Better late than never…

Fresh linen.

I have a confession to make.

We have only just begun using cloth diapers.  When I say that, I mean mere days ago.  We inherited a large bag of various types of cloth diapers from a couple of Mike's lovely co-workers.  I had every intention of beginning to use them within the first month or two of babyhood.  After all, babies alone are enough to figure out without the many facets of cloth diapering thrown into the mix.  When the weather warmed up I washed, sorted, and hung the inherited diapers on the line, but I still remained confused as to how these ones worked and so continued on with the disposables.

Months have passed and I felt sick with every package of disposables we fired through.  We would sit in the aisles grimacing at the idea of throwing more money into a landfill.  I was fully aware that the savings in the long run were substantial, but most stores we visited suggested the start up cost would be around $900 dollars.  The diapers would pay for themselves and then some over the course of their lives, but it didn't change the fact that $15 to $20 every week was easier on our bank account in the short term.

Then one day, I was finally done feeling guilty with each diaper change and began seriously researching the world of cloth diapers.  I found some great sellers on Etsy and was comparing two sellers in particular.  I could get 24 AIO (all in one) one size {birth to potty training} diapers with 24 free reusable wipes for $240 plus shipping through this seller, and the same from this sellerfor $365 plus shipping.  I then decided to make my way over to Ebay where I found 24 AIO cloth diapers for $128 with free shipping. 

Sold.

This company is in China and the decision to purchase from this seller may have been less than ethical or even environmentally savvy.  That being said we don't always have the luxury of choosing handmade, local, and organic items as those often seem to be much more expensive choice and as a family trying to cut costs so that I may stay home, the decision was made to go the more economical route.  I am a big believer in supporting the tiny shops and the environmentally responsible, but when it comes down to this transaction, I saved well over $100 and am now creating much less waste for many years to come.  I think now that we are set up, I will be able to buy lovely and more local diapers in the future.

The transition to cloth has been interesting and we are still trying to find our groove and comfort levels.  The first day we had her in them we had an astonishing number of teething/prune induced poops and so, after the 12th poopy diaper, we felt a little overwhelmed. 

Yesterday, I  went to our local baby boutique and picked up some bamboo inserts {$4 each} to go inside the three covers I had purchased when I had no idea what I was doing and will try those soon too.  I would also like to visit our local Recycled Kids store to see if they have any second hand diapers.

So far cloth diapering  is not nearly as intimidating as one might think.  You have to change them more often and wash them when you need more, but we have enough to last us 2 to 3 days at least with 24 AIOs plus 3 covers with inserts.  So far, the hardest part for me is looking at the fresh white fleece being smeared with poop and hoping it comes out in the wash.  I am sure it will be easier when the novelty wears off.

I will keep you posted on our progress and I would love to gather links for future diaper buying if you care to share your suppliers and favorites. 

I always love hearing about your experiences!

e.

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13 Comments

  1. Posted November 10, 2009 at 3:14 pm by elizabeth ~ so wabi sabi | Permalink

    awesome resource…
    http://www.diaperswappers.com
    I’ve bought diapers here and sold them too. but be forewarned it can be a little overwhelming and there is terminology to learn, although it sounds like you picked up on AIO.
    get a diaper sprayer (www.diapersprayer.com) you might find a co-op on diaperswappers though, it attaches to your toilet and is great for spraying off poo’d diapers into the toilet…it revolutionized my attitude towards dealing with the poo.
    one more thing…biokleen’s Bac Out is great for smell and stains.

  2. Posted November 10, 2009 at 3:46 pm by Jamie | Permalink

    We have been using cloth since the get go with Lily and I am so happy. We didn’t use them with Sam as we lived in a basement apartment with no washer or dryer so I was not hiking diapers to the laundry mat!
    I was tired of the midnight run to the shoppers to get diapers when out. Now I just a load of diapers. We too had a difficult time with the cost. We decided to go with the Kushies AIO from Sears/Toysrus. While many complain the they leaked, we have never had problems. For over night I have sometimes put a fleece insert under the kushies one. I also knitted a few and was given a few wool covers for the non-all in ones and this works great as well. I love the she was wool on her!
    My diapers wash recipe is great and I never have problems with stains. Then every few months I throw them outside and the sun goes a wonderful job bleaching any stains right out!

  3. Posted November 10, 2009 at 7:08 pm by hillary | Permalink

    Congratulations!
    I always bought my stash in small pieces because that price tag seemed so overwhelming. For my first, I only had him in full size prefolds, but by the time I had my second I had found a whole bunch of Motherease at our local resale and bought two dozen newborn size prefolds which was a treat when dealing with a teeny, tiny new one.
    For my basic stash I loved greenmountaindiapers.com. She is really helpful walking you through everything and giving really honest information about her products. Also check out jilliansdrawers.com. they are a local in my town and she is a great woman and I think she hosts these great cd sampling packages where you can return them if you don’t like them.
    Then after the basics I embellished on etsy and splurging here and there on fun handmade stuff.
    Such fun!
    (If you ever plan on having another one….then you’ll find out where the savings are 😉

  4. Posted November 11, 2009 at 12:33 am by Desiree Fawn | Permalink

    The nicest thing about line drying (when the weather is nice like this!) is that the sun gets rid of any poopy stains that might be left behind.
    I’m AMAZED at the bleaching powers of the sun!

