Family: The second event of its kind on Sunday was as successful as the first in September, and--good news--a third is planned for June. Offering more-- including the chance to discover unique small businesses and to give to others--is the key to its popularity.
Photo: Steve Eastwood
Normally, when you go to a children’s second-hand sale, you’re hoping to come out with some inexpensive outfits and maybe a high chair or tricycle. But at the recent “Everything but the child” sale at the City Youth Hostel in Pfaffenthal, visitors and participants came out with a sense of community.
The event was organised by Sarah Homer-Hutton, an entrepreneur with a big heart and the drive to make things happen.
The sale on 8 February was the second of its kind--the first one last September was a huge success--and it did a lot more good than simply helping parents acquire children’s wear or pass it on to others.
It served, for starters, as a welcome showcase for a handful of local business owners, many of them small, many working only online so without a “brick and mortar” venue, and all of them committed to offering excellent products for the tiniest of customers. A wide range of goods were presented, from handmade baby shoes, bibs, diaper bags and dresses to decorative items, books and toys.
“I wanted to create a platform for people who are offering different products and services for children,” Sarah said, “and I wanted to help provide some things in Luxembourg that I felt were missing.”
That said, it wasn’t what was missing here but what wasn’t that prompted Sarah to move here a few years back and raise her family here. “My mother moved here first for work, and I loved what I saw here and followed,” she said. Still, there’s nothing wrong with trying to make things even better, or looking to fill a niche.
Her company Moo and Roo’s Parties is one of the first soft-play hire companies in Luxembourg, and she also supplies bouncy castles and an indoor venue for kids’ parties.
By coincidence, when she was living in the UK, she was looking for a children’s product she couldn’t find and ended up finding the supplier through a friend – and Facebook. That supplier was Beetles and Bugs, and the owner Brigitte Neve now lives in Luxembourg too and was at the sale this weekend.
Brigitte’s business was also born by the desire to find something she couldn’t find. “I wanted something special when my niece was born but couldn’t find it,” she said. Now she offers the type of beautiful design products from ethical companies that she was after.
As well as giving people like her a chance to share their goods and passion, the event also gave other types of businesses the chance to introduce themselves to families, attending were Jeanette Hutchins School of Dance which offers classes and summer camps for over 5s; Lux Photography, which offers a free hour’s session and only charges for photos purchased, and Kindermusik with Hannah, which adds just the right note of creativity to kids’ lives.
But for all it did for everyone at the event, the sale also benefitted those who were not. A collection was made for the Make a Wish charity which works to grant wishes to children with serious or terminal illnesses, and a bake sale and clothes collection benefitted the residents of the Foyer St Antoine, which provides safe housing for families and others needing shelter.
Somehow, the whole atmosphere at this sale seemed to be less about selling and buying than about nurturing and caring. Maybe that’s something babies and children help bring out in us--our desire to put others’ needs ahead of our own.
There’s another chance to catch this event--and the good vibes--on Sunday 7 June at the same venue.