Flats and Handwashing Challenge – Day 2


Check out the rules here!

Check out the rules here!

The Flats and Handwashing Challenge is an annual event started in 2011 by DirtyDiaperLaundry.com  to raise awareness about how cloth diapering can be done economically and with minimal resources by almost anyone. Cloth diapering can allow families to allocate more resources to food and other necessities, without worrying about affording a product that is literally designed to be thrown out.

Day 2: My Flat Diaper “Stash” and what it cost

All my flats (except a few dirty & on baby,)and  covers except the one on baby.

All my flats (except a few dirty & on baby,)and covers except the one on baby.

For the challenge I am using about 36 birdseye flat diapers. They were purchased at different times, but the average cost was about $2.10/each. Half are OsoCozy unbleached flats, and half are Imagine unbleached flats. I am also using nine Diaper Safari covers which are $8.95/each but often are (and were purchased when ) on sale for buy 2 get one free, making each one come out to just under $6 each.

Showing the inside of one of the covers, as well as my pins and Snappi. You might be able to see a bit of the size difference between the Osocozy flat (on top) and the Imagine flat (on the bottom.)

Showing the inside of one of the covers, as well as my pins and Snappi. You might be able to see a bit of the size difference between the Osocozy flat (on top) and the Imagine flat (on the bottom.)

I also will be using  two diaper pins that were $0.75 each, a Snappi which was about $3, and cloth wipes that were made from old t-shirts that I cut up, so were free. I’m also using a bucket and plunger that I purchased new in our rural hardware store for about $15 as a washer, and my usual laundry detergent. That brings the total cost, not counting detergent or water (which are the only things that need constant replenishment) to $149.10. I honestly probably am using more flats and covers than are necessary, but $150 isn’t bad for diapering a baby full time for 2 years or so. A couple months disposables and wipes would easily cost that.

Flats Handwashing Challenge (9)

Oh! I did forget to add in the wipes solution that I’m using. I made wipe cubes with a bar of Dr. Bronner’s baby soap, coconut oil, lavender oil, and melaleuca oil, and while I don’t have what the cost on that was, I know that it made over 50 cubes, and a cube makes about 8 oz of wipes solution, which lasts me at least a few weeks the way I use it. I spritz the bottom, then wipe dry with a cloth wipe. Plain water, or water with a drop of your favorite baby wash are less expensive alternatives.

The OsoCozy flats when prepped have less even edges than the Imagine flats. There’s about a 3″ difference in the sides, where the Imagine flats only have about 1″ difference between the sides. For the most part this doesn’t matter, but for folds that require a square, it takes a bit of finagling to get it to work. The Diaper Safari covers have generous pockets at the front and back for tucking a flat into if you prefer not to pin the diaper on, yet they’re also generously sized enough to go over a doubled up diaper that’s pinned on. Later in the week I’ll share what folds I’ve used and why I like each of them.

My bucket and plunger "camp washer."

My bucket and plunger “camp washer.”

So far I started using the flats around 10pm Saturday night, and at 4:30pm on Sunday I was washing 10 flats, 2 covers, and 3 wipes. Since the flats dry within a few hours hanging on our drying rack, and assuming 3 more changes in a 24 hour period (to be generous) that equals 14 flats/24 hours, add half a day for drying is 21 flats, and maybe 3-4 covers (depending on the poop schedule. Today we only had one messy one.) I suppose I should mention that my little guy is not quite 5 months old, is a heavy wetter in the early morning hours, and a moderate wetter during the day. He is also exclusively breast fed.

I was a little bit worried about this starting on Mother’s day, but it ended up being fine. I usually change most of the diapers anyway, so that was no different. Since Hubby and Baby made my meals, and I mostly got to just relax, fitting in the washing was easy. I think it can fit in during the week too even after Hubby is at work and I’m working from home and getting other things done. We’ll see how the week goes!

What does your cloth diapering stash look like and what did it cost? Share in the comments!

To read other people’s experiences with the challenge, check out DirtyDiaperLaundry.com’s post and the link-up at the bottom of her post.


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6 Responses to “Flats and Handwashing Challenge – Day 2”

  1. Annemarie Says:

    This is interesting — the reason we quit cloth diapering was because my husband was changing the diapers, and I was working full time. We didn’t have a washer or access to a laundromat, so all laundering was done in the bathtub with a scrubbing board and Fels Naptha. Husband refused to wash the dirties (lol) and I was way too tired! But this sounds like it might have been manageable.

    You’re awesome, Amy!

  2. AmyKathryn Says:

    A post later in the week will talk about washing routine 🙂

  3. Annemarie Says:

    Reading on, I’m betting this would work well for regular laundry. We still don’t have a washing machine. The only thing it might not work for is Joe’s heavily soiled blacksmith clothes — those would need pretreatment.

    Maybe I missed it — do you know anyone who hang-dries diapers? Do they come out like cardboard?

  4. Mama's Happy Hive Says:

    You are amazing!!! You have put a lot of thought into this process and have done an excellent job at making it work for your family! I am impressed 🙂 Cloth diapering isn’t for the faint of heart! 🙂

    • AmyKathryn Says:

      Thanks. It just made sense for us. I’m sensitive to a lot of things, we try to do the “green” thing, and we’re on a very tight budget. Now if I could get motivated enough to figure out some Montessori activities for my little guy like you have done, THAT would be awesome!

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