Bringing a baby into a tough economy

August 13, 2008 5:24:47 PM PDT
A new baby can put a financial strain on your family, but there are ways to save money when you're expecting. Vice president of The Cradle, Amy Fierstein, has some advice.

Amy's tips on saving money when having a baby

Clothing Exchanges:

  • Using services like the SF-based Maternity Xchange, a mobile maternity shop selling discounted brand-name and designer maternity clothing.
  • Organizing a swapping party with other moms (could be personal friends or those you meet on social networking sites like The Cradle)

    Stocking up on necessities and planning ahead:

  • Buy in bulk when it comes to diapers, wipes, ointments, and other baby items you'll need for a while. A site like Diapers.com offers a wide variety of brands and will deliver free to your door in days
  • January and July are big sale months. Buy clothes at the end of each season when clothes go on sale. Buy 1-3 years in advance and store away until your child grows into each size. You can find some really cute, designer clothing for a fraction of the price.

    Send e-card announcements:

  • Forgo the stamps and stationery and announce your baby's birth with an e-card. Not only are you saving on time, energy and money, you're saving paper. Very eco-conscious! You can find e-card announcements at your preferred online photo shop (such as Shutterfly or Kodak Picture Gallery) or on The Cradle.

    Decorating nurseries cheaply:

  • Using wall decals instead of expensive art or murals
  • Affordable furniture: Many companies are now making nursery furniture that's not only stylish, but affordable. i.e. Dwell has a line at Target, Netto Collection makes a Cub line, etc.

    Think outside the (wrapped) box:

  • When registering for gifts, consider options that will last much longer than clothing or toys. There are many outlets that will allow your friends and family to donate to your child's health or education fund.

    Consignment shops:

  • These shops are not just for clothes, but larger items like strollers.
  • Parents should also make sure to see if products are JPMA certified and always check the recall list.

    Taking advantage of samples:

  • So many brands want to get their product exposed to the expectant mom. Both OBGYN offices and hospitals have sample packs of vitamins, coupons, lotions/potions, etc.
  • Also, take advantage of goodies that the maternity ward gives you when you check out: diapers, bottles, hats, swaddle blankets. You even rent breast pumps instead of buying them.

    Don't go buy every book or DVD on pregnancy and parenting. Use local resources, like libraries and friends, to borrow materials. Plus, the internet tends to have the most current information.

    Clothes when your baby is first born: Your newborn is going to grow out of those newborn clothes quickly, and they will mostly be lounging around at home in a onesie or swaddling blanket, so don't buy too many clothes for the first few months.

    Amy Fierstein Bio
    Amy Fierstein is the Vice President of The Cradle, the first-of-its-kind lifestyle destination focused solely on expectant and new moms from pre-conception to baby's first birthday.

    The mother of two young boys, ages 1.5 and 4 years, Amy was immediately attracted to the concept of The Cradle. Having gone through two pregnancies in the last four years, she not only liked the idea of a resource specifically focused on the life stages of pregnancy and new parenthood, she knew there was a need for it.

    Amy strives to make The Cradle a simple yet comprehensive source of timeless advice and relatable content, with robust community features and easy to use tools. She describes the end result as a trustworthy and approachable resource for expectant and new parents.

    Holding an MBA from Thunderbird, the Garvin School of International Management, and a BA from the University of California at Santa Barbara, Amy's varied career has taken her across the country - from a lobbyist in Washington, D.C. to a marketing guru in California. Her work at Magnet Interactive Group and Siegel & Gale brought her extensive integrated marketing experience with Fortune 500 brands including ADP, Kellogg, DeBeers, Energizer, and Experian. Most recently, she served as VP of Marketing for Modern Mom, an online magazine with a subscriber base of 100,000 mothers. In this position, she managed marketing, branding, and PR efforts both online and offline.


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