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Old 07-31-2004, 07:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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There are a lot of Amish families where we live. They lead the simple natural life, make their own clothes, build their own homes, don't use birth control, breastfeed, no electricity, drive horse drawn carriages, make their own bakes goods, grow their gardens and raise their livestock. We see them in Walmart usually on Saturdays buying the things that they don't grow:flour,sugar,coffee, toilet paper AND sposies and wipes. I can't figure out why they don't use cloth. My dh says it's prpbably because they don't have washer/dryers. I wonder if it's that or because the only cloth diapers around are the cheap gerber prefolds and plastic pants. They don't have computers or internet so they wouldn't know there were places to buy high quality prefolds and covers.
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Old 07-31-2004, 08:02 PM
 
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I would think they would just make their own? Does seem a little strange, you'd think cd's would be a given.
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Old 07-31-2004, 08:03 PM
 
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Amy, what an interesting thread! I have no idea why Amish wouldn't use cloth, and would use high-tech disposable diapers. I guess if they don't use high-tech new-fangled appliances, then it would be tough to wash them? But it's not like they shy away from 'tough' so I can imagine them hand washing diapers..... hmmmmmm Perhaps someone needs to go there in person and sell them quality WAHM fluff? You'd think there'd be a seamstress in every community who would make diapers as well as clothes....
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Old 07-31-2004, 08:04 PM
 
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What a great thread to start
I guess I just assumed they wouldn't use sposies ......
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Old 07-31-2004, 08:05 PM
 
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That is interesting!

The Amish by my Aunt don't even have garbage pick-up, they burn all their trash that they don't compost. Wonder if they use sposies too and what they do with them?

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Old 07-31-2004, 08:07 PM
 
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I have noticed that also Every year a girlfriend and myself go to Shipshewanee for a week and they are all amish/menonites(sp?) there and the same thing all in disposables. They do have hand washers with the ringers and almost all of the women are great seamstress so go figure
The only thing I can think of is what you had mentioned about if they don't sew and only find the cheep ones at the stores.
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Old 07-31-2004, 08:25 PM
 
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That is very puzzling. I hope someone can jump on this thread with some "insider" info on why that is...

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Old 07-31-2004, 08:35 PM
 
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Maybe someone needs to make a flier upon the new developments in cloth diapers. Have a list of WAHMs & addresses, so they can write the WAHMs for more information.
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Old 07-31-2004, 08:35 PM
 
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That is odd. I was thinking that they can't very well use their electric serger and sewing maching to whip out nice strong diapers, but they do make their own clothes. Maybe they use sposies because it's one part of their religion/culture that they are allowed to use that is modern so it's fun to them?

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Old 07-31-2004, 08:46 PM
 
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But probably only wool covers, right? Synthetic covers are such modern inventions....well, then again so are sposies and they use those! Obvoiusly I have nothing new to add to this.... :LOL
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Old 07-31-2004, 08:47 PM
 
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Strange!!
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Old 07-31-2004, 09:10 PM
 
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Wow! I know I'm saying the same thing as everyone else but I'm shocked!!! I would think they'd make their own diapers. There weren't these fancy dipes 100 years ago, they made their own and got by. Go figure!

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Old 07-31-2004, 09:14 PM
 
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i live in a community with lots of amish. about 100 families or so. i've never seen them use sposies. in fact, they don't even use plastic pants. they use flat folds because they dry faster on the clothesline. i tried selling some cpf's at a garage sale once and they passed them right by! (and they were labeled as cloth diapers) the amish that we have are old order amish...meaning they are the most strict. it may vary by which order they belong to. it probably also depends on the family. it's usually unfair to say that all amish do this or don't do that. ours don't wear them and i wouldn't want to hold an amish baby for fear i'd get soaked!!
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Old 07-31-2004, 09:17 PM
 
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This is all I have found on the subject so far - not particularly informative - perhaps they only use disposables when they're 'out and about'?

http://www.amish-america.com/faq.html#diapers
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Old 07-31-2004, 09:25 PM
 
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The Amish & Mennonites have varying degrees of what tey allow & don't allow based on what "order" they belong to. The Mennonites I live by drive cars, use electricity & modern appliances, do everything "modern" except that the women all wear dresses/skirts long enough to cover their legs, double up on the fabric covering their chest-area (cape-front dresses or jumpers) and wear head-coverings. The men dress plain, but in fairly modest modern clothing.
My brother lives in an Amish community, and they don't drive cars and stuff like that. I'm not sure what their "rules" are - I think they have electricity. I do know that they use synthetic fabrics liberally, which I always thought was strange!

