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Second hand clothes - would you or wouldn't you - and is it really a class thing?

134 replies

flobbleflobble · 30/06/2005 08:38

Do you let your kids wear second-hand clothes?
I have just read a book which claims that this is a class indicator!
Apparently only the higher social classes find it acceptable to wear second hand clothes.

OP posts:
cupcakes · 30/06/2005 11:18

colditz - I think that's a really interesting point you made about 'shame' and choice. I think that possibly if you are on a really low income it is a matter of pride to buy new clothes. You possibly have more to prove by doing so.
It is a shame though if that is true.
Especially with regards £400 prams!

Listmaker · 30/06/2005 11:19

Funny isn't it ZebraZ - I never (or OK once for a wedding) dress my two dds the same - is that a class thing too??

Tortington · 30/06/2005 11:27

colitz you have it spot on - great insight

Tortington · 30/06/2005 11:27

colitz you have it spot on - great insight

Tortington · 30/06/2005 11:27

so good i said it twice

crunchie · 30/06/2005 11:27

No listmake I dress my dd's the same otherwise I get argumenets. Basically with their 'nice' dresses if they don't have the same one of them will claim 'it's not FAIRRRRRR' so I make it easier and buy two. With everyday clothes I don't though.

spidermama · 30/06/2005 11:31

My son 3.5 wants to wear a dress to pre-school this afternoon. What would YOU say?

zebraZ · 30/06/2005 11:33

Tell him that he can't because the other children will think it's odd and he doesn't want them to say mean things to him about it (but it's fine at home, he can wear the dress at home later if he wants).

We have pictures of 3.5yo DS1 in a dress, too.

spidermama · 30/06/2005 11:35

Isn't that pandering to predjudice of others. I can explain others might tease then leave the choice to him perhaps? I did with my older son. (runs in the family. Keeping an eye on dad)>

Listmaker · 30/06/2005 11:35

Yes Crunchie my 2 dds do have one posh dress the same and a couple of other things that I had to buy them both or there would be fights but the mum I was talking about dresses them the same EVERY day. It's wierd!

tortoiseshell · 30/06/2005 11:45

Most of dd's clothes come from our local charity shop, or have been handed down from friends. She does have a few 'new' things, just to satisfy my love of shopping! But I always feel really pleased when I find something as good as new for only 50p or so. It's harder with ds - I think girls in general must have more clothes, as there are always lots of girls clothes but hardly any boys.

bran · 30/06/2005 12:15

Some of the difference must be due to how much the mother likes clothes. I dress ds much the same way as I dress myself, a pile of tops and a pile of bottoms, get up in the morning and take the top item from each pile, so long as it doesn't actually clash I don't think about it too much. Someone who really enjoys dressing themselves and their children would probably not want second-hand clothes because they would want the current seasons fashions.

paolosgirl · 30/06/2005 12:17

Yes, loads of our clothes DH and I, not just the kids)come from charity shops and eBay - I'm not at all fussy. Stick them in the washing machine on hot, and off we go. I cannot understand the attitude of "we don't do second hand" - what a waste of perfectly good, lovely clothes.

zebraZ · 30/06/2005 12:19

spidermama Maybe it's pandering to the prejudice of others, but you've a duty to protect him from bullying, too... imagine when he's 10yo and the boys at school manage to find a picture of the day he wore a dress to preschool, he'll never live it down.

paolosgirl · 30/06/2005 12:20

And yep, I'm middle class. Say it loud, say it proud!!!

snafu · 30/06/2005 12:23

Haven't read all thread but - God, yes! Of course I do. Lots of ds's stuff is either hand-me-downs from friends or bought off ebay.

Although they have to be 'nice' - not any old tat

snafu · 30/06/2005 12:24

And I wear second-hand stuff too.

Fimbo · 30/06/2005 12:33

My ds 18 (mths) has a few things second hand, because my bf is a car boot addict. Some of the things remain unworn though as they have stains (that will not come out - despite a good wash and mounds of vanish!) and are holey. All my dd's (7) clothes are new, although I will pass her old ones on. I personally think charity shops are getting more expensive and ok in some you can pick things up for 50p but Tesco's clothes are good quality and some of their long sleeve t-shirts are only £1 and £3 for kids jeans.

MistressMary · 30/06/2005 12:36

Yes, I wear second hand clothes as does my son.
Love charity shops and car boots.
Get some real bargains and some new unworn stuff to at bargain prices and not the silly prices the shops seem to charge.

Pagan · 30/06/2005 12:36

All of DD's most of mine - I must be royalty . Interesting original post. I wonder why 'poorer' classes don't find it acceptable???

One thing I have noticed (and I'm going to sound like a total snob - don't mean to)is that the chavvier the parents, the more baby paraphenalia. I mean huge prams with frills, all the matching gubbins, kids dressed up like dolls ..... could also discuss!

TinyGang · 30/06/2005 12:37

Of course - so many great bargains out there!

Agree with Snafu though - my rule is it has to be good quality, I don't need a bargain so badly that I'll have it even if it's knackered. Mind you, I think the quality is very good in second hand shops - they don't seem to have to sell rubbish.

Dh makes me laugh though - quotes the Little Britain sketch to me 'Did someone die in this, do you know?'

QueenEagle · 30/06/2005 12:42

I have never bought anything from a second hand shop either for myself or my kids and probably never would. We pass kids clothes around the family though - I am getting back stuff now for ds3 that my ds2 wore 6 years ago and it's still in good enough condition to use. I would wear something that my SIL had worn though.

ds2 used to wear all ds1's hand-me-downs and by the time he was 7 he got really cheesed off at never having anything new for himself. Now I buy ds2 his own stuff and pass ds1's on to their cousins.

LunarSea · 30/06/2005 12:43

Ooh - am I posh? Most of ds's clothes are from car boot sales and Ebay, and a lot of mine too, or at the very least are bought in sales. Dh on the other hand has everything new. (Can you tell that he earms more than I do, but I pay for ds and me, he pays for his own?)

SenoraPostrophe · 30/06/2005 12:47

I buy second hand more than new, for me and the children. I hate waste.

I am middle class in the sense that I have a degree and run my own company, but I get this trait from my mum, who describes herself as "working middle class". Income-wise I'm fairly low down the classes (but hope to improve!)

It's not true about "working class" meaning low income though - plumbers and builders earn more than a lot of professionals (eg. teachers)

SenoraPostrophe · 30/06/2005 12:47

I can't believe anyone thinks it "unacceptable" to wear second hand clothes though.

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