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Cloth diapers I can sew myself?


Mergath
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I've tried to google this, and every time I get overwhelmed by the sheer number of options. I'd like to try cloth diapers with this upcoming baby both for environmental and financial reasons. Also for financial reasons, I'd love to find something I can sew myself. I have a decent sewing machine and I've sewed things in the past like an apron for dd, so I can handle the basics and I'm willing to learn.

 

But jeez, there are so many kinds of cloth diapers. Could someone give me a recommendation for a type of diaper that's possible to sew yourself and isn't super unbelievably complicated to use? Something that dh could actually put on the baby if necessary. ;) I think if someone says, "Look into this kind," and I have a place to start I can ease myself into the research without feeling like my brain is going to explode, lol.

 

Thanks!

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I don't sew, but what about making fitted diapers out of pre-folds?  There are probably patterns out on the web.  You could use velcro for the closure on all or even just some of them.  You would still need a cover with those.  For covers just get some cheap ones of whatever you like OR if you want some wool covers, sometimes people make them from old wool sweaters.  Ah, this makes me wistful for diapering days long past, lol.    

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Honestly...it's way more practical to buy used cloth diapers unless you are a super fast seamstress. I've done a lot of sewing, and it took me at least an hour to sew a fitted diaper...and when you need 20ish per size, that's a lot of sewing time. And if you buy nicer fabrics such as bamboo fleece, you'll end up spending close to what you could buy used ones for anyway. My suggestion would be to check out www.diaperswappers.com. Figure out what type of diaper you want, and then keep an eye out for a lot of one of the medium-range brands in good condition for a reasonable price. I bought a ton of used diapers from there and never had a problem with them other than one scammer. Fitteds and a PUL cover are a good combination...some DHs will use them, and some would only use all-in-ones or pocket diapers. I liked Bummis covers best and also used Prowrap covers. All-in-ones are nice for convenience but IME tend to leak more. Some people like pocket diapers a lot...personally I hated stuffing them. You can also look for one size diapers to save money though you will likely still need newborn diapers for a baby under 10 lbs. I liked infant prefolds and a cover for the newborn stage.

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I don't sew, but what about making fitted diapers out of pre-folds?  There are probably patterns out on the web.  You could use velcro for the closure on all or even just some of them.  You would still need a cover with those.  For covers just get some cheap ones of whatever you like OR if you want some wool covers, sometimes people make them from old wool sweaters.  Ah, this makes me wistful for diapering days long past, lol.    

 

Okay, pretend you're talking to someone who hasn't used any kind of diaper at all in about seven years and who has never even seen a cloth diaper in person before. :lol:  What's a prefold?

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Okay, pretend you're talking to someone who hasn't used any kind of diaper at all in about seven years and who has never even seen a cloth diaper in person before. :lol:  What's a prefold?

 

A prefold is a name for a cloth diaper (from the old, old days when I was a baby) that you possibly have used as a burp cloth.  It is a cloth rectangle that has about 3 times the thickness in the middle third of the rectangle.  They were called prefolds because other than that you had the option of a very thin, huge square cloth that had to be folded down into the right size and thickness to use as a diaper.  The very thin, huge square are sometimes called flats.  

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Also, for those of you who used cloth diapers, did you find that, when all was said and done, you actually saved any money? Was it worth the time and effort? I hate the idea of all those disposable diapers going into the landfill, but I don't know how that balances out against all the extra loads of laundry from an environmental standpoint.

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If you're dead-set on sewing, see if the Rainy Days pattern is still available...I tried quite a few patterns and that was my favorite. It's a two size pattern, so one size for up to about 18 lbs and a bigger size for after that. You could make all in ones or fitteds from that pattern. You will need snap pliers to make it...a lot of patterns need snaps.

 

I used to buy diaper making fabrics from www.kidsinthegarden.com. She used to send out a coupon monthly if you joined her mailing list. Joanns does carry some diaper making supplies now but not necessarily as good of quality as at specialty websites.

