plural noun: hand-me-downs
  1. a garment or other item that has been passed on from another person.

I have two boys, so obviously whatever item of clothing is too small for the eldest to wear is handed down to the younger sibling.

However, my eldest boy also has lots of clothes that have been handed down to him by either his older cousins or colleagues and friends who have children that are older than him.

I have no issue with this at all but I do know that the practice of “hand-me-down’ is frowned upon by lots of people.

To me it’s simple:

  1. It’s cost saving as I do not have to buy a lot of new clothes
  2. I feel that everytime I dress my child in something that was given to him by someone else, I realise how truly blessed we are and how loved my children are
  3. It creates an opportunity for us to ‘pay it forward’, as whatever is too small for my boys to wear we either hand down to younger cousins, children of friends/colleagues that are younger or we send it home to the karoo with my mother who then hands it to children that are really less fortunate.

It also teaches my children to take care of their clothes as they know that once they have outgrown them another boy can be blessed with it.

Simple rules to remember:

  • Do NOT give clothes to people that are badly stained of have big holes in them.  Rather reuse as cleaning clothes or throw them away
  • Do wash and neatly fold/iron the garments before giving them to someone else
  • Do have a storage box or cupboard where you keep all the items that you are planning to give away, this also creates more space in your children’s closet.

I know that not everyone like hand- me- downs but there are people out there that will appreciate the gesture.









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