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By: Allison Kaplan | Posted: 03/17/2014
Nordstrom has a generous return policy, but a lot of good that does you when Junior grows out of his sneakers two months after you splurged on the breathable, waterproof variety. And how about the darling Matilda Jane dress you bought for holiday photos…and haven’t taken out of the closet since?
Kidizen to the rescue. This new iPhone app, created by two Minneapolis moms, makes it possible to consign kids’ clothes in a couple of clicks. With its Pinterest-style visuals, and laser focus on moderate to better baby and children’s apparel and accessories, Kidizen presents an approachable, engaging alternative to eBay and Craig’s List, which can be overwhelming, and impersonal. Taking a singular, Instagram-style approach to consigning, Kidizen invites sellers to set up their own “boutique,” and post product photos straight from their iPhone. Buyers can tailor their search according to age, gender, size and preferred brands.
“New seems so excessive,” says entrepreneur Dori Graff, who co-founded Kidizen with Mary Fallon. The two found themselves amazed by the amount of stuff involved with raising kids—the constant cycle of discarding, and needing more.
“Minimalism is destroyed by babies,” Graff says. “I became a champion of ‘pre-loved’ goods. There’s a huge movement to make secondhand shopping okay—it’s about being a smart enough mom to know you can get more for the money by buying secondhand…and the thrill of paying so little for something so awesome.
Creating community is a big part of Kidizen’s mobile marketplace. Members are encouraged to post pictures of their children in their profile. New users get step by step instructions, including shipping tips —which can be a barrier to online selling—to make the selling process quick and easy. Users can also “follow” other users to keep track of what they’re selling.
“Consigners are micro-entrepreneurs,” Graff says. “We want to empower them.p
Graff and Fallon are no strangers to brand building—between them, they’ve worked in advertising and marketing with companies including Target, Disney and Levi’s. Kidizen, which launched in February, is seed-funded by Emil Michael of Uber.
Allison Kaplan is Mpls.St.Paul Magazine’s shopping and style editor. See bio
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