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A prefold is a name for a cloth diaper (from the old, old days when I was a baby) that you possibly have used as a burp cloth.  It is a cloth rectangle that has about 3 times the thickness in the middle third of the rectangle.  They were called prefolds because other than that you had the option of a very thin, huge square cloth that had to be folded down into the right size and thickness to use as a diaper.  The very thin, huge square are sometimes called flats.  

 

Gotcha. Thank you!

 

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Also, for those of you who used cloth diapers, did you find that, when all was said and done, you actually saved any money? Was it worth the time and effort? I hate the idea of all those disposable diapers going into the landfill, but I don't know how that balances out against all the extra loads of laundry from an environmental standpoint.

 

I honestly don't know.  I experimented with different kinds figuring out what I liked best, but then some got used on more than one child.... I really have no idea.  But they were so stinking cute!!   :001_tt1:  :D

Edited by Another Lynn
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If you're dead-set on sewing, see if the Rainy Days pattern is still available...I tried quite a few patterns and that was my favorite. It's a two size pattern, so one size for up to about 18 lbs and a bigger size for after that. You could make all in ones or fitteds from that pattern. You will need snap pliers to make it...a lot of patterns need snaps.

 

I used to buy diaper making fabrics from www.kidsinthegarden.com. She used to send out a coupon monthly if you joined her mailing list. Joanns does carry some diaper making supplies now but not necessarily as good of quality as at specialty websites.

 

I'm not necessarily set on sewing them myself, but when I was telling dh how much new ones cost when I looked at them online he looked like he was going to cry. :P I'm definitely going to look into buying used ones. Dh might get a little squicked out at the idea of a used diaper, but too bad for him.

 

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We did best with prefolds (they are just a flat diaper) and a diaper cover. I was not a fan of fitted diapers, or pocket diapers, or any all-in-one diapers at all. We tried them all and went back to plain old prefolds with a diaper cover. At night we used Aristocrats or similar wool covers. The only time we ever had a leak or a blowout was when we decided to travel with disposables since we wouldn't have access to a washing machine. Yuck. 

 

I would buy a couple dozen good infant prefolds, a couple snappis (so you don't have to bother with diaper pins) and some inexpensive covers and be done.  You can even buy them used to save money.

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It was cheaper. I gave up on cloth halfway through baby 4 though, after using it from the start with the others. We had major stink issues with everything due to crappy water, and DH constantly complained about the smell (didn't bother me any). Be warned though...cloth diapers can turn into a massive time and money sink...there are SO many different ones and they can be so cute...it can be easy to get sucked into finding just the right diaper or having a super cute stash. I honestly wish I had never used cloth because I got sucked in and wasted far too much time on buying, selling, researching diapers. Sounds stupid, but spend a little time on Diaperswappers and you'll see what I mean. I didn't mind the extra laundry but it is definitely more hassle than sposies.

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I don't sew, but what about making fitted diapers out of pre-folds? There are probably patterns out on the web. You could use velcro for the closure on all or even just some of them. You would still need a cover with those. For covers just get some cheap ones of whatever you like OR if you want some wool covers, sometimes people make them from old wool sweaters. Ah, this makes me wistful for diapering days long past, lol.

This is what I would do. I cloth diapered 6 babies and my favorite was always a regular prefold. I feel like they last through several babies and they wash up better and dry faster than other kinds of "fancier" diapers or uber absorbant ones. And they are cheap. I have never sewed fitteds out of prefolds, but if I was ever going to get fancier than a regular prefold, that's what I would do.

Edited by DesertBlossom
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Also, for those of you who used cloth diapers, did you find that, when all was said and done, you actually saved any money? Was it worth the time and effort? I hate the idea of all those disposable diapers going into the landfill, but I don't know how that balances out against all the extra loads of laundry from an environmental standpoint.

