I'm on the fence. With DD1 & DD2, we used disposables during the first year. With DD2, we did CD's (pockets) once she was walking until she potty trained. DH is a SAHD, and is reluctantly willing to do a hybrid (ie so long as we have disposables around for emergencies or traveling) but I'm in charge of "managing" diapers if we do that. If we decided to try that, I'm inclined to try a multi-size option like BumGenius (we had a few of them last time & I liked them). BUT ... we sold all our diapers years ago, and I'm leery of investing a ton in them during the early days when we've never done little-baby CDing and I'm not sure if I'll feel physically up to handling the wash etc. while recovering from birth & starting back to work initially. Thoughts?
We're going with Bum Genius AIO one-size based on recommendations and "research" that we hope to use for this babe and any that may follow. Since one-size won't fit baby until 9-12 weeks, I am sort of facing a similar issue.
There are many online services that rent out newborn sizes for 12 weeks (of new or used variety). There's a bajillion of them out there, just ask the Google! (has anyone rented? lemme know about it!)
With that said... It seems that the cost between renting (gently used) and buying disposable for 12 weeks is comparable. If you feel like cloth could be a little stressful for the first months, why bother? You can do the good for baby better for planet thing for MANY months afterward :) Make it easier on yourself, do what will keep you sane!
With my daughter, we used the pack of 20 swaddler disposables that we received in the hospital, through the meconium and she hasn't worn a sposie since. We have traveled and road tripped and everything and she has only worn cloth. We love it. I'm obsessed. If you're looking for a cheaper route, you can look into GMD workhorse fitteds and covers, or prefolds and covers. You can also buy a couple one size, Totsbots are my absolute favorite, but they are expensive. Otherwise you can get ones on sale, or gently used ones on diaper swapper websites and stuff like that.
I'm also obsessed. Completely.
I have a newborn/littles stash of used Green Mountain prefolds and wool and Thirsties covers I got from friends and online.
We have purchased a few BumGenius, but I'm considering buying a larger stash of SoftBums for the long haul. I'll have to check out Totsbots!
I've cloth diapered all of mine, and only my third has been in cloth since birth. The other two had disposables for a few months. Honestly, cloth from birth was not nearly as hard as I assumed it would be. Somehow the diapers got cleaned (by me, but I don't even remember doing them postpartum. But no one else knows how to wash them so it must have been me) and I truly do not see much difference (time wise) when it comes to putting on a prefold that is trifolded in a cover vs. a pocket diaper or AIO.
How long are you staying home before hubby becomes a SAHD? Maybe you could be in charge of the (much cheaper) newborn prefolds/covers until it's time to go to work, and then switch to the hybrid? My husband quickly realized the prefolds and covers were very do-able.
We also did the workhouse GMD's with wool (and elimination communication) the first few months with my new baby. :) After that though (especially once we started going out a lot more) I started to prefer pocket diapers while continuing with EC.
Now my little guy is almost two and refusing to potty train completely...I think it's because we don't have actual toilets here (only composting buckets) so his baby potty isn't that appealing since it is not similar to what we use. We practice potty training during the day until we end up having a lot of misses and then I put a pocket diaper on him if we're going out or a workhorse fitted if we're just at home.. We've had to use organic disposibles at night because I haven't found a cloth diaper yet that can hold up to his nighttime wees.
I'm hoping against hope that we can move before the babe comes. I live in an old house divided into apartments and share a washer and dryer with one girl and then a family who lives downstairs (all my friends, at least). The family downstairs is a family of 4 who cloth diapers one baby. I can't imagine trying to do it.. if it happens and we're still here we'll face it but meanwhile.... lame.
I also love a thirsties cover over a prefold, but that sounds like not exactly what you and your hubby are looking for.
If you don't want to buy flatfolds or prefolds, you can use old t-shirts or flour sack towels. Tshirts are great, though, because you can cut them down for a newborn and not have to hem them, since they don't fray. Not having a hem is nice because you don't have to do sew it, but it also reduces bulk in the folded diaper.
My main advice for money saving would be to under stash, just get what Fisher Family recommended and then slowly build it up with what you need/ like the best over time. Plus, you never know when some mama will find out you're cloth diapering and then hand over her whole stash. Also watch CL and free cycle. You'll find some great stuff!
You also only need a teensy but of detergent when washing diapers, and I always washed cold until they got a little older, so laundry prolly won't be as expensive as you think.
Finally, register for some cloth dipes and supplies (like a diaper sprayer that attaches to your toilet, wet bag, diaper pail with wet bag inside, some cute covers, etc.). Maybe you'll get lucky .
I love cloth. I didn't start with my son until he was 4 months so I haven't CD'd a newbie yet, but I can't wait. I made 90% of my son's stash and can't wait to start making some for this bubba.
For the NB stage I'll make bamboo fitteds, knitted soakers and longies and I'll try a couple of PUL covers too.
I'll move on to sized AI2s once we grow out of the NB fitteds. I loved them with my son and they're fun to make.