Friday, February 26, 2010

Different types of cloth diapers

One of the most confusing parts of using cloth diapers is ALL the different TYPES of diapers available!! Parents researching cloth are often completely overwhelmed by the various diapers. Here's a list of different diapers available. Here are the most common. Here are some really awful pictures, and apparently blogger hates me because it's chopping my pictures in half. I'll try shrinking them more...

Flats- these are 1 layer, usually square. What our Grandmas used on their babies. Fold up to fit the child. There are LOTS of different folds, and once you get it, it's not that hard to do. There is a learning curve, but these diapers are one-size and economical. A wonderful choice if you are willing to learn. They also wash and dry very easily and are great for travel. You can fold them up and lay them in a velcro cover and it's just as easy (but much faster drying) than an All-In-One.

- I think these are what most people think of when they think "cloth diapers". The are usually a rectangle, and you fold them to fit your child. The come in several sizes, and now several companies are offering "special" sizing. These are slightly less intimidating than a flat, and can also be folded to fit in a velcro cover.

- These have elastic in the legs (and usually in the back) and can come in several closure types including velcro, snaps and pinnable/snappiable. They come sized, or one-sized and are made from everything from flannel to organic bamboo velour and cute prints. Easier than prefolds (no folding) BUT still require a cover.

All-In-One (AIO)
-As the name indicates, this is an all-in-one type diaper. No cover needed. The outer is usually waterproof PUL (comes in lots of colors), the inner can be made from anything absorbent. The absorbent soaker is usually sewn in to the diaper. Some times they have a stay dry top, a hidden soaker and a waterproof outer. They are as easy as a disposable, but have the disadvantage of being harder to get completely clean and they take awhile to dry.

- Sometimes these are listed as AIO's, BUT the difference is that the soaker typically snaps out, leaving a waterproof shell. These usually dry slightly faster than an AIO.

Pockets- These are similar to an AIO, but have a pocket in the front or back to "stuff" with something absorbent. Typically, the diaper consists of a waterproof outer, a stay-dry inner and some sort of "stuffing". The benefit to these is that they dry faster than an AIO and you can customize absorbency.

- These are similar to an All-in-two, lay or snap in a soaker to the shell (which can be reused if not soiled). They usually have some sort of disposable soaker option as well. More on these later.

There are a few other options, but these are the most commonly used and talked about on diapering forums.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

So what can you expect from me?

From now until DD is born (that's Dear-Daughter for those that don't know internet/forum lingo) I plan to take pictures of some of the newborn 'stash' that I have waiting for her. I'll compare sizes (xs vs. small) for those diapers that I have both sizes and give impressions, but none of the real reviews will come until after she arrives (unless someone is dying to see a NB diaper on a cabbage patch kid).

Some diapers I have waiting in the wings include:
bumgenius bamboo fitteds
bumgenius AIO (xs)
XS fuzzibunz, small fuzzibunz (which BTW are HUGE and won't fit for awhile)
XS very baby AIO's
Green Mountain diapers (GMD) orange edge prefolds (some of which I've made cuter w/ fabrics)
Wonderworks XS AIO's (I think these are discontinued, but they pop up used on FSOT on
XS Magic-All AIO's
Megaroos extended tab infant prefolds

I also have a handful of One-Size diapers including:
Bumgenius OS pockets
Motherease OS fitteds
Fuzzibunz OS pockets
GEM cloth OS snappiable fitteds
Disana Tie-Nappies
Precious Dignity Shamrocks

And those newfangled "hybrid" systems including:
Cottonbabies FLIP

I've totally spent all the diaper money already, and there are several others I'd love to try, but for now they'll have to wait until I can get some more money together (but of course, I don't NEED any more diapers!!)

I'll also (eventually) show how to fold a prefold and how to fold flats. Leave me a comment if there is something specific you'd like to see!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Why cloth? And why blog about diapers?

I am currently on bed rest with my third child. I really have nothing better to do than to blog about diapers right now. Just in case you were wondering why I thought this might be a good idea. When I was pregnant with my first (7 years ago) I stumbled upon a community of crazy ladies who swore that cloth diapers were easy, not at all gross, and WAY more fun than throwing disposables in the trash.

I have to admit, it took me awhile to understand their obsession. The potential savings was what drew me in. I researched. I read. I nearly made my eyeballs bleed trying to figure out the "best" or the easiest diapers for a newborn. In the end, it made no difference. I ended up trying just about everything out there (no, I'm not kidding). No, I probably didn't save a dime over using disposables, but it was more fun!

When my second child came along weighing in at a whopping 5 pounds, I had NO idea how to diaper her. I had some wonderful friends who sent along some preemie cloth diapers. Thankfully, they fit her and we continued our cloth journey, again trying just about everything new that came on to the market.

Now with the anticipated arrival of daughter #2, I've started getting some diapers together for her. There are new diapers on the market. I sold off my other daughters older diapers and purchased new stuff for this one. It's been 4 years since I've had a newborn, I want to try out some new stuff!!

So that's where we're at. As I wait for this little one to make her debut (hopefully not for another 6-8 weeks), I'll start giving some reviews and posting pictures. I've got a LOT of diapers to try out with her, and a LOT of reviews to come!
Let me know if you have any specific diapers you want to see reviewed!