Friday, July 30, 2010

This week's Featured Retailer is Diaper Junction!

This week's spotlight is on Bryana of Diaper Junction!  We're super excited to share her interview with you and to give you a sneak peek inside the Diaper Junction warehouse!

Tell us a little about yourself, your family, if you have little ones in cloth diapers, etc.-  My name is Bryana Guckin.  I am a mother to 3 wonderful girls ages 15, 10, and 8 and a wife to a recently retired Navy man.  I live in Virginia Beach, VA where I was born and raised.  Although our children are now out of diapers, my love for and belief in cloth diapers has continued.  I am lucky to have friends and family (including a new 12 week old niece!) that I get to test new diapering products on.

How'd you get started cloth diapering and what made you decide to open your own business?  I stumbled across cloth diapers when my middle daughter about 16 months old and I was pregnant with my youngest daughter.  I wasn’t successful with breastfeeding my older two children and I was determined to get it right with my youngest.

I had read that cloth diapers were a good tool in helping mom determine that diapers were wet and that baby was getting enough to eat.  I began my research on cloth diapers and found out about the economical advantages of cloth.  Since I was going to have two children in diapers, I thought it would be a great way to save some money.  I must have researched for weeks before I finally got up the nerve to buy something.  I purchased a few different diapers all in different styles and began cloth diapering my middle daughter part time in the evenings since I worked full time during the day.  After a short time I narrowed down the one I liked best, jumped in, and purchased a full time stash for my two children.

After my youngest daughter arrived and I began cloth diapering full time (I was lucky to have a caregiver who would use my cloth).  I must have talked about cloth diapers all the time because my friends and family started telling me I should sell them.  It started out as a hobby doing local  “Diaper Parties”.  I soon
realized in order to get the cash coming in to keep it going so I built a website and began selling online.  Sales were slow but I thought “OK, it’s just a hobby.”.  Soon after I came to the decision that I just didn’t want to work full time and be away from the kids.  So I took a chance, quit my job and put all my efforts in to the cloth diaper business.

Diaper Junction is actually my third store following Soft Cloth Bunz, and Smartie Pants Diapers which began in December 2002.  I started out as a one person production (me) and now Diaper Junction resides in a 1500 sqft space with 6 employees of which 2 are work at home moms!

What do you like best about being in the cloth diaper industry?
BABIES!  Who doesn’t love a baby!?!  HAHA!  I love talking with new moms and moms to be.  It keeps the spirit young.  It is easy to talk with them on a subject that I hold close to my heart and truly believe in.

What are your business goals for the future?  Currently we are just a shipping warehouse.  I do hope to one day expand out into the local market again with a B&M store.  We did try once before but found that we just weren’t ready for it.  Everything was growing so quickly and I just wasn’t ready to invest the time it took yet.  I’ve learned quite a bit from that experience and are putting our ducks in a row to try again hopefully soon.

What are your favorite Knickernappies products and why?  Hands down….the LoopyDo inserts!  I love microfiber and hemp together.  I think they were made for each other like peanut butter and jelly.  One fabric quickly absorbs while the other locks it away.  I have always recommended this combination to my customers and am happy to offer a product that utilizes both of these fabrics together.

Special Offer:  Save 10% off ALL Knickernappies products with Coupon Code KND10!  Offer Valid 07/30/10-08/08/10.

Do you love Diaper Junction?  Stay connected with them on FaceBook, Twitter, the Cloth Diaper Blog etc!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

"Dumping Disposable Diapers" is a must read for those new to cloth!

If you've never wandered over to Mothering.com then you're really missing out. Not only is it full of tons of great info from from topics like home birth, breastfeeding, vaccines and cooking to cloth diapering! The Mothering crew really has a love for cloth and they've got some great articles that are really worth reading.

One such article is Dumping Disposable Diapers, by Lindsay Evans. Lindasy shares with readers her thought process on making the switch, how the idea came about and why it works for her.

"as my stock of disposables dwindled and Amelia and I settled in to our new life together, the thought of continuously buying—and supporting the makers of—disposable diapers made me sick."

She covers the different styles of cloth diapers, their cost, how to care for them, and more in this great article. She even discusses traveling with cloth diapers and the environmental debate, cloth vs. disposables.

This is a perfect article if your a newbie, or considering making the switch to cloth. Head on over to Mothering and check it out! Come back and let me know what you think.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Meet Jenna, Our Featured Fluff Addict for this week!

Tell us a little about yourself, where you are located, how many kids you have,little ones in cloth, etc.-  My entry might be a little bit unique because I actually don't have any children yet.  I am 30 weeks pregnant with my first baby and I've never even put a cloth diaper on a baby before, yet I already have a stash of 25 cloth diapers!

I am 26 years old, getting ready to celebrate my first wedding anniversary on July 31st, and live in Louisville, KY.  I have a bachelors degree in Social Work.  Currently, I am a part-time nanny for two children and I plan on keeping this job after my daughter is born because I will be able to take her with me to work!

I pretty much spend all my free time researching cloth diapers.  I love reading and watching reviews on different diaper brands, and reading diaper blogs and forums.  My latest topic of research pertaining to cloth diapering is how to properly launder my diapers.  Also, I'm trying to figure out a way to prevent my diapers from staining once my daughter gets into the solid food stage.

What made you decide to give cloth diapers a try?  When I first found out I was pregnant, I was determined to do this "baby thing" as inexpensively as possible.  I asked a good friend what the most expensive thing about having a baby was, and she immediately responded:  "DIAPERS!" I then began researching prices of diapers and how many my baby would need each month.  I found that Target has the cheapest everyday prices on diapers-- $8.99 for a jumbo pack.  I also calculated that my baby would need around 225 diapers for the first month...which would be around 6 jumbo packs of diapers.  That's over $50 a month for diapers!  Obviously, some people do it for cheaper with coupons, sales, etc-- but this diaper thing was really rubbing me the wrong way.  I had to figure out a way to do diapering for cheap!  So, I started researching cloth diapers.  It was so overwhelming at first.  I had no idea there were so many options.  I spent COUNTLESS hours pouring over different websites, forums, and blogs trying to soak up as much information as possible. It took me a few months before I was 100% sure I wanted to exclusively cloth. I then brought all the facts and presented them to my husband.  At first, he was hesitant.  But, once he realized how much money we could save he slowly got on board and now he is 100% ready to cloth diaper our little girl in 10 short weeks!

