Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Mummy Saving Tip #1 - Real Nappies!

We've come a long way in our cloth nappy journey since I wote this post! Check out our other cloth nappy posts here...

So when I was pregnant with my eldest and thinking about ways to save money the idea of 'real nappies' briefly crossed my mind but was soon pushed out by thoughts of 'boil washes', 'taking ages to dry ' and 'too much expense upfront'. I had good intentions but other costs took over and I found it just too easy to pop a pack of disposables in with my weekly shop. However second time round the thought of how many nappies I had used on Ben that would be still be sitting on a landfill site really disturbed me (not too mention the amount of money I had spent on them!) and I didn't want to repeat that with Elizabeth Rose so I did some research and found that the cheapest option (without out all the folding and pinning of good old terries) seemed to be prefolds. The idea is you get rectangular flat nappies which are made of several thick layers of cotton stitched at each end, and you fold them (different fold options depending on the needs of your baby) and pop them inside a waterproof wrap that fastens with velcro, with a liner (which can be flushable or reusable) inside if needed. When they need to be changed you just pop a new nappy inside the wrap. Another benefit of these is that as they unfold to dry flat, they are a lot easier and quicker to wash and dry than other types of real nappy.
So having decided that these were the nappies for me I fell incredibly lucky one day when doing my weekly shop in Asda. As my eyes glanced over the 'reduced to clear' shelf, I noticed some familiar packaging. There with a 'big yellow reduced to £10 sticker' was a Bambino Mio Nappy set (12 nappies and 3 wraps), the very one I had been looking at on their website for £55 only days earlier! And even better there were more packs behind that one! So I rifled through and found myself a 'nappy set' in each of the four sizes from newborn to large for a total of £40! If I had purchased these sets from the Bambino Mio website they would have cost me a 'whopping' £240. Having saved myself £200 I decided to purchase a tumble dryer to make the drying process even easier (of course I do line dry when possible but as my daughter was due in November, we just don't have the weather for line drying during the winter in Manchester!).

When Elizabeth Rose arrived I must admit she did spend the first few weeks in disposables while I got her and my three year old, Ben into a routine (of sorts) and managed to get back on top of the housework and washing (kind of!). When she was around three weeks old we started using the Bambino Mio's on her during the day on a regular basis and I was impressed with how quickly I got used to using them, washing them (at 40 degrees) and drying them simply became part of our routine. At first they did seem a little Bulky on Elizabeth Rose's tiny body and I struggled to fit tights in aged 0 -3 months over them, so had to start using a size bigger. But she soon grew into them, and they kept her dry and comfortable. On average I have had to change them 3 hourly which is similar to the amount of time I would leave a disposable on during the day. With 24 size 1 nappies (from both the newborn and small packs), I had plenty of nappies to do a wash every 2 -3 days (when my nappy bucket was full) but the three wraps that came in each size just weren't enough so I purchased a couple more 'preloved' ones from ebay. I have overall been happy so far using Bambino Mio's on Elizabeth Rose. They do occasionally leak (especially when she was exclusively breastfed and had those 'exploding poops' most mummies will be familiar with!), but so do disposables and I am much happier having cotton next to my baby girl's skin that all the harsh chemicals they put in disposables these days to keep them so slim and absorbent. As for night times, we tried these during the night on a few occasions and they just didn't last (even though Elizabeth Rose does still wake to feed in the night we try not to disturb her too much by changing her), So we still use disposables during the night at the moment.

As a budget option Bambino Mio's are worth 'mymummiespennies' (especially if you are lucky enough to get them on offer like I was!) They are easy to use, wash well and dry quickly and are absorbent enough to use during the day if you change regularly. They also have some funky prints available so you can show off your baby's cloth bottom in spots, stars or hearts!

For a great deal's on Bambino Mio packs at the moment check out their facebook page!/bambinomio which has an offers tab, that's regularly updated! and they have an online shop

For myself and Elizabeth Rose, our journey into cloth is just beginning...

We have recently tested some 'pocket style' nappies and will be sharing our thoughts soon.

I am also still on the lookout for some 'budget' cloth that will last the night so please share any ideas you have...

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