Wow! What a great response to my first cloth diapering post! I love that so many of you are intrigued and want to know more! It sounds like a lot of you are where I was at when I first started thinking about cloth diapering - definitely interested but you don’t have all the information. I don’t claim to have all the information myself, just the experience of our 7 1/2 month go at it so far. So I will share with you as best I can because in my opinion, the more you know about them, the more exciting they are!
So lets start from the beginning – the newborn stage.
Why we chose to use newborn diapers.
Newborn diapers are not a must, its purely based on preference and what works for you. As we were collecting our one-size diapers I started thinking we might want something a bit smaller for the early days. Because I knew more babies were in the plan I hoped that having a newborn set would buy a little time for potty training if we have more than one babe in diapers. We had heard that it can be difficult to fit regular sized diapers into newborn clothes. We wanted her to wear things that fit her not her diaper. Oh, and they were ADORABLE! So we dove in.
We used lil joeys by Rump.a.rooz – like I said, so cute! Besides being cute there were a few other reasons why I was drawn to this particular brand.
Why we chose lil joeys
1. They have snaps instead of velcro – I hate – no – loath washing things with velcro. All the sticking, all the pilling and it seems like when velcro is washed over an over it ends up loosing its stick. Since we’re in this for the long haul, I wanted these diapers to last. Snaps were definitely a must.
2. They have gussets inside just like disposables. This just made the most sense to me. One more barrier between me and all the stuff that belongs inside the diaper. I’m in!3. They are an ‘all in one’. No stuffing, no folding, the diaper is one piece so you use it exactly like a disposable. It goes into and comes out of the laundry in one piece.
4. They snap down in the front so they wont irritate the belly button before the baby loses their umbilical cord.
We bought all of ours from a specialty children’s store in town, their staff is super knowledgeable and very helpful. You can order them online here, here or here. I have also heard of some places renting sets of newborn diapers for a monthly but I have never actually found anyone that does and we wanted to own ours.
Use and care
We had heard that meconium can stain the diapers and our hospital sent us home with a package of disposables. By the time we were out, the meconium was gone so we started right away. We have two wet bags – I’ll give more information about these in my cloth diapering accessories post - a large one that hangs in the closet and a smaller one that stays in the diaper bag. While you are still exclusively nursing everything that comes out of baby is water soluble so after changing, the whole diaper went straight into the bag and wasn’t thought about again until it was time to wash them. When it was time to wash, we unzipped the bag, shook them into the washing machine and started the laundry. There was no touching the diapers a second time. We washed the diapers every other night. After we put the baby down for bed I ran the diapers. Cold prewash, a hot wash with a small amount of detergent and an extra hot rinse cycle. Before we went to bed I threw them into the dryer and we had clean diapers in the morning! It was really that easy. Every few weeks I would run them in two extra hot wash cycles with no detergent just to make sure there was no residue left behind.
To date, the newborn diapers were the most challenging part of our cloth diapering experience. I would still do it again with out thinking twice but there were some challenges. Because of their all-in-one design the took longer to dry. We were using them in the summer so I just set up a clothes line outside, after one round in the dryer I hung them up. By the time we needed them they were dry. Every once in a while they would come out of the wash stained, but because we were hanging them in the sun to finish drying the sun bleached them right out. We did have blow outs. I attribute most of them to improper sizing – the diapers offer multiple size options depending on which combination of snaps you use and after adjusting the size the problem was typically resolved.
Over all we had a very good experience with these diapers. It felt good to put her in something so soft and cozy right away. She was so tiny for so long that had we gone with one-size only they would have been too big. Everly never ended up growing out of her lil joeys but you know that saying ‘what goes up must come down?’ Well, what goes in must come out and when she started to eat more what was coming out was no longer being contained. We worked our way up to a stash of 12 diapers and they paid for themselves in 12 weeks. We ended up using them for about 17 weeks and they are ready and waiting for the babies to come!