What were your friends and family's reaction when seeing the "new" cloth diapers and have they been supportive or skeptical of your choice to use cloth diapers?  At first my mom was completely against it.  She said she would buy her own Pampers and use them when she watched the baby.  But, after I bought my first cloth diaper and showed it to her she was amazed at how much they looked like disposables and by how stinkin' cute they were!  Shortly after, she was already perusing Kelly's Closet buying me all sorts of cloth diapers to help me build my stash.

My husband's parents were supportive from the very beginning because they cloth diapered all 3 of their children.  My mother-in-law just used rags and safety pins!  WOW!

For my baby shower, I registered for cloth diapers and the only person who got me a few was my sister-in-law because she knew how much we needed help building or stash.  Plus, she is interested in cloth diapering her future children.  When I opened the package all 35 of the ladies looked at the diapers like they were foreign objects from outer space.  They all passed them around the room and played with them like they were toys...haha.  Most of them had never seen a modern cloth diaper before.

What was your very first cloth diaper?  A BumGenius Organic One-Sized in Clementine.  This is the one that hooked my mom into the whole idea of cloth diapering.

What type of diapers does your stash primarily consist of; pockets, aio, onesize, prefolds, flats, hybrids, etc.?  I primarily have One Size pocket diapers.  But, I have all different brands:  Bum Genius, Katydid, Happy Heinys, Rumparooz, Knickernappies, and Bum Essentials.  I also have 3 Flip diaper covers and 9 inserts.

What is your favorite Knickernappies product or which Knickernappies product are you dying to try and why?  Currently I own 1 Knickernappies One-Size diaper (in red) and it is one of my favorites because it snaps on the sides.  I can't wait to try it and would LOVE to have a few more for my stash :)

Do you have a favorite place to hang out and talk or learn about cloth ; a blog, message board, facebook page, etc?  I follow blogs such as The Cloth Diaper Blog, Knickernappies, The Cloth Diaper Whisperer, Baby Good Buys, Baby Cheapskate, and Diaperswappers.  I am also fans of all of these sites on Facebook and Twitter.

Also, I have one pregnant friend who is also going to cloth diaper her baby so we talk "fluff" a lot.  And, I have one friend who currently has 2 toddlers in cloth, so if I have any major questions I go to her.

Finally, I have a family blog that I often use as an outlet to write about my adventures in learning about cloth diapering. www.josiahandjenna.blogspot.com

What cloth diapering item, besides diapers, do you consider to be a must-have accessory?
  I can't say for sure yet since I don't have any experience, but I would say it will be a Planet Wise hanging wet pail.  I've been researching pail liners for about a month now and have finally decided on the hanging pail because we have a small apartment.  So, I think something that takes up less space, yet still keeps the odors in will be essential for us.  I'm also thinking a wet bag for the diaper bag will be a pretty important accessory too!

If you could share just one tip with someone who is just starting out with cloth or considering using cloth, what would be your best piece of advice to them?  Do your research and make the decision that is best for your family.  Once you decide, don't let any negativity from friends/family discourage you.  Remember why you chose cloth in the first place.  We are committed to saving up a large amount of cash for a down payment towards our first house, so extra frivolous spending on a baby was not an option.  Cloth is what will help us reach our financial goals because it will help us save money in the long run-- that's why we chose cloth and were sticking to it! 

*Facebook link:  http://www.facebook.com/jennahellekson
*Twitter handle:  @jennahellekson

*Are you interested in being our Featured Fluff Addict?  Visit our FaceBook Page and in the Discussions Tab you'll find all the info you need regarding this opportunity.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Knickernappies makes the 10 Top 10 Lists For Going Green!

We are pleased to announce that out of over 3000 sites/products who were considered, Knickernappies made the cut! 

10 Top 10 Lists For Going Green is an e-book consisting of 10 separate lists consisting of 10 unique sites and/or products each.   Each listing features a description and links to the featured site/product/resource.

What are the 10 Lists?
  • Your Children
  • Your Garbage
  • Your Garden
  • Your Home
  • Your Inspiration
  • Your Life
  • Your Money
  • Your Pets & Animals
  • Your Resources
  • Your Self
50% of the profit from sales of the 10 Top 10 Lists is being donated to various charities and non-profits each month.

For a sneak peek at the book or to order one click -HERE-

Monday, July 26, 2010

Cloth Diaper Virgins! Answers to all your frequently asked questions.

Retailer Contributed Article by Kozzy Bottoms

How many times I have come across the people that as soon as I mention I cloth diaper they give me a fake smile and then change the conversation. What is it about cloth diapers that intimidate and scare everyone away? It is the washing? Is it the rows of snaps and Velcro? The feeling that you need a degree just to understand the language used in cloth diapering? Or is it the dreaded poop issues that scare people away from cloth diapers?

      I can tell you that just from our short experience with selling cloth diapers people are amazed to see how far they have come and how much diapers have evolved. I call these people the Cloth Diaper Virgins.  C.D.V. are people who wanted to cloth diaper but something kept them from trying it. It could be something so simple but once they get a diaper in their hands and get to actually use it they fall in love. I was a C.D.V. and now I am a die-hard cloth diapering momma. The day we had to pack up our diapers was a sad day for me. 

      I have watched my husband, the most stubborn of all men, convert from a C.D.V. to a cloth diapering dad. He even loves to take the rein and tell people at shows and explain the diapers. Sometimes it helps to know that even dads are ok with the diapers and how easy you fall into a routine with them and how easy it becomes.

