Results 1 to 9 of 9

Thread: Cloth: The Ins & Outs

  1. #1

    Default Cloth: The Ins & Outs

    After dabbling in some good ol' fashioned online research, and simply a desire to try something new, I've finally figured I want to give cloth diapers a whirl. My little epiphany is fantastically timed; I've just ran out of my last Bambinos, and the disposables seem to be lacking a bit for me, too.

    But, here's the problem: I don't know the first thing about cloth other than, well, it's cloth, and it's environmentally friendly, so to speak. So, here come the long onslaught of questions about this, because even though I have read quite a few sites, I'm still jogging my brain here.

    1- Cloth types: What's the most comfortable? I've seen the terms 'birdseye', 'flannel', 'terry toweling', and such, what is all of it? Do some wear quicker or longer? Do some stiffen or get uber fluffy after a few washes?

    2- Pre-folds & Such: I've read on these, and I'm not really sure what to do about this. I'm shooting for maximum absorbency here, but easily cleanable as well. This link I found while pouring through some old posts on here gave me a foot in the door, but now I'm not really sure what to make of all of this. I'd love someone with experience in both pre-folds & fitted. Bonus if you've tried more versions that those two and care to share.

    3- Costs: What really got me thinking about this was the terry toweling on Cosyndry (a new home-ground for my shopping since I got that onesie and love it to death!) and I have to ask; what's the typical cloth diaper going to run me, and is it worth it if I ended up buying something like a fitted velcro diaper with a cover off of ebay or even the toweling squares off of Cosyndry?

    My ultimate goal here would be to find something that, either it be a pre-folded cloth diaper with a cute plastic pants cover or a fitted one with the cover already on it, would be look like a child's cloth diaper. Any help at all in narrowing this down for me and giving me some information/tips/pointers/etc. would be fantastic!

  2. #2

    Default

    There are probably many past posts on this topic and some info in the wiki, but I'll try and answer this. There are a great variety of cloth diapers out there as well as diaper covers. Cloth diapers are usually either birdseye, flannel, gauze or terry and diaper covers are either vinyl, polyester, nylon or rubber. You can find babyish prints mostly in flannel diapers and vinyl plastic pants.

    The answer to # 1 is highly subjective, but over the years, I've found gauze is the most comfortable, flannel is the least bulky and terry is the most absorbent. Birdseye is somewhat in between. Flannel and terry will wear the longest and then birdseye and finally gauze. All of them will get softer with more washes. Be sure to follow the recommended washing instructions as some things, like bleach, can shorten the diaper's life.

    Cloth diapers can be flat, pre-folded or fitted. Flat diapers must be folded into many layers before wearing (sort of like folding a bed sheet). Pre-folded are already stitched, pre-sized and rectangular and just need a simple fold in the crotch. Fitted diapers are pre-sized, hourglass-shaped and often have elastic around the leg openings and/or waist. With fitted there's no folding at all. The price goes up from the first type to the last, with fitted being the most expensive. Pre-folded is the most common type and some companies will make custom pre-folded sizes. Many people, including myself, will wear layers of pre-folded diapers to increase or decrease the absorbency (and bulk).

    Cloth diaper prices can range from $15 to over $40 US dollars per diaper. I would highly recommend several things first. Use an ordinary towel and fold it into a rectangular diaper shape that will fit you. You could pin it in place, but the important thing is to get an idea of what size diaper you need to order. Keep in mind that they will initially shrink 2 to 4 inches after several washes. I have found that it is much harder to find the right size plastic pants than the right size diaper. You can always adjust the diaper with pins. Plastic pants can be uncomfortable if the elastic is too tight of useless if it's too loose. It takes a long time to figure out what works for you just remember to order only one at a time. Best of luck.

  3. #3

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by applebeary View Post
    After dabbling in some good ol' fashioned online research, and simply a desire to try something new, I've finally figured I want to give cloth diapers a whirl. My little epiphany is fantastically timed; I've just ran out of my last Bambinos, and the disposables seem to be lacking a bit for me, too.

