Are You Too Good for Hand Me Downs?

Updated on September 08, 2014
M.L. asks from Conneaut, OH
35 answers

I just read the blog on the home page, usually I don't because they are always stupid.

This really bugs me. I have never give someone clothing with out asking them if they want it. do they really expect mint condition children's clthng for free? I have received lots I pass on to others if it doesn't fit or isn't my style or if it really doesn't meet my standards I just pitch what can't use. no judegment on the giver.

If you agreed with this author can explain to me how you got into that situation in the frst place.?? and is anyone else having trouble typing on this site today?

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So What Happened?

you oculd try refreshing the homepage, if you really cared, but that was essentially it. that people gave her stuff she didn't want to have.

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answers from Washington DC on

Sorry - haven't read it. I don't read the blog or take the polls.

I've received "hand me downs" that still had the tags on them...I have given "hand me downs" that still have the tags on it.

If I get something I don't "Like"??? I pass it on. Donate it. Whatever. Don't look a gift horse in the mouth.

11 moms found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

Oh hell no I'm not too good for hand me downs! I love them. My 16 yo daughter is a tomboy and lives in basketball shorts and t-shirts. My 12 yo daughter is a fashionista and doesn't share her big sisters fashion taste but my daughter has 4 friends who have given us hand me downs for years. They always ask if we want them and they usually only give us the good clothes that they don't want to give to Goodwill. I am so grateful for those clothes. They are in great condition and come from higher end clothing stores that I can't afford so daughter #2 gets some great clothes for free. I haven't had to buy a full wardrobe of clothes for my youngest in years!

7 moms found this helpful


answers from Chattanooga on

I read it too... I think she was trying to be sarcastically funny, but didn't convey it well at all.

Personally, I LOVE hand me downs in any condition.

If I get anything that is too torn, worn, or stained for my taste, I try to upcycle them into something nice, or pass them along to someone who REALLY needs them or donate. (Luckily I have a girl... So I can easily transform pants with holes in the knees into a nice skirt, shirts can have sleeves removed and replaced with ribbons to make a halter or tank top, lace can be added to cuffs and hems to extend it's life, or I can cover stains with iron-on decals, ruffles, flowers, etc.) Sometimes I will keep one or two outfits for play/paint clothes.

7 moms found this helpful

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answers from Reading on

I hate those stupid blog articles. They are usually written by nitwits with big opinions and not a lot of intelligence.

And no, to answer your question, I have no problem with hand me downs - I took my daughter thrifting this afternoon and she got 8 shirts for 15 dollars, two with original tags still on.

9 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

I didn't see the article. As for hand me downs, I never received anything because my daughter was the first born grandchild. I would not have turned anything down if something were passed to me. If I couldn't or wouldn't use it, I would donate it.

I have passed some things on to family members who requested her clothes because I bought good stuff but I stopped and started sending everything to the Women's Shelter or out community outreach program.

I prefer to get the tax benefit from my donations and I know they are appreciated.

After several times of paying upwards of $50 to send boxes of good clothes to my brother's little girl and never getting a "we received it", "thank you" or a "go to hell" acknowledgement... I decided that our things would be appreciated more by those who don't have expectations. In turn, I am helping children and women in our community and getting a tax benefit.

8 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

We always take them! I don't use everything I am given, and I pass on what I don't use. Clothing, furniture, whatever. We rarely turn anything down, because we don't want people to not offer us things they no longer want. If that makes sense.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Baton Rouge on

People have always asked me if I would be interested before giving me hand-me-downs. And I always say "yes" to free clothing.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Tampa on

I have received some wonderful hand me downs over the years. I have always been grateful and thanked the giver sincerely. I have also received stuff that is either horribly ugly, stained or damaged. I tried to use what I could. The rest either got trashed or donated depending on condition. I did also give tons of baby stuff away when I knew folks having babies as mine were outgrowing stuff.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Columbia on

I responded to that one. My opinion was that the author's tone is arrogant and entitled. I love hand-me-downs and hardly even buy new clothes, other than the stuff folks don't hand down (socks, underwear, shoes).

