School of Cloth 2016 - Traveling with Cloth

Travelling with Cloth Diapers

Really? Why would you want to do that?

By: Amy Fong

I used to think I could not do it (and hence we travelled with disposable diapers for our first child while using cloth diapers the rest of the time), but after having our second kid we decided to give travelling with cloth a go!  In fact, now that we have experienced travelling with disposables and cloth, we actually prefer travelling with cloth diapers. We saved ourselves from having to deal with the runny blow-outs that we often got while using disposable diapers. We missed out on the stench that emanated from the used disposable diapers in our receptacle bin until housecleaning came to take out the trash. We loved that we were making an effort to avoid generating trash in the places in which we were travelling, and we enjoyed sticking to the same system that our baby was comfortable and familiar with using at home.

We’ve travelled to many different places, all while exclusively using cloth diapers--whether we are on multi-day road trips, tent camping, on a cruise ship, staying in remote alpine lodges, visiting Disneyland, or on a 17 hour flight.  Here are some tips to help make cloth diapering easier, no matter your travel situation:

  1. Research your laundry options before you go.  Call your accommodation and ask if they have laundry facilities. If not, then find out if there is a laundromat nearby or consider whether there is an option to visit a laundromat during your trip. Laundry is often accessible in situations that you might not expect. I was surprised to learn that our cruise ship had a guest laundry room, and that a private resort not far from our campground had a coin-operated laundry machine which they were happy to let campers use. Since making the most of your time is important while on vacation, try to fit in doing laundry when it makes the most sense for your itinerary. For example, you could consider doing laundry during dinnertime so that your family can enjoy a meal at a nearby restaurant while your load is running at the laundromat.


  1. Pack just enough diapers, but not too many. We were generally able to cram about 3 days worth of cloth diapers into our standard size diaper bag. If you run out of diapers before you are able to get to a laundry machine, which happened to us when we had longer stretches in places without laundry access, you can hand wash a few diapers to stretch out your supply. You can also repurpose flannel receiving blankets, t-shirts and other absorbent materials to use as diapers.

  1. Consider drying time when choosing which diapers to pack. Prefolds, flats, flannel receiving blankets and cotton tea towels are ideal for travel since they can be stuffed into pocket diapers or laid inside reusable covers, and are fairly easy to hand wash and take relatively little time to dry.

  1. Bring absorbent boosters. We found that we generally had to go longer between changes when we were on the move.  To ensure that we had enough absorbency to last between changes, we added an extra cotton, bamboo, or hemp booster to each diaper.

  1. Remember your wet bags. A few small portable wet bags will help contain your dirty diapers and seal in their smell until you are able to wash them.

  1. Bring liners. Liners save the messes from contacting the diaper, and make it easier to toss the poop into the nearest toilet.

  1. Don’t rule out using full-service laundromats. We vacationed for a couple weeks in Hong Kong, where guest laundry facilities and self-service laundromats are scarce. However, full-service laundromats were everywhere – there were no less than four on the block where we were staying. We did a quick rinse of the wet diapers in our sink before dropping them off along with our regular laundry at a full-service laundromat in the morning. Everything was clean, dry and neatly folded by the end of the day, and the service was fairly inexpensive (not much more than using a self-service laundromat). It couldn’t have been easier.

  1. Pack some laundry detergent. While laundromats often have laundry detergent available for purchase, the options are generally limited. If you would prefer to use the detergent that you normally use at home, pack a small amount in your travel bag. It will also come in handy for handwashing your diapers in a sink or tub.

I had every intention to take pictures of our cloth diapers on our vacations so that I could document what we did in different travel situations for a blog article. However, cloth diapering while travelling was so inconsequential that taking these pictures slipped my mind – there were, of course, more significant and exciting things to shoot pictures of while travelling.  Hopefully these tips will help you succeed in making cloth diapering a part of your travels too!

Amy Fong is circle leader of the Real Diaper Circle for Metro Vancouver, mom of 2 kids, and a full-time practising lawyer. In her volunteer time she enjoys helping to share the benefits of cloth diapering by teaching cloth diapering workshops and organizing cloth diapering loan packages for families in need.

School of Cloth 2016 - Laundry Troubleshooting

There are still a few diapers in our home that are not for teaching and demonstration despite the fact that our youngest just turned 7. Late last year I was going through the diapers to decide which to donate, sell and which to put away for some time a million years from now when my babies have their own babies.