    But, here's the problem: I don't know the first thing about cloth other than, well, it's cloth, and it's environmentally friendly, so to speak. So, here come the long onslaught of questions about this, because even though I have read quite a few sites, I'm still jogging my brain here.
    Ah cloth! They're a bit of a thing to get right, but they're so wonderful once you do. Don't get frustrated if it takes a few tries to get the fit and feel the way you like it!



    Quote Originally Posted by applebeary View Post
    1- Cloth types: What's the most comfortable? I've seen the terms 'birdseye', 'flannel', 'terry toweling', and such, what is all of it? Do some wear quicker or longer? Do some stiffen or get uber fluffy after a few washes?
    Terry is basically the material from which bath towels are made. It's super absorbent, but might not be as comfortable against the skin as other types. Gauze and Birdseye and Flannel are sort of the "basic" staples of cloth diaper fabric. Flannel is soft, Gauze is absorbent but has a coarser texture, and birdseye is a bit of the middle ground. That said, I find Gauze to be plenty comfortable, but if you're a bit more sensitive, you might want to try different fabrics in different combinations. Terry in the middle with something softer against your skin works well, too.



    Quote Originally Posted by applebeary View Post
    2- Pre-folds & Such: I've read on these, and I'm not really sure what to do about this. I'm shooting for maximum absorbency here, but easily cleanable as well. This link I found while pouring through some old posts on here gave me a foot in the door, but now I'm not really sure what to make of all of this. I'd love someone with experience in both pre-folds & fitted. Bonus if you've tried more versions that those two and care to share.
    Spaz went over what the types are, so I won't do that again. As far as I'm concerned, however, pre-folds are basically less-flexible but more convenient flat diapers. Both are square-shaped and have to be folded and shaped for your body. Pre-folds just have more layers of material in the middle to save you effort folding multiple flat diapers to make a middle soaker area.

    IMO, flat diapers are the best way to go. Although they're the most work to fold and put on, they offer a great degree of flexibility. You can fold them any way you want, and if you want more thickness, you simply add more diapers folded and layered as you want them, whereas a pre-fold limits you on the types of folds. For example, I'm a big fan of the "kite fold", and I've never been able to make that work with a pre-fold. Also, because of the multiple layers of a pre-fold, they are harder to keep fresh, as there is way more thickness for the wash water to work through, and they take way longer to dry. Flat diapers wash pretty easily, stay fresh longer, and dry quickly either in the dryer or line-dried.

    In my opinion, fitted diapers are not worth the money. Yes, they're incredibly convenient, but what you gain in convenience is, IMO, does not at all counterbalance the loss of absorbent material or thickness. If they were less expensive, then perhaps I could justify it, but for my money, it's not worth the extra expense.



    Quote Originally Posted by applebeary View Post
    3- Costs: What really got me thinking about this was the terry toweling on Cosyndry (a new home-ground for my shopping since I got that onesie and love it to death!) and I have to ask; what's the typical cloth diaper going to run me, and is it worth it if I ended up buying something like a fitted velcro diaper with a cover off of ebay or even the toweling squares off of Cosyndry?
    Spaz covered costs pretty well. I am a big fan of adultclothdiaper.com myself. They have the best prices I've found, their plastic pants fit very very well and wear very well, and their diapers are of pretty decent quality as well. I would recommend them before any other site, especially if you're just getting into cloth, as they won't break your budget and will allow you to try some good quality, if not elaborate, items and get the feel for it all.

    Speaking of costs, do you have your own laundry, or do you use coin-operated laundry? Once in awhile, you'll have to do an extra rinse cycle on cloth to help keep them fresh, so do keep in mind coin-op costs if you have them. That said, when I did the math when I still lived in my apartment, my building's laundry and the amount of diapers I could wash still worked out to be cheaper per diaper than did Abenas or Bambinos.