There was a time where folks made an effort to get as much use out of their clothing as they possibly could. Now we live in a throw-away society. It's wasteful and sad. The same ones who insist on ONLY NEW, and ONLY BRAND NAME are the ones with too much month at the end of their money. We like saving money and reducing waste any way we can.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Oklahoma City on

There are certain items the kids have worn that they were the 6th or 7th kid to wear that garment.

Soap works. I think it's totally weird for people to not want to have second hand clothes. They were tried on in the store and I bet you didn't wash a brand new garment as soon as you took the tags off or drop it off at the dry cleaners first.

Most of my friends even do undies. Soap works. If soap doesn't clean stuff then that fork you put in your mouth at lunch is wayyyyyy dirtier than a pair of undies washed in hot water with bleach.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Abilene on

When I had my daughter I received boxes of clothes from several ladies at our church. Sizes ranged from infant to 6x. I stored the larger sizes in my attic. Because of their incredible generosity I only purchased special occasions clothing and did that because I wanted to purchase her first Christmas dress etc. I was so appreciative and happily passed on things to my fiends as well. To each his own. I didn't read the article because it sounded petty. Glad I didn't bother.


6 moms found this helpful


answers from Austin on

Gosh she sounds entitled and judgmental. Yikes.
And she put it out there where her friends that passed things on to here are going to be able to read this?

How many of you have experienced, this? You washed everything really well and them months later you go through the clothes and find stains you had never seen before? Yep this happens because some stains are in the fabric and do not appear right away, even after being washed. I used to be a linen buyer and we used to hear about this type of thing with really good table linens. People knew they had cleaned them, but the next Thanksgiving there would be all sorts of stains on the linens. Food grease, white wine, sugars.. they can stain long after they have been cleaned.

Be gracious and do not judge or assume, Do not like what they are offering, do not use them. Just move on.

I was offered a ton of baby items. We did not have to purchase any baby things except a high Chair and a stroller. The crib, mattress, changing table, sheets, clothing.. All were either given or loaned to us and the stained items? Not a problem, either put them aside or used them when we were going to be home being messy.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Raleigh on

I accept hand-me-downs from one of my friends and I'm always appreciative. Usually, she weeds out the worst pieces with stains and holes before giving them to me. I've not had to buy swim trunks for my son for the last 3 years! What I don't want goes to charity. I have two friends who take my kids' clothes, mainly because I almost always buy new. Which leads me to my next statement. I don't do consignment shops and those all-out consignment warehouse events. I can almost always buy something brand new for less than what these consignment shops are asking. For example today. I bought 5 pairs of shorts for my daughter for next year for $10 (total sale) from Target. I bought 6 tank tops for her from Old Navy for $12 (total sale). Way cheaper and I didn't have to pilfer through a bunch of racks and bins saving me lots of effort and aggravation. I just buy up at the end of the season and put them away for next year. It's just a matter of knowing when and how to shop.
As for toys- I ask a few friends if they want something my kids outgrow. These toys are usually in great shape before I even ask. If they want them, great! If not, charity. It's really not a big deal either way.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

The clothes with holes and stains are the perfect camping clothes.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Grand Forks on

I have always received hand me downs and been very happy to accept them. Even those with rips or stains were fine. I can sew a torn item and I can try to remove a stain. When my kids were little they could wear stained clothes for playing in the sandbox or eating ice cream. They were just going to get more stains! If the item were too ripped or stained to salvage I had a new cleaning rag. When I give hand me downs I assume that the receiver can decide for themselves whether they want to use stained items or repair items. I have also given and received socks and underwear. Like Gamma G said, soap works.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Muncie on

Love, love, love hand-me-down children's clothing. As fast as kids grow, heck yeah, free clothing!

I ALWAYS say yes and I ALWAYS show appreciation to the giver. If something doesn't fit or isn't "us", I pass it along or donate it to Goodwill.

My husband has a baby sister who's only 2 years older than our daughter. We also have family friends who have a boy and a girl, each is 2 years older then our 2. Hand-me-downs help so much.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

Well I did read the article (someone shared the link below) and frankly what bothered me was that she complained about getting a bunch of stuff that was unwashed/smelled bad and was broken and/or otherwise unusable.
All I would say to that is what the hell kind of people do you hang out with?
I have been both the giver and receiver of second hand items but the people I know at least have enough class to wash things before they pass them on.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

Hand me downs= money in my pocket. Less I have to buy.

