Day 7 – The End of the Flats Handwashing Challenge

I can honestly say that I enjoyed this week. Don’t get me wrong, I love my washer and this challenge has given me a new sense of gratitude for it. Before this challenge I was expecting it to be near impossible and I met May 11th with excitement and dread. Excitement because I was going to learn something new and dread because no one seemed too fond of the idea.
image

When I asked around a few weeks prior to the challenge I was met with a lot of laughing and “Good Luck’s”. Everyone else made it seem like it was this impossible task that couldn’t be accomplished in modern times. Dare I say it almost seemed like it was beneath them to handwash their child’s soiled diapers. Why waste time washing diapers by hand when we have washing machines?

I did this challenge for a few reasons. Allow me to re-cap:

  • I participated to raise awareness that, regardless of socioeconomic status, parents and caregivers can cloth diaper their children.
  • To gain the skills I would need to successfully handwash my son’s diapers if we were in a situation that required it.
  • To answer the question of whether or not I would cloth diaper, now in modern times, if I did not have access to a washer or dryer all the time.
  • Every child deserves to have a clean diaper.
  • Cloth diapering is affordable when using flats, receiving blankets, flour sack towels etc. and covers.

I believe that anyone can cloth diaper using flats and covers. Whether your flats are receiving blankets, actual diaper flats, or flour sack towels YOU CAN CLOTH DIAPER!
image

What did this challenge teach me?

This challenge taught me that anyone can cloth diaper and that flats are the most customizable diapers a person can use to diaper their child. I also learned that if I didn’t have access to a washer and dryer all the time, I would still cloth diaper my son using flats and covers. I know that at times it may become a daunting and tedious task but I started cloth diapering to save money.

I wasn’t aware of how many parents are already handwashing their child’s diapers until the challenge started. The Facebook group was a great resource for me because I was able to learn from other people’s experiences.

Now that I have been using flats for 2 weeks exclusively, I have decided that flats will make up the majority of our stash. They are simple, work well, wash well, and I get a perfect fit on my son every time. My son also has sensitive skin and since being in flats his skin has been much better!

I do think that anyone can handwash their child’s diapers. I think that it is doable, once a routine is found.

The one question I got asked a lot was “Doesn’t it take forever to handwash?”.

No, I can handwash 7 diapers, some wipes, and covers in less time it takes my washer to finish a cycle.

I really enjoyed this week and I truly enjoyed getting to know each of you! Thank you for checking out my journey for the week.
image

How did the challenge go for you? If you were unable to participate this year, will you try next year?

Wanna See My Stash?- Day 2 of Handwashing Flats Challenge

Simple, to me, is better. 

In the first post I mentioned one of the reasons why I wanted to participate this year was to simplify my son’s diaper stash. I admit, I got caught up in the whirlwind of prints and options available. There are so many options when it comes to cloth diapers, and in reality, a good ol’ fashioned flat will do you just fine. There is nothing wrong with having variety of diapers but I have learned that for us, simple is better.

Let’s break my son’s diaper collection. He has:

12 Green Mountain Diaper flats. I bought these new and it cost me $12 for 6 flats. I paid $24 (plus shipping) for 12 flats. Let me tell you, there is a difference between flats and flour sack towels. Flour sack towels are thinner than flats that you buy from a diaper company. They function the same but absorption, in my opinion, will be better with a flat from a diaper company.

image

The flour sack towel is on top and the green mountain diaper flat is on the bottom. The FST reminds me of gauze and the GMD flat is birdseye cotton.

3 Geffen Baby flats. I bought these new as well and I got them through a co-op so they were cheaper than average. I honestly don’t remember what I paid, but, they cost $7.99 each on the Geffen Baby website. I use these specifically for night because they are made from 60% Hemp and 40% Organic Cotton. The quality and absorption of Geffen Baby is top notch. My son is a heavy wetter and 2 Geffen flats last us 12+ hours. I use a windpro cover over them at night.

4 Target flour sack towels. I was strolling through Target last week on a hunt for more things I don’t need and saw they had flour sack towels and I picked them up for a trial run of handwashing. They do the job well, are cheap, and are easily accessible. They cost $3.99 for a pack of 4. I know that they also have coupons you can use which would probably make them cheaper than $3.99.

2 Windpro fleece covers. I bought these from a shop off Etsy called Dragon Cloth Covers for $17 each. I wanted something that was low maintenance that I could throw in the washer and dryer. In my opinion, they work just as well as wool. Windpro is AMAZING at repelling moisture and it would take a heavily, heavily (and I mean heavily) saturated diaper for the outside to feel moist.

3 Nicki’s Diapers PUL covers. These are easy to wash and that is why I invested in them. One I bought used and I don’t remember how much I paid and the other 2 I bought new. They cost $10.95 on the Nicki’s Diapers for prints and $9.50 for solid colors, but if you watch for sales and use coupons you can get them for much cheaper. The thing I love about their covers is the double gussets. My son has runny, breastfed poop and these covers contain it!!!

image

3 Wool covers. All the wool I am using for the challenge was bought used. The knit soaker and wrap are one size and they will last him through to potty training with no problem. The longies are sized and he has been wearing them since he was about 4 months old. I am sorry I don’t remember the prices. The wrap and longies are upcycled which made them cheaper than buying interlock. I can tell you I paid no more than $15 for any of the wool pictured.

image

1 drying rack. I bought this a few years ago (it has taken quite a beating) when our dryer broke down and we didn’t have the immediate funds to purchase a new one. I got this at Fred Meyer for (I think) $25. I know it seems steep, but it has definitely paid for itself.

image

Drying rack

The only things that I bought new specifically for this challenge were the flats and the flour sack towels. I already had the covers, wool, and drying rack. I hope this gives you a better idea of how economical cloth diapering can be. You only invest ONE TIME and the items should last you through potty training + multiple children. When adding the up the flats, flour sack towels, windpro covers, and PUL covers I got a total of $100.74. You easily spend $100 on diapers in 2 months time.

You can cloth for even cheaper by:

Using flour sack towels, t-shirts, or receiving blankets

Buy used (trust me, it will save you a lot of money)

Reuse on multiple children

Looking at the cost now, I wish (oh, how I wish), I would have started with some flats and covers. If you only want to invest in 12 flats and 3 PUL covers, your total would be $54. Or if you wanted to use flour sack towels and you got 12 of them + the 3 PUL covers your total would be $42. Cloth is affordable and it doesn’t have to break the bank!!!!

Up Next…

Would I even bother cloth diapering if I didn’t have the luxury of having a washer and dryer?

image