Friday, May 25, 2012

Tip Jar: Flats and Handwashing {2nd Annual Flats and Handwashing Challenge}

I am taking part in the Second Annual Flats and Handwashing Challenge hosted by Dirty Diaper Laundry.  For 7 days I will be using only flat cloth diapers and handwashing them in an effort to prove that cloth diapering can be affordable and accessible to all.  You can learn more about the rules and why this challenge was started by visiting the announcement post.  This year there are over 450 participants from all over the world!

{Be sure to read posts 1234, and 6 to see how the rest of the challenge went!}
I honestly don't feel like any kind of an expert to be handing out tips on this after only a few days, but here are a few things I've learned through my own trial and error.

Although covers seem like they absorb next to nothing, they can actually hold a lot. This is a lesson I learned the hard way. My first night handwashing diapers, I didn't bother to do anything with my covers beyond my "pre-wringing" process. In the morning, the covers still seemed fully saturated. When you don't have a machine to spin it out, rolling your covers in a towel works surprisingly well. This is advice I'd heard over and over but regret actually listening to from the start.

my 4 year old helping out with diaper laundry
Fold your flats ahead of time. Whichever folds you prefer (pad, kite, airplane, gaynor, etc.), It's the equivalent of having your pockets stuffed before it's time for the next diaper change. It seems like a simple idea, but when your flats have been hanging to dry all night, it's easy to forget about them until you need them.

Use your iron. I normally hate ironing laundry, but I actually don't mind ironing my flats. It's helpful if your flats need a boost drying (assuming you can't use a dryer), the heat can help kill bacteria, and the nice crisp, smooth flats you're left with are easier to fold.

Don't be afraid of pins. They might seem antiquated, but you can get a really secure fit with a little practice.

To read tips from others participating in the challenge, check out some of the links below:

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