A guide to being safe as a consumer when buying at Little Pickles Markets

At Little Pickles Markets we want everyone to have an enjoyable experience, and too grab a bargains or two. Although Little Pickles Markets, do our best to ensure the standard of items for sale is high, it is up to you, the buyer to ensure that you are happy with the item you are purchasing, whether from a second-hand or one of the business stalls, before any money is exchanged. Little Pickles Markets cannot be held responsible for the condition of any item that has been bought at one of our events.

Using the following sites we have compiled a list of important information for consumers, this list is not exhaustive: –

  • Trading Standards – www.tradingstandards.gov.uk (There are some handy leaflets and downloads)

  • Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents ( RoSPA) www.rospa.com

  • Foundation for the Study of Infant Death (FSID) www.fsid.org.uk (you can order a useful wall thermometer – explaining how many blankets to put your baby in for the temp of the room)

  • Baby Centre www.Babycentre.co.uk

For reasons of health and hygiene, there are some goods that we advise against selling (unless brand new in packaging)

These include:

  • Dummies

  • Beakers or cups

  • Potties or toilet training seats

Car Seats

Although safety experts advice against buying car seats second-hand due to the fact you cannot guarantee that it hasn’t been involved in a crash. Even a seat that has been involved in a minor accident and displays no visible damage, may no longer provide adequate protection for your child in a further accident. We advice that car seats may be difficult to sell on but we don’t stop sellers bringing them along.

For further information on Car Seats and the various stages see our guides.  Car Seats from Birth & Second Stage Car Seats.

Electrical Items

  • Portable Appliance Testing

UK Law states that any second-hand electrical items must be PAT tested by a competent person before being sold and should include the manufacturer’s instruction manual. Please do bear this advice in mind before you buy any electrical item second-hand.

Pushchairs4527600

Check out our guide and top tips to buying Pushchairs, buggies and travel systems second-hand.

Cots / Moses baskets / carry cots /

Is it complete?

  • Check all the pieces carefully before buying, and ensure that all components are present, including screws, panels etc.

  • Check the finish and make sure that wooden models are smooth and have no splintered edges.

  • Ensure that painted models have no flaking or chipped paint

  • Look at the space between the bars, ensure that your child will not get their hands, feet or head stuck.

Travel Cots

Always ask the seller to put the cot up for you, not only so you can ensure its in perfect working order, with no rips or tears but so that you can see how the mechanism works.

Whenever possible ask for the instruction manuals.

Mattresses

The Foundation for the Study of Infant Deaths (FSID) advises that it is very important for your baby’s mattress to be clean, dry, firm, flat and that it is a perfect fit into the baby’s cot/ Moses basket. Ideally you should buy a new mattress for each new baby. If you want to buy one second-hand, ensure that it has a completely waterproof cover with no tears, cracks or holes. Also ensure that it is exactly the right size for the cot.

** Websites such as Kiddicare do have great sales on they also provide discounts on multi-purchaes of the same item – Think about clubbing together with other new mums or mums to be maybe from anti natal to purchases a few mattresses or carsets and split the discount. **

Highchairs

Read our comprehensive guide to highchairs and what to look out for when buying second hand.

Toys

  • Safety Marks

In the case of second-hand toys look for the CE mark. All toys approved by the British Toy and Hobby Association will also carry the Lion Mark. Avoid buying handmade toys unless they have the above markings.

  • Condition

Check that a toy is not broken or damaged and inspect for loose parts or sharp edges that could be a potential hazard to your child. Ensure that the toy is suitable for your child’s age range. Batteries Check the battery compartment to make sure that old batteries haven’t leaked and rendered the toy unusable.

If you are ever unsure or have any queries please do ask any member of the Little Pickles Markets

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Start a family friendly business

According to a recent survey by Mumsnet and the Daycare Trust more than a third of parents have considered quitting work due to childcare costs. Around one in eight (12) having left a job, while one in 5 have turned a job offer down because of the cost of childcare. ever found yourself in a similar situation?

Given these statistics there is no better time to start your own business.

Are you??

  • Friendly?

  • Organised?

  • Love meeting new people?

  • Do you understand how much it can cost to raise a family?

  • Are you someone that likes a challenge?

  • Do you have or want to build links with the local children’s sector, including pre-schools, nurseries, schools, toddler groups, activity groups and many more?

  • Are you regularly be able to check you emails to keep up to date with your latest bookings and enquiries?

  • Can you be available at weekends to run markets, for about 4/5 hours?

If you have answered yes to 5 or more of the above then a career with Little Pickles could be what you are looking for!

Little Pickles Markets in less than 2 years has branched from Jessamine to a total of 13 branch leaders and growing still. Not only have Little Pickles Markets become a nationally recognised brand, they have developed a large following on Facebook and Twitter.