    Quote Originally Posted by applebeary View Post
    My ultimate goal here would be to find something that, either it be a pre-folded cloth diaper with a cute plastic pants cover or a fitted one with the cover already on it, would be look like a child's cloth diaper. Any help at all in narrowing this down for me and giving me some information/tips/pointers/etc. would be fantastic!
    Cloth diapers can be amazingly cute! What I would recommend is to buy some non-descript plain diapers and plastic pants first (adultclothdiaper.com is a great site for this) so you learn how to fold and care for them. Ebay, protex, and changing times diaper company are great places to find really cute plastic pants.

    Some other tips I have...

    Washing-Be very careful about how much soap you use. The temptation is to use a lot of soap, but don't do it. If you use too much soap, after awhile your diapers will start to stink to high heaven as soon as you wet them. If this happens, wash them a couple of times with no soap and that should help freshen them up. Also, if your diapers start to get a bit of an ammonia smell, put a bit of vinegar into the wash with the diapers, as the vinegar will help neutralise the ammonia. Both of these issues come about if your wash machine does not do a good rinse cycle (like the ones in my apartments were). Even if these issues haven't come up, occasionally run an extra rinse cycle on them or wash them with no soap an extra time, and that'll help avert other issues.

    Cloth diapers are also quite a bit thicker than disposables. They're also much more awesome, even though they take more work, but if you're wearing them in public or under clothes, keep that added bulk in mind, as finding clothes to fit over cloth is, how do I say... A bit of a thing

    Beyond that, enjoy!

  4. #4

    Default

    just to add to the good advice already given, frost-protection fleece is the same material as nappy liners and is good with all nappies (to avoid stains) but probably more so for terry-towelling, given what's already been about roughness. the liner feels best if it's been washed before first use and for a really silken feel, simply double it.
    i have an american style fitted diaper, but as it's not very absorbant and i stuff it with one of my smaller towelling towels. it's good as a day diaper like that. excess towel can be pulled up or folded (like an S) wherever desired or required. i've put a quicky pic in the gallery for you. and if you note the placky-pants, i usually only wear them with this diaper as they're considerably smaller than what was expected. that often seems to an issue and i'd advise buying pants that are bigger than you tink you need and with enclosed elastics, so that you can reduced/tighten however you need. that should save some shopping around and trial and error.
    when washing, i add a wee bit of disinfectant to the last rinse cycle (i actually double rinse cos the detergent causes irritation). i use a store's own version of Dettol; not because of the cost, but because it's more aromatic and less chemicalish smelling (it reminds me of hospitals in the olden days).

    you could have a look round http://www.arizona-care.co.uk/vspads.html for inspiration. i don't know if they ship abroad. i have the shaped terry nappy, btw, and it is excellent for night use.

  5. #5

    Default

    You could also try making your own diapers. If you're just after a flat or prefold, it's really a very easy thing to do, and the materials aren't that expensive. If you're handy with a sewing machine, you could try making a fitted diaper, but I can tell you from experience that is quite a lot of work, especially getting the measurements right. Check out Joann's fabric store -- they have a wide variety of fabrics, and they often have cute prints, too.

    And one thing to add about materials: fleece is a great diaper material, especially if it's used over a layer of more absorbent cotton. Fleece is very soft, very breathable, and wicks well.

  6. #6

    Default

    I use both pre-fold birdseye and gauze cloth diapers from AdultClothDiaper company. The gauze is a bit thicker and holds more. Since I usually wear at night, I buy nighttime weight exclusively. I also use the LeakMaster plastic pants, the high waist variety, because they cover more so I don't have to worry about leaking at night. Most of my diapers are small as I have a 30 - 32 inch waste. I also have 3 medium size as well, should I have drunk a lot before I go to sleep....sigh.