Get thee to the store for some Pampers! :D

 

I can't imagine wanting to rinse out and wash all of those poopy diapers. :ack2: I guess I'm just an eco-villain in this sense, but I never even considered cloth diapers because of the mess and the amount of laundry I would have had to do.

 

I agree about wondering about the expense. First you have to buy or make the diapers, and then you have to keep washing and bleaching them in hot water and running the dryer, so there is definitely some expense involved. But even if the disposable diapers are quite a bit more expensive, I think the convenience outweighs the extra cost.

 

I probably don't belong in this thread. ;)

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Get thee to the store for some Pampers! :D

 

I can't imagine wanting to rinse out and wash all of those poopy diapers. :ack2: I guess I'm just an eco-villain in this sense, but I never even considered cloth diapers because of the mess and the amount of laundry I would have had to do.

 

I agree about wondering about the expense. First you have to buy or make the diapers, and then you have to keep washing and bleaching them in hot water and running the dryer, so there is definitely some expense involved. But even if the disposable diapers are quite a bit more expensive, I think the convenience outweighs the extra cost.

 

I probably don't belong in this thread. ;)

 

I'm terrified of trying to use cloth diapers, honestly, but after reading that every disposable diaper takes five hundred years to biodegrade, well, I hate doing that to the planet.

 

At this point I'm seriously considering just leaving the baby naked on a tarp all day. :lol: :lol: :lol:

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Also, for those of you who used cloth diapers, did you find that, when all was said and done, you actually saved any money? Was it worth the time and effort? I hate the idea of all those disposable diapers going into the landfill, but I don't know how that balances out against all the extra loads of laundry from an environmental standpoint.

 

Yes, I am sure we saved money. Environmentally, I think if you are living in a non-drought area cloth is better.  

 

Cloth is really very easy. In the beginning you don't even need to rinse the diapers - it all comes out in the wash. We just kept a trashcan with a pedal next to the changing table and tossed in the diapers along with cloth wipes (this is something that you can definitely sew at home to save money - I used flannel and also two sided with flannel and terry on the other side).  Wash every couple of days and you're good to go.

 

The reason I preferred prefolds (which is the least expensive option by far) was that I could just take off the diaper with the prefold, turn it over the receptacle, and empty it in - quick and easy. The fitted diapers you have to unsnap and while they are awfully cute, I found it took more time and was messier. All-in-ones were way more expensive and we just weren't big fans. Ditto pockets.

 

I have nothing to compare it to because we only used cloth and maybe it isn't related, but DS was out of diapers during the day at 18 months. His cousins in disposable diapers wore them for many months (and years in one case!) more.  

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Catwoman, you don't have to bleach, in fact, probably shouldn't. And the poopy diapers are not yucky until you introduce solids. Even then just let it plop in the toilet and carry on. :D

I'm way too old for babies now anyway, but don't the diapers get stained if you don't bleach them?

 

I'm so clueless, and I don't want to hijack Mergath's thread, but I just assumed cloth diapers would need to be bleached. :)

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I'm terrified of trying to use cloth diapers, honestly, but after reading that every disposable diaper takes five hundred years to biodegrade, well, I hate doing that to the planet.

 

At this point I'm seriously considering just leaving the baby naked on a tarp all day. :lol: :lol: :lol:

:lol: :lol: :lol:

 

Maybe we can brainstorm and find another way you can save the planet so you won't have to feel so guilty about the disposable diaper thing!

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Nope, and a lot of bleach actually wrecks the PUL.

 

They might need to be bleached occasionally, but generally, a good rinse, then a good wash in hot water (with TIDE....and ONLY TIDE in my experience.) and they were good to go. Also, line drying was always better than using the dryer.

Thanks! :)

 

I don't have a clothesline, either... :leaving:

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I'm way too old for babies now anyway, but don't the diapers get stained if you don't bleach them?

 

I'm so clueless, and I don't want to hijack Mergath's thread, but I just assumed cloth diapers would need to be bleached. :)

Bleach isn't good for them. If they get stained (I never had much of a problem with this) you can put them in the sun.