If only I had known just how hard the water was in our previous home. If only I had known just how important it was to know this information!

As I was going through the diapers I found several with 6 year old newborn stains. Now I know that a few simple changes to my wash routine would have avoided these stains. Needless to say, I’m more than a little embarrassed that I put these diapers away in this condition. You can avoid my dilemma by checking out RDA Laundry Science and evidence based tips based on this laundry science on the RDA Wash page

Nevertheless: Challenge Accepted.

The detergent and additives are what my family currently uses for our normal laundry routine. 


This is a bamboo fitted with 6 year old breastmilk poo stains. 


The diaper was soaked in a tub of warm water with a teaspoon of BioKleen Oxygen Bleach Plus and left it for a couple days. This gave time for that old, very set stain to release from the fibers of the diaper.


Almost all of the stain has already disappeared!


Next the diaper goes into a rinse & spin with momma cloth, towels and a teaspoon of Rockin Green Femme Rock.

Finally a warm pre-rinse, long, hot wash cycle with Biokleen Laundry Liquid and a tablespoon of Biokleen Oxygen Bleach Plus and a cool rinse cycle (this is the only rinse cycle available for this cycle on my washer).

There is just a bit of stain left in the folds of the elastic casing. Pretty darn good outcome for a 6 year old stain, one soak, one rinse and one wash cycle.

We receive lots of questions about stains and whether it is even possible to remove them. The answer is yes. It can take a little time, but it is both possible and worth it. Whether the stains are a few days old or a few years old, with a little tlc your diapers will look better than ever!

Need some help with staining or other laundry challenges? RDA's Laundry Science page has tons of great information. Check to see if there is an RDA Circle in your area for one on one support in your community! If that is not available, contact us by email or message us on Facebook!

Angela Torres
Chair, Real Diaper Association
Circle Leader, Real Diaper Circle of Northern Virginia

School of Cloth Week 3: How to Advocate for Cloth Diapers

Do you love cloth diapers and want to help spread the word about them, but don't know how to get the word out? Here's some ideas!

The first, and one of the best ways, is to either start or join a Real Diaper Circle in your area! Either be a Leader through the great training with the RDA, or help out the local chapter. Real Diaper Circles offer hands-on, local support networks, for advice in all aspects. It does take time to build your circle, and dedication to the cause, but you get to meet so many wonderful families, learn from them and help them in their journey.  It is time well spent! Education is the best way to produce success.

Of course, your use of cloth is one of the best ways you can advocate for cloth diapering. Every time you do a public diaper change, show your friends the cute new diaper print you have, or take photos showing off your baby in nothing but that cute diaper cover, you're helping spread the word that cloth is awesome. Expand your reach into social media and use hashtags to  find others who share your cloth diaper love.

Be a cloth diaper mythbuster! Do your friends or family have misconceptions about cloth diapering? Do they wonder about how much laundry it entails, or see the upfront costs as too much, etc?  Tell them it just is not so! Use your personal experience to guide them to the truth behind the myths. And if you found you struggled, but you got help to guide you through, explain where you got the help, and how awesome it is now that you're on the other side. Explain the benefits, to the pocketbook, to the environment, to the health of your baby. and the incredible convenience of knowing you’ll never really run out of diapers!  If you know they plan to have more babies in the future, remind them that cloth diapers can be reused on future babies. Suggest ways around difficulties like diaper services for busy families, local sales groups or DIY possibilities for those on tight budgets, or OS diapers for those with 2 or more babies and toddler using diapers.

Start lending diapers! Do you have a friend who wants to try cloth but is hesitant? Let them borrow some diapers to give it a try, or buy them some to get them started! Show them how to use the diapers, explain how to wash them, and get your friend interested in some prints they may find appealing.

And there is always the biggest event of the year, The Great Cloth Diaper Change! Media coverage, community involvement, and a world record attempt always get people talking, and get people interested! Bring friends to it, if you're attending one, even if it's your first time and you don't know what to expect! No event close to you? Host an event yourself! We've got a great support network for newcomers! Everyone is welcome to host GCDC events, and other cloth diaper advocacy events in their communities!


