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Old 01-27-2013, 08:31 PM   #1
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School me on Flats... Blank slate!!

I am getting ready to have my 4th baby (3rd to CD) in March. I have toyed with the idea of trying Flats and after reading the flat challenge I am totally inspired. So, I need info... which flats to get... best absorbancy, how to fold, best age to start, etc... I am a blank slate when it comes to flats!

I do LOVE prefolds and have intended that to be my primary stash with some fitteds thrown in there for DH. This is what I have for wraps...

2 Flips
3 Thirsties Duos
1 regular Thirsties

Will these work with flats too? Ahhhh... so much info needed!

TIA for all of your help! I am excited to try something new!

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Old 01-27-2013, 08:50 PM   #2
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Re: School me on Flats... Blank slate!!

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Old 01-27-2013, 09:19 PM   #3
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Re: School me on Flats... Blank slate!!

I just started using flats a few weeks ago. I have DR large unbleached flats for my 5 month old and so far I am loving it. In fact, it's all I use when we are home. Out and about I still use pockets or aio but I prefer using flats/covers by far. I use Flips or Grovia covers and they both work well for us. Only fold I've been using so far is the kite fold but I'm going to study the flat folds thread and try to branch out. You can also use flour sack towels as a cheaper alternative to flats. I've heard the Target ones are great
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Old 01-28-2013, 06:43 AM   #4
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Re: School me on Flats... Blank slate!!

I love flats esp for a nb. It is the trimmest option IMO. I prefered them with dd1 over gmd oranges and I LOVE gmd oranges.

For a nb I used the orgami and going to do mini kite this time around. I still use flats with DD1 who is now 18 months old. I mostly use flip covers on her but have used thirsties duos on her too. As a nb I used bummis nb--by far the smallest option and with flats they lasted longer bc less bulk.
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Old 01-28-2013, 06:43 AM   #5
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Re: School me on Flats... Blank slate!!

I love flats esp for a nb. It is the trimmest option IMO. I prefered them with dd1 over gmd oranges and I LOVE gmd oranges.

For a nb I used the orgami and going to do mini kite this time around. I still use flats with DD1 who is now 18 months old. I mostly use flip covers on her but have used thirsties duos on her too. As a nb I used bummis nb--by far the smallest option and with flats they lasted longer bc less bulk.
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Old 01-28-2013, 06:50 AM   #6
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Re: School me on Flats... Blank slate!!

I'm using flats on my 7 week old. She is a tiny thing, so all the Flip covers I bought her still don't fit her! We are using Thirsties Duos in size 1 on the smallest setting.

I use flour sacks and Osocozy flats, which are much thicker than the flour sacks. However, both are doing well to maintain baby's pees and poops. I use the mini kite fold with a snappi.

The hardest thing with flats is folding enough if you're using them exclusively, because it can be hard to keep up with having enough of them on hand. I fold them after washing and make sure to always have them handy.
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Old 01-28-2013, 06:54 AM   #7
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Re: School me on Flats... Blank slate!!

I pink sparkly heart my flats. We use them folded/snappied, pad folded laid in flips and to stuff our pockets. My favorites and our most absorbant are our receiving blankets, they would be too big for a newb though I think. We also have some birdseye flats that would work well for a smaller babe. They are so versatile, you can truly use them from birth to pl'ing. I've said it before, but having flats around makes life easier!
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Old 01-28-2013, 08:53 AM   #8
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Re: School me on Flats... Blank slate!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicolenutt View Post
I pink sparkly heart my flats.
^ This lol. Definitely.

Flips and Thirsties covers will definitely work with flats. In fact, a Flip is my favorite cover to use with my flats when I'm padfolding (folding the flat into squares, then into thirds to create a "pad" that you just lay in the cover). If you're wanting to try folding (kite fold, origami fold, etc.) and pinning/snappiing, you might find that you'll want a cover that provides a little more coverage than the flip. My Flips *can* work for this, but because they're so trim I found that I was having to shove and push the edges of the flats inside the cover too much, which got annoying after a while. The Thirsties are a little fuller than the flip, so they would probably work well for that (I can't say for sure because I've never used Thirsties with flats); two other covers that I absolutely love that provide the fuller coverage are the blueberry coveralls and swaddlebees capris.

Common flats that are out there include

1. Green Mountain Diaper (GMD) flats (only sold by GMD) = considered by many to be *the* best there is when it comes to flats, they are all-cotton birdseye flats that come in two different sizes -- small (which shrinks down to about 27x27) and large (which shrinks down to about 30x30), cost about $2.00-$3.00/flat, depending on size and how many you get

2. Diaper Rite (DR) flats (from Diaper Junction) = these are also considered to be really good by a lot of mamas, they're also an all-cotton birdseye flat that comes in two sizes, too -- small (which seems to shrink down to about 24x25) and large (which seems to shrink down to about 26x29) Cost about $2.00/flat, depending which size and how many you get

3. Osocozy flats (sold a lot of different places) = all-cotton flat, I've never used these, but I've heard good things about them. One important thing to note is that these do seem to shrink up to be pretty small (I don't have exact dimensions, but I *think* I've heard they can be as small as 23x23?), so if you're planning on using flats on a larger or older baby, these might not work as well. Cost about $1.75-2.00/flat depending on the type and how many you get

4. Imagine cotton flats (from Nicki's Diapers) = all-cotton flat that comes in organic cotton, as well as unbleached and bleached, same thing as the osocozy flats -- I've never used them, but I've heard they shrink up pretty small, so they might not work very well for larger/older babies. Cost about $1.50-$2.00/flat

