The Great Clothing Swap –

My son is growing!  Suddenly, almost overnight, his size 18 month pants and shirts are all too short!  And not just a little – I didn’t notice until one day I put a shirt on my son and the sleeves were a good inch above his arms.

Now this I was not expecting.  We’d purchased 2T clothing from the end-of-summer clearance racks, so we have plenty of t-shirts and shorts.  But it’s still March, and I’m sure some of you are looking out the window at the same thing I am – a foot-and-a-half of snow, and more swirling down.  So we’ve been keeping our eyes out for 2T pants (he has lots of shirts that still fit.)

So today, when I found an online clothing swapping site called I was very excited. I see lots of clothing for the whole family, although at the moment there isn’t a lot of maternity. 😛

Just like many online swapping sites, the site works on a system of credits.  Each item you list will initially earn you a free credit, with a maximum of ten free credits.  When you sell an item, you and the buyer split shipping costs, and the buyer pays a $0.99 transaction fee that goes to  I really like the fact that Swango uses the transaction fee to cover making the site run smoothly (by using paypal checkout) and also donates part of it to a charity that provides clothing to families in need.

You can use the credits you earn to “buy” clothes!  A brand new Gap onesie I’m eyeing would cost me 2 credits.

Swango, of course, is just one way to swap clothing – Ebay, Craigslist, freecycle, thrift stores, family…there are so many others.  And the benefits to swapping instead of buying new are plentiful:

~ swapping keeps clothing out of landfills – because if you never purchase new clothes, you never have to dispose of them!  Plus, you save the chemicals, raw goods, and other parts of the manufacturing process.

~ it’s cheaper!  It’s often just a couple dollars (compared to tens of dollars for new) or even free

~ swapping in many places means you will get something that is almost as good as new. previews listings and may reject those they feel are not in good condition.  I can’t tell you how many clothes I have inherited off of freecycle that were brand new, and many that were just as good as they would look after my son wore them a couple times!

All that said, I can’t wait until summer and garage sale season.  I haven’t found a really good thrift shop that carries clothing around here yet, but the garage sales are great!  Now, if only this snow would melt!