Prosecco Mum

Prosecco Mum’s review of Little Pickles Market

Guest Post – Check out Jess from Prosecco Mum, review and thoughts on Little Pickles Market

Prosecco Mum

One of the things I’ve learnt since becoming a mum is that babies don’t tend to wear clothes for long before they suddenly go through those bloody ‘growth spurts’ and burst out of clothes quicker than you can say, Michelin Man. 


So I’m a huge fan of Nearly New Baby Sales where you can pick up new, or as good as new, bargains for a fraction of their original price!


I have sold at a fair few Little Pickles Markets now and not only do I realise my children have a better wardrobe than me and are the new reason I teeter on bankruptcy each month but I realise how spoilt they are; rows and rows of clothes all hung on rails still with tags on, shoes that haven’t even been unclipped and every gizmo and gadget, you can guarantee they’ve had it. Well, probably not quite so much with Arlo, poor second child, I learnt my lesson with him and he still parades round with pink muslins and pink bibs on. But gender neutral clothing’s all the rage now, isn’t it?!


I don’t tend to buy clothes at these things but the last time I was selling I had a quick peruse at some of the other stallholders bits before the frenzied buyers burst through the door, and I managed to pick up a Gro Clock (I’m glad I brought it second hand because it doesn’t bloody work for Sofia she just bursts in at the crack of dawn saying “my clocks still blue mummy”) and a Maxi Cosi Family Fix base – that was a real bargain. On other occasions I have picked up some nearly new Clarks shoes for Sofia for nursery and a brand new bike seat, even though neither of us own a bike…but, you never know, maybe one day – and it was a bargain!

 

Today I sold at the Eastleigh market which is held at Fleming Park leisure centre – it’s a really busy market and ran from 10.30-12, so long enough to be constantly busy and not enough time to get bored or take up a whole day! The queue was out the door and around the carpark and I people’s faces were peeping through the door at 10am, which heaped the pressure on as I frantically tried to unload my jumbo bags full of one man’s treasure.

I had a great day today, I made over £200 and the best bit, is unlike carboot sales, people are all here for one thing; baby stuff so every person walking round is a potential buyer of your items. I was selling to make money, of course, but also to start ridding the house of bags and bags of bits that I’d accumulated over the past 3.5 years. By 11am my stall had quite literally been ransacked and I’d sold the big items such as the Sleepyhead, baby bath, baby carrier, stroller pushchair and shedloads of clothes. Also, unlike a carboot sale it’s all inside which is a real bonus as it will never be ‘rained off’ and you’ll always be warm and dry!

So what was the key to today’s success? 

  • Having a mixture of items – clothes, toys, books as well as some of the bigger items as mentioned 
  • It probably also helped that I had both boys and girls clothing; though obviously if you only have one, there’s not much you can do about that!
  • Pricing the items right – in hindsight I probably did the Sleepyhead too cheap but it’s gone now and no longer residing in the kids playroom, the clothes I marked anything from 50p (for leggings, tights and baby vests) up to £7 (for brand new with tags John Lewis/Gap/Ted Baker type items) and everything in between
  • Be prepared – I mark up all clothing labels with brand, size and price, it not only makes it easier for the people looking but also for me when selling!
  • Presentation – I always think that even though it’s a second hand/nearly new sale, it doesn’t mean that everything should look shabby….myself included! 
  • Good quality items – I only sell things I’d be happy to buy myself and I am fussy. So I do wash, iron and hang all of my clothes ahead of the sale.

Do you visit nearly new sales? Have you ever been to a Little Pickles market before?

You can see where your nearest market is by clicking here, and you never know I might see you at one if you’re local!

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A New Baby Costs HOW Much????

There is much speculation about how much it costs to raise a child from baby to adulthood. Recently The Guardian stated that it can cost a whooping £231,843 to raise a child to their 21st Birthday  to feed, clothe and educate each new member of the family. This includes childcare, but does not take into account loss of earnings if a parent opts to stay at home, or reduces working hours. The report also reveals that the first year alone could cost a parent upto £11,498. So where does this money go and what can we do to reduce it?

