Cloth diapering is usually pretty cost effective in the long run (unless you get sucked by the cuteness and buy WAY more than you need!), but the start up costs can be a tough hurdle. You can buy a pack of disposable diapers for $10 and diaper your baby for a few days. $10 doesn’t buy a single diaper in the big name brands, but there’s good news. There are cheap ways to get started. Check your local Craigslist. You can almost always find some on there.
Thanks to my online mommy friends, I now have an even better idea. Order a dozen Prefold diapers. I love the Imagine line from Nicki’s Diapers. While you’re there, get a set of diaper pins. In the couple of days, while you wait for your diapers to arrive, hit the nearest fabric store and buy 1 yard of fleece. Then follow this tutorial. It’s stinkin’ brilliant. She used a sewing machine, but you can absolutely just hand-stitch a couple of pleats. You can do all this for less than $40.
Month #1 – You’ll have to commit to washing your diapers every day, but you can do it. It’s just one month. Every time you would have bought disposables, set aside that money. At the end of the month, use that money to buy another dozen prefolds and a few covers. (I like Proraps for their price, and they work great)
Month #2 – Keep setting aside your diaper money. Now you can start going 2 days between washes. Again, at the end of the month, use your savings to buy some more diapers. You’ve probably got enough now to buy a couple of pockets or all-in-one diapers if you want to try those out. I would suggest buying one each of as many different styles as you can. Then you can figure out your favorites. This is a great time to look into some pre-loved diapers on Craigslist.
Month #3 – (more…)