 

Mergath, another thing you can easily make is liner inserts (you won't need these in the beginning). We used to add these to the diapers overnight for extra absorbency. Easy to make with some microfleece and absorbent terry.

 

Here's a beginner's list: http://www.kellyscloset.com/What-do-I-need-to-get-started-cloth-diapering_ep_209-1.html

Edited by bibiche
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I've tried to google this, and every time I get overwhelmed by the sheer number of options. I'd like to try cloth diapers with this upcoming baby both for environmental and financial reasons. Also for financial reasons, I'd love to find something I can sew myself. I have a decent sewing machine and I've sewed things in the past like an apron for dd, so I can handle the basics and I'm willing to learn.

 

But jeez, there are so many kinds of cloth diapers. Could someone give me a recommendation for a type of diaper that's possible to sew yourself and isn't super unbelievably complicated to use? Something that dh could actually put on the baby if necessary. ;) I think if someone says, "Look into this kind," and I have a place to start I can ease myself into the research without feeling like my brain is going to explode, lol.

 

Thanks!

 

 

So look into prefitteds. :)  They are multi-size and because the layers aren't heavy (instead they fold in) an average sewing machine can handle them.  Plus, they dry faster which is pretty relevant when you start getting into workhorse diapers.  

 

Similar to this:

https://community.babycenter.com/post/a27208733/quick_snap_flap_wrap_w_elastic_tutorial?intcmp=SPGroupSearchResult_SPGroupSearch_textlink

 

I have sewn probably about a hundred diapers over the course of life in general and while I love fitteds, the catch is that the cloth in the gathered leg will wear out faster than your diaper.  This is super frustrating when you have put expense and labor into a diaper and the whole thing could last a while but that area wears out.  So my favorite is essentially a rectangle with wings - kind of like a prefold and then with an elastic in the waistband and snaps.  If you have a drill press you can buy dies (cheap) to fit them.  When I first was making diapers my snap press LITERALLY came to the US on a slow boat from China.  Truly.  I was part of a snap press co-op (and co-ops are still the way to go if you like great fabrics like hemp or bamboo.)  

 

Think about using upcycled materials, especially to learn on - flannel sheets and knit t-shirts.  Terry is absorbent but horrid to sew for diapers - most folks automatically  think of terry towels but they get so stiff and lots of fluff. Ugh.

 

For financial reasons, also consider a lightweight fitted (rather than a sewn in soaker) and then add a doubler to it.  They will dry SO much faster.

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I'm way too old for babies now anyway, but don't the diapers get stained if you don't bleach them?

 

I'm so clueless, and I don't want to hijack Mergath's thread, but I just assumed cloth diapers would need to be bleached. :)

 

The sun is amazing. It takes out all the stains. I am currently CDing our fourth. We, like many others in this thread, use prefolds with covers. (If you want reasonably priced recs, just ask.)

 

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Also, for those of you who used cloth diapers, did you find that, when all was said and done, you actually saved any money? Was it worth the time and effort? I hate the idea of all those disposable diapers going into the landfill, but I don't know how that balances out against all the extra loads of laundry from an environmental standpoint.

 

 

I think it was worth it. I loved it. Truly. My last few were disposable babies but DS2, DD3, DD4, some of DS3, DD5 were all cloth. DD6 was semi-cloth.

There are few things that feel as nurturing as putting a soft, dry, clean cloth diaper on a happy little butt. I dunno - it's something primal I think.

 

Did I save money? Not initially I spent a fortune switching from prefolds to fitteds.

That said, I PREFER prefolds - the good, old fashioned, unbleached Chinese prefolds. But DH did not. We had an agreement that I would change diapers if I was using cloth and that was the deal for years. Sure enough, when I switched to disposables, DH went back to doing diapers. I didn't find it to be a lot of laundry - about two loads a week.

