I took the kids shopping the other day, to get a birthday present for their sister and a few more clothing items for summer. We came away with a high-quality wooden puzzle, two hats, two swimsuits, two dresses, two tops, a pair of shorts and a pair of jeans. We spent a total of about $50. Wal-Mart? No way. This was a local store, called All About Kids.
All About Kids is a consignment store for used children’s clothing, toys, and baby items, located in Northeast Portland, Oregon. They also offer new toys, games, puzzles, and art materials from Melissa and Doug, a very popular manufacturer of high-quality toys.
I like good quality clothing for my kids, but can’t necessarily pay the price for new clothing. My top choice for clothing is Hanna Andersson (also an Oregon company), because their clothing is well made, attractive, and made with fewer chemicals than most other brands of children’s clothing (they meet the European Oeko-Tex 100 standard, which is stricter than U.S. standards). Hanna Andersson clothing also often costs three times what I would pay at Wal-Mart or Target. That’s hard to justify on a low-income budget, even if you are getting your money’s worth.
I’ve gotten Hannas on sale before, and I’ve bought used stuff on eBay, but then I discovered that they were available locally through All About Kids. I’ve found Hanna tops, dresses, pants, tights, and even underwear at this store. All About Kids often has other top brands as well, like Tommy Hilfiger, Old Navy, Gap, Gymboree, and more.
Whether it’s a Circo item from Target or a pair of designer jeans, clothing from All About Kids is clean and gently used. Some is new or near new. All of it is reasonably priced; we usually pay five to eight dollars per item. They also have a clearance rack with even lower priced items.
Shoes are another good buy at All About Kids, although finding the right size can be tricky. Finding just the right pair of shoes is well worth it, though.
In addition, All About Kids takes baby furniture and equipment and baby and children’s toys on consignment. You can find car seats, bassinets, breast pumps, baby carriers, cloth diapers and covers, and more.
If you’re looking for a great gift for a child, you can’t go wrong with Melissa and Doug toys. They’re sturdy, old-fashioned wooden toys that help kids to use their imaginations. I used to go out to a local toy store to get these, but then All About Kids started carrying Melissa and Doug, so I always go there first when shopping for gifts. The store also carries Melissa and Doug art supplies, including crayons, paints, spill proof paint jars, and easels All About Kids does sell Melissa and Doug toys online through their website, in addition to selling them in-store.
Finally, the store carries a good assortment of used books, CD’s, videotapes and DVDs, along with some new books.
If you’re anywhere near this store, I can’t recommend it highly enough. If my family needs children’s clothing or gifts, I always start my shopping at All About Kids. The store is located at 11905 NE Glisan Street in Portland, Oregon; you can also find them on the web (www.allaboutkidspdx.com).