Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Adventures in cloth diapering

Dear Readers,
We officially made the switch over to fulltime cloth diapering last weekend and so far I am loving it! When I was doing research on cloth diapers while pregnant, I found it incredibly hard to make sense of all the information out there. There is an entire cloth diapering language that I was certainly not fluent in, and I felt completely lost and overwhelmed trying to figure out how it might work for us. Prefolds, fitteds, AIOs, AI2s, pockets, hybrids, snappies, woolies...I just wanted someone to show me how they did it in a way that made sense to a newbie like me.

So I figured I'd try to do just that. I am still not an expert by any means, but thought it might be helpful for others out there to read along as I attempt to become one! Plus, I'm pretty sure my mom thinks I'm nuts for wanting to do this, so seeing how not weird and easy it really is might help change her mind :)

We decided to use the Flips covers and inserts as our main diapering system. I believe the Flips would be considered an AI2, or 'all-in-2' diaper, but I'm not really sure. Either way, whatever they're called, they are really simple and easy. Basically, you have the one-size adjustable covers, and the one-size adjustable inserts that go inside and actually soak up the poop and pee. You can get either organic microfiber inserts, regular microfiber inserts, or disposable inserts (that you just flush or throw away like regular diapers). We  chose to go with the regular microfiber inserts. The inserts you change out every diaper change, where the covers you only have to change out when they get dirty (which is maybe every 3-4 changes?). So we decided we needed eight covers and 24 inserts. Elliot goes through about 10-12 diapers a day, so this means I have to do diaper laundry every other day. Here's what a Flip diaper looks like when its put together:

The cover is the beige part and the insert is the white part

My awesome friends from Stevie's August 2010 Babycenter Birth Club also got us a bunch of other cloth diapers (all handmade by different independent shops/WAHMs), in a variety of styles. Some are AIOs, or 'all-in-ones,' meaning there aren't separate inserts, you just change out the whole thing like a normal disposable diaper (except its washable of course!), which are also really nice and convenient.

Finally, I have two GroVia one-size diaper covers and two 50-packs of the GroVia disposable Biosoaker inserts. I haven't used those yet, but I think it will be nice to have a disposable option for things like road trips (where I don't want to deal with carrying around the dirty inserts in the car, or if I'm ever behind on laundry).

Here's our little stash so far (the GroVia disposable inserts aren't pictured):

I also started using cloth wipes. When someone first mentioned cloth wipes my reaction was 'um, no thank you.' But now I think its the greatest thing ever. We have about 40 of the super cheap white baby wash cloths from Babies R Us, plus some flannel cloth wipes from an independent online cloth diaper shop. I roll them up and put them in the Prince Lionheart cloth wipes warmer. Then I use a cloth wipes solution (this was also from my August2010 girls!), mix it with water, and pour over the wipes. They soak up the solution and the warmer keeps them nice and moist. They smell amazing and come out feeling just like those hot towels they give you at fancy Asian restaurants:

I don't know why I was so nervous to make the switch to cloth diapers/wipes because it's really easy. And this is coming from a girl who gets pretty grossed out by poop, and absolutely hates doing laundry. The diaper changing process is exactly the same as using disposables except that instead of putting on a new diaper and throwing the dirty one (and wipes) in the garbage, you put on a new diaper and throw the dirty one (and wipe) in a wetbag, which is just a fabric bag lined with waterproof material:

(this wetbag was also a gift from my awesome friends...and it just so happens to match the nursery perfectly!)

You can also get wetbag liners to go in a diaper pail, but since Elliot's poops don't really smell too bad yet, the hanging bag works great for right now. Once its full, I just bring it down to the laundry room and throw the whole thing in the wash--super easy!

I am so excited to be done buying disposable diapers all the time. Not only are they expensive, but of course we were always running out of them during the middle of the night when no stores are open, plus Elliot was constantly pooping and peeing right through them. Since making the switch to cloth, I'm thrilled to report we've had zero blowouts! I know we probably won't keep that record for long, but the cloth diapers really do keep everything contained really well.

And the best part of going cloth? They are so stinkin' cute! 

I'll let you know how things continue to go, and feel free to comment with any questions, or even better, tips and advice!



Brie said...

I too find that I have far fewer blowouts using cloth. I use gpants with the reusable inserts. I'mhappy to report that I only bought ONE box of disposables since he was 2 months old..I do disposables when out and about and overnight, so I go thru more than I probably should. We recently went on a three day trip in which I used disposables ( no laundry while camping) and went thru over 40 diapers. It put the savings in perspective. Not to mention, cloth is super easy so long as you have laundry facilities available!

Lori said...

They ARE so stinking cute. I know you know how much I love cloth diapering, so I won't ramble about it. Just glad that you do also! Love, love, love!

Jodi said...

Awesome post! I just started using cloth diapers this past weekend, and Henry is almost 6months old. I am trying it on weekends for right now and will hopefully build my stash and make the switch full time. I love it! We have started with the GroVia's and love them.

Emily said...

I was initially totally game to do the cloth diapering, but Brian was against it. He grew up in a household where 'easy' was king and he felt disposables would be too much work (and mess). It kind of bothered me because I really thought it would be something we could do (and it fits with my environmental philosophy). I'm not sure how it would have worked during Kaia's time in the cast though. That might have been a challenge, plus our washing machine is not the best so if we had to buy a new one that would have cost a lot.

Still, I'm kind of jealous of how cute Elliot looks in his cloth diaper. Maybe if we ever have another baby I could get Brian on board... What are the cost savings do you think?

Emily said...

Sorry, my post didn't make sense...Brian felt that non-disposables would be too much work...

Typing on the fly and forgetting to edit!!!

Curls O Fred said...

Yes, way cute :) Glad you've found it so easy! We love it too!

Ashlie said...

There is a great youtube channel all about cloth diapering. You should check it out. It's like being shown how to do everything, plus reviews on a bunch of the different cloth diapers out there. I wish I could have cloth diapered, but we didn't have a washing machine at the time, so it is what it is. I think all you have to do is search youtube for cloth diaper channel.

Paula said...

thanks for posting this!! what do you use to wash the cloth diapers?

Julie said...

this is great, kristin! when i was pregnant with kenny i did all the cloth diapering research, convinced ken, and decided on sunbabies. i planned to order them the week after kenny died. i'm curious - what was the deciding factor for you on the flips? why them over other brands? i am hoping to need to make this decision again in a few months, and looking for all the info i can get! elliiott is so stinkin' cute!

Dana said...

I've been reseraching cloth diapers for a few weeks now and it is mind boggling. I have bought an AIO and a few AI2's but I'm thinking of getting Motherease cloth diapers with diaper covers. They've had really good reviews and I went to a diaper store and the owner raved about them even though they weren't the most expensive, which would have been to her benefit.

I want to put them on my registry, but it's a little difficult when a lot of the people coming to my baby shower don't use the internet (my Mom's friends) and the diaper store I'd like to get them from doesn't even have a website to order them over. Oh well.

Anyways, I was glad to see this post, I love reading about cloth diapering from Mom's who are doing it and not just from reading about the diapers online.

Jessica said...

awww they are stinkin' cute :)

Lynley said...

Can you feel when the cloth diaper is full? One nice feature about the disposable is the blue and yellow line that says they tinkled. Can you feed the wetness?

CourtneyAnna said...

Could that boy be any cuter?! :-)

Holly said...


any post about fluff is awesome :) Glad you are liking it! Once you go cloth that's the end of it! Your addicted! lol

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