School of Cloth: Week 1- Emergency Diapering

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!


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