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July 30, 2010
Has anyone used
? I'm really liking the notion of a quasi-freecycling of baby and child clothes but I'd love to hear what others have to say before I commit.
Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion
(1 answer total)
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No one replied? That's unfortunate. I have no direct experience, but I do have a few things that may be better than nothing.
From a functionality perspective it seems very similar to Bookmooch, which allows people to exchange books. Bookmooch seems to work well even though it has more roadblocks than this site - you have to ship your own books, you don't get paid for sending a book (you get points that can be used to get books from others), you send one book at a time rather than a whole box.
I think the reason Bookmooch may work better is that people are looking for specific books. You know exactly what you're getting when you get it. People also need/want books frequently, so there's lots of turnover. With a box of clothes you're trading a somewhat commodity item (a box of clothes, not individual pieces). And how many boxes of clothes do people really have to trade? I would suspect that you're mostly going to get low quality / low demand clothes, since the first thing people are going to do when they get a box is to put everything they don't want into a new box use that to start their next box for shipping. It seems to me that you're going to have the nicer pieces out of circulation for longer (worn longer, passed down as hand-me-downs) resulting in lower average quality per box.
It also doesn't look like much of deal. At least here (Chicago), Craigslist and garage sales let you pick exactly what you want for a lower price. Especially at garage sales almost no one is trying to make a buck off kids clothes, and you can often get really nice things with the tags still on. If you're buying in bulk you can get most things for 50 cents or a dollar.The $13 shipping (introductory rate) isn't much of a deal for 10 items, and with the premium fees for getting to look inside a box and it starts to seem less free.
I think in summary it might be a good deal for people with very little time to shop locally, or with very low local population density. I might give it a try, but I don't really see it being much of a freecycle alternative.
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