I think the most important thing is be respectful of other's choices. If you have friends who do things a little differently, but it works for them, respect that. If you have friends who choose to only use cloth diapers part of the time, or not at all, be an open book when they ask for help or advice and politely remind them you love cloth diapers because of all the reasons listed, and then some... but don't make them feel like they've done something wrong by choosing another way. Parenting is hard work! No two children are the same and no two situations are alike. While there is always a way to make it work, it doesn't mean everyone is willing or able to do so. With new parents who may be overwhelmed, be gentle.  Someone who has no idea what they're getting into may be unable to see past the struggle, so offer assistance, but don't force it. They may come back to you later to try again if they see you're successful.

Adout the Advocate Author:
Tracey Valade is a mother of 5, Real Diaper Circle Leader in Ontario, Canada, Great Cloth Diaper Change committee member, works at home and out of the house, owner/operator of Darolotty's Natural Parenting Online Store, and blogs about parenting. Tracey is a busy woman with a passion for cloth!

School of Cloth 2016 - Cloth Diapering from Birth


When Tamaira Kaster, Circle Leader for Real Diaper Circle for Ventura County, informed her labor and delivery nurses that she would be cloth diapering her daughter from birth they told her, “Yeah, yeah, we hear that all the time. People say they’re going to do it but…” Tamaira was firm and committed though and was quickly able to get the hospital staff on board, even in the face of an emergency C section situation.  

I have cloth diapered 3 newborns now. With my first, we waited about two weeks after we were home from the hospital, and had used up the baby shower gifts and “free” hospital diapers before switching to cloth diapers full time.  With DS2 and DS3, we brought cloth to the hospital.  Like Tamaira, I found that using cloth from birth was pretty easy once I busted some myths and faced my fears. (PS: Did you know this little guy graces the pages of the RDA coloring book? Get your copy here!)

Unfamiliarity with cloth diapers is often one of the biggest hurdles to using them.  You may find that you must educate your partner, friends, family and healthcare providers about cloth diapers, before your birth.

We had a great time discussing strategies for using cloth diapers from birth during a recent RDA webinar, which you can listen to here. The biggest takeaway from our discussion is that with a bit of advance preparation, parents can certainly cloth diaper from birth,  even if cloth diapers are new for your partner, birth team, hospital, birth center, and even if your birth does not go according to plan.

Reflecting on all of the different personal stories we have heard from RDA Advocates and Circle Leaders, here are our tips for successfully cloth diapering from birth:

Tips for Success

1. Over-prepare!

Take a class. Get your partner on board. Write your choice to cloth diaper your newborn into your birth plan. Tell your health care team. Enlist your support team to back you up. Pack the diapers and supplies in your bag ahead of time.  Set yourself up for success!

Check to see if you have an RDA Circle Leader in your area for classes and face to face cloth diaper support. If not, many retailers offer regular CD 101 classes and local diaper services are always willing to meet with new parents and demonstrate how cloth diapers work before a baby arrives.  The more you make your wishes known to those around you, the more confident you will become, and the more prepared everyone will be. In those first heady moments after birth, you’ll be glad your plan was already in place.


2. Talk to other parents.

Parents who cloth diaper love to talk about cloth diapers. It’s true!  We have all gushed about our favorite cute little print, or the adorable wholesome look of a newborn in cloth, or the strange but undeniable joy that a freshly laundered pile of cloth diapers brings us.  If you want to know what cloth diapering is like, ask someone who uses them. They will tell you! Our RDA Circles are an excellent place to find parents who can support you face to face in your community.  If you prefer online support, try:

3. Build your support network.

Enlist your partner to advocate for your wishes in case you are unable to during and after your birth. If you have family and/or friends helping you in the days after your birth, delegate those first few loads of diapers to your helpers, so that you can focus on your babymoon. Teach them how to launder before the baby comes, and provide them with an RDA Laundry Tip Sheet.  Post it by your washing machine and you’ll always be able to refer to it when needed.

4. Build a Stash.

You’ve heard it before, cloth diapering can be a huge money saver for families. Of course, it can also become a serious financial investment if you decide to collect the latest fancy prints and designs, but all the frills and artistry fall into the category of form, not function.  Decide what you think you will need first, then choose how to build your stash. You can build a cloth diaper stash on a budget. You can hire a diaper service. Some retailers offer rental programs.  If you are having a baby shower, consider telling guests that you will be cloth diapering, and ask for reusable diapers instead of disposables.

