4 secrets to secondhand gift giving
Have you ever tried to give a secondhand gift but worried that you’d appear tacky or cheap? I personally love giving secondhand items because it allows me to give something that’s worth more than what I could comfortably purchase new. Today I want to share my four secrets for how to give a secondhand gift that is appropriate and tasteful.
1. Don’t try to pass off secondhand stuff as new.
I recently gifted a secondhand play kitchen to my toddler niece. It was previously my daughter’s, but she outgrew it a few years ago. I knew my niece would absolutely love it and use it frequently.
However, I also made sure to honestly explain up front to my sister where the gift originated. This is important because it helps avoid any awkwardness while the gift is examined (the recipient will know it’s not new). And no one will wonder if you were trying to fool them into believing you spent more than you did. You could try saying something like, “I was perusing the thrift store looking for furniture to redo and I saw this and knew it would be absolutely perfect for ______________.”
2. Make sure an item is clean and in “like new” condition.
I always thoroughly inspect a secondhand item for signs of wear and only give stuff that is in “like new” condition. Clean is key, too! I made sure to give the play kitchen a really good scrubbing, so it appeared as if it came right off a store shelf.
3. Add something new.
This is my secret sauce for taking a secondhand item from appropriate to totally awesome! For example, I ordered a new apron for my niece to go along with the secondhand play kitchen. The apron only cost me $2 on eBay, but it increased the value and thoughtfulness of the gift exponentially. Adding something new to a secondhand gift conveys that your motive was to give the perfect gift, not just save a buck.
4. Personalize it.
This removes any shred of “secondhand” from a secondhand gift, elevating it to uber thoughtful, personal and meaningful. For example, I added to my niece’s play kitchen a container to corral all the (clean) secondhand play dishes and cooking items. Then I simply slapped on a chalkboard tag labeled “Rosie’s Kitchen.” Done.
Have you ever gifted a secondhand item? What was the result?