Friday, January 17, 2014

Cloth Diapering, done cheap!

We decided to try cloth diapers when we realized that at the rate we were going through Disposables, we would spend about $50 a month on diapers (on the low end). I also found that a particularly economical brand of Sposies (disposables) that actually fit our daughter well put off this odd chemical odor when she wet the diaper. It was faint, but there, not very comforting. Buying cloth diapers on a budget was a big issue, we already had enough disposables from showers to get us through for a little while so we decided to buy cloth diapers one or two at a time, starting with the cheapest, quality ones I could find.

We picked Pocket Diapers because it seemed easiest! Easy is key in our house! I also knew that if it wasn't easy-peasy John wouldn't really be interested in it. All in Ones would honestly be easier, but line drying diapers helps them last longer and I read over and over again that it took a long time to get All in Ones to dry. As we expand our collection I plan to add a few AIOs here and there, but for now I'm really happy with the pockets. After you wash & dry them, stuff the insert in the little pouch (I do this while I watch TV or while Cora plays in her jumparoo) and they're ready to go! When it's time to change I just put the whole diaper in the wet bag. On washing day I just pull the inserts out of the diaper as I toss it in the washer.

Prefolds (& covers) are significantly cheaper! This is probably what you think of when you hear Cloth diapering, the flat piece of fabric you pin to the baby. I actually really considered doing this! Now there are these nifty things called snappis that replace the pins, I was totally sold! Problem was, I knew I would end up being the only one in the house actually putting cloth diapers on the baby if I picked this style. It was only going to end up being practical & economical if I could get my husband and any caretakers (ie my father!) on board!

The three brands we initially purchased were, Alva Baby, Kawaii, and Sun Baby. (I wish I could find a reputable dealer for Happy Flute diapers, if you have suggestions I'd love to hear them!) These brands are the cheapest options I found out there. Eventually we plan to try the more expensive options one at a time. Each of these brands runs roughly $7 a diaper.

If you want to try these diaper brands out one at a time, I found that Amazon was a great resource, except for the Kawaii diapers - just order those from their website (Amazon had them for twice the price!). (Fair warning, shipping these diapers one at a time is pretty pricey as far as shipping is concerned, they're coming from Canada.) This is particularly relevant for trying out Sun Baby diapers. On their website, you have to order them in bundles, which is great if you know it will work for you, not so hot if you just want to check them out.

A note about these sellers - The Kawaii diapers shipped out of Canada and always got to me in a very reasonable time frame (roughly a week from ordering). The Sun Baby diaper I ordered was off Amazon, so I can't speak to the shipping times from the actual company. Alva Baby diapers shipped out of China and their shipping times showed it. They shipped the day after I ordered them, but I got them 3 weeks, 6 days later. Considering I paid like $.06 for shipping - I'll order again, you just shouldn't count on getting them quickly.

We decided we needed roughly 9 diapers to get through a day based on what we went through a day in disposables. Obviously, I'm not a fan of doing laundry every single day, and I've read that hang drying the diapers will make them last longer so ideally we will get our stock up to 18 or more diapers. For now I'm diapering Cora in cloth on the days I'm home with her during the week, so Tuesdays and Thursdays. I wash on Wednesday between so that I'm good for Thursday and again on Friday or Saturday. I try to get at least one weekend day in cloth, this will get easier as we get more diapers.

My wet bag from Sweet Bobbins

The Extras -  Beyond the diapers you will have at least one more need. Wet bags. To get started I purchased a medium sized wet bag that is big enough for my needs. Since then I've added a pail liner for my diaper pail, but that isn't necessary! If you plan on using cloth diapers outside of the house, you'll also need a wet bag that can go in your diaper bag. I recommend this amazing Etsy shop for your wet bag needs!

If you are really interested in saving money I recommend looking into cloth wipes! I looked at buying some but as cute as they are I just couldn't justify spending so much money on wipes, even if they are reusable. I made my own - I'll post about that another day. It was so easy and I have more wipes than I can use in several days and the cost was very reasonable! They don't add any more work to my diapering routine because I just toss them in the wet bag and then the wash with the rest of the diaper laundry!

I'm loving cloth so much! I hardly notice the added "work" of using cloth over disposables and I'm so much happier with putting them on my daughter!

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