5. Jump In!

All of the diapering missteps that occur during the newborn stage are universal. Tiny legs can be hard to fit in both disposables and cloth diapers. However, if you use prefolds, or fitteds, you may find that you can more easily achieve a snug fit on a tiny baby due to the inherent adjustability of cloth. Simply fold down the fabric at the umbilical cord site to allow that area to heal, just as you would with a paper diaper. Meconium is sticky and can stain, but there are many solutions. You can use a liner for the first few diaper changes, or even a scrap of cloth laid over your diapers can catch the first poop and make it significantly easier to clean. Remember, all diapers, both reusable cloth and single use disposables consist of the same basic components, an absorbent layer, and a waterproof layer.

6.  Bring what you need, not what you want.

We all know that cloth diapers come in a wide array of adorable prints, styles, systems, and sizes. Indeed, that is part of the fun! By all means, enjoy the ride but consider that in those first moments after birth, a simple no frills system may be easiest for your birth workers, family and friends to use. Prefolds, fitteds and covers will offer you the most flexibility in sizing and laundering simplicity. AIO’s with newborn sizing can also work great but can be a challenge to fit on very tiny babies.

As your baby grows and as your life together develops, you may want to expand your cloth diapering stash and try different diaper styles or brands.  Go for it! That’s part of the fun. Once baby starts sleeping longer, or goes through longer stretches between soiling their diaper, don’t be afraid to try new fabrics like hemp or wool.

Above all, remember, all diapers, whether they are made of disposable paper and plastic, or soft natural fibers like cotton and wool that you can launder and reuse, exist to catch pee and poop. They are made up of an absorbent layer, and a waterproof layer. Reusable cloth diapers have the added benefit of being safer for babies, cheaper in the long run, and way more adorable!

Emily Kuhn, Real Diaper Association Board of Directors and Real Diaper Circle, Butler County Circle Leader

Michelle Dominguez, Real Diaper Association Executive Director


School of Cloth 2016 - Emergency Diapering, Hurricane Matthew edition

When we planned the blog posts for School of Cloth 2016 we had no way of knowing there would be a storm of such magnitude heading for the United States. Suddenly the topic of Emergency Diapering takes on a completely different feel. Hurricane Matthew is carving its way up the eastern coast of Florida after devastating the Caribbean as a slightly less powerful category 3 storm as this blog is being written. We're pulling together a "best of" blog post of previous blog posts to put all our best tips that can help families during this time, whether they cloth diaper or not, in one place. 

All of our basic tips sheets can be easily found here. Link to us and share widely with someone you know who may need help! 

Need to wash in a shared facility such as a hotel or laundromat? Check out these tips!

What if you don't have access to a washing machine or no power for your washing machine?

What if you run out of diapers or if the diapers you usually use are not as convenient during this time?

Some of the hardest hit will undoubtedly be low-income families. Even if cloth diapers haven't been used previously, some of these tips can help families get by, perhaps even convert to real diapers.

Real Diaper Association is here to support your cloth diapering as you weather this storm. We'll also be here as you rebuild. Contact us on any of our social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. See if there is a Real Diaper Circle Leader in your area. Or please contact us directly.  

Above all else, be safe friends!

Angela Torres

Chair, Real Diaper Association



Emergency Diapering- The Day the Baby Wore Grandma's Kitchen Towel Home

When you become a parent (starting during pregnancy), you begin experiencing lots more little “emergencies”. There’s a food emergency when you’re in the car and can’t fathom making it home before the baby inside you eats you alive so you HAVE to stop at the drive-thru. There’s a laughing-pee emergency that sends you straight home from work for new pants. Then, of course, there’s the I-think-I’m-in-labor emergency which sends you rushing off to the hospital only to find out it’s not nearly as fast as it is in the movies.

After the baby arrives, there are many more little emergencies. It’s nearly a full-blown crisis if we run out of snacks, the water cup goes empty (gets dumped), or the favorite toy is left behind. When I look back on the early baby days, I have to chuckle at all the bodily-fluid-related emergencies. Our first kid once spit up all over me so badly that I didn’t know what to do so I just sat there calling for my husband to help. We both had just had a bath, but spit up was running down both my front and back as I sat in our rocking chair, with literally nowhere to turn. Babies are masters of manipulating gravity and the physics of liquids.

