Shopping for children is fun — you get to look at cute prints and socks and t-shirts made adorable by their very virtue of being tiny. But it’s all expensive, not just in terms of price-points but also in terms of the number of wears they get. After all, at the pace at which children outgrow things — physically and sometimes even mentally — is faster than you can say ‘sustainability’.
It wasn’t uncommon for Indian kids from even as recently as the 90s, to have their wardrobes stocked, and sparsely at that, with mostly hand-me-downs from cousins and siblings. However, living increasingly in smaller and nuclear families now, this passing down of clothes and getting the most wears out of each garment, becomes hard. Noticing this gap, a few entrepreneurs have been populating this nascent and fledgeling market of pre-loved baby goods with their community-driven platforms, all claiming to offer proper cleanliness and sanitary checks. Here are some.
Launched in July 2020, this Instagram-native shop is run by three working mothers, Divya Abhishek, Tripti Chordia, and Vaibhavi Prakash. The idea is to connect parents, who quite like themselves, were looking to find more use for clothes and toys that their children outgrew fairly quickly. The trio assures “quality control through safety checks and sanitisation” before re-selling. If you reach out to sell a lightly used item, an automated email with a detailed questionnaire on the status and condition of the product, and requirements for a photograph, and a notification for a video call to follow up on this, lands in your inbox. Only once you send that back duly filled, can you proceed with the selling process. They list everything from educational toys, baby swing sets, prams, high-chairs, cribs and more.
Delivery across India. @shoptwicetreasured on Instagram.
Noida-based mothers Bhavna Dayal and Nandita Kodesia started this website in 2020. Their motto: love, transfer, repeat. The duo wanted to create an online community to start a conversation on sustainable practices for parenting. So far, with over 50 brands like Chicco and Tommy Hilfiger listed on their platform, Tiny Things has also secured a first round of seed funding, and as per reports, hopes to expand their presence across India by selling franchises to mothers or “mompreneurs” who can work from home. Currently, their platform sells clothes, toys, books, shoes, and accessories. They offer free pickups of goods you want to sell, but follow a due process of ensuring the product's quality before this.
Delivery across India. Tinythings.in
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Started by friends Shradha Virani and Heena Kalantri in October 2019, Sold Resold too started as a community-driven platform to get parents to easily buy and sell “preloved and precared” baby products. Mostly active on Instagram, the platform uses one of their ‘Highlights’ section to detail a 4-step method for anyone wanting to sell lightly used baby products like toys, clothes, cots, shoes, sterilisers, and strollers. Products are qualified on the basis of a photo of the product shared with the team, and further communication on what one can earn for their product, is communicated directly.
Delivery across India. @soldresold on Instagram
Founded by Rhea Gandhi Rajan, a member of the family that owns the popular Vadilal ice creams, Uptot is one of the more recent entrants into the game. The need to “create a community that would teach every child the concept of sharing and upcycling, right from a young age,” is what drove Gandhi to launch her own platform, which is open to clothing, strollers, books, toys, and even items that do not “…fit into one of our current categories”. Uptot charges charges a commission of 20% percent of the sale price, including 10% for shipping.
Delivery across India. Uptot.in
Informed by a restless toddler, bored of all his current toys and clothes during the initial lockdown months of the pandemic, a young mother started looking at social media groups to buy preloved, affordable and sustainable new toys, books, and more to keep him entertained. But it was all too unorganised. Overnight, she decided to create a platform that accepted gently used toys and books from parents, sanitised them, and curated to sell them on an online platform. Prehugged differs from the others on this list in that you cannot earn from what you give away. They offer a free pick-up service across Mumbai, Thane, and Navi Mumbai; and reimburse your courier costs of up to ₹200, if you wish to send your donations from anywhere else. When you buy from them, they say, a part of your money goes to a charity for orphans.
Delivery across India. Prehugged.com
Also Read: The art of upcycling old wires and bolts for fashion