While browsing Andrea’s site not too long ago, I came across her post on used gifts and was wondering what YOU all thought about them.
Why is it that so many people think they have to give brand new items away at Christmas time (or for any holiday, really)? I actually love receiving used gifts and I have many friends and family members who feel the same… but we always receive new gifts during the holidays.
I don’t want to sound ungrateful. Of course I am appreciative of any gift I receive, but I love seeing people save money and one great way to do that is to give used gifts. I’m not talking about dirty or broken items, but things that someone could actually reuse and love as much as you once did.
Here are some used gift ideas that you might consider giving this year.
Even though new clothing goes on sale all the time, it’s rare that you can pick up an article for a few dollars or less. Thrift stores, yard sales and online classifieds like Kijiji and Craigslist, are great places to find used clothing for a fraction of their original prices.
T-shirts, pants, sweaters, jackets… all of these are articles of clothing that everyone needs. They surely would make great gifts! You will be able to give more than usual, as well, because the cost of used clothing is much lower than anything new.
2. Baby Gear
Do you have an expectant mother and/or father on your gift list this year? Consider giving used baby items that you either pass down yourself or purchase from a thrift store.
Some great used baby gear ideas would be toys, swing, changing table, bouncy seat, high chair, etc. Babies don’t need much to be happy and well cared for.. but the items they do need can be rather expensive if you purchase them all brand new. Baby items are meant to be shared, so go ahead and gift some of your favourite used items this year.
As long as there is no visible wear (or not very much, at least), books make great used gifts. Have you seen the price of books lately? I don’t know what’s going on, but prices seem to be going higher and higher all the time.
I can’t justify spending $20 on a book that someone is probably just going to read once. What’s wrong with buying a used copy instead – for only $5?
If there’s someone on your gift list that has been talking about getting some new furniture, it might be a good idea to see if you can pick something up for them from the classifieds or a thrift store.
Some people are very picky about the type of furniture that they purchase, though, so I wouldn’t advise giving used furniture gifts to those folks. However, if you know that your friend or family member is open to different types of used pieces, it may be a good idea to see if this is something you are able to purchase for them.
Coffee & side tables, baskets & bins, lamps and coat racks are all great gift ideas… but do pay attention to what people are mentioning needing and try to only pick up those pieces to avoid adding more clutter to someone’s home.
5. Home Decor
Think candles, serving dishes, clocks, mirrors, and artwork when it comes to home decor gifts. These types of items can always be found at your local thrift store, so be sure to check out their selection every so often to find that perfect little something for a loved one.
Home decor gifts are one of my favourite things to receive (used or new!). I’m not even close to being a designer, but I do know that you have to love your home and the things inside it if you want to be happy living there. Since I spend a good 90% of my time in the house, I want to be surrounded by beautiful things.
Giving used gifts does not make you cheap and it does not mean that you are poor. You are choosing to give those types of gifts because you think they will be useful and loved by the recipient(s).
Of course, it’s a good idea to make sure that the people/person you plan to give used gifts to are okay with the idea. Some people are really put off by letting used items come into their home and it’s probably not very smart to gift those types of items if you’re unsure of the recipients’ feelings toward used goods.
Giving used gifts is not only a great way to save money, but it is a fantastic way to recycle! One (wo)man’s trash is another (wo)man’s treasure…. right?
Do you like to receive used gifts? Please let us know in the comments.