      We have found that there are four main parts that bother C.D.V. which scare them off from cloth diapering. We are going to acknowledge this and help other C.D.V. and bring them to the cloth diapering world. It really becomes much easier to understand love for cloth when we cover the points:
    • The poop?- We have found so many people are scared of cloth diapers because they are intimidated by the poop. It was a huge thing for us to surpass when we started cloth diapers but then we noticed something that made a light bulb go off for us.  Everyone thinks you have a diaper pail full of poopy diapers and its going to stink and be so messy. Wrong. Amazingly there is even less poopy mess when you use cloth versus disposable diapers. When you toss a disposable diaper in your trash can or diaper pail you toss the whole mess.  They get so stinky and when you child gets into solid food you may as well get a personal gas mask for diaper changes because that’s when you learn about real stink!!  When you use cloth diapers you flush the poop away, a simple shake into the potty and all that remains is the smear, unless it was a messy diaper, and you toss the diaper in your pail to wash.  So when you look at the comparison you have a pail full of poopy stinky diapers when using disposables or you have a pail of smeared diapers when you use cloth.  Truth is cloth is less stink.
    • Washing- I can’t tell you how many dads we have come across that flat out say no to cloth because they don’t want the poop in the washer. My husband swore up and down that his clothes would smell like poop. We found out it was actually the laundry soap that was the problem not the diapers thank goodness. As we discussed above there is not much poop going into your washer after you flush everything away and you wash what is left away. I threw in a couple drops of tea tree oil in our wash and the smell was great and we designated a day to washing the diapers. That way when I was done washing I would run a rinse cycle with bleach so there would be no poop issues in the wash for the rest of our clothes.  Washing really is not much more difficult then when you do your daily wash: you rinse, you wash and then you dry. For those who have never dealt with washing cloth diapers I think that the washing is the most intimidating part but once you learn how easy it and it becomes second nature they are much less scary to C.D.V.
    • Language- Sometimes I feel like I need a degree in order to understand the language involved with cloth diapers. Aio, Flat Fold, Pre fold, AIO2.  Can you blame them! For those who don’t have someone to break it down for them and explain what is what it can be very intimidating a scary because they are not sure what to buy or order.  By putting a quick description with the diaper and explaining what the cloth nickname for it is helps the C.D.V. feel as though they are part of the cloth diapering world.
    • Price-  So many people pass on cloth diapers because they just don’t think they can afford it but the truth is you save money when you cloth diaper. It’s not something you see right away but over the period that you diaper you save almost have the amount of money you would use on disposable cloth diapers. We figured it out that you spend around $412 dollars for one child per year! Now say you spend $300 on cloth diapers you have already saved money and that’s just in the first year alone! You don’t have to buy brand new cloth diapers, you can also buy used cloth diapers which save you money and you can use cloth diapers for multiple kids so you save even more money in the long run. The great thing is cloth diapers hold their resell value so you can resell them and still make a percentage of your money back. You can’t do that with disposable diapers, you use it once and then your done.
    So Cloth Diaper Virgins come out of hiding and see that cloth diapers are really not that scary. They are just as easy as disposable diapers and better in the long run. Come on out and be converted over to the cloth diapering side! 
    Elysse is a work-at-home military wife to her active little toddler who recently became potty trained.  But that doesn't stop her from converting all the Cloth Diaper Virgins she can find and convincing them to give cloth a try You can visit Kozzy Bottoms at their website where you can find Knickernappies and other products that you need and want for your little one.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Knickernappies Sighting: Christmas in July Sale, Giveaways & more!

Bum Covered Diapers is doing a Christmas in July sale this weekend with 15% off Knickernappies pocket diapers and inserts, and we're also giving away a Knickernappies 2G pocket diaper during the sale. Details can be found on our Facebook Page or on our blog (http://bumcovereddiapers.blogspot.com).

WeeLittleChanges is also having a Christmas in July Sale! Save 10% off with code JulyXMas and don't forget to enter their giveaway for a Knickernappies Onesize Diaper! Giveaway ends August 22, 2010.
Don't forget to check the Knickernappies Wall by viewing posts by Knickernappies & Others and you'll find tons of other sale announcements by Knickernappies Retailers as well as giveaways and more!

Also, while you're on the FaceBook Page make sure you become a Fan of our retailers to stay up to date on all the latest and greatest!

Friday, July 23, 2010

All about Tea Tree oil! Can you use it on your cloth diaper laundry?

This is a re-published article from DiaperDiscussions Blog.

Tea Tree oil is a hot topic in the cloth diapering world.  Some swear it's the best thing since sliced bread and others swear you shouldn't use it.  Many natural products contain tea tree and boast about it being one of mother natures greatest gifts.  Let's take a closer look at Tea Tree and see if we can come to any conclusions for or against it's use.

What is Tea Tree oil and what makes it so special?
Tea Tree oil, aka Melaleuca oil, is an essential oil taken from the leaves of the Melaleuca alternifolia tree, native to Australia. This oil has naturally occurring antiseptic, antifungal and antibacterial properties. It is most commonly used in a diluted form. It can cause skin irritation even after dilution so testing for allergies or skin sensitivities is recommended before use.

Tea Tree is also commonly used to treat acne, skin infection, athlete's foot and head lice among many other things.

Does Tea Tree work for washing diapers and killing bacteria? If so, how?  Honestly, in my research I've found that the recommended amount needed to definitevley kill bacteria in laundry would be more than I would recommend using on cloth diapers. Unlike regular laundry, it is important that the oil does not build up on your diapers and cause them to repel. For this reason it is not recommended that you use more than 1-2 drops of Tea Tree oil in your wash or in your wet pail.

Also, due to the fact that Tea Tree oil is naturally a very potent oil, even when diluted, adding more than 1-2 drops to you diaper laundry could very well cause skin sensitivies and rash issues with your baby.

Even though you may not be able to rely on 1-2 drops of the oil to rid you of your bacterial problems, you can count on it to help mask and neutralize odors and keep them smelling fresh and soft.

My best advice is to experiement with the use of Tea Tree for your diapers. Start with 1-2 drops and increase if needed making sure that your diapers aren't getting oil build up and that your babe's bum is still rash free.

*Another important note...In researching this topic I did come across those who beleive that the use of Tea Tree, due to it's antibacterial properties, could contribute to the evolution of "superbugs," antibacterial resistant microorganisms. They belive that the use of low-dose Tea Tree that is not stong enough to kill bad microbes acutally toughen their defenses making them stronger and more resistant.

Likewise, I found information disputing the above claims.

So my conclusion is that using tea tree is something you should decide on your own.  If you can find suitable alternatives then you may want to go that route.  If you already love and use tea tree in your day to day routines as well as your cloth diapering laundry and have experienced no problems then good for you!  Tea tree is definitely not something to treat as lightly as if it were just another essential oil, it is a powerful natural remedy who's medicinal properties should always be taken into consideration.

