Cloth diapering seemed fairly normal. I had the privilege of being the daughter of a mother who cloth diapered my youngest brother towards his potty-training years, and so I remember the eighties version- pins, prefolds, and plastic pants.
Trying to decide what I would use was a bit more daunting. Every cloth diapering mama, it seems, has come up with her own design and tricks and is marketing it to ecologically and economically friendly mothers everywhere. All have cutie-pie names that sometimes start to blur together: Bum Genius, Bummis, Fuzzi Bunz, Motherease, and Kissaluvs are just a handful of the more popular ones. On most mothering boards where cloth diaper use is prevalent, the alphabet soup of acronyms is just flying, as discussions of "BG's vs FB's" and "ME's with or without covers" go on and on and on.
I knew I would use pre-folds, whatever else I landed on. Prefolds are the typical cotton rectangle that most people think of when visualizing cloth diapers. Plastic pants are a crinkly, scratchy thing of the past, with the advent of wool covers (stay tuned for a mid-fall intro to my Etsy line of "Shorties;" a flashback to the good old days when Pa knew a new bun was in the oven when Ma started click-clacking away on the knitting needles, chugging out tiny wool shorts. That, or the massive morning sickness over the daily mucking of the cow stalls. Ahhh, the good old days...) or PUL covers (PUL stands for polyurethane laminate, a waterproof but soft fabric). Pins are even a thing of the past, as many (but not all) prefold users now snag the diaper into place with Snappis.
Aside from the "PFs," I was on the prowl. What marvelous, washable, soft and cozy item would catch my baby's excretions? The posh, but way too expensive Blueberry Minkies? Perhaps someday, when I find the buried treasure I've been searching for since third grade. As cute as they are, $42 is just too much for one single diaper.
Motherease was next on my list. Organic cotton, lovingly hand-picked by pixies by the light of the full moon*, woven into a comfy, yet moderately priced diaper that works from newborn on up to toddlerhood, thanks to a series of snaps that changes the size completely. Their Air Flow covers were also my main cover choice, as I wanted a breathable, "bubble cover" that would fit a range of thigh to waist ratios.
Bum Genius 2.0's were out when Gianna was born, and they upgraded to 3.0 by the time she was 6 months old. These also were "one size," and worked without a cover, as they were an "all in one" diaper. The only downside is that the fabric that contacts the baby's skin is synthetic, and for the summer, I've noticed that Gianna just does not tolerate the microsuede on hot and humid days.
After a full year of trying out different diapers, and stepping into the Wacky, Wild and Wonderful World of Wool, I've decided that, as in many things, simplicity is perfection. My typical set-up is a prefold, Snappi'ed shut, with a wool cover or a Motherease Air Flow. She's happy, comfortable, and rash-free, and I am only washing diapers every other day (or sometimes every third day, unless it's humid). The Motherease One Size with an insert snapped in, is what gets her through the night.
Any of my readers doing cloth? Any thoughts to share?
*Okay, I exaggerated a bit. I think the pixies machine-pick the cotton, and it's probably during the day. Every day.