and play area in the back keep kids and moms happy. You will find clothes for resale from newborn sizes to 10 years old. Women’s and maternity clothing are also found here. See website for consignment days and times, as well as tips on what they accept.
Insider Tip: Popular brands and styles can now be found at their online shop for purchase to pick up at your convenience, or to have shipped directly to you.
1385 Shattuck Ave.
Hours: Tues.–Fri., 11 am to 5 pm; Sat., 11am to 3 pm; Closed Sunday and Mondays
Photo credit: Grove Street Kids
Silver Moon Kids
A longtime favorite which moved from Grand Avenue in 2011, Silver Moon carries both new and used apparel for ages 0-12, plus unique and sought-after gifts, toys and books. Looking for a fantastic birthday gift for your hip friend’s toddler? Pick up an Oaklandish onesie, Appaman jersey, the latest Robeez, or trendy Salt Water sandals. As far as consignment, the owner is looking for brand name, current clothing in excellent condition. They pay 40 percent in cash or 60 percent in store credit.
Insider tip: Ask for the cute wrapping and bag for your birthday gift.
Silver Moon Kids
3233 Lakeshore Ave
Hours: Mon.-Sat., 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sun., 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
From the gorgeous, artsy décor and displays, you won’t believe this place is consignment. Friendly staff, occasional live music, parties and pets—Ruby’s Garden is the perfect model of a welcoming, locally-owned business. They offers both new and used clothing (new clothes up to age 12; used clothes up to age 8), with an emphasis on hip, trendy, vintage and urban. Ruby’s also feature cool books and toys, making the store a great pre-party shopping stop. Sell your own stuff for store credit only; see website for hours.
Insider tip: Most first Fridays of the month, Ruby’s Garden throws a Bunny Party, from 6-8 pm, with juice, snacks, wine–and bunnies!
5026 Telegraph Ave
Hours: Mon.-Sat., 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
This consignment shop in downtown San Rafael has been around for almost 30 years and its buyers have developed a keen eye. The shop offers gently used clothing for infants through size 14, and you’ll also find one of the better used toy, book and DVD collections here. Need some adorable decals for the nursery? Chances are Outgrown will have it. Need a baby crib for your little “mama” at home? We bet you’ll find it here. Consignment is accepted every day until 2 p.m.
Insider Tip: Save your Circo and Sprockets gear for the Goodwill bag. This store sticks to its high-end acceptance policy.
1417 4th St.
San Rafael, Ca
Hours: Mon.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4 p.m.
Play it Again Kids
At Play it Again Kids, in business since 1991, the owners know what Marin moms are looking to buy. They have a vast inventory that changes every day. The shop won’t accept clothing with stains, nor will they buy battery-operated toys before they’re demonstrated to work, which should give buyers confidence and help sellers sort through what to bring in. No appointment is necessary to sell (although consignment ends at 4 p.m.), and you’ll get 40 percent of the selling price for items priced higher than $50, and 30 percent for items priced lower.
Insider Tip: If you’re selling larger items like furniture or equipment, you have the option of arranging for the store to pick it up.
783 Andersen Dr.
San Rafael, Ca
Hours: Mon.–Sun., 10 a.m.– 5 p.m.
Shop at Novato’s only kids’ consignment store for strollers, gear and seasonal clothes of all brands, in great condition and wonderfully organized. But there’s more to love! The folks at Ella Bunbee are committed to community service. Shoppers are encouraged to fill out a card stating how they will be kind to the community and to clip it to a display branch. The store also accepts shoes for charity for Soles4Souls, and, through the Community Closet program, makes sure that donations that can’t be sold go straight into the hands of families in need.
Insider tip: Need a truly useful gift for a mom friend? Pick up a gift certificate!
867 Grant Ave
Hours: Mon., 9 a.m.-12 p.m. (intake only); Tues.-Thurs., 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Fri.-Sat., 11 a.m.-6 p.m.
North Bay Just Between Friends Children’s and Maternity Consignment Sales Event
This is the North Bay’s largest maternity and consignment sales event. It happens just twice a year and the next sale is September 14–17 at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds. Each sale has over 500 families consigning and boasts over 100,00 items including clothes, toys, books, games and gear. This event is highly organized, so much so that the space resembles a department store. Go to their website for admission information, selling details and free consigning tutorials.
Insider tip: Consigners get to shop first, and if you volunteer to work the sale (as a “Helper”), you’ll get even more back on your sales.
Dates: Set. 14-17, 2017
Sonoma County Fairgrounds
1350 Bennett Valley Road
Santa Rosa, Ca
Photo Credit: North Bay Just Between Friends (JBF)
Kid to Kid
Kid to Kid is great because they will simply pay you cash on the spot (or offer store credit) for your clothes, toys, books, DVDs and equipment—no waiting until your items sell. Their huge selection runs the gamut: Recent summer finds include great swimsuits, Melissa and Doug toys and a huge stroller selection. You can also find maternity items here. Stop in and leave with several items for the price of one retail piece! There is a play area for kiddos so moms can shop uninterrupted. Follow them on Facebook and stay on top of store promotions and sales (they have two semi-annual sales).
Insider tip: Your kids will love going inside the child-sized door next to the big one!
2666 Homestead Rd.
Santa Clara, Ca
Hours: Mon.–Fri., 10 a.m.–8 p.m., Sat., 10 a.m.–7 p.m.; Sun., 11 a.m.–6 p.m.
Photo credit: Mili T. via Yelp
This huge semi-annual sale is packed with more than 40,000 used items at prices lower than those of the typical consignment store. This amazing three-day extravaganza of buying and selling happens each spring and fall; the next event takes place October 20-22. Don’t be overwhelmed by the size of this sale; the high level of organization makes it a breeze to shop. If you plan to sell, be sure to register in advance, and check the website for more information.
Insider tip: Sunday (the last day of the sale) is known as Half Price Day. Many vendors slash prices even further!
Dates: October 20-22, 2017
Santa Clara County Fairgrounds, Expo Hall
344 Tully Rd.
San Jose, Ca
Hours: October 21, 22nd and 23rd 2016, 9 a.m.–5 p.m.
Photo credit: Bird in the Nest
Bird in the Nest
This adorable little boutique in downtown San Carlos is a gem. Shop here for a well-curated selection of affordable clothes, toys, books and maternity wear. They have both new and recycled kids clothing, from newborn to 7 years. Call to see what they are currently buying and to make an appointment. Bird in the Nest will pay you cash or trade on the spot, and they also consign larger ticket items.
Insider Tip: This store is easy to visit with your baby or toddler as they have a play area, changing station and nursing chair.
1568 Laurel St.
San Carlos, Ca
Hours: Mon.–Sat., 10 a.m.–5:30 p.m.; Sun., 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
The Lovely Bump
Nestled in downtown San Bruno, this light and airy shop will dash any misgivings about shopping consignment. The clothes are pressed and hung on wooden hangers, it’s stroller-friendly with wide aisles, offers a children’s play area (with an in-house turtle!) and features a range of new and almost new clothing, baby linens and gear. Call to set up a selling appointment to sell; guidelines are on the website.
Insider Tip: They provide evening appointments to accommodate working parents.
509 San Mateo Ave.
San Bruno, Ca
Hours: Mon.–Sun., 11 a.m.–6 p.m.
Do you have a favorite shopping spot for gently used kids clothes? Tell us in the comments below!
—Erin Feher and Emma Bland Smith