Do you have an experience with tea tree oil that you'd like to share?  Please leave us your comments, we'd love to read them!

Written by the Cloth Diaper Geek, Copyright 2009 DiaperDiscussions

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Become a local cloth diaper advocate with the help of the RDA!

Do you love cloth?  Well then you should help spread the word about cloth diapering, how easy it is and how modern cloth diapers do exist.  Each and every one of you is probably an expert in the field and when you combine your knowledge with the tools and resources that the RDA has to offer then you're ready to be a local advocate for cloth!


Have you been to the RDA lately and checked out all that they have to offer?  They offer
  • Advice on how and where to promote cloth
  • Free printable brochures and handouts
  • Cloth diaper advocacy badges for your blog or website
  • Volunteer opportunities
  • Become a Real Diaper Circle Leader
  • Find out if there is already a Real Diaper Circle near you
  • Tons of cloth diapering facts, resources & articles
  • Cloth Diaper Friendly Daycare Directory
  • and much more!
You don't have to be a retailer to be a member of the RDA and become a Circle Leader, you just have to be a cloth diaper user and have a passion for it.  Everyone knows you can't have one without the other!

Where can you promote cloth?
  • Hospitals
  • Daycares
  • Church
  • Moms Groups
  • Playgrounds
  • Grocery Stores
  • anywhere you want!
Visit the RDA today and read all about the advocacy opportunities available.  For tons of great info read the RDA's Article "You Are the Local Cloth Diaper Advocate" from their Quarterly Newsletter.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Knickernappies Sighting on The Cloth Diaper Blog!

If you're a cloth diapering mama then chances are you've heard of The Cloth Diaper Blog!  The Cloth Diaper Blog is the official blog of Diaper Junction and is also the home of Feed Your Stash Fridays.  Diaper Junction is one of Knickernappies newer retailers and we can't tell you how proud we are that they've
become a part of the Knickernappies family!
Just this week The Cloth Diaper Blog featured Knickernappies and we couldn't be more pleased.  The Diaper Dish spotlighted Knickernappies OS Diapers and gave a fabulous and thorough review of them that you don't want to miss.  Click on the screenshot below to be directed to the Cloth Diaper Blog and read the article in it's entirety.
While you're there be sure to become a follower of The Cloth Diaper Blog and check out all the great resources they have to offer!  You can also become a Fan of Diaper Junction & The Cloth Diaper Blog by clicking HERE.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Winner of the Fourth of July Diaper Trio is...fancygrlnancy!

Congratulations to lucky comment #1234, fancygrlnancy a.k.a. Arizona Mama!  She's the lucky winner of our fabulous Fourth of July Diaper Trio!  This means she gets three diapers; Red, White & Blue Knickernappies sized diapers!

Please stop by her Blog Arizona Mama and congratulate her!  Nancy, please contact us at marketing@knickernappies.com to claim your prize! 

Thanks to everyone who entered, this was by far our most successful giveaway yet!

Friday, July 16, 2010

This week's Featured Knickernappies Retailer is....SnuggleHugs located in Berea Ohio!

 It's Friday again!  Time to feature another fabulous Knickernappies retailer.  This week the spotlight is on Christine of SnuggleHugs!  Read our interview below and get to know the wahm behind SnuggleHugs a little better.

Tell us a little about yourself, your family, if you have little ones in cloth diapers, etc.-My name is Christine, and I am the lucky wife of David and mother to 6 of the most beautiful children around.  We have 4 girls ages 26, 10, 7 and 6 our boys are 18 and 9.  We live in Berea Ohio which is just west and south of Cleveland.  Our children have all outgrown diapers now unfortunately so we patiently await grandbabies to diaper and baby wear.   

Do you have a physical store or do you sell online only?   We do not have a B&M yet but are working towards that goal.  We do offer personal consultations for our local families for a nominal fee which is returned to them in the form of store credit.

How'd you get started cloth diapering and what made you decide to open your own business?   Our first introduction to today’s cloth diaper was a bit unorthodox although the method was effective. I introduced my girlfriend to baby wearing which she grew to love almost as much as I do. One afternoon she showed up at my house without calling with a HUGE bag of cloth diapers. She told me “I’m not leaving until you have tried every one of these diapers!” She had prefolds, covers, fitted diapers, pocket diapers and all-in-ones. She stayed for 6 hours letting my little one “test out” every one of the diapers she brought. Her tactic worked. I was sold. When my husband got home that night (yes she was still here) I said “Guess what we are going to start doing now Honey!?” Cloth diapers and baby wearing were my brand new passions. That afternoon was over 7 years ago and they both are still just as much a passion in my life.

What do you like best about being in the cloth diaper industry?  
The best part of the cloth diaper industry is the families I get to meet and help.  I have met some really great people both as customers or fellow retailers that I would never have had the chance to if I was not in this business.  I love getting to help new families make their first steps into a whole new world.

 What are your favorite Knickernappies products and why?  The side snapping feature of Knickernappies lends itself to reduced bulk around the middle making it easier to fit under clothes.  If you are using the sized pockets or the one size the side snapping feature is wonderful.  Personally we preferred the sized diapers.  Next I would have to say is the Super-Do insert although a bit on the think side compared to just a micro fiber insert it absorbs like no ones business perfect for nap and over nights or just heavy wetters.  We do wish that the Super-Do was available when our little ones were in cloth.

Special Offer:  Save 10% off ALL Knickernappies products with code KND10 at checkout!  Valid until July 31, 2010.

Want to stay connected with SnuggleHugs?
Follow SunggleHugs on Twitter at www.twitter.com/snugglehugs
Become a FAN of SnuggleHugs on FaceBook >HERE<.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Finding your cloth diapering groove....it's not so hard!

Reader Contributed Article

Many people respond with wide eyes that seem to say, "You're crazy! I would never do that!" when they realize that I cloth diaper full time, as if I were spending all my time slaving away. I've been giving it some serious thought lately, because it doesn't feel like a difficult thing to me. I've been asking myself, "In all honestly, is it really that much work?" After much thought, my honest response is, "No." Cloth diapering is not as hard as many people think it is, and I'm definitely not spending tons of time slaving away over it. Let me explain my reasoning.