5. Imagine bamboo flats = These just came out recently, they're a birdseye flat made from bamboo and organic cotton, so are a bit softer than all-cotton flats, they seem to shrink up to be about 27x30, the bamboo makes them very absorbent, right now I'm loving using them for night time with my LO, cost about $4.00-4.50/flat (*Swaddlebees also has a bamboo flat that they came out with recently, it has serged edges

6. Flour Sack Towel (FST) flats = these are just all-cotton flour sack towels that you can get extremely inexpensively at Walmart, Target, or Ikea, look for them in the kitchen towel section, they vary in size depending where you get them from, mine from WM seem to measure about 25x27 after a lot of washings, these are great if you're on a really tight budget or just want to try flats out to see if you like them, they don't seem to be as absorbent as the ^ birdseye flats, seem to cost about $1/flat on average

7. Receiving Blanket (RB) flats = these are just all-cotton receiving blankets, (you know, the ones you have a bunch of laying around from baby showers, etc. lol), these also vary a lot in size, a lot of mamas love them because they are absorbent and generally have serged edges which makes them lay flatter (all the ^flats have t&t edges), they're also great if you're on a tight budget or just wanting to try flats out, if you don't have any at home you can often find them really cheap at thrift store or clearanced at Walmart or Target, cost varies a lot but is on average free-$1.50/flat

8. Specialty flats = these can get very expensive (like a lot of cloth diapering, lol), specialty fabrics like hemp, bamboo velour, bamboo terry, etc. Just off the top of my head some of these are Orange Diaper Co bamboo terry squares, Zabi Baby bamboo flats, Hemp Baby hemp flats, etc. Cost varies a lot = between $5.00-$12.00/flat, I think?

The beauty of flats (at least for me) is how versatile they are. In previous threads that I've read, I think I remember mamas have seemed to agree that a flat (after being washed) that measures 27x27 can easily go from birth to potty training.

So if you're wanting to get just one size of flats, the GMD smalls would probably be best in terms of absorbency, size, and longevity (actually, I think if you go on their website, GMD has a birth-to-potty economy CD pack (under "package deals"?) that has 4 dozen of their small flats and a bunch of thirsties covers for something like $230). If you'd rather do two sizes of flats, then you can really get any combination of the ^above flats and I don't think you can really go wrong.

In my personal stash, I have about 2 dozen small birdseye flats (GMD and DR), 2 dozen large birdseye flats (GMD and DR), 7 imagine bamboo flats (for night time), and a small mix of others for back-up just in case (RB flats, FST flats, etc.). I use my flats for everything -- stuffing pockets, padfolding, folding and snappiing, burp cloths, light blankets, wiping up big spills, baby towels, etc. They are SO useful.

How to fold? However you want lol. Seriously, there's really no wrong way to do it. It can be as simple as just folding the flat into quarters and then pinning it on like a prefold or you can do something more elaborate like a mini kitefold. There's a thread somewhere around here that has a bunch of different folds for flats and you can also always check youtube, which has some awesome videos on it. If you're in a hurry, definitely just padfolding is fantastic. If you're wanting to contain the poo more, experiment with using a snappi, pins or boingos with one of the other folds and be sure to jelly roll the legs just like you would do with a prefold. (I love the kite fold and origami fold, but it's really going to vary depending on your baby's age and shape).

Best age to start? Whenever you're up to it. I would start as soon as possible, but that's just me. The cool thing about using flats with a newborn is that you don't have to rinse them out since the poo just washes out in the washing machine. I didn't start using flats with this LO until he was about 3 months old, but that was just because I was afraid of them and how hard they would be to use. I started out using them in pockets, then started experimenting with padfolding and everything grew from there. With our next LO, I'm definitely starting with flats from the beginning (with a few fitted and pockets for easier changes).

Wow, that was crazy long. Didn't mean to hold forth so much but anyway...HTH Good luck and feel free to ask any other questions you want.
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Old 01-28-2013, 09:01 AM   #9
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Re: School me on Flats... Blank slate!!

I used flats on my nb. I actually used and LOVED the gerber flats for the newbie stage. But smaller flats like osocozy or DR smalls would probably work just as well. Because I used such small flats like gerbers I didn't have to make them smaller. I used the kite fold and the neat fold with jelly rolled legs. Thirsties duo size 1 were my favorite covers after her stump fell off. Before then they rubbed it just a bit and I only used the nb proraps which were so tiny and had a great umbillical cut out.

When she was bigger, probably around 6 weeks and 10 or 11 lbs, I started using my LL flats which are a little bigger than osocozy or DR smalls. I think they are more equivalent to GMD smalls. I am still using them padfolded for my 9 month old and now using the Diaper Rite larges on her snappied on. Although I can still use my smaller LL flats snappied on her no problem, I just happened to already have larges and they work well.

Links for all flats I just mentioned:

Diaper Rite small and large:

http://www.diaperjunction.com/diaper...h-diapers.html (out of stock currently on smalls)

GMD small and large:

http://www.greenmountaindiapers.com/flat.htm

I did find it hard to have time to fold flats for the newbie stage. Gerber flats worked really well padfolded but for the itty bitty change a diaper every 30 minutes stage I used preemie pfs just for ease of use. I did do a flat every once in a while.

Pictures:

NB prorap over preemie pf before cord was completely off at 10 days old: about 9 and a half lbs.



In a gerber flat kite or neat fold can't remember which at almost 3 weeks old: 10 lbs:

Duo size 1 over it:



LL flat mini kite fold at almost 3 weeks old:



I hope all that helps!
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Last edited by ReadingRenee; 01-28-2013 at 09:02 AM.
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Old 01-28-2013, 09:03 AM   #10
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Re: School me on Flats... Blank slate!!

I'm gonna have to keep an eye on this thread... I should be getting our flats (Osocozy) in the mail today!!!
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