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I used cloth diapers on my now 25 year old son, given my environmental bent.  I did not stitch any for him, although a couple of years ago I did make some diapers for a grand nephew using this pattern:

 

https://www.ottobredesign.com/en/print/pdf/vaippa_en.pdf

 

As a sewist, I had lots of flannel and terry leftover bits which I used in the soaker pads. 

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Sized prefolds like the Green Mountain ones definitely fit better if you go with prefolds. There are other companies that make sized prefolds also. For us, though, once baby started walking I could not get a prefold tight enough to prevent leg gaps once it got wet...which led to poop leaks. I tried different types, sizes, folds, etc and it always happened, which is why I preferred fitteds. We did use mostly wool covers though which are nice and breathable but a pain to hand wash...it might not have been a big deal with PUL covers.

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I started making diapers for my eldest when he was a 2yo. My sewing skills are probably on par with yours. I did flats/prefolds and covers/pocket diapers. 

 

Trying to figure out how to sew my own diapers cost a lot more than just buying cheap diapers would have. 

 

I still have the diapers I made for DS and am using the better few on DD now. But right before she was born, I bought new diapers, since I didn't have enough for a newborn. 

 

I bought from theluvyourbaby.com and from nickisdiapers and from kellyscloset a few from assunta store (also where I bought the snaps for the diapers when I was making them myself). theluvyourbaby has super cheap covers, and they work fine. Same with nickis diapers brand. 

 

I also bought used diapers from the above mentioned online shops. They both have "wash and return" type programs, so the diapers aren't heavily used. I don't pay more than $13 for a cover or pocket diaper. 

 

I love flats and prefolds, they are just so easy to wash. When DD was <6 mo or so, I wrapped them and snappied them on. Now, I just pad fold the flats or prefolds and they stay secure under the cover on their own. 

 

Around when she turned 1 yr, she was waking up from her diaper getting filled, and instead of fiddling with cloth combinations, DH insisted we use disposables, so we currently use disposable inserts (flip brand) at night. 

 

We've definitely saved money. Laundry doesn't cost that much. I make my own detergent, and wash 3 times a week, max. I think I only spent $300 on diapers for DD. I spent a lot more than that on materials to make diapers for DS. 

 

$300 sounds like a lot, but that's 6 months of disposables. 

 

If you want to sew something, sew wetbags for the dirty diapers to go into. I think I actually saved money doing that. 

 

Wanted to add, DH was not too thrilled with the idea of cloth. But SO MUCH money saved! He does change diapers, even though its a little bit more work than using disposable diapers, because he knows that I'm at home changing diapers all day and I need a break. 

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We are unexpectedly expecting again, too.  I used cloth with my other babies, but I sold everything.  I want to keep it simple and affordable, so far I have no concrete plan, but here are some ideas:

 

Prefolds with a snappi really are easy to do- and they are the cheaptest option.  If you child doesn't like the cotton against her bum, you can put a fleece liner against baby to keep her dry.  Just buy a high quality fleece at JoAnns and cut to the right size.  Cheap and easy!  You would need 24-36 prefolds, and about 10 covers.  DOwnside would be older sibblings probably won't be able to change baby. 

 

Make your own pocket- I have done this with previous babies!  Buy a few used ones to get an idea of the size and cut.  You can use aplix, but I have a snap press ;)  Makes life wonderful and totally worth it, but not for everyone.  You will need fleece, some PUL fabric, some elastic and either snaps or Aplix.  These are really easy to make!  Stuff with the prefolds- orange edged or yellow edged.  You can also buy slimmer things or sew your own inserts, but honestly I always just used prefolds b/c they washed and dried easily.  I wouldn't recommend making fitteds or AIOs- the pockets are easiest and less bulky to sew.  You may have to watch the needle, b/c the PUL can gum it up and sometimes mine doesn't want to sew as well on PUL as it does on cotton.

 

Buy mostly used, then re-sell- this is a good option.  If you purchase name-brand diapers, gently used, you can usually sell them again for close to what you purchased them for. 

