10/29/2010

Exciting Stuff.....

I'm sorry to have been so MIA the last couple of weeks. I promise there are many great things in store for you that have been taking quite a bit of my time. And of course I like to keep things a surprise! So no hints. 

Well, ok, one hint. Take a look in here for a few suggestions towards upcoming goodies, and a giveaway as well! 

If you are here from Jill's blog, please comment below you are following the blog (either a new follower, or already a loyal reader). 

Thanks folks! Have a safe and wonderful Halloween! 

 

10/07/2010

Trash Talking



I'll admit it, I wish the trash and recycling guys came later in the day. Not that I mind the early pickup, necessarily, but I really just want my trash to sit outside for more of the day. Yup, I want people to eye my trash pile with a curious eye. 

'How on earth do they have so little trash?' I want people to wonder.
Or, 'don't they have a baby, where are all the diapers?'
Or, 'they must drop their trash somewhere else.'
Or, 'wow, their recycling pile is larger than their trash pile.'

I'll admit, on our old street we often drove by a neighbor's house wondering how exactly they managed to put out one small bag of trash a week. Two adults, one plastic bag (the likes of which you'd get at Target) was all that was ever there on trash day. I've since asked them how they do it and they shrugged off my question (aka veiled compliment). Either they truly don't notice their teeny footprint, or, they really are throwing away their trash elsewhere. 

I'm proud to say, we are getting there (notice this week's showcase, photo above). How do we do it? Live that motto you learned in elementary school - Reduce, Reuse and Recycle - very catchy and very true. A few ways we've put those R's into action: 

REDUCE
refillable water bottles - despite being recyclable, plastic bottles are a huge strain
cloth diapers - far fewer diapers needed from birth to potty training
cook from scratch - fewer processed packages to toss/recycle
get off mailing lists once and for all!

REUSE
wax cereal bags make great storage sacks, just roll the top and clip shut
sell or donate used items - make Freecycle and Craig's List your friends

RECYCLE
know your recycling laws inside and out, especially which plastics are accepted
seek out alternate recycling for items such as cork or glass, which are not normally accepted at the curb
compost - my husband has faithfully been feeding our worm composter all summer (and my ferns have never looked more beautiful, thank you worm juice) 

So friends, I challenge you to take a look at your waste come trash day. Are you proud of what you see? I know I am. Although I aspire to one day graduate to my very own Target-sized trash bag!



10/05/2010

DIY: How to Shorten Prefolds

Thank you to my friend Rachel over at Reluctantly Green for allowing me to pass along this fantastic tutorial!

One note I would like to add - while I tend to harass my friends for content to publish here, don't hesitate to contact me if you have something you've written about cloth diapering and would like to share!




From the Desk of Rachel S.

How to Shorten Prefolds

My daughter is 16-months-old with a skinny waist and short rise, but big thighs! This means she requires the width of a premium-size prefold, but the rise of an infant prefold. How to solve this problem? I trimmed the rise of my premium prefolds! This is super easy and really makes the prefold nice and trim because you don't need to fold down the rise. 

I originally found instructions on Karen's Cloth Diapering Site, but decided to take step-by-step pictures because that's what I like to follow. She sews the cut-off piece onto one edge of the prefold for a built-in doubler - great idea! 

Materials 
  • Premium Prefold (any brand)
  • Scissors or Rotary cutter
  • Marking pen
  • Straight edge (I used a large picture book, but if you have a ruler that would be great)
  • Sewing machine (you will be using a straight stitch and a zig-zag stitch)

Instructions
Begin with one Premium size prefold. Measure your baby (from the top of her butt in the back to just below her belly button in the front) to determine the rise length that you need. Or, measure a diaper that already fits perfectly.


Use a straight edge to mark where you want to cut your prefold. Mark with a fabric pen or your child's magic marker. 


Cut along your line. 


It should look like this: 


Take your prefold over to the sewing machine. You will begin by using a straight stitch. Sew about 1/4 inch from the edge of the prefold. Use whatever thread you want. I used blue so it would show up in the pictures. On the other prefold that I trimmed, I used white. 



When you're finished, it will look like this: 


Now you're going to use a zig-zag stitch on the edge. Set your machine for a tight zig-zag (short length) that is wide enough to cover the area (long width). 


You'll want your zig-zag to be along the edge of the prefold, so make sure you position it in the machine accordingly. Stitch along the edge of your prefold. 


You'll end up with something like this. Hopefully your sewing skills are a bit better than mine so yours turns out straight! 


If you want, trim a bit on the edge to get as close to the zig-zag stitch as possible. It will look especially wonky in the thickest part of the prefold because you had to cut through so many layers. Remember, the diaper will be under a cover so it doesn't need to be perfect. 

That's it, you're done! Go put the diaper on your adorable baby! :) 


I used the extra pieces to make doublers. One I just stitched along the edge. For the other, I cut off 1/3 of the strip and stitched it over the other thin part of the prefold, making it thick all the way across. 



10/03/2010

When Bad Things Happen to Good People


my friend Allison's washer after a recent detergent mis-measure
don't worry, no diapers were harmed in the making of this picture

As most people quickly realize when cloth diapering - you need far less detergent than most manufacturers would lead you to believe - for top loading machines, you need 1/2 of the recommended amount, for front loading machines, just 1/4. Have you translated this knowledge to your regular laundry routine? Unless your load is heavily soiled, you are using too much detergent! Think of all the money you could save only using half to one-eighth of the usual amount!

