Top Hand-Me-Down Tips

parents playing with baby

If you have siblings or even cousins, you might be well aware of the tradition of hand-me-downs. If you’ve gone thrift shopping, or to estate sales, you will have an idea of how things, from clothes to furniture, can be reused. There is a timeless tradition in many families across the world; one of passing along gently used items from one child to another.

It saves money, for one. And it also reduces waste. It fosters a sense of community and sustainability and can ensure that good-quality items never go straight to the trash bin. But navigating the world of used baby items is overwhelming for many parents, so you’re not the only one! Learn how to choose the right items, maintain their quality, and even how you can potentially reuse bottles for a second baby and other items with Abiie®.

Quality Over Quantity

With used baby items, quality reigns supreme. You have to prioritize items that are durable, well-made, and most importantly - in good condition. It’s definitely tempting to accept every offer of hand-me-downs, but be selective for your baby. Choose items that will stand the test of time. High-quality clothing, toys, and gear are more likely to retain their value and usefulness as they’re passed from one child to another.

Inspection & Cleanliness

Before accepting or giving hand-me-downs, you have to take the time to thoroughly inspect each item. Look for signs of wear, damage, or safety hazards. For used baby items like clothes, check for stains, tears, or missing buttons. If you’re planning on reusing bottles for a second baby, check for broken or missing parts on the bottle. Think about the current safety standards for baby items and check that your baby items meet these standards. Even if you know your items have been cleaned, it never hurts to clean them again (especially if you’ve accepted them from someone) to remove dirt, germs, or allergens.

Customizing Items

While used baby items offer practicality, not to mention saving money, they sometimes lack the personal touch that comes with buying new items. Ultimately, you want hand-me-downs to feel special and unique for your child, and customizing is a great way to do that. For some items, like a wooden high chair, you can find replacement parts and accessories that can make the item feel completely new again. With Abiie’s BEYOND JUNIOR® Y HIGH CHAIR, you can also swapp out cushion colors to make it feel like new again.

To make other baby items unique, think about adding embellishments or patches. If you know how to embroider, make use of those skills on baby clothes! Infuse hand-me-downs with your personal flair, so they can be one-of-a-kind for your baby.

Rotate and Refresh

mother feeding baby

To keep used baby items fresh and exciting, consider rotating them in and out of your child’s life. Store unused hand-me-downs in labeled bins or containers. Periodically swap them for new items to keep things interesting. For some items, you may have to invest in new pieces altogether, like a hip seat baby carrier that can make carrying your baby around easier. But rotating can prevent your baby from getting tired of the same old toys while ensuring that used items continue to be utilized and appreciated over time.

Pay It Forward

Just as you’ve benefited from getting used baby items, consider paying it forward too. Pass along items that your child has outgrown to other friends and families in need. Donate gently-used clothing, toys, and gear to local charities if no one in your immediate circle needs them. By sharing the wealth of hand-me-downs, you can extend the life cycle of these items and prevent them from ending up in the landfill anytime soon. It also makes a positive impact on others in your community.

Be Grateful and Appreciative

As your child grows, it’s important to teach them to appreciate and value hand-me-downs as meaningful gifts from those around you. Encourage gratitude and appreciation by involving your child in the process of receiving, cleaning, and organizing hand-me-downs. At the end of the day, you want your child to grow up with the best of values, and this can start by ensuring they know the value of these hand-me-downs. Instill a sense of gratitude and responsibility so your child can develop a deeper appreciation for this timeless tradition.

Be Open-Minded

Not all parents value hand-me-downs, and you might even encounter parents in your circle who have strong opinions. But being willing to embrace the unexpected is what parenting is all about, and you have to apply this psychology to used baby items too. Some items may not initially feel like the ‘perfect’ fit for you, but you’ll be pleasantly surprised by their functionality once you start using them.

Experiment with different combinations and uses for hand-me-downs, and don’t be afraid to think outside the box. You never really know what hidden gems you may discover among the hand-me-downs you receive. You could even do it within your home! Reusing bottles for a second baby is common, and many parents end up saving baby items from the first time if they are planning on having additional kids.

Invest in the Future with Abiie®

It’s time to be sustainable parents, for yourselves and the future of your child. By following these hand-me-down tips, you’re paving the way for sustainability, but are also keeping with tradition. With a little creativity and ingenuity, used baby items can end up becoming treasured heirlooms that tell the story of your family’s journey through parenthood.

Whether you’re looking for a hip baby carrier or a high chair, Abiie®’s sustainable products are here to make your search easier. Our innovative and minimalist baby products are a favorite among parents and experts. Upgrade your and your baby’s life today with Abiie®.