 

 

You can do combos of whatever types of diapers you want, I plan to have a mix of fitteds, prefolds, AIOs and pockets.  All of my kids have had cloth diapers, and I don't find it a big deal to do the laundry... I'm already doing tons of laundry anyway, it's just a few more loads per week- and I have 2 washers :LOL

 

Good luck!   

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We used flats and covers for our kids.  DS(7 months) still uses flats and covers.  Flats are a large square of fabric that you can fold any way.  They are truly the only one sized diaper.  I use a snappi to secure it under the cover.

 

We chose flats because we live in an apartment and we line dry our clothes.  It is very easy to get them completely clean since they are not a bunch of layers and they air dry in only a couple hours even on a damp / cold day (MN here too).

 

We have saved a lot of money.  The flats and covers were about $60 and disposable diapers here on sale are about 32 cents each.  It increases our electricity by about $5-7 per month for washing.

 

BTW....CONGRATULATIONS!!!

Edited by ezrabean2005
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I have never tried to sew them myself. From online sewing people who have, even seasoned seamstresses have a learning curve with them. Expect your first few to look like junk. Using swim fabric for the outside is supposed to hold up best (which makes sense as it's designed to work in a wet, chlorinated environment!).

Rocket Bottoms https://www.naturesfabrics.com/patterns/rocket-bottoms.html

 

Made by Jack's Mum http://madebyjacksmum.com/product/osfm-nappy-pattern/ (also on etsy I think?)

 

Darling Diapers: http://www.darlingdiapers.com/buyddu.html

 

Good free pattern for newborn fitteds: https://www.hallapatterns.com/products/halla-fitted-diaper-newborn (read the description to go to the FB group for the code to make it free)

 

Join the FB groups for coupons/sales and advice. 

 

I've cloth diapered 4 kids. It probably saved money, but I had a cute diaper habit with my first two, so... ;) With my second two, I used pockets and didn't get into the cute stuff. That definitely was cost effective. I like Bum Genius pockets with either prefolds or the inserts that come with it. Use Tide. Strip them occasionally. Mine are going strong after 2 kids using them for almost 5 years. (Still use them as night time just in case dipes for one kid)

 

And I don't think I saw a previous announcement, so congrats! :)

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Also, for those of you who used cloth diapers, did you find that, when all was said and done, you actually saved any money? Was it worth the time and effort? I hate the idea of all those disposable diapers going into the landfill, but I don't know how that balances out against all the extra loads of laundry from an environmental standpoint.

 

Absolutely saved money.   There is no comparison.   My aunt went to a Gerber outlet store and bought a ton of prefolds and used them as Christmas packing.  So, I don't know how much that cost.  I also bought way more covers than I needed just because they were stinking cute.   I mean, who can resist a minkie (velvet-like fabric) cover with "I love you" spelled out in cursive?  Especially when it is onsale after valentine's.  I bought PUL and made some covers.  I still spent less than $150 total.  

 

Asking which diaper to use is like a baby homeschooler asking which curriculum to get.   

 

Edited by shawthorne44
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The sun is amazing. It takes out all the stains. I am currently CDing our fourth. We, like many others in this thread, use prefolds with covers. (If you want reasonably priced recs, just ask.)

 

 

It took me a couple babies to learn this. I threw out some outfits I thought were ruined. Silly me. The sun would have cleaned them right up.

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I preferred using cloth diapers. Sometimes I used a diaper service which had to be a year long contract, I think. Dreft is a good detergent I used, for babies and tots but expensive. Or I'd use A&H and added 20 mule team borax. No, I rarely bleached them. 

Some babies don't do well with cloth diapers and develop rash easier. I've heard other moms say their babies developed diaper rash from disposables. My babies did better with cloth. 

Pre-folds is the way to go. If your baby is especially tiny, the pre-folds will still be a little large. There is a trick to learning how to fold them for your baby and it also included folding over the top front down into the diaper which meant the diaper pin was going through MANY layers of diaper. But if you have a boy, that extra fabric in the front helps. 

