Cloth Diapers for Newbs

A first time mother's journey with cloth diapering

Prepping Prefolds (and other natural fibers)

This is my newborn stash. I purchased 24 prefolds (9 GMD orange edge, and 15 Osocozzy) and 3 Prorap newborn covers. These covers have a lowered center for the umbilical cord.

I wasn’t sure which prefold would be better so I didn’t want to buy them all one brand. The prefolds will be used as diapers during the newborn stage, with a couple of newborn covers I got from Prorap. I didn’t want to spend too much money on newborn diapers since I’m not sure how big the baby will be. For all I know, she might skip right into the pockets and AI2’s.

If that is the case, It’s no big deal. I can use the prefolds to stuff pockets and use as inserts for my other diapers. So no money wasted there. If I don’t get to use the newborn covers I’m only out $24 for three covers.


The first thing you have to do with any natural fibered material is prep them.  (Cotton, bamboo, hemp, ect) They have natural oils and such in the fibers that can get on your other diapers if you wash them together the first time. This can lead to the diapers repelling moisture.

There are two ways to prep. You can either wash them like 6 or 7 times (drying in between each wash). OR you can boil them and save some water and time.

I chose to boil my prefolds since I pay for my water. You can do this technique with flats, contoured diapers, or any other natural fibered material that doesn’t have velcro or snaps on it.  I even boiled my organic bamboo Flip insert this way.


A large pot



Blue Dawn (Optional)

Prefolds, flats, or any other natural fibered cloth that doesn’t have snaps or velcro 

This is how thick 15 Osocozzy unprepped prefolds are....and my nosy cat

Step 1:

You fill a pot with water and add the prefolds. I could only do about 4 or 5 prefolds at a time. You can squirt a couple drops of Blue Dawn (Must be the original blue kind) into the pot. Some people think the Dawn will help take out more oil than just boiling alone.

Boiling the prefolds for 30 minutes

Step 2:

Boil the prefolds for 20-30 minutes. The water turned yellow after boiling them. This is the oil in the fabric. If you want you can dump it out and get fresh water, but I know some people will boil two batches before dumping the water.

I put the wet prefolds in a laundry basket

Step 3:

Dry them on high heat in the dryer.

Step 4:

That’s it! You just saved yourself about 5 runs through the washing machine and dryer. You may need to wash and dry the prefolds once or twice more to reach full absorbancy, but the boiling should have gotten the prefolds into usable shape. Whats even better is that now you can wash your prefolds together with your other diapers without worrying about the oils getting on them.

How much they thickened up after one boil and run through the dryer... and my other creepy cat!

I was really surprised to see that they more than doubled in thickness! They also shrunk a decent amount, I was worried they would be too bulky on a newborn, but after they shrunk they seem like they would fit perfectly!

1 Comment »


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,322 other followers