Here is a (long) essay thay my dh wrote for some friends of ours considering cloth:
Let me preface this advice with a fact that we usually uses disposables when we go out. They are less bulky, and easier to carry around, and it's nice to not have to carry home dirty diapers. Other then that I've loved using cloth diapers, and I think we've found a system that works pretty well.
Prefolds with a cover:
Plus: Cheapest, easy, easy to wash, cute covers.
Minus: For some reason she'll sit in her own poop and smile, but she tinkles just a little and she'll scream for a change. You will definitely have to change these more often then you would a disposable. Occasional unruly poop with make it to clothing (not a big problem at home unless it's the white Tommy Hillfiger outfit Grandma bought).
My favorite covers are the Bumpkins: The Velcro works well and holds up in the wash.
You add these to the above combination to wick wet away from the baby so she will stay in one diaper longer.
Plus: Wonderful for night time and naps
Minus: Just adds a step to changes.
I have recently been told that fleece does not unravel when cut and that you can just get cloth at a department store and cut it into strips instead for buying super special baby diaper strips of fleece.
Fuzzibunz pocket diaper
Fuzzibunz are essentially a diaper cover with a fleece insert sown to it with a pocket for you to put a prefold between them. You can do the work up front and stuff them when they come out of the laundry, and have them ready to go like an all-in-one when you are changing diapers. You can buy super special Fuzzibunz inserts, but prefolds work as well or better. You can even save on prefolds and cut some old towels in to strips to stuff the diapers with. We held off on buying Fuzzibunz until Soli hit 12 lbs.(around 2-3 months) and could fit in the mediums which will last her until she is about 1 year old [Actually, she is 2 years old now, and they still fit.
. We bought 12 of them figuring that we will be able to send her to daycare with them since they are the most convenient cloth diaper for the daycare folks. [This true. The daycare folks loved these.
In retrospect, it would have been worth it to buy a few smalls for night time and going out.
Plus: Easy, Again great for overnight, especially great for middle of the night changes when you are too stupid tired to manage the three layer combo above. Dry much faster then all-in-ones.
Minus: Not cheap, Makes my baby's butt so big my 3 month baby can almost fit in 6 month clothes.
We have about 30 wipes and bought a normal wipes warmer and just stuff it full of wipes and add about a half cup of water to it. I also leave a prefold on the changing table so I can pat her dry after using the wipes and before putting a diaper on her
Plus: They're cloth
Minus: It's a pain to fold them all when they come out of the wash.
I'm Indifferent to:
All-in-Ones: There seems to be a big Fuzzibunz pocket diapers verses Bumpkins All-in-Ones debate on-line. Having both, I fall solidly in the Fuzzibunz camp. All-in-Ones don't have any fleece or other wicking mechanism, so you have to change them much more often, also they dry much more slowly. Fuzzibunz are a little more work up front but will save you time in the long run. If you want to uses All-in-Ones the only ones I have liked are Bumpkins (see below)
I don't like:
Minus: When they say "quick drying All-in-One" they mean we took out most of the absorbent material (cotton) in this diaper. You might as well use a paper towel, plastic bag, and some tape.
Fitted Diapers (like kissiluvs):
Plus: Poop never gets out.
Minus: she never has them on when she poops, 'cause she pees first and immediately starts screaming for me to take them off, twice as many snaps as with a prefold and cover.
I really recommend to check out http://www.nopins4baby.com
. We have bought pretty much everything there. Dina, the woman running it must live next to the post office and just spend all day checking for orders because we usually get things in the mail from her the next day (she is in TN).
So the final issue with diapers is storing the dirty ones.
We tried using a DiaperGenie or some such thing thinking (my idea) that it would cut down on smell. It used about a yard of special smell-proof plastic bag for each diaper so it is now sitting in to closet for anyone who wants it. We have (Sharon's idea) a big (like 50 quart) plastic kitchen trash can from Target and two laundry bags. We just wash the laundry bags with the diapers. We keep the diapers next to the cat box which usually wins out for smell. Just in case we bought some little scented disks from Dina for the can.
We also bought a Mini-shower from her which we really like. It's a little shower head that attaches to your toilet that you can uses to wash poop off the diapers before throwing them in the bin. I think his is particularly useful for those of us that don't flush when we pee since it saves you from having to put your hand in the toilet water to clean off the diapers. It can also be used to irrigate stitches from a tear or episiotomy. We have not tried the disposable inserts that some people seem to like instead of washing the diapers; four layers just seemed like too much to me.
Let me just add that I think my dh kicks a$$