Now, I know I’ve saved the best for last: poo-mergencies! Somehow, it gets everywhere. You open up that diaper to find a lake of poo, and your baby promptly kicks her foot down and then up, gracefully and efficiently depositing poop in places you won’t find for a week. If you’re lucky, your baby might manage to kick the diaper off the table before you can take it away. Well, it was time to mop the floor anyway…With a 3yo and a 1 ½yo, I can look back fondly at those memories without a desire to be there again (just yet, anyway). You really will laugh someday!

One emergency that I felt better prepared for than most was a diaper emergency. The moment you’re on the road and realize you’ve gone too far to turn around and get the diaper bag you left on the kitchen counter: yep, we’ve been there. Being a cloth-diapering family, we learned to take this in stride, and we found a way to handle it. Since we hadn’t gotten used to relying on disposables, stopping in a convenience store to pay a ridiculous amount of money for a small package of diapers didn’t really enter into our minds as an option. So, what did we do? Improvised, of course!

First, we crossed our fingers that we didn’t have a poopy diaper while we were out. That always makes things more complicated (but not impossible) in a diaper emergency situation. I’ll get back to that later. The most common outing we went on when we forgot our diaper bag was to my in-law’s house, a brief 20-minute drive away. Our first non-diaper we used in this diaper-bag-on-strike situation was a kitchen towel. Using pockets, we pulled out the wet insert and then laid the folded kitchen towel on top of the shell. Not perfect, but it sure worked! This saved us many times. I’m pretty sure we used an extra pair of baby pants folded up in a diaper like that once, too. Cloth diapering helped me realize what kinds of fabric absorb well, and I got good at thinking fast about what we had laying around. Extra blankets in the car weren’t clutter that I kept avoiding cleaning out, they were diaper emergency insurance! Eventually we switched to regularly using flannel receiving blankets in our pockets because they absorbed so well (and we had so many). T-shirts, cloth napkins, pillow cases…just about any piece of fabric can be wrapped or folded around your baby’s bottom in a pinch!

If you use all-in-ones or experience the simultaneous diaper and poo-mergency, you may need to get a little more creative. It’s all about keeping the fabric on the bum. Let your imagination run wild, and don’t be constrained by practicality or thinking about only long-term options. A T-shirt folded around and Scotch-taped (carefully) will probably get you to your next destination, despite its lack of runway-caliber couture. You can also use their pants to keep the fabric in place!

Here’s hoping you’ll always remember your diaper bag, you’ll have remembered to reload it with diapers, and you’ll have brought enough for the day. If ever that isn’t the case, know that you now have a trick up your sleeve and an extra blanket or pair of baby pants in the car. Keep calm and diaper on (or t-shirt, or blanket, or towel…)

Making good use of those Bookstore Tshirts!

About the Advocate Author
Megan is a member of the Real Diaper Circle of Butler County, mom to two amazing little girls, and an Instructor in the Department of Family Science & Social Work at Miami University.  She has been cloth diapering for over 3 years, and is an active volunteer in her circle, helping to organize the local Great Cloth Diaper Change and teaching Diaper Repair classes.  


School of Cloth: Week 1- Emergency Diapering

We've all been there. You're in the middle of the drying cycle on your cloth diapers, just crossing your fingers that last diaper holds up until you're done... and your baby decides, as usual, now is the perfect time to have a nice big bowel movement. You smell it a mile away and you know they can't sit in it long enough for the load to be dry. Or, maybe you're out longer than you anticipated, you didn't bring enough diapers with you, now you're an hour from home, and your baby is leaking out of the diaper. OR maybe it's a worse scenario, you're in a shelter because there is a massive storm with high winds that may be a hurricane... you've got limited supplies at your disposal and you've forgotten or misjudged the amount of diapers needed. What now?


This calls for emergency measures! Some of these measures even can be used by disposable users!


Receiving Blankets. They're great for quick bundle ups, swaddling, spit cloths... and prefolds! Flannel and cotton prefolds make great cloth diapers. Some people even use them regularly. Back when I started diapering, when I only had enough diapers for a day or two with my now almost 6 year old, I used these during wash time! You can use a fleece pant, a regular cover, wool, or even let them roam free in just a prefold. Here are some examples of receiving blanket diapers:


Tshirts. Don't have any blankets with you? No fear! Tshirts can also be used in an emergency! We've all got lots of those right?!

This classic Real Diaper Association video shows how to fold, step by step; it is so simple!!

