Homemade Diapers

By Shauna Cuff
babywindeln image by Daniel Fuhr from Fotolia.com

Parents who wish to make their own diapers have a variety of options available. Many materials can be used, including some found around the house. Diaper Sewing, a diaper sewing resource, recommends using any material that is no more than 20 percent polyester. Cloth diapers do not require covers, but a cover can prevent leaking through less absorbent materials. Cloth diapers can be fastened with buttons, Velcro, snaps or pins. Parents who enjoy the diaper making process may even sell or gift their creations.

Lay the newspaper on a floor or table that is safe for cutting on.

Spread the disposable diaper open in the center of the newspaper, including opening the tabs.

Trace an outline approximately a 1/2 inch from the edge of the disposable diaper onto the newspaper using the marker.

Cut the newspaper tracing out. Set the excess newspaper aside. This is the diaper pattern.

Lay the fleece on a table or floor. Place the pattern in the center of the fleece and pin it down.

Cut the fleece around the edges of the pattern. Remove the pattern and pins.

Place the cut fleece on a flat surface, and lay the absorbent cotton material or layers of material on top. Cut it so it is the same length (top to bottom) as the fleece, but not wide enough to extend into the curved sides of the fleece. It should be only as wide as the most narrow area of the fleece. Center this rectangle on the fleece.

If the absorbent material has been layered, sew the layers together to make the liner. Sew the right and left edges together using a sewing machine set to basic lock stitch. Repeat this three or four times to reinforce the stitching. When the sides are complete, sew across the top three our four times, as well. Turn the absorbent material inside out, so the stitching is hidden. Place one finger on each side of the open end of the material and pull to the sides gently while tucking the unsewn edge in. Pin each side and iron the material flat. Sew the absorbent material shut with a sewing machine, ensuring that the unsewn edge is tucked into the "pouch".

This is the diaper liner.

Stitch the liner to the fleece along the sides, using the sewing machine. Leave room on each side of the liner for elastic.

Place a pin at each end of the leg openings of the diaper, roughly where the diaper begins to curve outward. Make any necessary adjustments to the area you want fitted against the leg.

Measure the exact elastic size needed by laying one end level with the lower pin on each side. Cut the strip 1 to 1 1/2 inches from the top pin.

Stretch the elastic between the two pins, and use them to pin it down. Place several pins along the elastic to hold it flat.

Sew the elastic to the fleece on the inner and outer edges while stretched using the sewing machine.

Use diaper pins to fasten the diaper and begin using immediately if desired.

If you don't want to use diaper pins, lay the Velcro along the outside edge of the diaper front (the smaller end) and cut off at the edges of the diaper. Use the sewing machine to sew it down.

Sew a small square of Velcro to the inside end of each "arm," or long sides of the back of the diaper. You can now fasten the diaper by pressing the Velcro arms of the diaper to the outer front, adjusting to fit.

About the Author

Shauna Cuff began writing music reviews for vteens.org in 2001. She wrote technical guides for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and her poetry appeared in Harrisburg Area Community College's "Voices." Cuff currently writes articles that focus on health and parenting. She studied art and English at Pennsylvania College of Art and Design.