Disposable diapers are an environmental nightmare also because most people do not dump the waste into the toilet. 

 

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Are you planning to breastfeed? Breastmilk poo is SO EASY. I never ever rinsed out a diaper with breastmilk poo before sticking it in the diaper pail because it's so runny anyway. I just do a pre-rinse in the washer before I add the soap. Also, I feel like a well-secured prefold under a PUL cover contained the newborn poo so much better than disposables. Especially on boys, whose man-package tends to force everything up and out the back. I prefer cloth diapers for newborns because they leak a lot less. 

 

Now, once baby gets into solid foods it's a little more complicated. It's also why I have quit cloth diapering my last couple babies once they started solids. It's also why I am never in a hurry to start solids. Lol.

Edited by DesertBlossom
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We absolutely have saved money. My favorite cloth diapers are Grovia and they typically have decent Black fridta and Earth Day sales. The hybrid option is so nice (waterproof cover that you can swap the absorbable inner when necessary).

 

If you want to be super cheap, you can order from Sunbabies. They are a fair trade Chinese company that sell packs for decent prices.

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Also, for those of you who used cloth diapers, did you find that, when all was said and done, you actually saved any money? Was it worth the time and effort? I hate the idea of all those disposable diapers going into the landfill, but I don't know how that balances out against all the extra loads of laundry from an environmental standpoint.

First: Kinds of Diapers

 

flats - giant very thin square of fabric that you fold down into a diaper shape. Looks like of like a flour sack kitchen towel. You need to put a waterproof cover on over this. (you can reuse the cover multiple times before washing)

 

prefolds - rectangular, multiple layers, middle layer is thicker. Comes in various sizes. You need to put a water proof cover over this.

 

fitteds- These generally snap or velcro onto the baby like a disposable diaper. You need to put a waterproof cover over it.

 

pocket - these are two parts - a a water proof cover that you "stuff" with an absorbant insert. You take the insert out when washing. Both parts are single use, then wash. 

 

All in One - Goes on with snaps or velcro, looks like a disposable. Nothing to take apart when washing. Easiest to use, but most expensive and most difficult to wash.

 

 

 

And Yes, I saved a ton of money. We're about to diaper baby number four, and I'm still using some of the same diapers as I used on baby number 1 17 years ago! Prefolds last forever, and are the most inexpensive option. They are also the easiest to wash and dry. My DH never had a problem learning to use them, but my next favorite (ok..total favorite) are Sandy's fitted diapers, which I tend to buy used. The size small fits forever and ever...so may even be more economical than multiple sizes of prefolds in the end...not sure. But because they have elastic they do eventually wear out. Of course, that elastic means no poopy blow outs. EVER. I like them with a Bummis pull on cover. Sandy's are bulky so some covers don't fit over them well.

 

This is a good source of info on kinds of diapers, what you need, etc http://www.greenmountaindiapers.com/newmom.html. 

 

Also, agreeing with others not to sew them ....it isn't worth it. Really. Start with some prefolds and covers and go from there. 

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I'm way too old for babies now anyway, but don't the diapers get stained if you don't bleach them?

 

I'm so clueless, and I don't want to hijack Mergath's thread, but I just assumed cloth diapers would need to be bleached. :)

 

Nope. I mean, sure, I have a handful of stained ones after using them on 3 kids, but not for the most part. Newborn breastmilk poop suns out if it stains. The rest just comes out in the wash. i do bleach every now and then, for whatever reason, but not normally. 

 

Biz is the best for getting them SUPER clean though. (oxiclean plus enzymes)

 

Washing Routine:

diapers go in machine on a rinse and spin, no detergent, cold

long hot wash with detergent

maybe extra rinse if need be (depends on machine, detergent, how hard the water is, etc)

 

I WILL admit that I tend to use disposables overnight once they are sleeping the whole night and wetting heavily. Otherwise the absorbency required makes it too hard to find pajamas that fit right. But one diaper a day seems ok to me :)

 

Cloth is DEFINITELY better for preventing poopy blowouts. 100 percent better. No contest. 

