Martina Robinson realized she was spending far too much money on children’s clothes.

The Baltimore, Md., mom of four was determined to find a solution.

Five years ago, she started thrifting.

“I just was like, ‘I can’t keep spending all this money on clothes,’ ” she said.

Now, Robinson, the mom behind YouTube channel The QweenVLOGS, routinely and effectively thrifts for her children. She has a 16-year-old son, a 15-year-old daughter, a 2-year-old daughter and a 1-year-old daughter. The older children like to select their own clothes, but Robinson, 38, always eyes great finds for her younger girls.

She sets a budget before stepping into any number of the shops she visits in the Baltimore area and described herself as particular when it comes to choosing clothes for her kids.

Robinson doesn’t necessarily shop for specific brands; high-quality clothing is the priority.

From her experience, it’s possible.

Robinson shared with Hey, Black Mom! some of her niftiest thrifting tips for mothers. While it took her some time to find a rhythm, she now knows the nuances that make thrifting worth every trip.

BEFRIEND OTHER MOTHERS

Get advice from another mom when you’re first starting out. Gather ideas and tactics from them, or even use Google to help get you started. This will also help you figure out which thrift shops are in your area.

When Robinson began thrifting for her two younger children, it had been more than a decade since she shopped for baby clothes, so she had to brush up on some of the new trends.

She’s also taken some of her friends who may have been skeptical thrifting with her.

“A lot of times, I guess you have to get out of the idea of what you think good quality is and where good-quality clothes can come from,” Robinson said. “I think it’s a mindset thing. My kids are always dressed so nice.”  

LOOK FOR DEALS ON SPECIFIC DAYS

Many thrift stores have discount days, especially around the holidays. At Robinson’s local store, they offer seniors 30 percent off every Tuesday, so she’ll take her mother with her.

Becoming a club member also helps keep you in loop. Plus, you can get additional rewards and discounts for signing up.

FOLLOW LOCAL STORES ON SOCIAL MEDIA

Some thrift stores will announce a big sale via social. They’ll use the avenue to inform customers about subscriber emails, texts and additional deals, too. Robinson said it’s a great idea to store the shop’s contact number and call them to ask questions about deals when you can.

BE MINDFUL OF THE SELECTION

One of the biggest challenges Robinson has faced is a wider clothing selection for teenagers and adults than infants. She on occasion drives 20 minutes out of the way to find more variety. Sometimes, you have to be willing to travel to find the sizes you’re looking for.

Do you thrift for your children? Please share some of your best tips on spotting quality finds at your local shop!

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