Cloth Diapers

cloth diapers.jpgSo many things that are better for us and the environment are so much more expensive than the alternatives. As a family of six on a pretty tight budget, we can’t always do the better choice. We try where we can, such as starting to garden and grow our own food, lowering the thermostat and just wearing extra clothes etc. One decision we made was to use cloth diapers, we switched over when our now five year old daughter was a year old. I have never regretted this decision. When I found out exactly what is in disposable diapers I never wanted to put them on her tender tush again. I talked my hubby into switching and got to learning the basics. We went with prefolds and covers instead of the all in one diapers as these were much, much cheaper. Even now with our fourth baby, I still prefer prefolds as I personally think they are easier to clean and still much, much cheaper. Even the bigger size that we use on our 15 month old was still only $2 dollars a diaper. Granted she grew so much so quickly when she was little, we were buying new covers in bigger sizes for a while, but that evened out and we haven’t bought anything new since she was about six months old. When all is said and done, we have probably spent $150 total and these will last until she is potty trained. When we had babies in disposables, we spent $150 in less than four months and that was on the cheapest disposables available. I have been so thrilled knowing that it is so much better for the babe, the environment, and most definitely the wallet. I get such a thrill whenever we are in a store that sells diapers, just thinking that we aren’t paying a cent. Even when she is out of diapers, they will still make great cleaning rags, so they just keep giving. As far as laundry goes, on average, it’s only two extra loads a week, so not much extra time at all. When the weather is nice, there is something about hanging them all on the line, something strangely peaceful and calming. Call me strange, it’s ok. This is one choice that we have made that we really love, and any chance I get, I tout the benefits of cloth diapering. For a while when we first switched, I was the only one in our town that did, so I had several people calling and asking questions. It was a lot of fun, and now quite a few other people cloth diaper as well. If you still have little ones in diapers, perhaps you can consider switching, you won’t regret it.

family • Tuesday, November 17th, 2009 • 29 Comments »
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29 Responses to “Cloth Diapers”

  1. What a wonderful thing to do for your family and the environment. And, I agree there isn’t anything quite as satisfying as seeing white diapers drying on the line outside.

  2. I’m with you on this. We used prefolds for the first 18 months and would absolutely do it again and again… all for it. I LOVED them, truly. I don’t think people believed me when I said it was easy… often people would glaze over – didn’t want to know!

    We did switch to disposables at around 18 months though as we were struggling to cope with the quantity produced by an older babe… would love to hear how you coped with this change.


  3. Jennifer says:

    Fancy Elastic, by quantity do you mean just wetting more diapers? I’m not exactly sure what you mean, but if you let me know, I’ll tell you how we handled it. 🙂

  4. Marie-Jolie says:

    Hi there! Just happened upon your blog and it’s a beautiful spot for a visit. Not sure if you are interested in taking part, but over at French Picnic we are hosting a blog comment love project to help those with creative/crafty blogs get more readers and more comments. We’d love to have you join us if that’s up your alley. You can learn more about it here:

    I’m a knitter and a homeschool mom, as well, but my boys are teens now. I did use cloth diapers for part of the time when my boys were tiny.

  5. Emily says:

    We love our cloth diapers too. I love how much money we save! I use the pocket kind because I was a bit intimidated by the prefolds, though that’s what my mom brought us up in. Maybe the next time around I’ll try prefolds too.

  6. Mousy Brown says:

    We loved our washable ‘nappies’ here too – I used to tie dye them and have a rainbow on the washing line! My boys are way out of nappies now but I was able to pass the good ones on to my cousin for her little boy and like you the scruffy ones became dusters. ( My mum and dad still have some dusters that were my nappies when I was a baby) You are right, they are a fantastic idea and do keep giving!
    ps. How are the flapjacks? Did my attachment work?

  7. Jennifer says:

    So excited to see so many cloth diaper users out there.

    Mousy Brown, I haven’t gotten to a second trial of flapjacks yet. The pears were ripe so I made my pear custard pie (stop by tomorrow). I’m hoping to get to the flapjacks this weekend.