One of my favorite photo tutorials is by dirtydiaperlaundry, who makes two flats from one xxl t-shirt.

Don't have any of those handy? Think of other textiles and fabrics you have around! What about washcloths? They're made to absorb. Need something to shove in a pocket or line a cover? This is a great alternative! They may not last quite as long, but they can get you through a short time period. Or, even a dish or hand towel! Flour sack towels are a popular use option in the cloth community now, but any towel really works! Larger bath and beach towels may require some trimming.


Now you've got your absorbent core. What about a cover?


Think of other materials and items around your house. Does your child have fleece pants? Perfect! These work great as a cover all on their own without needing to do anything! Fleece sweaters wrapped similar to a t-shirt like above work too! Don't have any fleece clothing? Fleece blankets works too! Wrap and snappi or pin it just like the flannel or cotton receiving blanket, just on top. Wool is also great! Usually wool would require lanolizing to become water resistant, but in an emergency, throwing some wool interlock pants over top of a quickly made diaper is better than nothing. Water resistant clothing like “splash pants” work as well, or plastic/vinyl diaper covers. Reusable swim diapers may work in a pinch too.

Adout the Advocate Author:

Tracey Valade is a mother of 5, Real Diaper Circle Leader in Ontario, Canada, Great Cloth Diaper Change committee member, works at home and out of the house, owner/operator of Darolotty's Natural Parenting Online Store, and blogs about parenting. Tracey is a busy woman with a passion for cloth!


2016 School of Cloth


Real Diaper Association has been supporting cloth diapering advocates and cloth diaper users just like you for more than 12 years! We want to continue to help you successfully use 100% reusable cloth diapers and we want to applaud those of you educating others about the benefits of cloth diapers. One of the best ways to educate others about cloth diapers is to get together with your community and share what you know about cloth diapers. In order to support and encourage your efforts to teach your community about cloth diapers, we are hosting the third annual School of Cloth event!


School of Cloth is all about education and giving back. Although anyone can register to teach a School of Cloth class, Real Diaper Association donors and Real Diaper Circle Leaders may sign up to teach School of Cloth Classes at no charge.


What are the benefits of teaching a School of Cloth class? Well, other than the fact that you get to share your knowledge about cloth diapers, all attending students will be entered to win cloth diapering related prizes from the generous businesses supporting School of Cloth. That’s not all our winners get… Remember when I said this was about giving back? Our winners will get to choose one of the registered 501(c)3 cloth diaper charities to receive a matching prize pack!


              To register your 501(c)3 charity to be eligible to win, sign up HERE.

              To learn more about how School of Cloth began, click HERE.

              If you are a cloth diaper business, and would like to donate, register HERE.

              Sign up to teach or attend a School of Cloth class near you HERE!


No classes near you? If you can’t attend or teach a class, you can still join in the fun by following our blog posts and blog hop and by answering our School of Cloth questions with the #SchoolOfCloth and #realdiapers on social media. Keep your eyes open for some virtual School of Cloth classes this year!


Are you a blogger that would like to learn more about how to participate in this year’s School of Cloth Blog Hop? Blogger suggestions and tools can be found HERE.

What's a Blog Hop? A Blog Hop starts with a primary blog post. Other bloggers write a related post and link it up to the primary post (or blog hop home post). Blog hops allow readers to reach many sources of information on the same topic or theme in one convenient place!

This year’s School of Cloth blog hop posts will post every Saturday in October and will include the following topics:



3) October 15, 2016: HOW TO ADVOCATE FOR CLOTH




Thank you for your continued support of the Real Diaper Association! Become a member or a Real Diaper Circle Leader today to help us help more families learn about the benefits of 100% reusable cloth diapers!

How to Cloth Diaper at the Hospital

During the month of May, Real Diaper Association's #getREAL campaign will provide REAL Facts about the RDA, REAL Member Advocates and cloth diapering. 
Are you ready to make a REAL difference in your community? 
Join the RDA today!


How to Cloth Diaper at the Hospital

If you follow my blog you know I have much love for cloth diapering. Some may say I'm a bit obsessed, and if you meet me you will quickly see they are right.