    As for washing, I first wash them on the big cotton setting along with the recommended amount of detergent. Then I run them again on the permanent press setting, a shortened set of cycles with no detergent. This gets any residue detergent out of the fabric. From there they go into the drier. This takes two runnings on cotton long time setting.

    Having a 31 inch waste, I buy small sized plastic pants. I hope this will give you some practical idea. I love cloth, and in my case, I love the feeling of the wetness against my skin. It takes me back!

  7. #7

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by slim View Post
    You could also try making your own diapers. If you're just after a flat or prefold, it's really a very easy thing to do, and the materials aren't that expensive.
    I looked into this. If you want flats unless you can get material for less than three dollars a yard, you have a serger and your time is worth nothing it is not worth making your own. You can adult flat birdseye diapers on ebay for less than thirty five dollars a dozen shipped. If you want something fancier or with a specific print it could get to be worth your while but the markup on hobby supplies like fabric is huge.

    Plastic pants are pretty expensive and if you can sew nylon it probably would be worth it.

  8. #8

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by MessyMan View Post
    I looked into this. If you want flats unless you can get material for less than three dollars a yard, you have a serger and your time is worth nothing it is not worth making your own. You can adult flat birdseye diapers on ebay for less than thirty five dollars a dozen shipped. If you want something fancier or with a specific print it could get to be worth your while but the markup on hobby supplies like fabric is huge.

    Plastic pants are pretty expensive and if you can sew nylon it probably would be worth it.
    Yes but:

    -- A serger isn't necessary. Unless you're using a really loose fabric, it's not going to unravel on you.
    -- Unless you're making a fitted diaper, there really isn't much work involved. Flat diaper = rectangle of material. Contoured diaper = rectangle that's been cut into an hourglass shape. You might need to sew a few layers together, but any monkey with a needle and thread can do that in <10 minutes.
    -- $5/dozen diapers on ebay?? That's crazy cheap. I can't speak about ebay, but most sites (compare Adult Cloth Diaper company) sell a flat diaper for >$10 a piece.
    -- You don't have to buy material; you can use old undershirts, or collect them from friends and family who are planning on getting rid of them anyway. That's how I've gotten a lot of material. Now if you can indeed find $5/dozen diapers on ebay, your point stands. But if not, then even if you buy all new materials, I'd rather make 10 diapers for ~$30 in materials and a little elbow grease than fork out $100 for bona fide factory made diapers.

    ---Edit---

    Checked ebay, not finding anything cheaper than any other website. The cheapest thing I can find is a single diaper for $6 + $6 S&H. I'm not saying you didn't/can't find cheap diapers on ebay, but if you can, I haven't seen them in all my years of ebay surfing, and I can't find them now.

  9. #9

    Default

    I can agree that adultclothdiaper.com is great. I wear mostly gauze pre-folds and birds eye pre-folds, I have a ton of 36x36 flat birds eye and other cloth diapers. I will be posting some pics soon as well.

    doodles textiles has great birds eye pre-folds they sell under granite smith on ebay. I suggest you look into proper care of your cloth diapers they will get softer and really are great to wear. Proper care to avoid buildup is important as is a safe diaper friendly detergent.
    if you want more info let me know I have worn cloth diapers a long time.

    Myself I prefer comco plastic pants there very durable and made well

Similar Threads

  1. AIO cloth, What do you think?
    By emdo in forum Diaper Talk
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 14-Feb-2010, 22:30
  2. Cloth....
    By Fire_lupine06 in forum Adult Babies & Littles
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 21-Oct-2009, 08:57
  3. Lower Ab work outs?
    By xdeadx in forum Off-topic
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 23-Sep-2009, 03:20
  4. cloth
    By nappyar in forum Diaper Talk
    Replies: 22
    Last Post: 04-Sep-2008, 04:21

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
ADISC.org - the Adult Baby / Diaper Lover / Incontinence Support Community.
ADISC.org is designed to be viewed in Firefox, with a resolution of at least 1280 x 1024.