The second hand market is becoming big business as people who have had babies try to recoup costs, whilst those starting on their parenthood journey are budget saving and aiming to slash costs. Our Little Pickles Markets are ideal for both markets, with families being able to hire tables to sell their good quality pre-loved baby items and buyers paying a minimal £1 per adult entrance fee. There are other organisations who run similar events, so look around to see what is on in your area. These places are ideal for picking up second hand cots, moses baskets, prams, pushchairs, baby monitors – all the things you need to see you through your first year.

You could also try eBay, Freegle, Gumtree, Freecycle and Facebook selling pages to pick up second hand items, although obviously in some cases, you have not actually seen the item before you agree to buy it, and sometimes saying “no” is not as easy as it sounds when you have arranged to meet someone at their house!

There are some items that you will inevitably want to buy new and in this instance, I would suggest trying your local Poundland, or waiting for the Aldi Event (other supermarkets also run similar promotions). Toiletries and some basic items are available very cheaply here. Another tip would be to join all the baby clubs that major retailers have. Most supermarkets have them, as do other high street names. Many of them offer freebies as an incentive to join and can be quite useful.

A New Baby Cost HOW Much

If you have a Childrens Centre in your neighbourhood, then pop along to see what they have on offer. Our local one offers baby massage, toddler groups, baby groups, coffee mornings and messy play, to name just a few! Some classes are free, others will charge a nominal amount, but it can be a lot cheaper than other baby groups. They may also offer a toy library, which will give you a chance to sample toys on offer to see what is suitable for your child. Once you have seen what catches their eye, you know what to look for when buying for them.

There are other costs you will encounter, such as nappies (reusable are obviously cheaper than disposable, but that is a whole other topic!). You will also increase electricity usage as you are home more and no doubt washing a lot more than you would have previously! However it is clear to see where it is possible to make some savings that will help to offset the other costs that you cannot avoid.

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Little Pickles Markets Buyers Tips

Our mission is to save parents as much money as they can kitting out their growing families from bump to early school years at our Little Pickles Markets and on through their primary years at our BIGGER Pickles Markets.

With this in mind we have a few tips to help you to be a savvy nearly new shopper.

  1. Raid the change jar – If you have your £1 entry ready on entry to the market, it help the queue go down quicker, so you can get shopping quicker. The stall holders also appreciate it if you have change instead of handing over a note.
  2. Time your shop – Our popular markets do attract a long queue of money savvy parents eager to scoop the bargains, so if you want first dibs make sure you arrive early to get to the front of the queue. If you like a quieter shop, you can arrive later, don’t worry there will still be tons of great quality bargains left.
  3. Make a list and set a budget – if you are expecting a new baby you might have a long list of needs and wants, if you keep note of what you need already have will help you to ensure you don’t get duplicates. Make a little note of how much you are willing to spend on certain things, it’s only a bargain if it is something you need/want and are going to use.
  4. Take a second look – You will be amazed what you can miss on the your first circuit around the market venue, after all there will be tons of bargains for you buyers to see. So take a second or even third walk around the venue and see what pops out.
  5. Lastly be safe – if you are buying battery operated/electric items make sure you see these working before purchasing. If you would like to use a plug socket please ask the market organiser and she will be happy to help on market day. Also if you are buying a a pushchair or highchair or anything else that may have a knack to using it, make sure that you get a full demonstration from the sellers.

We hope these tips help and please share any tips or advice you could offer Little Pickles Markets newbie buyers.

buyers tips

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Family Basics on a Budget

Family Basics on a Budget

Being Mum to 5, I am often asked how I afford it, yes that is a personal question but happy to let people know where I can cut costs. Yes my shopping bills a pretty large but the things that really tot the bill up have got to be the nappies, wipes, washing powder and endless supply of fresh fruit (a pack of clementine’s, punnet of strawberries, a couple of bananas and a large bunch of grapes equates to pudding for the kids). I mostly shop in Aldi which must save me hundreds over the year.