In the same way that cloth diapers are an investment of money in the beginning (and huge savings in the long run), they are also an investment of time and mental energy in the beginning, but not for the duration. When I first started cloth diapering I do admit that I spent a lot of time learning about the different kinds of diapers out there, and how to use and wash them. Since my baby girl came early and nursed for at least an hour at a time, I spent a good amount of that time reading and asking questions on forums about how to care for them. I had a few issues with washing in the beginning, due to my own stubbornness. I had been determined to use less than the recommended water for cleaning my diapers, which looking back was very foolish. Had I just gone with the recommendations, I would have had no problems! Much of my looking up information and re-washing diapers was due to this. You can read about a few lessons I learned the hard way about washing cloth diapers here. This led to lots of reading and re-reading, and I admit it was overwhelming as I learned about detergents and how many of them leave residue, how this or that can cause rashes, and how this or that cleaning agent can harm this or that cloth diapering product. However, even though it took some serious thought and investigation in the beginning, as soon as I found the wash regimen and products that work for me, I've settled into a routine and do not feel like the diapers are much effort at all! When I do come upon issues now, it's easy to tweak things without much ado.

Most things we do in life take getting used to, finding our groove, or getting into a routine. It is the same with cloth diapering. Many dirty diapers and washes later, I can honestly say it takes me just a few seconds to change my baby's diaper, and just a minute or so to spray them or just toss them in the pail. Washing them has become simply a regular part of the laundry. I just throw them in, run the cycle and when they're done, guess what! No folding required! I dump them on the nursery floor, do a quick sort, by stacking the different items on top of each other and stick them in the drawers. They are actually the easiest laundry I have.

Motivation also plays a huge role in one's perspective about anything in life. I have been very motivated from the beginning to make cloth diapering work because I saw it as a huge way to save money for my family. Since I have discovered that it gives me a great feeling to know that I am not adding to landfills in this way, and I love the fact that I never have to run out and buy more diapers. I enjoy diaper rash and yucky leaks being a very rare occurrence. There are so many unique types of cloth diapering products and I enjoy trying different kinds. I have to admit that I think modern cloth diapers and covers are super cute, which adds substantially to my motivation! So, with all that plus having this cute little helper, it would be worth it even if it were difficult!

Bio, Amy is just a novice in all things domestic keeping a log of what she learns on her blog The Cheap and Choosy. From cooking to cloth diapering, to crafting or budgeting, this is a log of ideas that she finds to be worth sharing

*Are you interested in sharing an article with the Knickernappies Blog?  Contact marketing(at)knickernappies.com for more information on becoming a contributor.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Where do all the cloth diapering mamas hang out?

When I first heard about cloth diapers I was a member of a message board for parents of multiples.  There really was no cloth diapering section but there were a few moms who cloth diapered and and had pictures of their little ones in cloth.  After taking the plunge and buying my first little mini-stash of gently used cloth diapers off of one of those mamas I was also told about the existence of entire communities online, massive forums, dedicated to the sole purpose of cloth diapering.

I must say, it was overwhelming to see but also a relief to know that there were so many other families that were using cloth diapers and everyone was super willing to give their support and share their knowledge.

Since then there's been a dramatic increase in blogging, particularly blogging mommies and wahm business owners.  Also the debut of FaceBook Fan Pages, Twitter and many other social networking sites, most of which I am still unfamiliar with.

I am curious as to where all you cloth diapering mamas hang out online?  Do you find that you now spend less time on message boards and more time on Twitter or are you a FaceBook addict?  Do you chat with fellow cloth diapering moms on the various fan pages or participate in Twitter parties or scheduled chats?  Are you obsessed with entering giveaways or following all your favorite mom bloggers?  Are you now a blogger yourself, trying to make a name for yourself and develop a following?

We'd love for you to leave your comments and share how you feel the popularity of various social networking tools has affected what and where you hang out online and where you turn for all your cloth diapering info and resources.

Julie

Monday, July 12, 2010

A Modern Mommys Cloth Diaper Cheat Sheet!

Reader Contributed Article
 
When I started out with cloth diapers, I felt like I was fuddling through a world of all these special words and phrases.  I figured out most okay, but each day I learn something new.  As the adage goes, I wish I knew then what I knew now.  We started our stash with all AIOs to make things easier for my hubby.  I couldn't figure out why someone would choose one type over others.  Hopefully this will make it a bit easier to figure out what you want and need.

Types of Diapers
Pockets--These are diapers that look similar to disposables.  They have a pocket inside that you stuff with inserts to create different levels of absorbency (less for newborns or during the day, more for toddlers or overnight).  They don't need a cover, the outer layer is waterproof.  These seem to be one of the most popular styles.

AIO (all in ones)--They are one piece system, no stuffing, no liners, just put on and go.  These are great for starting out, caregivers, dads, etc.  With an older baby they're not super for overnights because you can't increase absorbency levels, although there are 'pocket all in ones' which can also be stuffed.  These, like pocket diapers, also don't require a cover.  

AI2 (all in two) or Hybrids--These are diapers that have a waterproof outer shell and interchangeable liners.  These are good for reducing laundry and drying time.  My experience so far is that they're not as absorbent (though adding an extra liner or insert does help).  They are called hybrids because they have an option for a disposable liner that is more eco friendly than regular disposable diapers.

Fitteds--These diapers are a more shapely alternative to prefolds.  They need a diaper cover, though, either wool, plastic or pul.

Prefolds--These are your standard, previous generations diapers.  They need a diaper cover.  Cheapest way to use cloth.  Great for dust rags when they're retired (as anyone from previous generations will tell you).  Many different ways to fold them and work great with either pins or a snappi.

Materials
Organic Cotton--Average absorbency, average speed on absorbing (takes a LONG time to prep but works well)
Microfiber--Absorbs quickly but not as absorbent or as trim as hemp.  It is NOT recommended that it be put directly against baby's skin, use a fleece liner as a barrier.
Hemp--Absorbs a LOT and is a much more natural and trim alternative to synthetics.
Fleece or Suedecloth--Often used as a soft and stay-dry barrier between baby and absorbent layers.
Wool--Used as a cover, doesn't have to be washed very often, waterproof yet breathable.  When washed does require special care.
PUL (polyester laminate)--Most common waterproof outer used for various cloth diapers and covers.  Very durable and available in a variety of cute colors and prints.