Anyway, most of the Mennonites I know (who a lot of people mistake for Amish, soley because of their head-coverings) don't breastfeed because they believe that some women "just can't" (but won't ever come to LLL meetings ), feed jarred baby food, and disposable diaper.

I'll have to ask my brother about diapering in his community.
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Old 07-31-2004, 10:18 PM
 
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We live near both Amish and Mennonite communities and, in our area, they not only have access to online services, but use them quite frequently. Just not in their own homes...

One friend of mine uses sposies (mennonite) and I took her a ton of velcro wraps to use with prefolds, but everytime I've been back the baby has been in sposies. She was very interested in the pocket diapers I had made. I didn't ask her directly why she didn't use what I gave her , but just shrugs off the option of cloth. They have soooo much to accomplish during a day, particularly during the growing season, that I think the convenience must be the issue. I have noticed flats on the line of some of the more orthodox Amish.

Make no mistake, they are very savy business people that are well aware of the modern conveniences that exist!
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Old 07-31-2004, 10:59 PM
 
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I don't think my grandmother got electricity until 1958 or so b/c she lived so far back in the country. My mom actually remembers when it was turned on. I asked my granny how she did diapers and it was the usual wash: dump, rinse, on wash day boil the dipes and hang them out. It can be done. It was just part of her work day. She also had food to cook - 3 squares (woke up around 3-4), 5 kids to take care of, sewing, mending, canning, gardening - the usual old time stuff It's just a choice I think. Granny didn't have one so she washed the diapers by hand. I my Granny. She's inspirational and not just b/c she washed her cloth diapers by hand
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Old 07-31-2004, 11:00 PM
 
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interesting thread. :

Single mama to Alex(13), Maddy(12), Sam(8), Violet(6), and Ruby(3). fly-by-nursing1.gif
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Old 07-31-2004, 11:26 PM
 
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i wouldn't want to hold an amish baby for fear i'd get soaked!!
Hey! My babe goes coverless in flats and I rarely get soaked!!!
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Old 07-31-2004, 11:38 PM
 
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the amish community in dover, de. used sposies for the most part too.

amish do not use snaps or zippers either, they pin their clothing and i think they use buttons too. the aplix/velcro thing i am not sure of.

i know, for the families that i knew, it would be hard for them to have quality cloth diapers that worked well and were easy to care for. flat folds are not sold that many places and neither are good prefolds. disposable diapers are just easier when you don't have electricity in your house i suppose. it kind of surprised me at first, but then i thought where would they buy them? and how would they care for them?

i do know that most amish have a foot powered sewing machine, so they would be able to make flat folds and prefolds i guess. ever seen amish quilts? they are absolutely incredible and prefect!!!!!!!!! and they make all of their own clothes, except for shoes and probably undergarments.
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Old 07-31-2004, 11:57 PM
 
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Flatfolds are very effective diapers, and are the easiest of the easy to sew - if you know how to stitch a simple hem, you can sew a diaper. Nobody has to buy them - maybe buy some diaper flannel yardage (which I *know* they can get!) or some cotton birdseye, cut them to size, and hem.
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Old 08-01-2004, 02:03 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MTBto5
I have noticed that also Every year a girlfriend and myself go to Shipshewanee for a week and they are all amish/menonites(sp?) there and the same thing all in disposables.
We were just in Shipshewana two weeks ago while on vacation. I noticed the very same thing. Tons of Amish babes in sposies!! We were actually in a Wal Mart near there and there was an Amish woman behind me at the changing table in the bathroom. She was so surprised I was using cloth. I guess I just assumed she did and when I found out she didn't I started telling her about them. She seemed interested at least.

