Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Homemade Prefold Diapers from Recycled Clothing

I wanted to post the instructions for how I am making my son's prefold diapers from recycled t-shirts and sweatshirts.

Here is the website that inspired me.

Here are the measurements for the sizes of prefold diapers. The measurement is the finished diaper size. Please note that the measurement does not include room for shrinkage if you are using new fabric.

Newborn: 11" x 11" when fully shrunk, Fits newborn to about 6 weeks or 2 months, or fits about 5-10 pounds

Small: 12" wide x 14.25" long when fully shrunk, Fits 10 pounds to about 6 months old

Medium: 14" wide x 16" long, fits ages 5-6 months or so and older.

Large: 15" wide x 17" long, fits larger babies or age 12 months through toddler.

Toddler: 15.5" wide x 20" long, for age 18 months, or for a night diaper for over age 9 months to potty learning age

Diaper Doublers: These are the inserts that you can add into a diaper to make them even more absorbent, especially good for night time use. These are typically a double layer of polar fleece or other absorbent soft material. A double layer of sweatshirt material works great. I just cut them from the sweatshirt sleeves. and use the body of the sweatshirt for making the diaper.

Small: 11" x 4"
Large: 12" x 5"

When I make the diapers, I lay the t-shirts out flat and cut the diaper about 1/2" larger all around than the finished diaper will be, cutting through all layers at the same time. This will give me the front and back of the diaper. If you wanted, you could mix and match the diaper fabric using a t-shirt for the outside and a sweatshirt on the inside. It is up to you. Either way, you will want 2 layers for the diaper.

Now, here is where I do things a bit differently than the website I listed. Instead of overlapping the fabrics, I cut 2 rectangles of fleece (sweatshirt) 5 inches wide and long enough to extend the entire length of the diaper. I stack these and center them down the middle of the the 2 layers of the diaper material and top stitch them in place.

Last step is to either zigzag stitch or serge with your overloc machine around the outside edges, 1/2 inch from the edge of the diaper. Trim fabric if necessary.
That's it!

Now, if you are wanting to use the doublers, simply cut them from the sweatshirt (2 layers of fabric) and zigzag or serge around the edges. To use the doublers, just lay on inside the diaper in the middle to increase the absorbency.

Once you get everything cut out to make these diapers and doublers, they sew up really fast. You can easily make a stack of them in one afternoon.

If you have any questions about making these, feel free to ask me.