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Prefolds vs. Flats

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
For those with experience. Can you give me pros and cons of prefolds and flats. I'm having a hard time deciding which to use. I am leaning towards flats because:

1. I don't have a dryer only a washer and I'm sure they'd dry a LOT quicker.
2. They would get cleaner
3. I would think you can manipulate the fabric more for a better fit.

These are just my thoughts, I don't have experience so please chime in and help me to decide!
post #2 of 20
The dryer issue alone makes me say to go with flats. Prefolds take a long time to dry. I also think flats are easier to manipulate and get a good fit.
post #3 of 20
Iagree. I use both, and prefer my flats
post #4 of 20
The flats will dry much quicker. If the folding doesn't worry you I would go that route with out a dryer. I have heard people say that they prefer pins and not snappis with flats due to wear. No biggie either way to me. You can also just fold the flats into rectangles and place them in wraps.

I love my flats.
post #5 of 20
I love flats! I've been using them for DD, and they dry in 15 minutes on the line here in Arizona.

This is my first time using prefolds or flats (I started CDing DS with pockets), and I don't know why I was afraid of them before--they're so easy to use, and it's so satisfying to fold a nice, clean flat to perfectly fit DD
post #6 of 20
I like them both equally, but like you I don't have a dryer and I've been actually washing by hand, so I would go with flats! However prefolds don't take that much longer to dry if I keep a fan on them so if you wanted a few of those to change out with flats they will work too
post #7 of 20
I've actually never seen a flat either in a picture or in use. Does anyone have any pictures or links to instructions? I'm curious, because all of my other diapers dry so much faster than my prefolds, and it's annoying. Especially if I use the dryer and forget about them, because if there's a single damp prefold in there, everything manages to stay wet until I remember to turn it back on or take the dry stuff out. But that's just me being lazy. Ideally it'd be nice to not use the dryer at all - I'm getting there!
post #8 of 20
Here are a few sites:



I used what's called the origami fold when I first started and used a snappi to secure. Now I just fold it into a soaker pad and lay it in the cover I suggest with the origami fold you add another folded flat for extra absorbency.
post #9 of 20
www.gumbush.com for folding and pictures
www.greenmountaindiapers.com for info and purchase

hope this helps

post #10 of 20
You could also check out the 'Disana tie nappy'. Very quick-drying. I love these. As baby grows you have to add something for absorbency (a rectagular folded flat?) but they are another good option.

I don't know how to post a link but they are sold at Green Mountain Diapers and Tiny Birds Organics.
post #11 of 20
Yeah unless you live in a hot dry area without much of a winter, I'd go with flats. Or have a big stash of prefolds and have an area to line dry them inside. Personally I could never get the hang of flats. I ADORE prefolds though. But they do take longer to dry. In the winter mine usually take overnight and then some of hte day to dry in my basement. I NEVER use my dryer to be honest. It's like not having one. But I do have a nice sized basement with room to hang all our clothing. And flats are one-size which is nice as opposed to buying all different sizes of prefolds, so that's a better bet if you have a small budget.

So all in all it sounds like score one for flats!
I do have to say though, when they get wiggly(and they do!), you might prefer prefolds because they are quicker. Either that or you get REALLY good at those wwf diaper changes!
post #12 of 20
I haven't been able to find any prefolds in stores, but I LOVE flats! I have some fitteds, but don't use them alot, as they elave red amrks at my daighterte's waist.

I use the kite fold (I had to look to see what it was called.) I'ts the only way I know top fold them and it works awesome.

Flats do dry faster. And they fit well.

They can be a pain to pin. I discovered if I keep my pins stuck in a bar of soap, they go in quite easily.
post #13 of 20
Prefolds take ages to dry if you don't live somewhere warm and dry. Like me

I find that while folding flats isn't difficult, pinning/Nippa'ing them on DD is another matter!! So I mainly use flats as pocket inserts.

There are various sorts of flats. Imse Vimse do both terries and flannelette in multiple sizes, which are alternatives to the usual birdseye or twill. The Green Mountain Diapers ones are a nice medium weight (thicker than birdseye but still easy to fold and shape) but shrink to a slightly rectangular shape so your folds won't be perfect.

The only disadvantage to laying the flat in the wrap is that poo containment won't be brilliant--I'd still want to pin, at least for newborns.
post #14 of 20
I made/make my own flat diapers - with diaper flannel or birdseye. Very simple to do and I got to use up all my leftover bobbin threads too! They're hemmed very colorful-ly.

I have prefolds and flats, and dh prefers the prefolds (easier for him to figure out how to get into the bummicovers than folding a flat diaper). I don't really have a preference - I actually tend to use my newborn prefolds as soakers with a flat (kite fold). I'd recommend using a soaker of some sort with your flat (I use just a cotton fleece soaker set I bought years ago). But that might just be me.

My grandma loved birdseye flats, Mom preferred diaper flannel. Having used both - I agree with Grandma. The birdseye dries so quickly, and stays soft after being on the line (no need to 'fluff' in the drier).

That all said, I've recently bought some pockets and think I'll be buying more of those. As kids get larger/more wiggly, they're much easier to put on than the flatfolds and prefolds!
post #15 of 20
I am also thinking about getting some flats so they can be trimmer in my wool covers, are they less absorbant?
post #16 of 20
If you don't have a dryer, I would go with flats.

I have used both, a lot, and here's my experience:

Flats are pretty easy to use if you do the lay-in cover style. However, prefolds are even easier. With regular access to a washer and dryer, I prefer prefolds because they're less work to fold. But if I didn't have such access, I would definitely go with flats--they're not that much harder and they will definitely dry more easily, especially if you need to dry them indoors on rainy days. HTH!
post #17 of 20
With no dryer, I'd lean towards flats. That said, I could never figure the darn things out. LOVE my prefolds, though! Maybe a mix would be good...the prefolds really are more absorbant.
post #18 of 20
I love my flats. If you have no dryer, I say def. flats. I use my flats on vacation when I'll be away from a washer for 5+ days. You can always fold a 2nd flat to use a doubler if you need more absorbency.
post #19 of 20
Originally Posted by CathToria View Post
I love my flats. If you have no dryer, I say def. flats. I use my flats on vacation when I'll be away from a washer for 5+ days. You can always fold a 2nd flat to use a doubler if you need more absorbency.
I just lay them put flat, with 2 together, and fold them together. It even works for overnight.
post #20 of 20
I have prefolds but I have often think if I plan to add some more to the stash I will get some flatfolds.
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