If you’re a regular reader of Canadian blogs, you may have come across a post or two about Boomerang Kids, a Canadian franchise with resale stores in Ontario and Quebec. The posts would have told you that Boomerang Kids is North America’s first and only resale chain carrying children’s merchandise that’s available in-store and online. And maybe you would have agreed that nearly-new clothing is a great way to save money – after all, kids grow so quickly! And I’m sure you would have read a testimonial or two about the quality of the clothing, the availability and selection, and the benefits of purchasing perfectly reusable clothing.
This is not another one of those posts.
The truth is, I’m just not into resale. And that’s not a dig against those who choose to buy gently used items; it just means that personally, I don’t prefer it. (I also don’t prefer flimsy umbrellas, zip-lining or chocolate chip cookies.) While I donate used clothing to charity, and have even made a cool $34 after dropping off some of Ryder’s old clothes to a local consignment store, I generally can’t get excited about a purchase unless I’m able to rip off the price tags myself. Must be the shopaholic in me, huh?
So when asked to check out Boomerang Kids online, I was understandably hesitant. After all, I couldn’t authentically extol the virtues of previously-loved children’s clothing and toys while admitting an obsession with brand spanking new items, could I? But then, I found out about 25% of Boomerang Kids stores’ merchandise is new product, or “factory fresh” items. Hooray! I just happen to have a factory fresh niece that I like to spoil. So, I went shopping.
Now I’ll just cut to the chase and tell you that I am deliriously happy with the majority of the process. However, for newbie shoppers shopping for new shoppertunities (say that 10 times fast), I’d love to share the following wisdom in order to make your online experience as pleasant as possible:
First, visit www.boomerangkids.com.
1) Shop one store at a time. You *could* shop the entire online inventory at once, but you’ll be charged $10 (average) or more (oversized items and toys) every time you add items from a different virtual store. Hence, it’s better to see if you can find a variety of items you like at one store rather than jump from location to location. Simply select “Shop Online Stores” to visit each store at a time.
2) Shop by Category, and then by Condition. For example, I selected Baby Clothes, and then scrolled down to “New with Tags”. This helped ensure that I was only perusing through the selection of brand new items. (Alternatively, you could also select “Factory Fresh” – Factory Fresh are brand new items that Boomerang Kids has purchased directly from the manufacturer.) Next, your best bet is to categorize by Gender, followed by Size, if you wish. Et voila! Access to Boomerang Kids’ online inventory. I couldn’t resist this gorgeous Spring dress – check out the epic detailing – it was only $11.99!
3) Place items in your virtual cart, pay, and you’re done. And then get ready for some seriously fast shipping. I ended up ordering a haul of precious baby girl outfits from three different locations, and they ALL arrived less than 24 hours later. The clothing was perfectly packed, folded with care, and oh! Did I mention the PRICES?
Staple brands such as GAP, Old Navy, Osh Kosh, Mexx and H&M were heavily discounted. Each baby outfit was, on average, under $10 a pop! Designer brands like Jacadi, Prada, Hugo Boss, Burberry and Petit Bateau retailed for slightly more, but were still discounted by about 50-60% off the sticker price. AH-MAZING. For just over $120, I was able to purchase 20 outfits for my little niece. Do the math – that’s about $6 an outfit!
4) Beware the Grinch who stole stickers. In addition to the gorgeous clothing, I treated my boys to two Disney Cars oversized colouring books that included – as per the front cover that was advertised on the website – “Over 100 Stickers Inside!”. However, even though they were marked “New with Tags”, alas, someone had pilfered the sticker sheets from both books. Now considering the addition of stickers was likely factored into the retail selling price of the “new” books, I was very disappointed that both books were actually in “used” condition (but not as disappointed as my boys, who look forward to Cars stickers the way I look forward to an all-you-can eat cheesecake buffet). That was the one small let down in an otherwise glorious process.
(Good News: Boomerang Kids’ customer service is available for assistance if your shipment does not meet your expectations. Help is just a phone call away! I chose not to pursue the case of the missing stickers – however, if you have any questions or concerns about your order, your queries can and will be addressed.)
So, would I shop “new” at Boomerang Kids again? You bet I would. Since placing my order last week, I’ve returned to the site twice to check out the new inventory as it arrives. I must admit that it’s a little like eBay for the tame crowd – a Jacadi dress here, a Tommy Hilfiger Kids romper there – and before you know it, you’ve saved hundreds of dollars while fueling your clothing obsession.
Special thanks to Boomerang Kids for generously supplying a gift card to introduce me to their brand and online store. Click here to start shopping.