With my first I was a Pampers Mum, I would never thought to buy shop own as 13 years ago I think not much research was done it anything other than people suggested Pampers was the best fit for girls and huggies for boys. Mind you 13 years ago you could still by Boy and Girl Nappies (yes that was a long time ago). Now I think it is much more acceptable to buy the shop own brand and doing a lot of my own research I have found Mamia the Aldi own brand to be fantastic, with no leaks during the night, well fitting and most of all cheap at only £4.49 Now I am toilet training the 3 year old Man of the House (but that is a whole another subject!!!), he has started using the pull ups which are equally great. The Mamia is very deserving of all of their awards

Tha Mamia range also includes Sensitive Baby Wipes for a steal at 65p about a third of the price of the average cost of the leading brand. Baby toiletries including lovely smelling Baby Shampoo, which helps tame Baby Pickles wild locks.

The range of jars (yes Baby Pickle did mostly have jars as it is very convenient for our busy household) is good, not massive but then in other supermarkets there is often too much choice and it takes me forever to choose.

I have been using the Almat (check name) concentrated non bio washing liquid for a while not and it has had no bad effect on my two pickles with sensitive skin. It is only £1.99 for 21 washes too, that is less than 10p a wash, bargain!

Then there comes a trolley full of fruit, I do buy seasonally and see what the weeks offers they do a weekly Super 6, but generally apples and clementine’s are two thirds of the price of other shops, if not less. As well as the fruit and veg super 6 they do a Meat Super 6 too. Buying these seasonal specials also means that we have a bit of variety in meals too.

The only thing I can’t get in Aldi is Baby Pickles brand of formula and our local one doesn’t have toddler double trolley’s but I usually only shop with one child so not a problem for me

So go on try it out you might save a bit, but remember your bags J

Written by Jessamine Hislop-Newton, Mummy to 5 Pickles, Founder and Owner of Little Pickles Markets

Facebook www.facebook.com/littlepicklesmarkets1

Twitter www.twitter.com/mrsmummypickle

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Preparing for baby – the nearly new way

According to the Money Advice Service the average cost of raising a baby in their first year is £3,710.  Ouch! That includes everything you need to buy in preparation, from moses baskets and cots to pushchairs and car seats. And not forgetting clothes and nappies (the list goes on).

We were very lucky with our first baby (Little Shrimp) as family offered to buy the big things, and with us both working full time buying the other bits and bobs wasn’t such a problem.  Four years later and we’re expecting Baby Girl Shrimp (we’ll call her BGS for short) and I’m on a mission to buy ‘nearly new.’  Why?  Because we don’t have the money to buy anything at full cost and from running markets for over two years I’ve seen how much money can be saved. I have the bargain bug.

Bargain hunting

We don’t need too much for BGS as we have a lot from Little Shrimp’s baby days. But I have been on the lookout and managed to pick up the following items from our Little Pickles Markets:

Phil and Teds cocoon to keep BGS cosy in our Mini City jogger stroller

·             RRP – £80

·             Nearly new price – £20

Maxi Cosi infant carrier

·             RRP £94.99 (variable in different stores)

·             Nearly new price – £20

I personally wouldn’t buy a nearly new car seat. But I brought this from a friend who I 100% trust – and I know the seat has not be involved in any sort of accident.

Fisher Price, woodsy friends bouncing chair

·             RRP – £42.99

·             Nearly new price – £10

Monsoon summer hat

·             RRP – £10

·             Nearly new price – £1

Weaning bibs

·             10p each

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My wish list

·             Chest of draws for the nursery which can be used a changing table

·             Cot bed (but will buy a new mattress)

·             Comfy chair/nursing chair

·             Clock and lamp for nursery

·             Mini City jogger foot muff and rain cover

·             Clothes! Although having a boy and now a girl is lovely – it does mean a whole new wardrobe.

 

My wish list isn’t incredibly long but we have some home improvements to make so we can all live comfortably with our addition. And we still want to go on a little UK break as a family this year just before Little Shrimp starts school, and don’t get me started on the cost of that, but I did write a blog about it last summer!

Competition time

Tell us what ‘nearly new’ bargains you’ve pick up at our markets or what’s on your wish list while you bargain hunt.

Leave your comment below and we’ll enter you into a prize draw to win a luxury goody bag and a free nearly new table (worth £10) at any of our markets (subject to availability) during 2014.

 Closing date: Friday 28th February – Competition Now Closed

Good luck!

Blog written by Selina Shrimpton, Little Pickles Market Organiser Dorset

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