Are you interested in an alternative to disposable diapers? Pittsburgh is very fortunate to have Pittsburgh Cloth Diapers as a great resource for learning about the many different cloth diapering options that are available.
If you are thinking about cloth diapering and live in the Pittsburgh area, then I highly recommend “shopping local” at Happy Baby Company whenever possible. They provide great customer service and cloth diapering support and it is great for the economy and more “green” when you shop local. This being said, I bought a lot of my starter supplies at Green Mountain Diapers because they offer such wonderful package kits for starting with cloth diapering. Also, they sell incredibly high quality pre-folds that are economical and easy to use. Green Mountain isn’t local to Pittsburgh, but it is a small business that is owned by a mom who is passionate about cloth diapering. Wherever you are, please always consider the impact of shopping local and supporting small businesses.
On the other hand, if you are expecting and need to create the easiest wish list all in one place, then I highly recommend using the Amazon website as the home for your baby registry. Most of these cloth diapering supplies (except for the Cloth-Eeze pre-folds that I adore) are available through Amazon and you can register for them.
Everyone who uses cloth diapers has their own tricks and favorites, but these are mine and I tried quite a few options:
#1: For the 1st month, plan on using mostly disposables and maybe some cloth. The babies are really tiny at this point and you have to make sure you avoid their umbilical cord before it dries up and falls off (Josephine’s fell off at around day 10) and then heals (generally another 4-7 days after it falls off). I recommend buying a case of SEVENTH GENERATION diapers from AMAZON MOM, the case is much less than if you bought them in the store (about 1 penny more per diaper than a case of regular diapers from Costco) and they are delivered for free. SEVENTH GENERATION does not have any scary chemicals, dioxin or bleach, so they are safe for baby and for the earth.
#2: If you do want an all in one cloth diaper that will be great for a newborn and for at least 3-months, then I recommend either the GRO VIA newborn diaper ($14.95 each) or the Swaddlebees newborn ($16.95 each) [Note that these newborn ones are different from the regular sized GRO VIA or SWADDLEBEES]. I had two of the GRO VIA newborn and two of the Swaddlebees newborn and that seemed like enough. Expensive, but great for when you are out and about and super easy for grandparents and husbands because they are just one piece and you put them on just like a disposable.
#3: For months 1 through 3, you can use these Cloth Eeze diapers (these are $24 per dozen and you need at least 2-dozen) from Green Mountain. You will also need a cover for them and I recommend the size S from Thirsties Duo ($12.25 each for solid color) or the Mother’s Touch cover ($15.95 each).
So, my suggested list would be:
4 all in one diapers $60
2 dozen newborn Cloth-Eese prefold diapers $48
3 Thirsties Duo Covers $37 (you can use these up to around 6-months!)
4 Mother’s Touch Newborn Covers $64 (you can use these up to around 4-months)
You will also need some kind of diaper pail bag (it’s a special laundry bag and you put it into a regular kitchen size garbage pail—no special garbage needed), some kind of wet bag to travel with to place used diapers and wipes in, at least 24 cloth wipes and some kind of diaper spray. I’m not a big fan of the Kissaluvs that they sell through Green Mountain and prefer California Baby Diaper Area Wash (my first bottle lasted me for 4-months). You can buy these items through Green Mountain or somewhere else.
Green Mountain sells a Cloth Diaper intro kit that is absolutely worth it—-one mini-kit for around $100 and one full-kit for $200. The $200 one is the better deal because it includes everything you need almost through about 5-6 months. It also has a few different types of covers that you can try so you can see which ones you like best and fit your baby best. The only thing is that it does not include any all in one diapers. But, it does include the other stuff you need that I have listed above. I use SEVENTH GENERATION disposables every night and do not cloth diaper at night. I do 2-loads of diaper laundry per week.
Speaking of laundry, you would use the COUNTRY SAVE powdered laundry detergent. You can get it from Amazon and it is about $63 for a case of detergent that will last you over a year of washing not only your diapers but ALL your laundry with it. We all have sensitive skin in my house and it is GREAT detergent—-also eco friendly. Can’t beat it. I have recently had a new problem with ammonia that had previously resolved by just using Country Save. I used Rock n Green detergent and it solved the problem.