Friday, July 25, 2008

calendar event: baby & kids market

To market, to market to buy a great bargain

I think this place could be mummy heaven: bargain-priced clothes, shoes, toys, nursery furniture, prams, baby accessories... everything you could possibly need for baby and kids up to six. And it's coming to a venue near you. I'd never heard of the Baby & Kids Market until I did Stella's nursery post - her mum Michelle swears by it and by the looks of Stella's cute room, she's onto something. Anyone else been to testify? The markets sell mostly second-hand, but high-quality second-hand, baby goods from next to nothing (see pic below for proof!) to not very much (like cots for around $80, car seats for $30 and bouncers at around $15).

How often do you see a price tag with $1 on it these days?

There are also a few local businesses owner stalls selling new goods, but it's mainly pre-loved wares from a huge range of labels like Fred Bare and Pumpkin Patch to Country Road and everything inbetween. It's great for anyone setting up a nursery, after a few extra duds for their incredibly fast-growing children, stocking up on Chrissy and birthday gifts and even for those wanting to make a buck or two: you can set up your own stall (details here).

There are anything from 65 to 120 stalls at each market selling gorgeous clothes like this

Lucky Sydneysiders get to go this Sunday between 9 and 12 at the Five Dock Leisure Centre whereas I have to wait a whole other month for it to come to me. But August 31 is pencilled on my calendar - I'm so there. It'll cost you a whole $3 to enter - kids are free - and there is food, drinks and free kids entertainment all under one roof. To find out when it's coming to your town, go here for dates and venues. Enjoy, but no fighting now you hear?


leslie said...

i went to one in melbourne a few months ago and it was FABULOUS!! so much great stuff at amazing prices. the crowds are pretty crazy (my husband bailed and waited in the car after just 5 minutes in the insanity) but so worth it, it think. i'm definitely planning to hit the next couple, once i see what i need for the baby.

gilchrist said...

Some advice from a seasoned Baby Market-goer!
1. If you're after a big-ticket item, such a high chair, pram, outdoor toys, safety gate etc...get there early. You'd want to be in the queue by about 8:30, possibly even earlier if you can manage it. I'm currently after one of those Little Tikes cars that the kids ride along in and got to the most recent market in Five Dock at about 5 past 9. There was one for $30 and when I got to the stallholders table (note: the bigger items are not at people's tables) it had already gone - I was apparently the 6th person to ask if it was still available! There's definitely not such a rush for the clothes - there's plenty of those available!
2. Don't be afraid to bargain! It's practically expected, and the worst thing that can happen is that the person will say no and you pay the ticketed price. If you're buying multiple items and it comes to $15, then there's absolutely no harm in asking to have them for $12 (or lower!) People are there to sell their goods - they don't want to lug them all home.
3. It's worth hanging around till the end, or close enough to it. The crowds thin out and you can have a better look at what's left. Also, most of the stallholders reduce their goods.
4. For Sydneysiders...the Campbelltown and Blacktown markets are nowhere near as frenzied as the ones in Lane Cove and Five Dock. You can actually move!
5. If you're on a budget, make a list of what you really need to avoid impulse buying - everything is so cheap that it's very easy to get completely carried away. I was going through my son's drawers recently and for someone who's not even 3, he has more size 4 and 5 jeans/ pants than a shop. Oooops.
6. Following on from that, however, if you see something you just have to have in a much bigger size, buy it and put it away. They really do grow so quickly and they'll get to that size before you know it. Wahhh!

A word of warning...
1. Yes, the crowds are insane. Why on earth people take their entire families, i'll never know, but that's a whole other gripe!
2. Always check clothes for stains - some stallholders will actually try to sell stained items, and it may be in a not so obvious spot, such as the sleeve. Have a quick squizzy first - nothing worse than getting something you loved home and realising that even copious amounts of Nappy San won't get the mark off.
3. Don't be afraid to open the boxes of games and puzzles to check that all the pieces are there.
4. I can't stress this one enough - open DVD's and check them for scratches.

Have fun Belinda! Make sure you tell us all about it. : )