I’ve cloth diapered my son since birth. From the first moment I wrapped his little newborn tush in a prefold and cover, I fell madly in love with all things cloth. Cloth is addicting – easy, once you get the hang of it, but addicting. Collecting and creating cloth diapers often surpasses a woman’s stereotypical ‘need’ for shoes to match every outfit or (in my case) a vast earring and bracelet collection.
One of the many reasons I decided to cloth was to save money. So, I decided to try and explore ways to save even more money (while simultaneously expanding our cloth stash /ninja/), and still coming up with cute diaper solutions. During this exploration, I discovered the most addicting, yet expensive cloth addiction of them all: Wool. Oh.my.wow. And I thought I had an addiction before?!
Many benefits of wool:
1) It’s antibacterial.
2) It absorbs up to 30% of it’s weight in moisture, but doesn’t feel wet. Read: wa.ter.proof!
3) It breathes like no other diaper/cover.
4) It insulates – keeps baby cool in the summer, and warm in the winter
5) It’s so cute, I want a pair of wool longies for myself.
If you want wool to work correctly, you have to lanolize it. You can find my lanolizing tutorial –> here. It’s much easier than it sounds, I promise! Best thing about wool, in my opinion, is that, once lanolized, you don’t have to wash it. Okay, you do eventually, but the natural fibers of the wool repel dirt and grime and the material itself is antibacterial and evaporates wetness! You only have to spot clean, hand wash every few weeks (again, tutorial forthcoming), and lanolize every 3-6 weeks. Finn wears the same couple of pair of longies, in rotation, for several days at a time. If I didn’t have a dozen pair coupled with an insatiable need for alternating cuteness, he could go even longer.
Things you need:
- 75% or more wool sweater – angora, cashmere, sheep wool, wool blend – doesn’t really matter. Goodwill is great for these! They’re less than $5 a sweater, and you can get either two pair of pants or pants and two covers/soakers out of each sweater. I’ll eventually post a pattern for a cover/soaker.
- Sewing machine or needle and thread – I highly suggest a machine, as the crotch-area has alot of stress to which hand stitching may not hold up.
- Measuring tape
- Elastic (optional)
1) First, measure your little one. You need length (hip to wherever you want the longies to end), waist, hips, inseam, and rise (top of the front of the diaper, through the crotch, to the top of the back of the diaper – take this measurement with a diaper on).
2) Second, cut the arms and either the bottom or collar off of the sweater. With this sweater, I was able to use the ‘collar’, which saved me a stretchy, finished bottom to use for another diaper project later.