I started cloth diapering my son at about five months old because he was severely allergic to disposables. I knew going forward with my second child that I was definitely going to cloth diaper. I was after all a full-fledged cloth addict and was more than willing to spread the word of cloth to anyone willing to listen. I knew I wanted to save my baby the pain, and myself the heartache and frustration, and go for cloth as soon as she came earthside. This notion came out of a fear that my new baby girl would also be extremely allergic to the chemicals found in disposable diapers. Even though I was a very seasoned cloth diapering mama, I was still a little apprehensive of using cloth diapers at the hospital. I did not do it with my first, and so did not have first-hand experience with it. However, it was no longer a question of if, but how. After deep deliberation with myself, sometimes out loud, I came to the conclusion that I would approach my hospital stay with cloth diapers like I would if I were on a short getaway.

So here are my five recommendations to successfully cloth diaper at the hospital.

1- Write it Down

Yes, write it down. No, not on a post it, but in your birth plan. It's very important to write down what you expect and want for yourself and your baby. This can be a hectic and crazy time and this plan will help keep you on course and make your health care providers aware of your desires and expectations.

2- Educate Yourself (for newbies)

If this is your first rodeo, increase your chance of success, by doing the research. Ask friends who cloth diaper, talk to cloth diaper services, take a cloth class, join a Real Diaper Circle, get educated! That way you have the knowledge to pass along to your nurse if need be. (For information on how to cloth diaper and where to find local support go to

3- Bring what you need for at least a 3-4 day stay

Not packing enough was my biggest mistake. The day my baby arrived was a complete surprise, as was my c-section. Lucky for me I had a wonderful best friend who also cloth diapered so she was able to run home and do a load of diapers for me. Save yourself any worry or trouble and bring enough for 3-4 days.

4-Bring what you need, not what you want

Once you start buying diapers you may (like me) find yourself falling in love with all the colors and prints, eager to show them off. But when cloth diapering at the hospital, it's best to keep things simple. I suggest newborn prefolds and/or newborn fitted diapers and a couple of PUL covers. This is the simplest way to conveniently and successfully use cloth in the hospital for a few days. “How many?” you ask. If you are doing a mix of the two you need about 15 prefolds, 10 fitteds and about 3 covers. The great thing about covers are you can easily wipe them down and let them dry, thus not needing as many. Also, keep in mind your baby will not be eliminating as much in the first few days of life. You will also need one large wet bag or two small travel wet bags to hold soiled diapers. A couple of fasteners (like a snappi) and that's it. Simple!


That's right don't even think about it! As I said before make it absolutely clear to every nurse you have (you will have more than one) that you will NOT be using disposables diapers, so please do not fill baby's bassinet with them. Have someone write it on the chart, the door, or bassinet itself. You may be encouraged to use them, you may even be told the meconium will ruin your diapers - it won't. In fact my husband found it super easy to rinse meconium off in the toilet and I had no lasting stains at all. It could not have been any easier. Using cloth is the same as using a sposie with one exception, you throw them in a wet bag; not the garbage. Trust me when I say even this seasoned mama was a bit leery, but truly it was so simple and easy. I do warn you though, you may get plenty of questions and shocked looks. Let me encourage you by saying I was proud of what I was doing and you will be too!! So go on make cloth mainstream...I dare you!

Baby Girl In Cloth EarthSide

Tamaira Kaster, ecoCouture Baby
Real Diaper Association Advocate

From GCDC to Business Owner

During the month of May, Real Diaper Association's #getREAL campaign will provide REAL Facts about the RDA, REAL Member Advocates and cloth diapering. 
Are you ready to make a REAL difference in your community? 
Join the RDA today!

It is an honor (to have been) part of GCDC since it's beginnings. We've been involved in the Great Cloth Diaper Change since the first one (2011) and our community has grown exponentially. Today we can feel the love for cloth and say proudly in Puerto Rico: ¡Viva la Tela!

I proudly started my own business in 2011, the first cloth diaper store in Puerto Rico, a small brick and mortar called Hamaquitas y Culeros which has served to offer education and basic products for those wanting to start using cloth diapers. After that, we developed our exclusive line of cloth diapers and products made in Puerto Rico, Frankendiaper, having the opportunity to offer jobs to other moms. We are still growing and continue spreading the love for cloth diapers. We all know it is a tough job but with the satisfaction of unifying families and moms with the same ideals of the well being of our babies and our Earth.

Isila Loto, Real Diaper Advocate
San Juan, Puerto Rico
‪#‎teamfrankendiaper ‪#‎vivalatela