A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away…there were cloth diapers. But they were not nearly as cute or user friendly as they are now! I know I am going to date myself by saying this, but do you realize how lucky you are to have the kind of choices you have? It’s almost enough to make me want to have another baby–no wait–what am I saying?! I think I’ll just enjoy using these newfangled diapers on my grand baby, have fun ordering and selling them at our store, and call it a day!
I raised three girls whom I cloth diapered from the late 70’s to mid 80’s. Of course, most of my friends thought I was crazy for not using the “wonderful” disposables that could make my life so much easier! As a child of the 60’s, I was quite aware of Mother Earth and was happy to help her out, but frankly it was the fact that my girls always got horrible rashes with disposables (we used them on occasion while traveling) that kept me using cloth. I didn’t want those chemicals next to my baby’s bottom! Also, as a stay at home mom, the significant savings didn’t hurt either.
My only choice then was between flats and prefolds. I tried to use the flats–REALLY–but it took forever to fold them down to the right size, and I usually wound up with a massive monstrosity that came unfolded the minute I tried to slide it under the backside of a squirmy baby. So I upgraded to the “expensive” prefolds, along with my trusty diaper pins (I color-coordinated them to baby’s outfit–I know–OCD!) and plastic pants. Courtney, my middle daughter and partner at Over the Moon Diapers, dubbed this system the 4 P’s–Prefolds, Pins and Plastic Pants.
As far as the laundry went, it was pretty simple. I threw everything into a hot wash with either Ivory Snow or Dreft detergent and chlorine bleach for one complete cycle, followed by another complete cycle with just hot water. Stripping wasn’t a term used then–at least not in the context of diapers! My preference for drying was the clothesline, but that didn’t always happen. The chlorine bleach was a bit hard on the plastic pants, but I never had any stink issues with them and just replaced them when they got brittle. A 3-pack was really inexpensive, so I didn’t mind having to replace them every so often.
The diaper bag was a bit more tricky–no wet bags in darling prints back then. But…we had empty bread bags and metal twist ties that worked like a charm–where there’s a will, there’s a way! Of course, I don’t buy bread anymore–I like to make my own with whole wheat and coconut oil–but that’s another blog. So now I just drool over all the adorable accessories–the fun never stops!
So, there you have it…the diapering system that involved the occasional “diaper pin in the end of my finger” pain (better me than baby), and the ever so lovely “dunk and swish with my bare hands” method of removing, well, you know! I guess that’s why I get so excited about today’s modern cloth diapers. They are far cuter and easier to use than the 4 P’s, they are just as environmentally friendly, still save you tons of money, and…I can still color coordinate with grand baby’s outfit to my heart’s content!
Janice Bogott, Over the Moon Diapers