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So I want to try my hand at making diapers but I have no idea where to start.. is there an online tutorial somewhere? Like Diaper making for dummies? lol Any fabrics for the outside that are definite no no's? I have no idea where to start but I want more diapers for lil man but I have a very limited budget..couple that with a new sewing machine hubby is telling me I need to get to using or sell... yeah
I would start by recycling a couple of things from around the house to make some fitteds first. It's a great start for getting the hang of the shape, process, etc. Any 100% cotton fabric will work. When I first started, I bought a king size flannel flat sheet for $3 at Goodwill and used that for a bunch of diapers. Tshirts, old towels, receiving blankets, etc work too.
Once you get the hang of it, then branch out. For outer fabric, PUL is pretty much the standard, but you can use fleece too. PUL is mostly available online. JoAnn is now carrying it in store, but it's pricy. If you can get your hands on one of their 50% off coupons, it's worth it. I think I was getting 8 cuts out of each yard of PUL.
As far as patterns, I've generally made my own. I'll take a diaper I like, trace it, adjust things to my liking (narrower crotch, higher rise, whatever), then add 1/2 inch seam allowance. I've seen some decent tutorials online, but I'd have to look them us again.
Practice makes perfect. My first diapers looked awful but functioned. Try some of the free patterns and see what you like, don't like. It helps if you have at least 1 diaper to compare stuff too. I prefer knits for fitted diapers since they are stretchy but they can be tricky to start with. If you go on youtube there are lots of tutorials on how to sew fitteds, covers etc. Just jump in. It does get addicting.
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There's so much information out there, it's very easy to get overwhelmed. I've been sewing diapers for about 4 years now, and cringe when I think of my first diapers. Now, I hate it when people say this to me, but I'm about it say it to you...it's a matter of preference. What kind of diapers do you want? If you're not sure, try making a few of each kind and see which you like best.
For beginners, I strongly suggest the Darling Diapers Unlimited pattern. The instructions were an absolute necessity for me as I was starting out. The available options allow it so you can make any kind of diaper or cover with that pattern.
As for fabrics, if you're looking for inexpensive to start, I'm going to suggest flannel. You can do a cute flannel print on the outside, and 2 more layers of flannel on the inside. Add in a soaker of a layer of flannel, a layer of microfiber terry (easily found in packs in the automotive section at your nearest big box store), and a layer of flannel. Now, this combination requires a cover. You can make those out of PUL or anti-pill fleece.
You're in the US, so you have the option to get PUL from Jo-Anne's. You can also get snap pliers and snaps there, or hook and loop tape. Don't go with the velcro brand, it won't hold up.