Other Terms
One Size--A diaper designed to fit from birth/small infancy to potty training.  They might not work well for a newborn or a bigger potty trainer.  Downside--Depending on the brand, some are more bulky on tiny babies than sized diapers.
Sized--A diaper that has a specific size (S,M,L) based on weight.  Slimmer/better fitting, but less versatility. 
Snappi--Basically this is the modern diaper pin (reminds me of an Ace Bandage clip)
Aplix/Velcro--Brand names for hook and loop closures, good for getting a better fit and easy changes but can wear out more quickly and can be problematic when toddlers figure it out (as opposed to snaps)

I'm sure there is much more information out there, so much I've missed.  With all the options out there, it can be very overwhelming.  If you decide which options are most important to you right now, you can get started with any type.  Once you've been doing it a bit, you'll find what you like and what you want.  Our stash started with all AIOs for convenience.  Then we added a handful of hybrids for extended outings.  From here out, we'll get pockets to polish off our collection for variable absorbency as our little boy grows.

Bio--Tina is a first time mom learning the ropes and figuring out how to be a modern mommy!  Visit her at http://makingofamodernmommy.blogspot.com!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Will the oil spill cause more cloth diaper converts?

As the days continue to fly by and the oil continues to gush from the BP oil well, it seems that the decisions we need to make are becoming all too clear.  We're dependent on oil in so many ways we cannot even fathom.  Can we make a difference by making different choices?

Over the last ten years or so there's been a rise in the "green movement," a rise in the amount of interest in living more eco-friendly lifestyles, making greener choices and attempting to create less waste as we go through life.  Not everyone has jumped on board, many saw it as a trend and couldn't see the big picture, how the choices we make day to day can affect our children and our children's children for years to come.

Where do cloth diapers fit in?  To many cloth diapering may seem like just a small step towards going green, after all it does still require the use of additional energy and water.  Some claim that cloth diapers and disposables each cancel out the benefits and disadvantages of each other and that one is not a clear choice over the other.  But in reality, especially today's reality, using cloth diapers can make a huge difference.

According to a recent Huffington Post article, Eco Etiquette 
"Nearly 3.5 billion gallons of oil are used to produce the 18 billion throwaway diapers that Americans toss each year. To put that in perspective, that's more than the amount of crude we import annually from Kuwait."

What's even more shocking?  With these statistics disposable companies are stepping it up in order to try and keep families from considering cloth diapers.  Now they've come out with designer prints for babies to poop in.  The concept seems so absurd it's almost hard to imagine anyone buying them but they will I am sure.  They may as well just go over to the garbage can and throw their money in it because that's essentially what they'll be doing.

It is certainly depressing, the situation we've gotten ourselves into with this devastating oil spill, but we've made our bed and now we've got to lay in it.  There doesn't seem to be any end in site to this catastrophy and if you're anything like me then you feel absolutely helpless.

So what are your thoughts?  Do you think that this crisis will be a wake-up call to more families reminding them that there's no change too small, that even things like reusable baby diapers can make a great difference in the grand scheme of things?  Has your family considered making any additional lifestyle changes because of the oil spill?  We'd love for you to share your thoughts.

Julia Clark, DiaperDiscussions

Friday, July 9, 2010

Go, Baby, Go! is this week's Featured Knickernappies Retailer!

 Go, Baby, Go! is this weeks Featured Retailer!  Read our interview below and get to know Diane a little better!

 Tell us a little about yourself, your family, if you have little ones in cloth diapers, etc.-My name is Diane Turner, and I am the proud work-at-home-mom (WAHM) to 4 beautiful children. I have been married to my wonderful husband, Kelly, since 1998, and he has been with the San Antonio Fire Department since that time as well. I am a San Antonio native, and my family currently lives just outside the southeast corner of the city. We enjoy home-schooling our children, which we find is a perfect fit for the odd fire fighter schedule my husband is on, and it allows us to live at a slower pace and really enjoy our children.

How'd you get started cloth diapering and what made you decide to open your own business?  Go, Baby, Go! was born in October of 2007, when Kelly & I saw a need for natural parenting products close to home. I had worn each of my first 2 babies in different kinds of carriers, from the very mainstream and uncomfortable Snuggli, to the bulky, but better Nojo sling. I was introduced to the Moby Wrap by a friend when I was pregnant with #3. I wore my baby everywhere in the Moby Wrap, and everywhere I went, I was mobbed with people, usually other mothers, wanting to know what kind of carrier I was wearing and where I got it. I loved telling other mothers about the Moby Wrap and explaining the benefits of babywearing.

I was also using cloth diapers with baby #3, which I didn’t do with my first 2. Once I found out more and more about all the options and how easy today’s cloth diapers are to use and how different they are from what most people think they are, I knew I had to share that information as well.


Do you still have any little ones in cloth diapers?
I currently have 1 baby left in cloth. Penny is baby #4 and 15 months old. We had 2 in cloth for a short time, as my son Luke, transitioned to the potty after Penny was born. Having one size diapers made life a little easier when 2 were in diapers!



Anything else you'd like to share about Go, Baby, Go! Shop?
Go, Baby, Go! Is an at-home business with an on-line shop & Independent Consultants now in 6 states, including Texas. We offer personal consultations, classes & cloth diaper parties. All our consultants love cloth diapers as much as we do, and I LOVE that I am helping other mothers earn a little money while educating and helping other parents with the switch to cloth.


What are your favorite Knickernappies products and why? I LOVE the one-size pocket diapers! The side snaps are a favorite feature, not to mention the large size range! The colors are so bright & adorable!

Stay connected with Go, Baby, Go! by following them on FaceBook and Twitter

*Special Offer:  Save 10% off on in-stock Knickernappies Onesize Diapers & LoopyDo Inserts through July 15, 2010!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

What is the RDIA and what's it got to do with you?

Have you ever heard of the RDIA, Real Diaper Industry Association?  No.  Well then this post is just for you!  We'd like to fill you in on what the RDIA is all about, why it's important, and how it affects you.

The RDIA is a 501(c)(6) trade association.  It was founded in September of 2008 and is made up of a Board of Directors consisting of Manufacturers, Retailers, Diaper Service owners and other cloth diaper professionals and also has Associate Members.

The Real Diaper Industry Association's goal is...

