Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Value Village for Kids - a Review

I heard of a new second hand store for kids in Anchorage a few weeks ago that I hadn't been to yet.  I love shopping for a bargain - there is nothing like finding something completely adorable for a steal of a deal.  The store was a little out of the way, so I didn't want to waste my time going all the way over to the store if it wasn't going to be worth it.  I wished to myself that someone could tell me their experience with the store, but I didn't know anyone who had been there yet.

This thought gave me the idea to share my opinion and impressions of all of the second hand stores in Anchorage that I visit for kids stuff.  As I mentioned in my previous post, today I'll begin with a review of Value Village (the Dimond store).

Value Village - Dimond Location:
  1. V.V. used to be my all time favorite second hand store for clothing.  I could always manage to scour through the racks and racks of clothes and find a few gems for under $5.  Lately however, I have been very disappointed with two major things about Value Village.  They have completely changed their organizational system in the infant and toddler section and to put it frankly, I can't stand it!  It used to be organized by size and gender.  You know, the usual newborn, 3 months, 6 months, ect, ect.  For some reason that is completely beyond me, they decided to "organize" it by type of clothing and very loosely by gender.  For example: pants, shorts, short sleeve shirts, long sleeve shirts, ect.  It is horrible and on top of it all, with the new organization system, it also seems like there is half the stock that their used to be.  So that is the first major issue I have with Value Village now.  
  2. Second, their prices have gone up to nearly ridiculous levels for some things.  If you keep reading, you will get to reviews of Once Upon a Child and Kid to Kid which go more into detail about those stores, but one of my biggest problems with Once Upon a Child is price.  They seem to overprice their used clothing, but in their defense at least they offer clothing that is up to date, somewhat stylish, and (mostly) clean.  At Value Village, their prices are now rivaling and sometimes exceeding Once Upon a Child, and you have to dig through a lot of outdated and stained clothing to find the more trendy items.  The pricing is also obviously very dependent on the opinion of whatever worker happened to price it and therefore varies widely.  What I mean by this is that some days, I find a Disney themed pair of pants for $7.99 (not even joking) and a pair of barely used Baby Gap jeans for $3.99.  Or a Carters long sleeve onesie for $5.99 and a Gymboree long sleeve onesie for $2.99.  Now anyone who knows the original prices of these items knows that this is very skewed from the original value of the clothing.  It works out great for me, as I'm typically looking for "brand name" items from Baby Gap and Gymboree especially.  But I imagine it to be very frustrating to whoever wants those Disney character pants or Carters onesie.
Despite these issues, I know I will continue to shop at Value Village in the future, especially when I am in the mood to rummage.  Bottom Line:  If you like to shop at thrift stores and find a great deal, it is still a good place to look.  But if you are not into rummaging through less than worthy items to find your own gems, it might not be the place for you.  


  1. You know that I have always hated that dust infested place, but I must admit you have found some cute stuff there. Looking forward to reading about the other stores. love you xoxo

  2. The best times to get their real bargains are on their half off days, like President's Day.

  3. I agree. They hardly have any kids clothes (at least the last time I went) and practically nothing for boys. And the prices are crazy. I wanted to buy Sawyer some pots to play with and the cheapest one was $10! No thanks....