When I was pregnant with Bebe, we were living off of limited funds and I really liked the idea of cloth diapering in order to save money. Unfortunately, certain aspects of our living situation were against us:
1) We lived in a low-income apartment that didn't have a washer/dryer.
2) We weren't allowed any additional or add-on appliances because all utilities were paid by the management company.
3) Our apartment complex had shared, coin-operated laundry that was down the stairs and across the parking lot from our apartment.
In the end, I decided to skip cloth diapering. A decision I grew to regret, as Bebe was a very, very late potty trainer (3 years, 9 months). All I could think about was all of her diapers over those years piling up in a landfill.
When I got pregnant with Dois, I knew immediately that I wanted to cloth diaper. For environmental reasons, for the financial reasons, and partially for the cuteness factor. We now lived somewhere that we had our own washer and dryer, so washing the diapers (the biggest issue when pregnant with Bebe) was no longer an issue. D wasn't really encouraging or discouraging. As I shared bits and pieces of information with him, he was kind of like, "Okay, if you say so." The things that appealed to him the most, though, were the cost savings over disposables and the possibility that Dois would potty train sooner than Bebe did.
Initially, I was completely overwhelmed--there were so many different diapers out there (not just styles, like prefolds, fitteds, all-in-ones and pockets, but also brands with different shapes, cuts, rises, etc.)! I read up as much as I could in places like diaperpin and diaperswappers, trying to get an idea of what we would need or want. Many places encouraged doing a "diaper trial" from a place like Nicki's Diapers or Jillian's Drawers. I looked into such a program, but one thing that frustrated me was that most of the trials didn't give you enough diapers for an entire day. If I was going to use cloth, I wanted to use it ALL THE TIME! I ultimately decided that I wanted to take a different approach: I wanted to make my own "build your own diaper trial" by purchasing diapers used (on sites like diaperswappers and hyenacart) and new (from sites like Cottonbabies, BabySteals, and Zulily). I figured that in doing so, I could cater my purchases toward what I wanted to try, and I could also possibly make more back when reselling them (since newborn diapers get used so little).
In the end, I wound up with a "trial package" that cost me $300 and lasted me past the newborn stage (since some of the diapers were smalls and the prefolds fit for a while) until Bebe was around 6 months. It included the following items:
18 infant prefolds from Cottonbabies
6 small Fuzzibunz pocket diapers
7 Kissaluvs size 0 fitteds
5 x-small Thirsties Fab Fitteds (these have been discontinued, but were my favorite fitteds!)
6 small Thirsties Fab Fitteds
1 Made With Love Newborn fitted
1 Bumgenius XS AIO (now called Bumgenius Newborns)
2 Kushies Newborn AIOs
1 MonkeyDoodlez Newborn AIO
5 Thirsties Duo Wraps (size 1)
1 Fluffy's newborn diaper cover from etsy
3 newborn Prowrap covers
3 Small Prowrap covers
2 Kissaluvs Pail Liners
2 Thirsties Diaper Duffels
Newborn-sized wool longies
The "start up cost" did turn D off a bit as it added up. I'll talk more about our experiences cloth diapering in the next post, BUT I will say that once Dois outgrew all of this, I was able to turn around and sell what we were no longer using (so everything but the pail liners and diaper duffels, and 3 of the prefolds) for $200. So, for the first 6 months of Dois' life, it only cost us $100 to diaper him. Sure beats the cost of disposables!