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Q's from a newbie diaper sewer

552 Views 6 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  TypicalSituation
So, I am not very experienced at diaper sewing... or even sewing in general. I have sewn some slings and some recycled butt sweaters and longies. So, I have decided to sew some fitted diapers because I am poor and my daughter is in that fun wiggly stage and I am using mostly prefolds. Not so much from a pattern that I bought... I just sorta traced a fitted (stretched out of course) I have and added a little here and there. I have a few questions though. I traced from a fitted with snaps but I will be using velcro... do I need to change anything? And how about fabrics? I bought some really sweet pink/orange tie dyed flannel and some terry from Wally world (only fabric store in town!) but I would love to have something that wicks moisture next to the baby. Do I really need to order MM from online???? I saw some really soft terry (whatsitcalled... sherpa?) at walmart and wondered how well that would work next to the hiney??? Ok, last q... how many layers of terry for the inner soaker/pad? I have a Bella Bottoms (cheap from ebay) that I modeled it from but would like it to be more absorbant. I would really appreciate any help.... thanks.
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I advise taking a look around the diaper making boards at the old posts. I did a lot of reading before I actually started sewing diapers. There are old posts about the different types of fabric and layers of absorbancy.

Absorbancy cheat sheet.
I also use old t-shirts as absorbant layers, they soak up a ton.

An easy way to make a soaker that will dry fast is to sew a square 14 x14 or so, of 2 layers, say one terry and one flannel. Then fold it in thirds to put it in the diaper and you end up with six layers total but it dries fast after washing.

As for fastening, get something other than Velcro. It doesn't hold up as well as Touch Tape or Aplix. I order mine from I use touch tape because I like all the different colors.

Flannel and terry are good absorbant materials. You can use fleece for wicking inside the diaper, to be a stay dry layer. You can also order MM thick fleece for waterproof covers, but I've used 2 layers of regular fleece to make a cover and it's worked well.

As for patterns, there are a lot of free patterns in the sticky, I just recently started using the Very Baby fitted pattern. I like it.

And be sure to post pictures when you are done!
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Thanks for the tips. I made my first diaper today... mostly a practice diaper. It turned out ok.... but kinda wonky. What size elastic do you use? I got 1/4 and it doesn't seem very stretchy. I am gonna try the touch tape. I saw it at walmart and it seemed like it would be really easy to open... but then again it will mostly be under a diaper cover.
I use 1/4 inch swim suit elastic. it is the clear kind. It's very stretchy and holds up to a lot of washing.

I don't think they sell Touch Tape at Walmart, not at mine anyway. The touch tape and Aplix are much stronger than velcro, and the strength does matter, since the velcro will start to deteriorate, and once your child can start to take off their diaper by themselves, you will definately want stronger fasteners.

I sent you a PM yesterday about patterns.
WTG sewing your first diaper! Doesn't it feel great?

For a wicking, stay-dry layer you could try Alova suedecloth, I just read here recently that it is available at Walmart right now. The other choice for stay-dry linings is microfleece, it is thinner than the regular fleece. Walmart carries regular fleece in season, I am not sure if they sell microfleece. I would try terry or sherpa as an inside layer too. It isn't 'stay dry' exactly, but it will feel drier than a flat knit thanks to the loops. Both are nice and absorbant too.

The best elastic choice at Walmart is probably Stretchrite polybraid elastic. It is white and at my Walmart, is sold only in little packages that hang on the wall. I would recommend 3/8 inch for your diapers. The general rule of thumb is 1/4" for newborn and small diapers, and 3/8" for medium and large diapers. Other elastic choices are swimsuit elastic, which is natural color cotton on the outside, and again I would use 3/8", or lastin, which is thin, clear,and very stretchy, 1/4" is good. But you would probably need to order these online, though swimsuit elastic is available at most fabric stores(if you should find yourself near one
). Lastin is best purchased online.

I ditto fek & fuzz. buy your hook and loop online, chose either Touchtape or Aplix. Velcro is not worth the money or the time to sew it on. If you want an alternative, you could make fitteds that snappi. Terry works really well with a snappi, you could use it for the outside of the diaper or sew patches on the wings and the front where the snappi needs to attach.

I think Fern & Faerie's diapering pages for sewing your own diapers would be a good resource for you to check out, if you have not already. Lots of great ideas there.
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Thanks ladies! I just placed an order of Touch tape (hoping that 1.5 in. is good?) and clear lasting 3/8. Woo hoo. I got a ton of it for about $10. You ladies are so sweet!
Oh, fek&fuz, would you be my babies aunt and sew them stuff.... seriously. I love that classic pooh cover. Simply beautiful! I bet your sis is loving you!
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