Monday, June 14, 2010

Elizabeth's Cloth Diaper Journey

I got kind of a late start on diapering as I didn’t start cloth diapering until my son was about 10 months old. It’s better to be late than never because it started me down not only a more earth friendly path, but a budget friendly path as well. I was completely overwhelmed by the choices I had, when to wash, how to store, completely and utterly befuddled by the newbie I had now become.

My first stash was loaned/given to me by some sweet local cloth diaper addicts. I had 3 pockets, a dozen or so prefolds (both premium and premmie for inserts) and some PUL covers made by one of the lady’s who is a super sewing diva. I don’t even remember if I had a wetbag or not. At any rate I was cloth diapering! It took some convincing on their end because I am on the road quite abit and didn’t want to be slowed down by these cloth diapers and washing all the time. But once I got my stash settled and some actual wetbags instead of plastic grocery bags.. it made it TONS easier than I could have ever imagined.

Now I cloth diapered him until he started potty training now we use a combination of pull ups for night time accidents and regular underpants. And that seems to be a good balance as I have found for a 3 year old.

When my daughter was born I was given just enough disposable diapers to last me until her cord stump fell off. I didn’t buy any super small cloth diapers as my babies usually chunk up quite quickly (Laura on the other hand stocks up! ) So my stash with her was quite different than all the different types of diapers I had tried and gone through with my son. I had a stash of 24 infant prefolds and a dozen premmie prefolds to use as doublers, 6-10 small/medium pul covers I think I used 6 proraps colors, and 4 baby behinds colors.

When she got older I started using wool covers. I started using wool with William after Laura explained to me that lanolizing just meant that you put lanolin on the wool… nothing more! It sounded way more intimidating than that. Anyways once you switch to wool it’s hard to go back to pul covers ( at least for me.) So much easier to take care of and I love the smell of wool wash. I don’t buy small wool because I find that breastfed poop liked to get on them and you wash them a lot so I stick to pul during the first few months but after they get into mediums I switch to wool.

I never even used pins or snappis with my son I just folded a prefold into the newspaper fold and snapped it on. Now you can’t use pull on covers but that never really bothered me. With my little girl though I started out trying to use pins but quickly realized how wonderful snappis are. I love them and continue to use them with her as I bought a lot of pull on wool covers and knit a lot of her covers.

Another thing I like was fleece covers and acrylic knit covers. They look like wool but you just wash them after every other use with your diaper load like you would pul covers. I find that if I am working on a pattern to knit with I knit it in acrylic first so it’s cheaper if I mess up/the pattern is wonky. I also learned to sew my own fleece covers which saved me a lot of money versus buying them. But they are fairly inexpensive if you have to buy them too.

I went though my experimental phase with my son. I tried fitteds and I loved baby behinds hemp/bamboo on him they fit him really well. I tried pockets which I liked for their extreme ease while on the go and out and about. I tried prefolds ( and found my love in their simplicity. I tried all in ones and didn’t much care for them .

But all in all you must try to find what fits your lifestyle and your budget. Prefolds+wool is my thing, but it might not be yours so feel free to experiment try things out. Even with the next baby you might find what worked for your first doesn’t do well on your second just because of body shape, or weight. Most of all have fun and enjoy this new wonderful thing you’ve found!

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