Monday, November 17, 2008

My transition to cloth diapering, week 2

I made the jump. We're using cloth diapers now.

This is Week 2 of using cloth diapers. (Week 1 was while the monkeys and I were sick, so no documentation or photos from our first foray into cloth diapering.)

I have sewn several fitted pocket diapers using the Rita's Rump Pocket pattern. On a few of the diapers, I used flannel on both the inside and outside, which I bought at our thrift store. They sell large bundles of flannel receiving blankets for just a couple of dollars. Sure, there are cuter, new fabrics out there, but let's remember what these are being used for. (I'll save the cute fabrics for the diaper covers!) Here's a photo of Owen with my favorite (monkey!) flannel diaper:

I also made some of the diapers with fleece or terry linings. . . I like the terry the best so far. I'm really happy with the pattern, as it fits Owen's chubby legs and belly very well. I use bamboo terry, with a layer of cotton terry in the middle, then folded in half or thirds, for stuffing the pockets.

I mostly use wool butt sweaters and longies for covers:

I made them from this pattern, using (again) thrift store wool sweaters. I have to say, I am amazed at how well these work! (Sorry about the blurry photo, but he just didn't want to lie still any longer!)

I have made one cover using PUL and fold-over-elastic. It works great, but the pattern I used, also a Rita's pattern, is not big enough to fit Owen well. I just need to adapt the pattern a bit. I don't like sewing the PUL or FOE. . . I found it very difficult to work with, but then again, it was my first time sewing with the stuff, and maybe I just need more practice.

Time for honesty: I am not enamored with cloth diapers.

  • I miss the convenience of disposables.
  • I have to wash them every day. Owen is a very heavy wetter (he leaked from every type, brand and size of disposable in record time) so he goes through our entire stash of cloth diapers every day. I think making more diapers would solve that problem. . . . ?
  • They are bulky, so most of his pants can't be worn with these diapers. Winter's coming, so this doesn't look good! In the first photo above, I used a very thin soaker to stuff the diaper, so it looks pretty trim, but he'll wet through this in 10 minutes or less.
  • He needs ultra-absorbency, but with less bulk. . . . I just haven't found what works for Owen yet. Someone recommended hemp layered with microsuede. I'll have to try that soon.
But ---- I do like using them. I like how I'm not filling the landfill with more garbage. I like saving money. I like recycling/repurposing materials to make these diapers. He's happy and more comfortable in them. AND -- he does wake up dry. He's stuffed to the max for bedtime, but his clothes and bed are dry. . . something that never happened with disposables!
So, I'm going to keep using them, but I'm going to have to get used to using them.


  1. Good on you for giving it a go. It seems the lot of some mothers to have bigger wetters than others and you seem to have a good attitude towards this. I am not sure if there is a solution unless you are able to use plastic overpants which are fine so long as your little one isn't prone to nappy rash. Wish I could help! Cherrie

  2. I know it would be hard to make this transition. GOod luck and keep it going!! :)

  3. how cute is your boy! his smile is a killer!
    i never did cloth but my sister does/has with both her kids and she raves about it. she had to shop around to find the right kind, i think it's a lot of trial and error.

  4. Good for you! You have way more courage than I did!

  5. We use PF's all day and Bummi pretty, work GREAT!! I actually don't use a cover much at home except at night...because I can easily tell when she's wet and change her right away. I only use disposable when we go out, so she can wear her regular clothes. I keep the house warm enough for her to wear a long sleeve shirt and legwarmers around the house during the cold winter months with her cloth diapers and that works out perfectly...

    Just some ideas...
    Jenn (cloth-diapering for years on and off and have found this is what works the best)

  6. Thanks for the tips, Jenn... I've started leaving off the cover most of the day, too. We just discovered the too-bulkiness when we had to go somewhere, and his diaper didn't fit into any of his pants! And I can't wait to see the legwarmers -- yay! :)


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