Folk Tales | Cloth Diapers

*Folk Tale Disclaimer: These are simply the reasons we chose to do the things we do. We absolutely do not condemn any other parenting decisions as we fully respect that God put specific kids with specific parents and those parents are the only ones fully responsible for their children. These posts are merely meant to be a window into our lives for those who’d like to peer in and to offer some first hand knowledge for people researching these subjects themselves. :) *

RJ’s very 1st diaper. When the planning met reality. ;)

Like many of the things we do that land on the more… eccentric side of things, Gabe is the one who really came up with the idea of cloth diapering. We always liked the idea, but it wasn’t until we were pregnant that we really started looking into it. It was completely overwhelming for the longest time and if you, dear reader, are considering it, let me just say: it is not as complicated as it seems to be.

First, the basics. We learned that the average family spends $1,500-3,000 on disposable diapers throughout a youngin’s pre-potty days (and sometimes more; that also doesn’t include wipes). We also learned that diapers do not decompose well so they sit in landfills until…. I don’t know, the apocalypse or something. On top of that, the chemicals they use in disposable diapers to soak up all the moisture are potentially harmful. We didn’t like the idea of putting those chemicals on our baby’s most sensitive area.

So our mind was made up on going cloth, but then we had to pick which type and brand. That was when it got overwhelming. We even went to an hour long class about cloth diapering to learn all the different options and how to use them. By the end of the class we sort of threw our hands up and decided to go with what seemed simplest. We chose to use prefolds and wraps. We bought a bunch of bundles on discount and then we got a bunch of larger prefolds for when Baby got bigger. We also got a couple All-in-Ones for kicks and giggles (and because we wanted to try other options in case we liked them better).

So here’s what we got (roughly; I really can’t remember exact numbers):
6 Wraps from Econobum
30 prefolds (18 from Econobum; 12 from Bummies)
A few Snappis
3 travel wet bags
1 large wet bag
Reusable wipes from BumGenius (we figured, if we’re going to wash the diapers, why not the wipes, too? However, you can just make them out of old sheets)

I think it was close to $150 total (including wipes). Since our water is included in our rent the only extra cost right now is the electricity used to run the washer and dryer which is minimal. Even the water usage… It’s probably 2-3 extra loads a week. Not too shabby. They also very rarely leak – when they do it’s because whoever put it on didn’t tuck the cloth into the wrap correctly. As for ease of use, changing a diaper takes no more time with a cloth one than it does with a disposable. :)

When RJ was first born she was in the Gerber flats that I learned how to fold a special way to absorb well {thanks, YouTube}. Then the infant sized prefolds were a bit bulky, but fit. Now she has graduated to the larger prefolds that came with her wraps! It’s so weird/awesome to watch this kid grow. I love that little missy!

The wash routine is pretty simple, too. You just use detergent with less residue-building agents and do an extra rinse. If you are opposed to stains you can dry them in the sun and it bleaches them out; we’ve done this and it works, but honestly, I don’t really care if they get stained. ;)

Here are a few things that we didn’t have to buy, but have found useful in this area:
Disposable inserts by Flip – these are actually made for a different diaper, but we have put them in our wraps and they work fine!
Wipes Warmer – I use this for disposable wipes, too, but I really like it for the cloth ones because it seals in moisture.
Motherlove balm – life.saver. This stuff WORKS!
Country Save Detergent – Known for being “natural” or whatever. It doesn’t leave residue in the diapers which is key for preventing leaks.

A few things I might do differently in the future:

  1. Make some diapers! They don’t need to be pretty… I’ll have to do the research, but if it’s cost effective I’d like to have a go at making some whenever I need more.
  2. Skip the fancy all-in-ones (we got Happy Hineys… And yes, every cloth diaper company has chosen a cutesy play on words for their name). They don’t work at all so while they are cute, I absolutely hate them. {Note: other brands probably work perfectly; but they are much more expensive.}
  3. Make the wipes out of old clothes and such. It’s really just silly to spend money on bits of cloth you wipe your kid’s bottom with.

Some useful websites:
Why Choose Cloth? – cited “diaper facts”
Mother’s Haven  – The place to go for cloth diapers, carriers, safe toys, nursing supplies, even homeopathic remedies for Moms. They also have a space upstairs to meet with other moms {scheduled and not} and nurse privately.

5 thoughts on “Folk Tales | Cloth Diapers

  1. Umm yeah, I wish I had your website and blog during my research of it. I was so overwhelmed I just gave up lol! Well done Person!!!! (And, I might just try them at some point….)

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  2. I make all my own inserts…. When you want to take that adventure let me know (I'm in Mommies Group!) its fun and they are Soooo cute and cheap! I'll teach you how if you want, or I sell them too. Whatever!

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  3. Thanks, Jen!! I will have to take you up on that when she outgrows the bummies!! YAY! And Person, I totally know the feeling… I almost wanted to just dump the whole idea because of the crazy amount of "options" there are. EEK! Also, I will always, always have a special place in my heart for the target brand diapers with the green and blue circles on them because of Ayden. I actually packed and moved with a couple because we had some at my place in CA and I couldn't bear to just throw it out! hahahaha

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