Giggles & Gumdrops brings children's consignments to Lowell's Main Street

Deborah Johnson Wood

The owner of a new children's consignment shop in Lowell says the tough economy means parents not only want to pay less for their children's clothing, they want to make some money on the clothes their children have outgrown.

That's why Melissa Freeman, mother of two, opened Giggles & Gumdrops, a children's clothing consignment store at 217 W. Main St. She says customers can save 50 to 90 percent off the retail prices of boys and girls clothes for newborns through teens, and on shoes, games, books, toys, bedding, baby equipment and children's furniture.

"Our stock relies on the consigner bringing their things in to sell, so our inventory is different every day," Freeman says. "We also have a wish list for customers; if we don't have an item in stock they put it on their wish list and when it comes in we call them."

Right now Freeman has some unusual inventory for teen girls – more than 100 prom dresses, sizes zero to 28. The dresses are part of a fundraiser for Forest Hills Central High School's annual all-night party for seniors; a portion of the proceeds goes toward financing the party.

Landlord Scott Hosteter removed drop ceilings and refinished the original hardwood floors of the circa 1880s building in preparation for Giggles & Gumdrops to move in. The 2,000-square-foot store has large storefront windows topped off by what Freeman was told is an original Frank Lloyd Wright stained glass panel.

"As my children have grown I have loved picking out their clothes and toys. I love the patterns and styles and I never like paying full price," Freeman says. "That where the consignment idea came from.

"Children can come in and play with anything in the store, and we're stroller-friendly," she says. "When moms come in with strollers they can get around the store easily."

Store hours are Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. A Grand Opening will be April 24.

Source: Melissa Freeman, Giggles & Gumdrops; Liz Baker, Lowell Area Chamber of Commerce

Deborah Johnson Wood is development news editor for Rapid Growth Media. She can be contacted at [email protected] Development News tips can be sent to [email protected]