Being too good for something usually means the person is more worried about what others think. I could care less what people think...let them go buy expensive clothing and think they are better. My value doesn't come from what I look like or what I runs deeper than that superficiality.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Anchorage on

I love hand-me-downs, they have saved me lots of money over the years.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Roanoke on

Yes, I was bothered by that article too. She sounded spoiled and petty. Kids clothes don't have to be in new condition- kids get them dirty so fast anyway. First-world problems, right?

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Denver on

That's the article. I thought that the tone of that post was arrogant, and pretty insensitive in parts. Perhaps the author meant it as satire, or parody or humor or complaint, but to me, it wasn't successful as anything other than whining and weakness.

I too have received many hand-me-downs. Some were wonderful, some of the clothes were not ones that I would or could use (wrong size, my daughter would not consider wearing pink with ruffles even at a young age, etc). But I wasn't offended. I had a friend, when my children were little, who was very frugal and very generous, and she occasionally gave me a large garbage bag like the one the blog writer described: full of shirts with small tears or stains. I knew my friend intended them to be used when my kids were finger-painting, not for wearing to church.

I have always assumed that hand-me-downs were intended to be used by SOMEBODY. If I couldn't use them, I passed them on, donated them, or sometimes made burp cloths or painting bibs out of them. My friends weren't offended and didn't inspect my children to see if their hand-me-downs were being worn.

The sentence about the pregnant woman with the leg warmers and VHS tapes made me offended, and the fact that the blog writer feels dumped upon and unable to say "no thank you" made me quite unwilling to read more of her postings.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

I love the history of hand me downs. Especially if it's from a favorite cousin. I have passed on this love to my daughters. Sometimes we even are in awe as to how many bodies (in time) a certain outfit has covered.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

I read that blog too and it kind of made me cringe.
I LOVE hand me downs. I use them all the TIME. She is right in that sometimes I receive stuff that has holes, hasn't been washed, or stained. But, then I see if I can fix the hole, I wash the clothes, and I treat the stains. Then, if I can't do anything to fix the clothes I either donate (if they are not all busted up and just happen to be something I don't like) or I get rid of them.
I have received some AWESOME hand me downs and would never turn my nose up at someone's offer to give me free clothes.
I am on a free site on facebook where people give away clothes! I do too! It's a great way to dress the kids....for free!!!

3 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

I ALWAYS accept hand me downs. If they are too big they go in a bin in the attic. Too small or not our style they go in the donation pile for a tax receipt. Really bad shape gets thrown away. I'm so far away from my sister now I don't get any more from her - sure wish I did.

I even accept them for myself. There were about three boxes of maternity clothes that made the rounds between about five of us back in the day!

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

I always take the clothes when offered. I did not need to buy a single item for my daughter I got 7 bags of clothes from a friend and my co-worker. I loved some of it, what I did not like I passed down to my niece. I get stuff from my cousin, that she passes down from her boys for my son. Some of it we like, other things we just send to my friend or good will.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

I didn't read the article however I always received a ton of hand me downs when my kids were little. I'd sort through everything, keep what I wanted, throw out anything stained or broken, and donate the good stuff that I had no use for. My thought process was always 'thank you for thinking of us' but I never felt under obligation to keep or use anything. Judging someone who was giving you something for nothing seems stupid.

On the flip side I never gave a hand me down that was not in really good condition with no stains. I figured that it was easier for me to throw something out than it was to stuff it in a bag and lug it over to someone else's house.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Norfolk on

I'd much rather give to a charity that gives me a receipt so I can write it off my taxes.
I'm fine with people giving me their stuff and anything I can't use get donated as per mentioned above.
I don't really understand why THEY don't want to write it off their taxes - but what the heck, it ends up as money in MY pocket.
I've read a few home page blogs in the past but they don't interest me and I think most are very badly written.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

I can't find the article.

I don't mind getting hand me downs at all. I've always appreciated them, although I don't recall being given them with out the giver asking me first. Either way I wouldn't mind. If it's something I can use, great. If not, I pass it along or donate it.

