This is the second post in the cloth diaper series that features several cloth diapering families sharing about their stash and experience using cloth diapers.
Stash #1 post: HERE
As we prepare to adopt our first child, we’ve had such varied reactions when I tell friends and family our intent to cloth diaper. Responses range from “Oh, that’s awesome!” to “Gross, why would you want to do that?” We’ve even had some family members make bets on how long we’ll last with cloth diapers. 🙂 For us, the cost savings, health benefits for the baby, environmental impact, and cuteness factor all played into our decision to use cloth diapers. And, honestly, we’re excited to do this!
Modern cloth diapers have a long way from the days of prefolds and rubber pull-on pants! These days, options range from the most cost effective option of flats & modern covers, DIY, or even all-in-one options similar to disposables. I’ve asked some guests to share their experiences with cloth diapers. Stashes and cloth diapering experiences can vary widely so this will give you a chance to peek into several options.
Stash #2: Meet Katelyn McKim, a cloth diapering mother of three. She’s been cloth diapering for 7 months.
Me: why did you decide to cloth diaper?
Katelyn: Because I currently have two kids in diapers and learned I’d save about $5210 by using cloth (Yes, I did the math! lol!) And besides that, my kids always seemed to get rashes in disposables. With all those reasons, I got the thumbs up from my husband to use cloth.
Me: what cloth diaper system or styles do you use?
Katelyn: My stash is pretty simple. I have:
- 30 pocket diapers (Brands are Alvas, JC Trade, Juicy Ann, Kawaii, and Shine Baby)
- 8 fitteds (1 Thirsties, 2 GMD Workhouse with snaps, 2 no names and 3 Juicy Ann)
- 8 covers (1 Albert flip, 1 wonder wrap, 1 bumkin wrap, 2 happy flute and 3 no name)
- About a dozen prefolds (1 baby kicks wool, and the rest are no name cotton prefolds)
- 7 cotton flour sack towels. These are $1 at Wal-Mart and I use them interchangeably with prefolds. (Rebecca’s note – I talk about flour sack towels in this post.)
Me: how does your system work for you?
Katelyn: When I use covers, it depends on how they are made in the inside. With my Albert Flip cover, I use it with fitted diapers because of where the inside Velcro is positioned. With the rest of my covers, I tri-fold a prefold diaper (or pad-fold a flour sack towel) and just place it in the cover.
Me: how do you store them?
Katelyn: I have 3 storage systems: one in the bedroom and two in the living room. The extra storage system is for my extra inserts. Check out my stash shots below because it will definitely explain it better when you see it!
Me: what is your washing system?
Katelyn: My washing system is simple. I hand wash and rinse first then throw them all in the washer with 1/2 cup of my homemade laundry detergent. Afterwards, I ALWAYS line dry anything that has elastic. After they are dried I may throw them in the dryer for a few minutes on low heat to fluff up. Anything that is all cotton (like prefolds) are dried in the dryer.
Me: Lastly, can you give me an idea of cost for your stash (either total or per child)
Katelyn: Our stash cost about $190, total. I scoured the interwebz for deals including eBay, Instagram and Facebook. I even found a Fuzzibunz pocket diaper in excellent condition for 50 cents at a thrift store! I calculated our savings (including water cost and the cost of all the diapers) at $5,585. That’s for two kids since my daughter is almost completely potty learned so roughly around $100 per child.
Me: Any last thoughts?
Katelyn: I was lucky because I had two friends start our stash and slowly was able to build it to what I have now. I’ve probably given away over a dozen pockets so far. Also, we make our own detergent using Borax, washing soda, baking soda, Fels Naptha, Zote, and essential oil, so we save money there too. Lastly, if we used cloth wipes we’d save another $300 or so, but my husband prefers the convenience of disposable wipes. (Rebecca’s note – if you are cloth diapering, I suggest researching different detergents and learning if you have hard or soft water. Some people swear by homemade detergent but others find store-bought is more reliable. I think it depends on your washing system, the style of diapers you use, and water type. Do your own research!)
Stay tuned for more in this cloth diaper series! If you have questions or thoughts about cloth diapers, please comment below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Sometime in February I’ll do a Q&A post that covers the types of diapers a little more in-depth, as well as trying to answer any questions you might have. Thanks!