The best part of all is that Little Pickles Markets give you all the support you need to set-up and run successful markets. You will receive a starter kit including a banner, t-shirt, flyers, organiser handbook, goody bags, company public liability insurance, your very own @littlepicklesmarkets.co.uk email address. And best of all there are no start up costs!

I enjoy running the Little Pickles Markets in Hampshire, as I can put in the hours that I want to, and fit everything around school runs and holidays, being my own boss works so well, as I get to meet so many new people, and my kids love helping too ! The growth in Hampshire has been great, to watch the markets get bigger, and receive great feedback from the buyers and sellers makes it so worthwhile, knowing we are helping other families, and earning money at the same time.” Tarryn Hunt Little Pickles Portsmouth

The earning potential of Little Pickles Markets really does depend on you. So if your looking for a new challenge or something to complement an existing business or employment contact us today.

**Mumsnet questioned around 1,000 mums – the statistics mentioned were taken from Yahoo article **

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What Baby Equipment do I REALLY need to buy?

The list of items you can buy for your baby is endless. Many gadgets and gizmos are on the market to ‘make your life simpler’. But you are on a budget, so what do you really need and what can you do without?

Car seat

From the minute you leave the hospital, you will need to make sure baby is safe in the car. For a guide to choosing the right car seat, please read our guide here

Somewhere to sleep

It is a personal choice whether you use a cot, cot bed, moses basket or crib. You may find a cot is too big for a newborn, yet a moses basket may only last you a couple of weeks, especially if you have a big baby. Moses baskets are easy to move, so you can use it to keep baby fairly close to you in the day and then move it into your bedroom at night. A crib/cradle is slightly larger, giving the baby more room, but cannot be moved around during the day. Ask around your friends, see what they preferred. Second-hand cots, cribs and moses baskets are easily to find on the Second-hand market, but it is recommended you buy a new mattress for whatever bed you choose. When buying second hand, ensure your chosen ‘bed’ is strong and sturdy, in good condition. Ideally, especially with cots, you should look for one that comes with the instructions.

Clothes

You will need a selection of babygro’s, vests, bibs and cardigans. If you are having a winter baby, you will also need to think about a coat or snowsuit, plus hats. It is worth remembering that people will inevitably buy you pink or blue clothing once baby is born, so do not go too mad beforehand or you will end up with so many clothes that you won’t be able to use them all.

Pram

Our guide to pushchairs will help you to decide which style to buy and again, these can be picked up for a fraction of the price second-hand

Feeding

No matter how you intend to feed, it may be worth having bottles and a steriliser on standby. Despite best intentions, you may find you have to bottle feed and do not need added stress of having to get everything after baby is born. You could borrow from a friend or find a good quality second hand steriliser and buy new bottles.  You will also need muslin cloths and bibs, as it is bound to get messy!

Nappies

What goes in, has to come out! Re-usable/washable/cloth nappies are the cheapest to use, but they are not for everyone. Some people would also say that disposable are ‘easier’ for the first couple of weeks while you settle into your new life, but again this is personal choice. The most important thing is to have a stash ready and waiting. Whilst on the subject of changing, you also need to think where you will change baby – a changing mat is cheapest, but will need to be used on the floor, or you can get a specially designed changing table. Again, these can be found at a fraction of the cost second-hand. You will also need a supply of baby wipes or cotton wool and a top & tail bowl.

 

Other bits you may want to consider: Baby Monitor, a bath or a bath support, nail clippers, blanket/shawl, Dummies, Changing Bag.

This list is designed as a useful starting point, it is a personal guide to what is essential but remember it is a personal choice that wholly depends on your lifestyle and your budget. Many items can be bought second-hand, but be sure to check all items carefully and remember the items that you should buy new (mattresses and bottle teats being the essential ones).

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Guide to buying highchairs

So you’ve bought the cot, the buggy and all the other little bits you didn’t realise you would have to buy for baby. You think you’re sorted, but baby then hits weaning stage and you are suddenly faced with endless choices of Highchairs! You would think it would be a simple choice of colour & pattern, but no, as with all things ‘Baby’, it is a bit of a minefield.

Where do you start, what things should you be looking for? Whether you are buying new or second-hand, here are a few points to take into consideration:

Is it Safe? There are many different styles of highchair, but one of the most important things to look at is how sturdy it is. A wider base will provide more stability, although obviously it will also take up more floor space. The harness, as well as going around the waist should also preferably have a strap to go between the legs and straps to go over the arms. Some harnesses may not have the leg strap, as you may find the tray of the highchair or the highchair itself has a moulded part that will go between the child’s legs to stop them slipping under the tray. If you are buying second hand, ensure the straps are intact, not worn in anyway and are clean.