"to make reusable cloth diapers the primary choice for babies’ parents and caregivers while emphasizing responsibility and sustainability through a focus on people, planet, and profit."

How on earth does the RDIA plan to achieve such an ambitious goal?  Through collaborative efforts and uniformity by it's members the RDIA will essentially set a standard for the industry, creating better business practices, cloth diaper resources, and assist in better marketing cloth diapers worldwide.

What are some of the things the RDIA has already done?
Consider Cloth Campaign
The Consider Cloth Demo Kit is a Free educational kit for childbirth educators, midwives, doulas, lactation consultants and birthing center directors to assist them in providing cloth diapering information to their clients.

Each kit provides information on,
  • Why cloth diapers are a good choice, highlighting their benefits and ease of use; 
  • the different types of diapers available today; and
  • resources to learn more about cloth diapering.
For more information on the Consider Cloth Campaign and how to qualify, click HERE.

Guide to Washing Cloth Diapers
The RDIA seeks to provide a standard and reliable source to all cloth diapering families with accurate and readily available information on
  • Preparing Cloth Diapers for first-time use
  • Washing Cloth Diapers
  • Choosing and Using Detergent for Cloth Diapers
Tow download and print a pdf version of the RDIA's Guide to Washing Cloth Diapers click HERE.

Daycare Directory
The RDA & RDIA have teamed up to provide parents with assistance in location cloth diaper friendly caregivers in their area by creating the Daycare Directory!

What does the cloth diaper industry and the RDIA mean to Knickernappies owner Heather Hicks?  Well I asked her a few questions and below you'll find her answers!

How has the cloth diapering industry changed since you've been a part of it?  So much has changed in the past 5 years!  The industry has matured a lot: most diapers now come with professional packaging, manufacturers are hiring PR firms to help promote cloth to mainstream families, and many diaper stores are now run by corporations rather than WAHMs.  It's a fabulous industry to be a part of, though, and I love being able to work with families and retailers.

Why did you join the RDIA?  Knickernappies is a charter member of the RDIA because I believe in the association's goals and the things we can accomplish if we work together.  In my former career, I was a member of a professional organization and I saw the benefits that come from a well-run industry group.  Collective bargaining for services, sharing of information, having a consistent message for consumers, etc...these are all things that are happening within the RDIA and that's a benefit for everyone in cloth diapering, whether you're a manufacturer, retailer, or consumer.

Why is the RDIA so important?  Every "real" industry has an association.  Once the cloth diaper industry started to mature, it was time for us to have our own professional association.  It's important for retailers to have a collective voice and it's important for manufacturers to share information and resources.

Well I hope this post has helped you better understand the RDIA and the role they play here in the cloth diaper industry.  Thank you for supporting the cloth diaper industry!  Please visit  www.realdiaperindustry.org for more info on how you can help or for how you can become a member.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Having fun and penny pinching in your laundry room: Elysse recommends wool dryer balls!

Retailer Contributed Article by Kozzy Bottoms

My laundry room anxiety had me start looking for other ways to cheat the system and find ways to make laundry bearable.  It is amazing the things you find on the internet and how a couple new laundry items, including my super new washer and dryer! , have made me dash down to my laundry room.

I was never one to clean. I hated having to clean and it took my mom very creative ways to get me to clean.  I have learned to adapt them over the years to get myself to clean and organize. My favorite game my mother played with me was the witch tower.  She used to have me pretend that I was a princess locked away in a tower and I had to hurry up and race to clean up everything before the witch would come back and lock me away forever.  I’m telling you my room would be spotless when we played this game!  Now I don’t play this game anymore but I have adapted it to now, I race myself to get the laundry done.  I treat myself to something when laundry is done too. We as parents deserve treats too even if it’s just something as simple as watching something from our never ending dvr list.

We also added some new products to our laundry room that make me excited to do laundry and they save money too.  My favorite was our dryer balls and our new laundry soap. I am the worst when it comes to remembering to add dryer sheets to my laundry. I rush to get everything washed and forget but with our new wool dryer balls they make it so nice. I don’t have to worry about dryer sheets anymore, I can throw in the dryer balls and that’s it! They come in so many amazing scents that make me hungry when our laundry come out, our family favorite is called monkey fart, and the wools absorbs water and they fluff our clothes and they dry faster too. It’s great money saving tool and couple it with our new scented laundry soap and my laundry room has become my new haven.

Our new laundry soap is hand-made and doesn’t have all the harsh chemicals and we don’t feel grimy when wearing our clothes. The combination of scents and cleaning power makes our clothes come out bright and clean and the scent is so strong it makes my whole laundry room smell amazing. A great place for mommy to get away and I no longer dread the mountains of laundry.

So next time you see your laundry piling up and you dread heading to your laundry room then think of these great products that make it a little bit more bearable and keep a little bit more money in your pocket!

These items can be found at Kozzy Bottoms.

This article was written and contributed by Elysse Fleece, owner of Kozzy Bottoms. A extended nursing military mom to one busy toddler. 

Monday, July 5, 2010

How do you know if you need new inserts?

Recently I was speaking to a cloth diapering mama who was stressed because ALL her pocket diapers were leaking, regardless of the brand. Some of the diapers were new, some were old.  She just couldn't figure out why this was happening. She'd tried stripping them, washing, switching detergents, etc. and still couldn't figure out the root of the problem.

After hearing everything she had tried I felt there was only one question left to ask.
What type of inserts are you using and how old are they?

Turns out she's using micro inserts that were previously used when she bought them online. It's my belief that is where her problem lies. Microfiber wears down over time and becomes less and less absorbent. I am sure that you all have inserts, some are older than others, and you can tell the difference. The newer microfiber inserts are fluffy and soft while the older ones seem thin and almost as if the fluffy terry part has worn off, in most cases it has.

While saving money by buying gently used diapers is a great idea, buying used micro inserts does not always work.

Microfiber inserts are actually made of micro-terry. If you're inserts no longer look thick and fluffy then chances are they need to be replaced. It's not a bad idea to try and test their absorbency. Try soaking up some liquid with them and see how much they really can still hold.

Even if you have a great stash of diapers to last you through potty training and you plan on saving them for use on future children I feel it is safe to say you're going to need to keep adding new inserts and take the older ones out of rotation.