We go to an Amish bulk food store in Illinois ocassionally and they always have flats, pins, and plastic pants in stock so I guess I'm at the thought they would pay money for sposies when so many other aspects of their life are so simple.

, , , mama to Ross , Reagan (8/29/05), Joshua (from Haiti...here NOW due to the earthquake!), and Elijah , born safely 9-8-09.
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Old 07-26-2005, 03:19 PM
 
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This shocks me. :

I have never thought about it before....I just assumed they used cloth.

Mama to 9 so far:Mother of Joey (20), Dominick (13), Abigail (11), Angelo (8), Mylee (6), Delainey (3), Colton (2) and Baby 8 and Baby 9 coming sometime in July 2013.   If evolution were true, mothers would have three arms!

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Old 07-26-2005, 03:46 PM
 
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Makes no sense to me. I guess in the back of my mind I've always thought that they not only use cloth but make their own (probably pinned prefolds under wool soakers). How hard would it be for someone who can sew all her own dresses to sew a prefold? And if they can wash clothes, why couldn't they wash diapers?

Just seems like they'd be the last people in the world to buy sposies.

-Alice, SAHM to dd (2001) and ds (2004) each of whom was a homebirth.jpg, who each self-weaned at 4.5 years bfolderchild.gif, who both fambedsingle2.gif'd, who were bothcd.gif, and both: novaxnocirc.gif.   Also, gd.gif, and goorganic.jpg!

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Old 07-26-2005, 04:00 PM
 
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I'm no expert, but i once heard an npr report on the Amish that mentioned the ladies using washing machines, but instead of plugging them into a wall outlet like you or I, the machines were run by a motorcycle engine and they shifted gears to change the cycle.

I used to live near an Amish community and it's interesting the things they've adopted and adapted for their use. Like, they use tractors but no tires - just the metal wheels. And cars are a no-no, but they ride modern bikes.

i would have thought that strict Amish use flats and wool, but it doesn't surprise me that Mennonites use sposies. They seem to be more 'in' the modern world.
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Old 07-26-2005, 04:12 PM
 
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I'm so surprised! It seems counter-cultural. Plus, they are so hard working, would they really shy away from washing a load of diapers?
I know that my grandma used flats (basically just a baby blanket) and washed everything by hand because they couldn't afford a washing machine (plus she had six kids). And they were not Amish/mennonite.
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Old 07-26-2005, 04:19 PM
 
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I live in a mostly Amish area.
Lots of the Amish and Mennonites here use disposables but some use cloth. It's kind of funny how much 'worldly' stuff they can get by with. If I see Amish ladies in the grocery store, often it's not just flour in the cart - it's Fruit Roll ups, chips, pop and all the junk food they can fit in there. I have no idea why. But it's like mehndi mama said, different groups have different rules. My neighbour's son owns a truck for his construction business, but he's not allowed to drive it. One of his employees (non-Amish) does.
The way my neighbour washes laundry (and used to do with diapers) is an ancient washing machine. She hooks it up to their generator. I have only seen it one but it's not anything like a modern machine. They hang everything on the line.

With the Amish, keeping to the status quo is very important. They want to be the same as all the other Amish people. So it's probably area - to- area, church to church whether they're using cloth or disposable diapers.
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Old 07-26-2005, 04:50 PM
 
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Before I was really "into" the internet, I got a bunch of cd catalogs... I wonder if the Amish had access to those, if they would order some cds? I once read an article about a library on a bus that drove through Amish communities. Families would order what books they were looking for, and the bus would drop them off/collect them every week... Sounds kinda like a diaper service, doesn't it?

Interesting thread.
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Old 07-26-2005, 05:07 PM
 
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this is surprising. i know that the only diapering service within an hour of here is in a very amish area, though.
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Old 07-26-2005, 05:14 PM
 
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I'm shocked and somewhat horrified! I figured it would be flats all the way!

Laura
Mom to three
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