I have noticed recently that my cloth diapers are getting a little worn out… the PUL has holes, and the Velcro looks like it’s been through a war. Plus they are getting a little snug on my “tall for her age”, skinny 14 mo. old.
I have to say that as often as I get the chance.. my hubby and I are not tall people. And all of our other kids barely made it on the chart when it came to height. I laughed outright when the doctor told me at her last appointment that she was tall for her age. I had never heard that before!
On top of that, PUL seems to really cause rashes on my “warm” baby. She is always hot. She won’t keep covers on at night, and hates to be bundled. So I have been on the lookout for new diapers. And I have become obsessed! Really, I dream about fluff. Before all this I hadn’t realized there was anything out there but Kushies, and gdiapers, and then the really spendy ones that I could never afford without winning the lottery. I have looked at so many brands, and colors, and kinds, they all seem to sorta swim together. I have fanned so many facebook diaper pages, I can’t find the comments from my friends on my page anymore. I have become enthralled with fitteds, and wool or fleece covers.
But, with 6 kids and one income, I was really struggling to figure out HOW I am going to afford a whole new set of diapers and covers. Enter my sweet friend and sis-in-law at Robyn’s Sweet Cheeks Diapers. She kindly took some of my fleece blankets and flannel receiving blankets that we no longer use and converted them into fitted diapers for me at an amazingly affordable cost. I also found a really cute wool sweater that she is upcycling into some short and longie covers for me. Robyn also has a blog that has some really great info and giveaways that she posts while on her “Quest To Find The Perfect Cloth Diaper”. Which is hard when they are all so cute, and fluffy and you want them all! Her blog can be found here… She also makes custom order diapers at a very reasonable price, with really cute fabrics and colors.
I have won a Cutsey Tushies Cloth Diaper on Coupon Mommy of 3’s flash giveaways. I also won a pair of baby leg warmers from 4Ward Thinking Cloth Diapers. I am (quite impatiently!) waiting for all these items to get here, because I can’t wait to try them out, post some pics and let you guys know what I think of them. So get online and enter some blog giveaways, join in the fun and spend an evening trying out a flash giveaway. Even if you don’t win, it’s fun and you “meet” some other moms that cloth diaper too.
I built up my current stash while using disposables to begin with. I started out with buying the cheapest all in one (AIO) cloth diapers I could find, Kushies. They didn’t fit my baby for almost 4 months. For the next few months, I used the 5 cloth diapers that I had, then used disposables while those cloth diapers were in the wash, and gradually added cloth diapers, until I was able to purchase 20 Kushies in all and eventually was able to stop buying disposables all together. Robyn also sent me some WonderWorks diapers, some fitted diapers she had made and a couple of wool covers that her Lil Bean had outgrown. I was really bummed when only ten months later the Kushies were falling apart and needed to be replaced. I couldn’t afford to start over! It is expensive to get started cloth diapering, when you live pay check to pay check. I knew that in the long run we had really saved a lot of money, but we couldn’t afford the start up cost’s all over again. And a lot of you out there may also be thinking, I can’t afford that much money at one time!
But it is possible to cloth diaper on a limited income. Now that the Kushies need to be replaced, and I am having to really research options, because there is NO way I am going back to disposables, I am finding that there are a lot of cheaper, easier, cuter options out there then I knew about. I am finding that there are a lot of stay at home mom’s that make cloth diapers for very reasonable prices, and there are a lot that are willing to work with those of us that are of limited income.
Another thing I have done in a pinch, is to take an old flannel sheet, and strip it. Which is rinsing it in REALLY hot water or boiling it, several time to remove any soap residue. Soap residue can cause ammonia, which can stink and burn baby’s bum. It is a good idea to strip your cloth diapers at least once a month, or any time you start to smell a strong ammonia (pee) smell. I then cut the sheet into 28 inch squares, you would cut it into 27 inches for a smaller (like newborn) baby, or 29 inches for a larger (toddler) baby. Then I used the flat fold. Which is the fold our grandmother’s used and a cover. Here are the flat fold instructions. There are other ways to fold a flat diaper, but this seemed the easiest and quickest to me. I don’t really enjoy having to take the time to fold up the diapers, but in a pinch it works well. They have not leaked. And I know that at any time, for any reason I should need, I can have instant cloth diapers if I have a piece of cloth. I even added and old, stripped sheet to our emergency kit, with a pair of scissors, and a cover I don’t use often.
I also make our laundry soap, which enables me to make 4 gallons of detergent at a time, at about $.40 per gallon. This enables me to spend the money I would usually spend on regular laundry detergent on detergent that is safe for cloth diapers. I am waiting now, for a Rockin’ Green Detergent sample. I have heard great things about it, and can’t wait to see if it does what they say it does! With the savings, I am also able to save up to buy a diaper or two or diaper accessory once in a while.
Hopefully this post will help some of you get going on your cloth diaper stash, or build one up. If you have any more questions, let me know. I would be happy to help! It took awhile to get going, but now that I am there, no way am I going back!