  8. Anna, Sydney says:

    We’re currently trying to get pregnant. If it ever happens, this washable nappies is something I’ll consider. Don’t know anything about either way, and don’t even know if I ever get to even consider it but you write about it in a way that makes me cock my head and really listen.

  9. Charity says:

    We use cloth as well, and I love them! We chose to use All In Ones, as they seems easier for my hubby, but there is still a significant cost benefit. And I’m with you, hanging out laundry on a nice day is one of my favourite chores! 🙂

  10. gardenmama says:

    What a beautiful post!
    I understand what you mean about a peace washing over you at the sight of clothes on the clothesline : ) (and yes, when it is cloth diapers all the lovelier!)

  11. urban craft says:

    I, too, love the prefolds. Everyone I know is all about G-diapers and the all in ones, which I think are so expensive not to mention that I don’t really understand how they work. Doesn’t the whole all in one get dirty and you need to change the whole thing too? And with cloth diapers I can proudly say my boy has never had a diaper rash and I think it is making it easier to potty train. He knows when he’s wet.

  12. Jennifer says:

    There are so many different kinds of cloth diapers out there nowadays, that whatever your preference, you can find something to suit you. I know a lot of people use all in ones because they are easier to use if you’re not used to folding them, so great for hubbies and grandparents, but yes once they are dirty you have to wash the whole thing, which means you have to have a decent amount of them which can be expensive. Even so, they still work out to cheaper than disposables.

    I really prefer the prefolds, and it wasn’t hard at all for hubby and grandma to learn how to use them. Even my bigger kids can change her diapers in a pinch.

    I am more than happy to answer specific questions if anybody has any, just send me an e-mail.

  13. I was a SAHM, so washing diapers was no big deal. I figured we saved thousands of dollars with three boys in diapers for 3 to 4 years each. There was no anxiety about toilet training in order to get rid of the diaper expense. They trained when they were ready and it was accomplished easily. They didn’t have diaper rash. With cloth diapers it was easy to tell when they needed a change. They drooped!

    I didn’t dry my diapers on the line, but it was so easy to sit and fold them while watching TV or watching them play. Always thought it was the easiest laundry I did.

    And I bought my cloth prefolds at Walmart for about $15/dozen I think, maybe less. I’m pretty sure they don’t sell them anymore. 😉 Unfortunately.

    My local Walmart doesn’t even sell cotton clotheslines anymore. Grrrr! Love to hang the sheets on the line. I know what you mean about that feeling of peace, hanging things on the line. There is something wonderful about using the natural resources God gave us to do our work. It’s free and ‘green’ too.

    P.S. You are making me long for the days when my guys were so young and small.

    Fancy Elastic~ if by quantity you mean “what’s being produced by your kid”, this was my solution.

    I used the prefolds and plastic overpants. ( I’m not sure they make those plastic pants anymore. My boys are 27,21 and 19 now.) At night, I’d diaper them in a single diaper, put the plastic pants on and stuff an extra diaper in the front, between the single diaper and the plastic pants.
    The “stuffed diaper” was folded into thirds, lengthwise, and then in half . It worked quite well.

  14. Sandie says:

    Glad to see you promoting what we call in the UK “Real Nappies” I work voluntarily for an environmental charity which promotes their use and operates a “cash back scheme” whereby if the real nappy spend is over £60 then £30 is given back (£15 for purchases between £30 and £50)

    Disposables remain in the landfill long after the lifespan of the baby who used them. Sobering thought brought home to me by one of the Nappy Scheme users.

    Worth looking out for real nappies on Freecycle too.

  15. sheri says:

    The good news is that there are a lot of companies out there who are now making things more and more affordable for organic and natural choices. It makes it easier for all of us to make healthier choices for our families. It really does save us more in the long run.

  16. Carol Dent says:

    I found your blog on Google. I’ve bookmarked it and will watch out for your next blog post.

