The question: Would you/Do you/Have you given used gifts? If no, why not? If yes, does it matter the age of the recipient? Does it matter how close you are to them or is everyone fair game?
My answer: Yes, I do give used gifts.... mostly to my children and nieces and only to people who I know would still appreciate the gift regardless of if it is new or not.
Now, before I go into "why" and state my opinion, I'll be upfront and say that I know many people who don't shop resale or garage sales... either they think its disgusting or they just never think to go hunting for deals or they don't believe in buying used. I am not trying to come off in this post as "You're an idiot if you pay full price" because honestly, its your money. But for me, I try to stretch my dollar, so this is how I shop...
I love to shop at resale shops and garage sales... there are so many great deals to be found. And kids seem to get so bored with toys that it seems ridiculous to me to spend $40 on a toy that they might play with for 10 minutes a few times a week. Plus, you can really get a lot of bang for your buck... as you've seen... my kids have a whole playroom full of toys- and any toys in that room purchased by me were probably bought second hand or garage sale. I can buy more and spend less... I love it! (another word.... there are many of those toys bought new by family/friends for our baby shower, P's birthdays or Christmas, so its not like my kids have never received new toys LOL!)
I rarely, rarely buy my kids brand new toys (same for clothes too... I hardly ever buy kids clothes full price, and I shop a lot at resale shops). If I do, it has to be on sale or a good price or something that I can't find at a resale shop or on Craigslist or something like Playdoh or markers or coloring books. Holidays and birthdays are not off limits either. And they probably won't be for a few more years to come. Once they are older and are more into electronics or items that aren't best bought used, I'll adjust my shopping habits but for now they don't care where the toy came from. This year I got this Melissa and Doug train for Hudson for $2.50, this hippo flashlight for 50cents, a Cars puzzle for $1.00, for P's first Christmas I got him the Drop n Roar Dinosaur for $15 (a steal over the msrp of $40!), and I've seen the popular LeapFrog Learn n Groove Musical Table for as little as $8 at resale shops.
My nieces also received some resale finds for Christmas, but only because I knew my sister and SIL were totally cool with it (and in return, my kids also got some resale toys from them). I got Lia a whole slew of books for under $1 each, Aubri got a Cinderella DVD which cost me $5, Addisen got the Baby Einstein toy bar that cost me $2.25.
I guess, in my mind, it seems silly to buy brand new stuff- especially for kids. They grow so fast, their interests change so quickly and it seems so wasteful when there are so many toys in great condition at great prices! Like I said before, everyone has their own ideas for what is acceptable for gifts... and that's great! I love reading comments where there is a variety in opinion. Maybe you just don't think its kosher to give used gifts, maybe you don't have resale shops in your area, maybe your kids are older and used toys can't be passed off as easily.
So, what is your opinion on giving used gifts?