Shopping Eco Friendly For Your Newborn

First of all if you click into this post congratulations! I guess that means you are expecting a new family member very soon! The whole process can seem overwhelming and daunting (or am I alone in this??). Mix that with some hormones and VOILA – You might think you need to buy everything brand new and pay the highest price and have the best of the best for your new bundle of joy …. not only is this unnecessary but it is also very damaging to the environment. Think of how many newborns are born everyday, if each of these was to be bought a brand new wardrobe, a wardrobe that will only last for a month or so before baby grows out of them and mix that with the multitude of gifts baby will receive and you will find yourself with a huge pile of WOW. Baby registries are great because if someone does want to get you a gift at least you can be straight out honest and say exactly what baby needs rather than receiving a stuff that you might not ever use or want, although the registries are more American right now, even though it might feel awkward making out a list and giving it to people who do want to buy a gift, it makes perfect sense and is one way to cut down on waste. If this isn’t your thing, there are other ways to cut down on newborn shopping waste and be eco friendly with how you source your pieces.

Some vests I have collected

Secondhand

  • Secondhand From Family & Friends
    • Obviously this is the most straight forward and easiest way to do things. If a family member or a friend offers you some bits and pieces, if you need them, then graciously take them. Always ask if they are something they would like back in case they are planning for more children down the line. This is also a great way to be sentimental about certain things. I love when my (older) daughter wears things that I used to wear or that my sisters or cousins used to wear, it is amazing to see so many generations get use out of clothing. Normally these would be high quality pieces that will last years and generations, like – coats, dresses, hand-sewn jumpers and what not. So try to keep this in mind when receiving something you know might be important. Also don’t forget to write a nice card or get a small thank you gift.
  • Secondhand Online. There are sooooooooo many avenues to source secondhand baby clothes online, some of which come at zero cost to you.
    • Zero-Waste Groups. Check Facebook for Zerowaste Groups, specifically Zerowaste Baby groups like – Zero waste Baby/ Children Freecycle Ireland in which members upload items and clothing that they no longer want / need and offer them for free to anyone who needs them. I personally have been lucky to get some great items from here. Definitely a good idea to join. My tips within these groups are –
      • Make a list of what you need to get and keep an eye out for them or put your notifications for the group on to be alerted when someone posts something new, things tend to go very fast in these groups.
      • Know some terminology like ‘ISO’ = I am … ‘In Search Of’ what ever. Side note I didn’t know what ISO meant for ages and I was thinking lots of people are getting rid of this brand ISO. But it is a great way to either be offered certain items on your if you post that you are ISO or be guided to what you need.
      • Really give the pictures and the description a good inspection and make sure the item doesn’t look damaged and what not.
      • There are multiple Zero-Waste groups you can join, as I said above the Children and Baby Group above is good for collecting (obviously) children and baby items, but check on local groups to your county / area too for some great finds.
      • Normally you will just be asked to collect the items or pay a cost for delivery.

  • Buying Secondhand.
    • There are multiple websites to choose from when it comes to buying secondhand, but obviously the main thing to keep in mind is to only shop for what you need. You can get great deals all over the internet, whilst knowing that you are helping the planet. I found one great way to stock up on baby clothes (that will only be used a handful of times – as they grow so quick) was to buy ‘baby clothes bundles’ for 0-1 months or 1-3months etc etc. This is a great way to make sure you have all the basics. Keep in mind that you will be gifted lots of items from family and friends too. Normally they tend to gift the nicer items rather than the day to day basics, but again, if you are asked what you want or need be honest and tell the truth to reduce waste.
    • Baby Bundle Websites. Some of the websites I found best for getting baby clothing bundles are as follows….

Sellers will normally post a picture of all the clothing pieces as the main picture and then some closer pictures of the items for you to view once you click into the advert. You can find everything from neutral pieces to very obvious boy or girl bundles.

Some hats I have picked up

Shop From Companies You like

As with anything I ever say – “Cast your consumer carefully”. If you know a shop or company making the world a better place and that fits in with your morals and beliefs, make sure to shop from them. There are plenty of companies that are doing good, it may involve a little bit of research on your end as they may not be as well known as other baby brands, but they are out there. Some areas in which you might be passionate about ….

  • Ethical companies
  • Fair work practice
  • Using sustainable and organic materials
  • Cruelty-free
  • Supporting local (which is especially true for this year). Some great local Irish baby clothing shops to browse are

Extra Tips …

  • If buying secondhand online, really look at all the information available on the product and seller you are buying from. Check previous seller reviews. Check the photos for as much detail of any wear & tear not mentioned in the description, most people are honest though and will sell only good items or point out any flaws. Check other online reviews of what you are buying if it is more than a basic clothes bundle.
  • If not buying something in person, always check the postage costs too. You might think you are getting a great deal, but with postage costs and perhaps VAT too, it might not be the price you had hoped! eBay are great for letting you know the total costs before you buy and with the likes of Adverts.ie or Done Deal you can negotiate postage or delivery charges prior to buying if you are not collecting in person.
  • Before clicking – BUY – make sure to view and look through what else the seller has available. Chances are there might be more stuff you need or want that you can purchase directly from the same seller to save on postal & delivery costs and ease of research too.

I hope this has been helpful to you and you may have found some great tips or researched secondhand websites for baby items that you might not have even thought to look at before. Feel free to add any tips to the comment section below or share with a friend whom might find the piece useful.

x

Saoirse.

Cover photo – Luise & Nic

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