Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Spread The Cloth Diaper Love

I have always used disposable diapers, but lately I've been getting increasingly frustrated with the cost of buying disposables. My niece uses cloth diapers and raves about how wonderful they are. She uses one size fitted diapers from Bum Genius and her diaper supply cost a one-time investment of just over $400 for these very nice diapers.

Today I ran across a group that works to give cloth diapers to families in need all over the world. They call themselves Miracle Diapers and they have already cloth diapered 1,000 babies in 3 years. They are not currently taking nominations, but I think this is a very worthy cause if you can donate to it or somehow get involved in their work.

Through the Miracle Diapers website I have also found a website with some simple sewing instructions for cloth diapers. You can sew a complete diaper stash for less than $30! If you use old clothes (t-shirts and wool sweaters) you can make a complete set of prefold cloth diapers for about $25. If you prefer fitted diapers, it's possible to make a set for about $42, and flatfolds will cost you about $49 to make the set. The cost is based on buying bundles of t-shirts and wool sweaters from a thrift store, so if you use your own old clothes you can do it for even less.

Cloth diapers are extremely earth-friendly, and over time they can save you a lot of money compared to buying disposable diapers. For example, a box of size 1 Pampers on Amazon.com is about $24.69. Newborns go through about 12 diapers a day, so a month of diapering with disposables will set you back $88.92. This cost will lower when your baby is older and you are changing less often, so you can assume that most older babies will cost around $80 per month. If you diaper for 2.5 years, 30 months, you'll spend around $2400 for one child. A full set of brand new fitted cloth diapers is over $400 and can be reused for each child you have. If you make your own cloth diapers, the cost savings are even more!


  1. This was a very helpful and interesting post...and makes me a little guilty, I must admit. :) Have you looked into the cost of the diapering services that wash the diapers for you? That's always been my main drawback!

  2. I'm not trying to make anyone feel guilty! I feel bad enough that I've been paying so much for disposables for 9 years now! I have to admit, the laundering and the initial investment are the two things that have kept me from trying cloth diapers. I haven't looked into diapering services and what they charge. My niece just washes all of her diapers in a separate load, and she has a system of washing them twice to really get them clean. I'm sure if you work it into your laundry routine it's not as big a deal as it seems. Adding vinegar to your wash cycle will remove all traces of stool that could lead to salmonella, and will essentially sterilize the diapers.

  3. This is the laundering method my niece suggests: First you do a cold wash, using ¼ of the detergent manufacturers recommended amount. This removes the gunk. Then you do a hot wash, again using ¼ of the detergent. This sanitizes and kills anything that is left over. Next you do a final rinse and spin, on whatever temperature you like. This gets rid of all the leftover detergent, because if there’s any left it can make your diapers less absorbent and irritate baby’s skin. Then the diapers go to the dryer, sans any sort of fabric softener or dryer sheets, which can also mess with the diaper. You can add a bit of bleach every once in a while, I do it about once every three weeks. This just helps to freshen up the diapers a bit.

  4. Hi Cherylyn,
    I got your comment on my post of the same...
    I seriously thought about starting a diaper washing service in our area, Shenandoah Valley, Staunton, VA- last year, & stayed undecided on the matter.
    Wonder if I could take out a loan & run a successful biz doing that ??