Added: I read the article. As someone else mentioned, at first I thought she was trying to be funny... It's just a horrible insensitive article. Now I know why I rarely read the blogs.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Iowa City on

I've never received hand me downs that were in poor condition. Sure, some items had a few stains but hey! play clothes. And if there is something in really bad shape I just throw it away or use it for rags. The one or two crappy items among the many good ones don't bother me at all. If there is something I don't want I donate it to Goodwill.

Whenever I pass on hand me downs I don't just throw everything my girls have outgrown into a bag and say here take it. I go through the stuff and throw away things that are terribly stained or torn. I only pass on things that range from excellent to good condition. Whatever the recipient doesn't want he or she can donate to Goodwill.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Wausau on

I think I replied to that one. Or maybe I thought better of it and didn't.

The author gave a great example of How Not To handle things. There is no reason to accept or keep things you don't want, to build up clutter, or to accumulate great piles of your kids outgrown stuff for years.

I know many times the bloggers are going for humor but I didn't sense that this one was meant to be funny. I don't think the author realizes it is a problem of her own creation.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Phoenix on

The author does come across as snotty and arrogant, but so does your post. It's not a matter of being "too good for hand me downs" as you put it. It's simply a matter of saying yes or no, based on your needs, wants, and space limitations. I wouls never be offended if someone I offered hand-me-downs to said no.

After 11 years of owning my own daycare, I HAVE experienced the good, the bad, and the ugly of hand-me-downs. Unless it's something really big that I just have no place to store, I simply say "Yes, please." and "Thank you." to offers of hand-me-downs. Then I choose what, if anything I want, throw away the broken toys or the things missing so many pieces they've been rendered useless, and I donate the rest to a local organization that provides a home and support for homeless, pregnant women. If I pass on something, I suggest they donate it directly to the organization.
We are very fortunate that between two grandmas and sales, our kids don't need hand-me-down clothes or toys, but we have been very thankful for them when we get them. In the daycare, I've been truly lucky to receive hand-me-down exersaucers, pack-n-plays, changing tables, toys, etc.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Boca Raton on

am i too good for hand me downs? no. do i take hand me downs? no.
it's a personal issue. yes, i could save money if i were to take hand me downs, but there are two issues with me in regards to this:
1. there is always someone in need of hand me downs, and i'd rather those go to the families in need.
2. i can't get over the fact I and my kids would be wearing someone else's clothes. there. i said it.
having said that, my nieces and nephews take our hand me downs. my kids have a lot and their clothes are usually barely worn as they always gravitate towards wearing the sam shorts and tshirts. plus, they go to a private school, so they wear uniforms. things just don't get too worn out, so i pass them on to others.
shoes. no hands me downs period. each food needs to have their own shoes.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

Nope, though I have a cousin who won't even use the same baby bathtub between her own kids, so I don't bother asking. IMO, there's nothing wrong with a handmearound - we have a raincoat a friend gave us. They had a 2nd daughter in the meantime, the coat is in great shape, so I'm passing it back, plus a pair of boots. I will admit I didn't read the article, but having HAD to use handmedowns as a kid and knowing how quickly kids outgrow...everything...I just appreciate not having to buy yet another whatever when there's one for cheap or free available. Freecycle and CraigsList area also good resources for kid stuff, or stuff in general.

I don't give people trashed clothes - if it's not something I'd want to put my kid back in (if it fit), then I don't pass it along. I wouldn't just drop clothing on people, either. I always ask. I also like thrift stores and places like Once Upon A Child.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

i didn't read the blog yesterday, but no, i love thrift shops and have always been happy to use hand-me-downs for my kids and myself.
i don't know that it's really a snobby thing, though. my SIL can't stand the idea of used clothing. she's a sweetheart- but it just squicks her out. she can't do it. she can't even stand to, say, borrow shoes (eg if i offer her a pair of muck boots to wear out to my barn.) she's just hardwired that way. i don't think she thinks she's 'too good' for 'em, it just makes her feel all oogly.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Spokane on

I have 2 boys, my sister has 2 boys and my brother has 2 boys ~ we all share clothes :)

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