Kids grow so darn fast. Before you know it the cute sundress that your daughter wore twice is way too small and your son can't squeeze his toes into the shoes that he wore to your cousin's wedding. So what do you do with all of the barely-worn clothes that your kids outgrow?
You could donate them. Or pass these items on to family, friends, and neighbors. You could even list them on Freecycle or Craig's List. Or you could put them in dozens of storage bins and keep them in your garage for the future children that you may or may not have (this is what I usually do).
I think that these are all perfectly good options. But I do have two other ideas for you.
Trade the old clothes in for new ones. Bring your stuff to a children's consignment shop. I like Second Child on Armitage in Lincoln Park. They only accept the higher end brands and items need to be in good shape. Visit the website to see how the consignment process works and then bring in your gently worn, name brand children's clothing and trade it in for items that your kids need. You'll need to make an appointment if this is your first time. Now is the time to bring in fall and winter clothing. When your consigned clothes sell, use your credit to stock up on some school basics for your kids. Everyone wins in this exchange.
Organize a swap. If you have tons of perfectly good children's items that you are looking to get rid of, the chances are that your friends are in the same situation. Be a hero and organize a swap amongst your friends to help everyone get a handle on their closet chaos. I am planning to organize a Halloween costume swap in the next few weeks. Mostly, I want to get rid of the size 2T puppy dog and 5T frog costumes cluttering up my house and hopefully score some new Halloween costumes for my little ghosts and goblins.
You could also organize a swap of adult clothes. My sister recently attended a swap cocktail party with some of her buddies and came away with some great new clothes while also getting rid of some things from her own closet.
Let me know if you have other ideas for managing the wardrobes of the little people in your life.