Get started in cloth for ultra cheap!

June 4, 2011 at 6:40 pm (Cloth diapers)

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 startup 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.

But 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 if 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 several 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 – Repeat.  By now, you’ve got a pretty decent stash and can probably stop buying diapers.  But where’s the fun in that?  If you keep this up, for another couple of months, you’ll have a fantastic stash of cloth.

What’s that you say?  Little Tommy outgrew his diapers?  Easy.  List them on Craigslist!  There’s someone else out there looking for a good deal too.  Now, take that money and invest it in some bigger diapers.  Or, hang  onto them and start the cycle over again.  If you have another baby, you’ll be all set from the beginning!

Really in a financial pinch?  Check out your local thrift store.  Ask them what they do with the t-shirts that aren’t in good enough condition to sell.  Often times, these are sold for next to nothing.  Raid your closet, ask your friends for old t-shirts, whatever.  Get a bunch of them.  100% cotton is best, but as long as it’s mostly cotton, it’ll work.  Now check out this tutorial.

Best of luck to you!

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