I love being able to save money on clothes for my children and they love when I can get them lots of clothes. To accomplish this, I go to consignment shops. I shop at a wonderful one not to far from my house called Kid to Kid. I've even sold them a few things I have for store credit (you get a higher percentage when you sell for store credit).
The trick to shopping consignment is getting to know the store. This particular store in my area gets a lot of known brand of clothes and shoes and they sell them at a great price. I first visited the store a few times just to look around and see what they had, just get a basic feeling for the store. I also ask the employees for information. The most important question I always ask is when they usually get their biggest amount of inventory. They accept inventory every day of the week but they have some days that people seem to prefer to come in. They tag and place items for sale within a day so I know if I go in the next morning I have a better chance of getting items that just came in.
I also get information about special events. This store has a Halloween costume event labor day weekend and a winter coat event about three weeks later. I make sure to arrive at the store at opening time on event days. That way I have a better opportunity of getting what I'm looking for.
Today I went looking for a winter coat for my 5 year old and a couple of long sleeve shirts. I was able to get him a Land's End coat in like new condition for $15. I also got him 5 long sleeve shirts (all famous name brands) and the most expensive was $4.99. He was so excited to get "new" clothes today. As an added bonus, I browsed the girl area to see if by any chance they had any size 14 for my daughter (something that hardly ever happens). Today I was in luck!
She had told me as I left the house that her hoodie was too short on her and she really needed a new one. I had told her we could probably check online when I got back or go to some store tomorrow but when I saw a hoodie size 14-16 with the original tags still on, I grabbed it right away. It was only $6.99 and I have a happy tween, which is priceless.
Now, I will admit that I am very picky about what my kids wear. I will look for the bargains but I won't let them look like their clothes is used. So for me to buy at this store I make sure the clothes is in "like new" condition. They do an excellent job with having that kind of clothes and only a few times have I seen anything that looked used.
So if you haven't shopped on consignment, try it out. Just make sure you get to know the store and see if they have clothes, shoes, toys or accessories to your liking. Most areas have various different types of consignment stores; it's just a matter of finding the right one for you.