So if you've been feeling bad about cloth diapering because of leaky diapers then give yourself a boost! Try purchasing a new stash of inserts and see if this doesn't cure your cloth diaper blues!

Knickernappies Retailers carry a wide variety of inserts that can be purchased individually or in bulk. If you really want to treat yourself, we recommend the LooyDo and SuperDo!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Knickernappies 4th of July Giveaway! Enter to win 2G Diaper Trio! (Ends 07-18-10)

We know, it's been a while since our last giveaway so we're making this one a super sweet deal! In honor of Independence Day we're going to be giving away a Red, White & Blue 2G Pocket Diaper Trio w/ Inserts in the size of your choice!

Guidelines For Entry-
  • First entry requirement is to visit our Retailer Locator, enter your zip code and comment with which Knickernappies Retailer is closest to you!
  • Please comment once per entry so that you are entered the correct number of times in the giveaway.
  • Make sure you either leave your email address, blog or website address in each comment or make sure you are logged in to your Blogger account so that we can be sure to have a way of reaching you should you win.
  • Contest is open to participants WORLDWIDE.
  • Contest runs from Sunday July 4, 2010 12:00am to Sunday July 18, 2010 9:00pm.
  • Winner is chosen via random.org and winning announcements are posted on Monday.
  • Participants have 7 days from close of giveaway to respond and claim their prize.
How to earn extra entries-
  • Earn (1) extra entry for letting us know what your plans are or were for the holiday.
  • Earn (1) extra entry for posting a pic of your baby in a KN diaper to our FaceBook Fan Page!
  • Earn (1) extra entry for becoming a FAN of Knickernappies on Facebook!
  • Earn (1) extra entry for Following the Knickernappies Blog.
  • Earn (1) extra entry when you Follow @Knickernappies on Twitter.
  • Earn (3) extra entries each time you Tweet about the giveaway, please be sure to include a link to the giveaway and use #clothdiapers in your tweet. (Max. 2 tweets per day)
  • Earn (1) extra entry when you place the Knickernappies Blog Button or any of our Knickernappies Bling on your blog or site and comment with a link to where you placed it.
  • Earn (3) extra entries when you invite your FaceBook Friends to become a FAN of Knickernappies or Announce the Giveaway.
  • Earn (1) extra entry for each comment you leave to a non giveaway blog post on the Knickernappies Blog.
  • Earn (5) extra entries when you Blog about the giveaway in a blog post. Please include a link to the giveaway and feel free to grab any of the graphics we've used in our giveaway post.
Good Luck!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Knickernappies Retailer of the Week! Loads of Joy Boutique & Diaper Service!

The week's Featured Retailer is not only a Knickernappies Retailer but also a Diaper Service! It's Loads of Joy in Newnan, Georgia!

Tell us a little about yourself, your family, if you have little ones in cloth diapers, etc.-I am a WAHM that started my own diaper service/online shop in April of 2009. I started this service because I lost my job. My daughter, Katrina, was in cloth because she was allergic to disposables and when I started the cloth adventure I searched for a diaper service in my area and couldn't find one. So I thought if I was washing diapers for my daughter, I could wash diapers for others. :)

I am married to my husband, Jonathan, for the last 5 1/2 years. I have a 12 year old son, Chad, from a previous marriage, and a 12 year old stepdaughter, Megan, that is from my husband's previous marriage (this is #2 marriage for both of us). We built a home together in Newnan, GA next to my grandfather and I help take care of him because he will be 90 in August. :)

Do you have a Brick & Mortar retail business or is it online only? I do rent space from a local knitting shop, Two Sisters Knitting Nook, with store space and have Knickernappies available for sale!

How'd you get started cloth diapering and what made you decide to open your own business? As I mentioned before, I started cloth diapering because Katrina developed a chemical burn type rash in disposables and so I tried the chlorine free disposables, but they were rough and expensive so I searched for cloth diapers. I found a lady who sold me some Knickernappies and I fell in love. I cloth diapered my daughter starting at about 4 months of age and if I had known how easy it was I would have done it from birth. I decided to open my diaper service after I lost my job and thought selling cloth diapers would be a natural extension of the service.

What do you like best about being involved in the Cloth Diaper Industry? That I am helping babies live in cotton underwear just like their mommies and daddies wear - I usually ask people if they would like to wear paper underwear!

What are your favorite Knickernappies products and why? My favorite KN products are the SuperDo's because they are a no fail system for overnight - if you have an extra heavy wetter, just add a layer of just hemp (2nd favorite) and I have never had a leak!

*Special Offer: Save 10% on ALL in stock Knickernappies products and be sure to check the website and FaceBook page for exclusive 4th of July savings!

Twitter: www.twitter.com/loadsofjoy
Facebook: www.facebook.com/loadsofjoydiaperservice
Blog: www.jennifersloadsofjoy.blogspot.com

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Cloth for the Coast - Help save the gulf by donating cloth diapers and inserts!


As a Florida resident, the Gulf Oil Spill is on our minds daily. Summertime here is beach season and every time we are able to go to our beautiful beaches we are reminded that others on the Gulf Coast, like Louisiana and Florida's panhandle are not so lucky, who knows when they'll ever get to enjoy their coastline again.

You may not know this but fellow cloth diaper manufacturer FuzziBunz is located in Louisiana and has found a way that the cloth diapering community can help with this horrific disaster.

Tereson has started "Cloth for the Coast." After much research and cutting through red tape she has found that donations of new or used inserts, prefolds and other cloth diapers can be used to assist in the cleanup and in rehabilitating the affected wildlife.

While we may all feel helpless to stop this terrible oil spill from continuing to affect our coastlines and wildlife I think that it is awesome that there IS something we can do to help.

Please become a FAN of Cloth for the Coast on FaceBook and send your donations to

FuzziBunz Diapers
Attn: CFC
315 Weeks St
New Iberia, LA 70560

Items that you can send are; microfiber towels, absorbent inserts, pocket diaper inserts of any kind, washcloths, burpcloths, baby blankets and more.

It is preferred that items be free of snaps, elastic and velcro but if needed volunteers will be able to sort the donated items and will be donating the items that can not be used in the cleanup efforts to charity.

This is our chance to help make a difference! Let's show the coast just how awesome the cloth diapering community is!

 
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