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I sewed quite a few fitted diapers with my youngest two, but it was definitely a labor of love.  I used to dream about getting a serger to make the whole process a million times easier (but a million times more expensive.)  I gave up on all-in-ones, because I just wasn't good enough at working with PUL, so my attempts there leaked.

 

My M.O. was to settle for shoddy workmanship and utilize extremely cute fabrics. Not that it mattered to anyone else, because they were usually covered by, well, covers.

 

I did not calculate savings, because I splurged on the fabrics I liked.  Had I stuck to basics and repurposing, I'm confident I would have saved.

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I'm fairly lazy and squeamish and cloth diapering has never bothered me. Blowouts from disposables all over clothes, car seats etc are much more of a hassle IMO.

 

If we have any more babies, my streamlined stash would be........ newborn and infant prefolds with Thirsties Duo size 1 covers, then Flip covers with pad folded flats for older baby/toddler phase. (feel free to ask if you need anymore details/information) I like pocket diapers too, but haven't found them to be as reliable. Plus they add to the cost.

 

It absolutely saved money for us. I mostly used disposables at night (because I couldn't get it to work initially and I wasn't messing with extra sheet changes etc) though the overnight Flip inserts worked well with one of my kids. Disposables cost at least $50 a month. I haven't priced cloth diapers in a while, but I'm guessing a prefolds and covers stash is between $200-300 new. Used covers are pretty easy to find. You can also sell everything when you are done.

 

I feel like it's a better environmental choice. It's not just the laundry vs. the landfill. There is also an impact from the production of disposables.

 

 

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 I exclusively cd'd all 4 kids (save for the first week with meconium and vacations here and there). I just used prefolds and covers with mine. I tried some aio's and a few other things but I liked the simplicity and absorbency of the prefolds. Prefolds are work horses and cheap, no sewing needed. I certainly saved money and found them easy. People get scared by pre-folds but they aren't bad to figure out, my dh got them down in no time, and my older kids(6 &9 at the time) were able to help with my last baby, even though they didn't always want to. We just did a simple twist fold.

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Do you live where you can line dry? I used the dryer, but line drying would save energy and sun removes any staining very well.

 

I have a huge set of clotheslines out in the yard, but I live in MN so I can only use them for half the year. :P I have a drying rack for inside, though.

 

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Are you planning to breastfeed? Breastmilk poo is SO EASY. I never ever rinsed out a diaper with breastmilk poo before sticking it in the diaper pail because it's so runny anyway. I just do a pre-rinse in the washer before I add the soap. Also, I feel like a well-secured prefold under a PUL cover contained the newborn poo so much better than disposables. Especially on boys, whose man-package tends to force everything up and out the back. I prefer cloth diapers for newborns because they leak a lot less. 

 

Now, once baby gets into solid foods it's a little more complicated. It's also why I have quit cloth diapering my last couple babies once they started solids. It's also why I am never in a hurry to start solids. Lol.

 

That's the plan! That's good to know. Dh is cringing at the idea of scraping poop out of cloth diapers.

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Thanks so much, everyone! It sounds like the way to go might be to buy prefolds and covers. The diapers I was looking at online were the fancy all-in-one things, which may be why they seemed so expensive. I don't know about you, but I definitely can't afford thirty bucks per diaper, especially given that this will be our last child and so I won't be reusing them for siblings. I'll look at the patterns, but it sounds like sewing might not save me much money and would be a bigger hassle than I was anticipating.

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I'm not sure if this is supposed to be an insult or not.

 

 

I don't think it was meant as an insult - just that you are likely to get 20 different answers from 20 moms. And like homeschooling, it's very easy to get overwhelmed by all the information, choices and opinions.

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