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Swap party tips - kids' stuff

With back to school fast approaching some parents may be scratching their heads at how much smaller their kids clothing has become over the summer. It seems that no sooner have you stocked up on current sizes, kids are ready for the next one. That’s why parents frequent second hand stores and yard sales. Instead of trekking through a stuffy mall and paying outrageous prices for kids’ gear, why not make it interesting and host a kids’ clothing swap? Declutter, recycle and have fun. Here are some tips: 
Pick a date No brainer – but give parents time to scour their stores of gently used archived outgrown clothing to bring –freshly washed of course. 
Pick a time This isn’t so simple because you need to figure out if it will be just adults, or adults and kids that attend the swap. If kids come then they can try on clothes – the drawback is providing kids’ food and activities to keep them occupied during the critical swap process – and will also inform what time your swap is – day or night. Don’t forget nap time can get in the way for parents with younger children. After kids have been tucked in bed for the night is a good time for a dessert or fun cocktail event.  
Strategize Be sure the people in the group have children of different ages. You don’t want tons of onsies and no coats for five year olds – you want a great mix of sizes and styles. 
Be organized Make it easy for parents to find what they need; group items by age (baby, toddler, 5 to 7, 8 to 11). Then sort into categories - types and sizes of clothing (or even sports gear, games, books, crafts, toys, dress-up costumes). You could string a clothline up to hang stuff and merchandise things up a bit. Mirrors and hangers are a great addition! You can find really inexpensive kids' clothing hangers at thrift stores. 
Designate different areas of your home for different articles of clothing to promote mingling and prevent confusion. 
Refreshments should be offered but you could ask each guest to bring a little something to contribute. 
Keep it fun with upbeat shopping music. 
Other ideas With raffle tickets (available from a dollar store) give each guest a ticket for each item of clothing they bring, then the tickets can be used to claim an equal number of swapped items. 
Donate All unclaimed items can be donated to a non-profit group. 
Kids clothing swaps are really a fun thing to do and it's a win for everyone. 


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