Are all parts easy to clean? It may seem silly, but make sure all parts of the highchair are accessible for cleaning. Food will get absolutely everywhere! Make sure it is easy to wipe down and ensure there are not too many crevices where food will get trapped. Some trays are dishwasher safe, but if you are looking to clean it in your dishwasher, do make sure it fits in your machine!

Check the tray. A one-handed release tray makes life simpler, so ideally look for one that has this. If you are buying second-hand, make sure the release works properly, the tray slides easily, but also that baby cannot release it themselves, or get fingers trapped in them.

Is it portable? If you are happy for the highchair to stay where it is, then this is not so much of an issue. But if you intend to store it away after each meal, or move it to a corner, then you need to make sure it is easy to manoeuvre. Some highchairs come with wheels, but do make sure that these lock securely, as you do not want to be chasing it around the room at mealtimes! You also have to think if you will need to use it anywhere else – will you be taking it to Nanny’s, friends or restaurants? If so you will need a small compact one, such as a booster seat that attaches to a chair.

Wooden or Plastic, Solid or Folding? Highchairs come in all sorts of shapes, styles and materials. For some people, the look of the highchair is quite a major factor. As it tends to be an essential part of your day, most highchairs become part of the furniture. You may want to take this into consideration when you are choosing one. Although the bright, funky, bold pattern may look lovely in the shop, will you hate it when it takes up residence in your dining room or kitchen? If looks are important, you may want to consider a wooden one. However, be aware that these may not be suitable for a younger child as they tend to be designed to use at a table and may not have a tray attachment and will not have the tilting mechanism. Wooden highchairs tend not to be as padded as other ones, so do take this into consideration too. Do you need your highchair to fold up? If it is going to have a permanent place at the table, then you probably will not need a folding chair. If you do decide to go for a folding one and are buying second hand, then do make sure all the mechanisms work properly, that it fold easily, but also make sure there is no risk that it could fold whilst the child is in it.

Finally, you need to decide where you will use the highchair. If baby is to sit at the table with the rest of the family, then you need to make sure the chair will adjust to fit up to your table. You will not necessarily need one that has a tray. If you want something that grows with the child, then you may be better looking at a ‘cube’ chair. This is a stacking highchair that converts when the child is older, to become a separate chair and small table. If you are looking for one that you can use for activities other than eating (for example, play doh or painting), then you need to make sure you have a big tray that is easy to clean.

There is a lot to think about when choosing a highchair, but bear these pointers in mind and think about what you intend to use it for and how you want it to blend into your living space. There are highchairs to suit every budget and are readily available on the second hand market.

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How do you maximise your selling potential?

So you have finally decided to clear out your loft/bedrooms/cupboards/garage and have more baby clothes than you dared to imagine. Now what? Second Hand markets are gaining in popularity both for picking up bargains and also for selling on your good quality baby clothes and equipment. But how do you maximise your selling potential? How do you prepare for your sale?

Here are a few tips to make sure your stall stands out from the rest and makes people want to look at what you have to offer.

  • The first and perhaps most obvious point is to sort your clothes into girl and boy piles. You may even find that you can have a Unisex pile, which may be useful for those parents-to-be who are unaware what they are having
  • Next, sort the piles out into age groups: Newborn, 0-3, 3-6 and so one
  • It is then advisable to sort your clothes into seasons. It is surprising how many people do not look ahead to what they will need later in the year. So if your sale is in the Spring, then take your Spring and Summer clothes. If it is around September time, take your Autumn and Winter clothes.
  • Wash all your clothes in baby friendly products. If the clothes have been in your loft for some time, they may need freshening up a little, plus freshly washed clothes just have that ‘appeal’ about them and reassures the buyer that you have looked after your clothes.
  • Assuming you are allowed to have a rail with your table, the next step is to sort out any coats, outfits or higher priced items. These are best displayed on a rail, so again make sure they are clean (ironed if necessary, particularly with dresses) and have prices on them.
  • All your other items should be in boxes or baskets according to their gender and age. It is probably easiest to decide on one set price per item, this will make it easier for your buyer and for you, as otherwise you will have to price everything individually. On each basket, attach a sign with the details (ie Boys age 3-6 mths, 50p per item)
  • If you have vests, bibs, sleepsuits etc, and you want to sell them as a bundle, fold them neatly and pop them in a clear plastic bag. Attach a label to the bag stating what is in there, what gender/age it is, how many are in there and how much you are asking for them.

Follow these simple steps and make headway in clearing your cupboards. Take a look at Little Pickles website to find your closest Sale!

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