TotSTAR Interview: aidannnadias_closet

by Totspot Team

We’re so excited to be able to share the second installation of TotSTAR interviews with you today. We know you’re just going to love Joanne.

A mama who has almost completely sold out her closet, Totspotter aidannnadias_closet tells us about making a move from LA to Minnesota to raise her son in a family-friendly environment, how she became a star seller on Totspot (tricks below!), and why she switched her son’s style from prep school to mini hipster. She’s a pleasure to chat with in the app and offline, and that’s why we knew we had to highlight her today.

Meet and greet Joanne in the comments below!

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Where do and your family live? How would you describe it to someone who has never been there?

I’m originally from Singapore but lived in Los Angeles, California for five years after getting married. When we were pregnant with our first child, we decided we wanted to raise him in a more family-friendly environment and so moved to Minnesota where we’d be closer to my in-laws. We lived in Duluth for a year before finally ending up in the Minneapolis area last Spring. So we’re pretty new to the area and still learning a lot about the state but so far we’re loving every bit of it (even the cooler temps)!

he winters are absolutely frigid here but they also make for gorgeous landscapes and lots of fun winter activities! However my favorite season has got to be spring, for the fresh greenery and splashing in puddles, for fall, for the fiery treetops and everything pumpkin and apple! Minnesota is known as “The Land of 10,000 Lakes” and there really are beautiful lakes and parks everywhere! We have a lake and nature preserve right behind our apartment and it’s our favorite place to take walks and to watch the seasons change. 

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What are your kids names and how old are they? 

Aidan turns two in November and his sister, Nadia, is due on January 3rd

How did you pick their names? 

I liked the way Aidan sounded and it means fiery, which I thought would provide a good balance to his Chinese zodiac sign, which is the water dragon. Nadia is just Aidan spelled backwards! 

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What are Aidan’s favorite games and pastimes? Does he have a favorite toy or is peek-a-boo enough?

He can and will play with anything! He likes all automobiles – the bigger and louder, the better! He also likes books and we have reading sessions every morning, noon, and night. And like most kids, he loves going to the playground and he is quite an adventurous climber, both indoors and out!

Although he has tons of toys at home, it is imaginative play with real life objects that will keep him entertained the longest! He loves playing with boxes – they can be cardboard or plastic, big or small, from our recycling bin or the packages I get in the mail. He’ll stack them, fill them, or get into them himself!

He also loves playing with water. I could fill the bathroom sink, add scoops and cups, cover the floor with rugs, and just let him be! Even a single cup of water will keep him entertained for a bit. He practices drinking from a cup, pours it into other containers, or pours it on the table so he can slap the puddles with his hands! 

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Aidan has such a stylish and distinct closet – where do you think Aidan’s style comes from? How did you decide that this is how you wanted to dress him?

Before having Aidan, I had no experience or interaction with babies and kids, and was a little freaked out that I actually had to care for one, so he was dressed mostly in onesies and rompers during his first six months because they were the easiest to use! A lot of his clothing then was organic because that was how we were bringing him up.

But I soon realized there were cuter brands and styles out there! So he didn’t really develop a style until towards the end of his first year. It started out a little preppy (brands like Crewcuts, Gap, Janie & Jack) but it didn’t really match what my casual style. So his style has since become more hipster (brands like Beau Loves, Mini Rodini, Zara). I love dressing him in childlike prints and playful styles that would look good even on adults. His current Fall/Winter closet contains a lot of neutrals, with some pops of color, especially in accessories. 

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What about your personal style? How would you describe it and has it changed since you became a mom? 

After having Aidan, I stopped working to become a stay-at-home mom, we moved from LA to Minneapolis (where people tend to favor more casual styles), and I now have a toddler to run after! I have definitely become more casual in my choice of clothes because of all these reasons! I’m usually in jeans and tees, and always in flats. I used to love shopping for myself but I mostly shop for kids clothing now! 

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How did you find Totspot? Is it different from any other children’s clothing site you’ve used?

I saw a link for Totspot on facebook and was curious enough to download the app. I was hooked and started shopping immediately! Although I also sell on Kidizen and Instagram, I find Totspot the most user friendly, and best of all, has a super awesome community of supportive moms! I like how each listing allows for multiple photos and detailed descriptions, and I especially like the opportunity for interactions. I’ve found that the more time I spend in the app sharing and chatting with other moms, the more sales I make! 

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You had a full closet of super stylish items and now almost everything you have listed has sold – wow! Can you give some tips to our Totspotters? What’s your secret?

I try to price reasonably, only sell items that are in excellent or very good used condition, give good bundling discounts, provide lots of detailed photos, and be as honest and specific as possible in my descriptions. Every item is inspected for flaws and a handheld steamer is used to smooth out any wrinkles. I take most of my photos in natural daylight (by a large window) because it makes for clear bright pictures that convey the clothing’s true colors, and I usually show the garment in its entirety (front and back), highlighting interesting details as well as the flaws.

After a sale is made, I always inform the buyer when their purchase will be shipped (which is usually the next day), and every purchase is freshly laundered, pressed, neatly folded, and tissue-wrapped with a handwritten Thank You tag. The last thing I want to do is surprise the buyer with an item that looked better in the photos than in real life, because the best customers are the ones that return – and I do give special discounts to my repeat customers! 

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What are your favorite things you’ve bought on Totspot?

I got a gorgeous fuchsia-colored wool winter coat by zara at a fantastic price from @wonderwomom. My baby girl will only be able to wear it next winter (at 12 months) but I’m a major hoarder and have clothes for her up to 2 years! I’ve also bought some of my favorite handmade labels, like a Briar Handmade bonnet, from @lucansofia. 

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What advice would you give to someone who has just joined Totspot today?

First, read the Totspot FAQ because most of your questions, especially with regards to shipping, can be answered there! Having to sort through piles of your kids clothes and listing them can seem like a daunting task (well it did to me, which was why I was shopping a lot more than selling in the beginning), but you just have to start by taking little steps. I found it best to first sort clothes by size, pick a batch to work on (like tees), prep them (steam and inspect for flaws), and then take the photos on my iPhone camera. For me, the best time for photos is during Aidan’s noon nap time (because I rely on natural light), and I upload the listings only at night after he has gone to bed.

After you’ve put up your first few listings, it doesn’t hurt to say hello to the sweet Totspot Angels. When I first joined, @4yd3n, @loveandresell and @faithhickman were some who gave me the warmest welcomes and introductions, as well as useful tips on selling and shipping. And then follow and share as much as you can! I use the search function to find other mamas with styles that I like, and will always share their cute items (if I’m not buying it first)! Most mamas will follow you back and will return the favor when you share items from their closets. You want your closet to be seen by as many eyes as possible!

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Who are some of your favorite sellers?

My favorite sellers are honest sellers who offer stylish EUC clothing at reasonable prices. These are some mamas whose closets I check on a regular basis and from whom I’ve purchased multiple times. 

@lucansofia has an awesome closet for baby girls and toddler boys that is both stylish and laid back at the same time, with brands like Freshly Picked, Diesel, Janie and Jack, and Gap.

@wonderwomom is very honest in her descriptions and will specify even the tiniest blemish on her gorgeous clothing for girls, from brands like Zara, Tea Collection, Crewcuts, Janie and Jack, and Gap, which she sells at unbelievable prices. 

@apelovesjoelovesape has a stylish hipster toddler boy’s closet with brands like Zara, MIMA, Prefresh, Supayana, and Stella McCartney.

Thank you for your time, Joanne! Follow Joanne to see what else she posts at aidannnadias_closet

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