Getting Ready for Baby: Cloth Diapers
**Disclaimer- These are my opinions and are by no means a judgment on Moms who choose disposable or any other diaper method. I have been known to employ disposables from time to time. **
I have LONG wanted in on this gig since I love cloth diapers so much. Not only do I love them for their Green value but also their comfort, style and convenience. The brand I choose for my first born were BumGenius One Size. I choose them because I need only buy one size which would grow with my baby. I could pack them up and go. When they were spoiled, I could fold them up and the mess would be contained inside. I could adjust their size as well as adjust their absorbency. The list goes on...
However, as colorful and super cute as they were, I still longed to make my own with prints that would match my daughter's personality, wardrobe or just something with a little funk. But I was intimidated. It just seemed so tricky. Plus I had no idea what materials were involved and where to purchase them all. Well, none of those reasons is much of an issue now. Fabric.com's Diaper Central is a one stop diaper fabric purchasing center and we offer several patterns to make your own diaper, I chose Favorite Things "The Nappies Pattern" and decided to modify them to be One Size just like my beloved BumGenius.
** Prewash your fabric as you would wash your cloth diapers**
First I choose my fabric: for the print outside, I used quilting cotton but you can also use minky, flannel or any decorative material (Note- It must be washable, these are going in the wash at least 1-2/week). Then I added in some PUL- which is the waterproof but breathable layer that gets sandwiched between the decorative outside and the super soft and comfy lining fabric. I went with plain white because I knew I would be using a decorative print on the outside but if you just want a solid color check out our wide PUL color selection. Then I chose my lining fabric which was a diaper flannel but you could also use cotton flannel, terry, cotton or hemp (Hemp is the most absorbent for heavy wetters). Do not use microfiber for the lining. It will irritate baby's skin. Then following the directions I cut out my pattern pieces.
Since I am making my diaper One Size, I choose a size large because it was the size closest to my BumGenius at its largest size. After finishing step 1 I added my rise adjustment snaps (these make the diaper One Size). I added one row of 3 male snaps 1 in. below where the Velcro would sit and 1 row of 3 female snaps 1.5 in. below the male row, and another row of female snaps 1 in. below the first female row. Each snap was spaced 2.25 in. in each row. With the middle snaps centered on the diaper, I used my Babyville Snap Pliers and Snaps in Playful Green/Orange. Then I continued following the directions to complete my diaper.
One important note is to be sure you use the 3/8'' swimwear elastic as instructed by the pattern. This will make your diaper function better but the size is just right to fit in the seam allowance. Also, when stitching on your elastic, I used some binder clips to keep my elastic in place about 2 in. above the pattern mark. I started sewing on the mark but clipping the elastic above the mark really helped me keep my hands free for guiding the fabric and stretching the elastic. Pull your elastic to about 90-95 of its capacity. This will make sure your get the stretch you need but won't make it super difficult to guide. After your elastic is sewn, clip off the excess elastic. A little waste makes for much ease. I also used these same clips to keep all my pieces together as I sewed them up instead of pin because I didn't want any holes in my waterproof PUL which might cause leaks later.
Finally you can see in my pictures the before elastic comparison to my BumGenius Diapers
And after. Pretty close huh?!
Finally, I would love to show your this cute little diaper on a equally cute little bottom but we will all have to wait for the fall before that happens. Also, I don't know the gender yet but just loved this cowboy print so much that even if I have a girl she will be rocking western style. Have fun with your print choices!