  5. Posted November 11, 2009 at 10:28 am by chickadeeworkshop.wordpress.com | Permalink

    Good for you! Better late than never. I cloth diapered all 3 of mine in the 70’s and early 80’s when it wasn’t “cool.” My friends were all working moms who valued their disposables. I stayed at home and I couldn’t put those crunchy things (disposables were awful back then) on my baby. Besides, we couldn’t justify the expense of throw aways.
    We didn’t have fitteds or AIO’s back then. Just flat diaper fabric and some prefolds. I managed each baby with 4 dozen of a combination of those and vinyl pants. I actually got to enjoy folding the diapers after they came ouf of the dryer. I could do it while I watched t.v.
    If you’ve bought good quality AIO’s, they should last well into your 2nd babe.
    And don’t forget to hang them on the line occasionally for a good bleaching and disinfecting! The sun is so good at both and free.

  6. Posted November 11, 2009 at 12:35 pm by Joan | Permalink

    Awesome post! I love that you are jumping into cloth diapering now after going so long without…I don’t think it is very common because people get used to the “convenience” of disposables. We cloth diapered Abby since ~2weeks old. We used prefolds and covers in the beginning and then switched to BumGenius. We LOVE the BG! Luckily we bought all of the BG w/ gift certificates. Now I use contours and covers when we run out of BG. BUT…we still use a disposable at night because she is a peeing machine! :) Also check out cottonbabies.com, they sell diapers but have a great amount of info as well. Woo hoo! Have fun and just think how much better Poppy’s bottom feels!

  7. Posted November 11, 2009 at 12:50 pm by Sarah | Permalink

    I second the recommendation for Bac Out it truly is wonderful stuff! I only worked up the nerve to cloth diaper my last baby and now I miss it with a vengeance (he’s 26mo)! We loved Thirsties fab fitteds or prefolds with Thirsties covers. They were economical and could have lasted me through several more children…They were far superior to the “green” pull-ups we have now but I have two older boys I teach at home so this was a concession I made for sanity sake!
    Wishing you all the best in this endeavor!

  8. Posted November 11, 2009 at 1:39 pm by heather | Permalink

    i have a lot of experience here! i would love to answer any specific questions you have, so ask me as they come up! i’ll tell you what i’ve learned. my favorite thing to do is let them sun dry, to get the purifying qualities of the magical sun on those fibers that get saturated with stinkies.

  9. Posted November 12, 2009 at 2:40 am by Kelly | Permalink

    I get most of my diapers used, from kijiji or diaperswappers or just from other mamas in my AP group! I did order a dozen new BumGenius diapers from a local retailer to start myself off (using part of our income tax return), but the rest have been acquired here and there. It’s kind of a fun little hobby. Right now I’m really into wool covers, and am trying to build up my stash a bit for when the new baby arrives (which will be in approx 4 weeks, yikes!). I absolutely love using cloth! Buying and throwing out so many disposable diapers over the years that a child needs them is too overwhelming for me.
    Have you heard of Elimination Communication (EC)? I’m thinking about trying it with this baby (as well as using cloth). It sounds interesting.

  10. Posted November 12, 2009 at 8:50 am by Tonya | Permalink

    Congratulations! After a few weeks, it will just become part of your routine.
    There is nothing like folding clean cloth diapers, fresh from the clothesline.

  11. Posted November 12, 2009 at 8:34 pm by robina | Permalink

    yay! congrats, you should be proud for making the switch!
    i love cding. when i was pregnant i heard so many people naysaying how i would never keep up with it, but i always found going downstairs and putting a wash in to be way easier than going out and buying diapers! wren’s bum has never seen a sposie, actually, so our cds have traveled the country with us at this point — ha!
    after a lot of buying and selling of dipes, i have found myself to be partial to fitteds + wool. by far the best i have tried are goodmamas…steep price tag, but soooooooo worth it as i have no doubt they will last for all my children. they even work as training pants! we use kissaluvs 0s in the newborn stage, and have some bum genius pockets as well — for long car trips etc.
    i will echo a previous commenter in recommending elimination communication. we started wth wren when she was 4 months old and it has been amazing!

  12. Posted November 12, 2009 at 9:28 pm by Old Recipe for a New World | Permalink

    Welcome to the pleasures of cloth diapering. I’ll add just one thing to all the good words here: if you’re still using regular baby wipes, throw them in the wash with diapers and then use them as liners. If Poppy pees, you can keep washing them, but if she poops you can just throw the liner out with its, um, package. Keeps the fleece nice and clean, keeps kaka out of the diaper pail, and is almost free. We’re weaning ourselves off the disposable wipes and on to cloth ones with a homemade solution, but this has been a real help. Best of luck!

  13. Posted November 13, 2009 at 8:59 am by Jen | Permalink

    Love it. How beautiful and sweet. We cloth diapered both of our little ones. It is such a labor of love to them, and the earth.
    I am convinced it also aided in early potty training. both [my girl and my boy] were out of diapers by 2.
    We used the simple prefolds and basic white prowraps. I too LOVED folding freshly dried diapers, and stacking them up for the week.
    Its amazing when you are caring for them, how very aware of and in touch with your child and their needs as well as health and habits.
    blessings and grace on your transition!

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