  17. Amy says:

    cloth diapers are the one thing I came around to too late. And I regert that now. When my girls were babes, I had onlyrecently started to change the way we were living. I had only then decided to skip the trips to the mall and superstores. I chuckle at the way I used to go about things. We live so bare-bones now! Kudos to you and cloth diapers!

  18. mark says:

    Cloth diapers are the way to go for sure. Not only are they a money saver and good for the babies, but also the environment which I love.

  19. sorry, I realise that it wasn’t clear… by ‘quantity’ i did mean how much wee was being produced – masses! so, thanks Denise Claire, the wrapper stuffing is a great idea.

  20. Jennifer says:

    Thanks everybody for taking the time to comment, I really appreciate it.

    Fancy Elastic, during the day I just make sure to change her as soon as she pees, and during the night, I just add another layer, sometimes they are called soakers, to soak up the rest.

  21. Selena says:

    This will sound so crazy but I really miss having a baby in cloth diapers. I loved that time in my life. I especially loved the children in Hanna A. clothing which are perfect for cloth diapered bottoms. 🙂

  22. Jennifer says:

    It seems funny to see a baby with a slim tush after my cloth diapered ones, they are so much bigger 🙂 I’m sure I’ll miss it one day.

  23. Jenny says:

    Beautiful blog! I found you off of Lisa Leonard’s blog, one of my favorites. I cloth diaper my two boys which makes for A LOT of dirty diapers! I admit to using disposables at night and on occasion during the day…especially when we will be out for awhile. I love the cloth though. I saw an ad once that said “You don’t wear paper underwear, why should your baby?” and that cracked me up! I’m looking forward to keeping up with your blog. You can visit mine at if you are so inclined.

  24. Grace says:

    I can’t agree with you more! My sister is using disposables with her baby (her first) and we go around and around about it. It’s hard to take that plunge at first, I think, but SO worth it.

  25. Jennifer says:

    It is a little scary taking the jump, but it’s one I’ve never regretted. It’s not as difficult as people think, in fact, it’s not difficult at all.

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  27. Marie says:

    When our 14 year old daughter started wetting the bed,i didnt hesitate,and imediately got her cloth diapers and plastic pants to wear to bed.i got the cloth diapers and diaper pins and the plastic pants all from one website.I got her pastel and baby print plastic pants so she would feel girly wearing them.they have worked well,and i know i am helping the environment.

  28. Clarice A. says:

    To Marie-I used the cloth diapers and rubberpants on our son when he was a baby and they worked great! I wasnt able to have anymore kids after he was born and we always wanted a daughter to complete our family.Our son is now 16,and 4 months ago we adopted a then 14 year old Irish girl from north ireland.Knowing that she would be having day time wetting accidents and wetting the bed some,we put her into the cloth diapers and adult size rubberpants right away,24/7.She turned 15 a little over a month ago and we had her baptized and christened to weeks ago.We found a beautiful white,poofy,knee length,sleeveless,baptism/christening dress in her size with a matching bonnet and did lace anklets and white mary jane shoes.We got a sleeveless under shirt and new cloth diapers to wear under the dress and a pair of cute nursery print rubberpants to go over the diapers.She looked very cute and dainty in the outfit and loved wearing the outfit!Every one at mass that sunday morning thought she looked adorable and her baptism was special.She was a big hit at her party and she even had a pacifier in her mouth that she borrowed from the parish nursery.She is doing well now and the cloth diapers and rubberpants are doing their job.

  29. Kathy says:

    I need advice on a matter! Some close friends of ours have a 14 year old daughter who is a bedwetter and they are using cloth diapers and rubberpants on her at night.The thing that need advice on is that the girl wears the cloth diapers with baby prints on them under her rubberpants!I was over to their house twice before christmas and both times i saw the girl with the babyprint cloth diaper showing thru her white rubberpants.I didnt say anything to her mom,but i am wondering if this is appropriate for her to be wear the babyprint cloth diapers for her bedwetting.Can anyone give me some advice on this?

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