I'll admit, growing up and even into my college years, I believed is some is good, well then more must be better. Wrong! And guess what, I was not alone in my assumption! Check out this great article on detergents. I especially like the four concluding points, the first of which is "a) First, look inside your washer after each use. If you're seeing suds at the end of the machine's cycle, you're using too much detergent." LOL. Sounds like a line straight off the Babycenter Cloth Diapering board (I'm Ms Scarlett in KS, by the way)! Just another example of cloth diapering knowledge spilling into other areas of your life (my favorite discovery - the benefits of cooking with coconut oil, but that is for another day). 

Time to share the good news, when it comes to detergent, less is best! Now when it comes to diapers, on the other hand, fewer is.... well I'll leave that decision to you. 

Happy Sunday folks! 



10/02/2010

Congratulations!

Pleased to congratulate Michelle H., winner of September's WAHMlight photo contest!

Adorable Baby A. in a Guerilla Fluff fitted!

Don't miss out on snagging one of these great diapers - one GF one size fitted and two Calibers still left from last month's stocking! 

Interested in this month's contest? More details can be found here


WAHMlight update

Just a quick note -- Nacho Dipes will stock in the next half hour!
 

10/01/2010

Welcome to the WAHMlight Nacho Dipes!

Without further adieu, please join me in welcoming Nacho Dipes to the WAHMlight! I think I've known Amanda (or 'Nacho Amanda' as I know her in my head) for practically as long as I've been cloth diapering, and I'm excited to bring IBB and Nacho together!

Happy October WAHMlight party people! 

ps. Want to win $10 towards a future IBB purchase? Details following the interview. 
Itsy Bitsy Bums: Please tell us about yourself - your family, your likes, your dislikes.
Nacho Dipes: Hello everyone! I am excited to be offering Nacho Dipes with IBB this month. A little about me - My name is Amanda and if I have a title it is first and foremost mama to my sweet little man Thane. I am a single mom, and I work outside of the home as an accountant for a health care services company by day (Specialty Care if you are interested), and then I come home and do the mommy job for a couple of hours until my son’s bed time around 7:30. Then I try to head off into the sewing room and get to doing what I love.


IBB: When did you start making diapers?
ND: A little backstory-- I taught myself to sew when I found out I was pregnant with Thane. I wanted to make him a quilt for his room. Let’s just say I ended up with a botched Christmas quilt that will serve as a tree skirt—don’t ask how those two things are related because I am not even sure!

I moved on to a more manageable first project- making wipes and pocket inserts. That lead into making fitteds and fleece for my son and a few friends. I kept getting requests for items, and Nacho Dipes was born. I started selling diapers under the Nacho Dipes name in August of 2009, and opened my Hyenacart in October of 2009.


IBB: Where did you find the inspiration for the name of your diapers?
ND: It was a suggestion from some of the mamas I was chatting with on Babycenter. My screen name includes 'nacho' in it, and many of the mamas referred to the diapers as nacho's diapers so it just kind of stuck.
 
IBB: Nacho Dipes's logo recently saw a facelift. Can you share your ideas behind the changes?
ND: It started with the website redo. I was using one of the plain canned templates provided by Hyenacart, and I wanted to spice it up a bit. I love fall and the west, so the colors were inspired by those two things. The mama behind QuasiCo did a great job in designing something that really captured my inspiration. The new logo is a very similar version to the old logo. He got a little face lift (literally) to make it a little more generic and to incorporate the new color scheme. There are plans in the future to incorporate other children’s items (clothing, blankets, etc), and I think this image will work for the diapers as well as the other products.


IBB: Besides diapers, what other products does Nacho make?
ND: I have recently started making loveys and toddler blankets. Again, that has spawned from making something for my son. I really like the finished product ,and he loved his blanket, so I wanted to offer those to others. Nacho Dipes offers wool interlock and recycled wool from time to time. I also make (typically as custom orders) raglans and other appliqu├ęd shirts. 

where the action happens!

IBB: Where do you like to picture your brand in, say, one year? Five years?
ND: In one year I hope to still be growing my customer base, and making a quality fitted and [All-in-Two] diaper. My goal is to have my diapers carried in two or three retailers by this point. I have just finalized my first contract with a local retailer, and hope to use that as a stepping stone to others. 

In five years I plan to be Nacho Dipes full time! I hope to have reached retailers in other states as well as online that will be offering Nacho Dipes in their stores. My goal would be ten retailers [by] this point. I also hope to have incorporated a children’s clothing line that will offer cloth-diaper-friendly clothing that could be sold as sets with matching diapers or as stand-alone items. Big goals?? Eh-I say you can do anything you set out to achieve as long as you have a plan and put in the effort.

IBB: What is your favorite fabric currently stocked at IBB?
ND: The cowboys fabric of course! My son’s room is decorated in a classic western theme, and that was some fabric I bought with the intention of making him a diaper as well!


IBB: Anything else WAHMlight readers should know about you?
An interesting fact that some of you may know, but most may not, is that I used to live and work on the largest cattle ranch in the US. It was the largest based on animal production not land mass—although it did cover 300,000 acres! I loved it. Even if I only got to stay a couple of years I lived my dream. My son was born there, and I have some very fond memories of the place. 


Now that you've gotten to know more about Nacho Amanda, time to get your stalking caps on... as USPS has decided to hold the diapers hostage somewhere east of the Mississippi. Just as soon as I get my mitts on these beauties they will be stocked at IBB - stocking to be announced both on Bitzy Buzz and Facebook. Stay tuned! 


Interested in winning $10? Thought so! Here's how - 
  • Post a picture of your little one wearing your favorite Nacho Dipes diaper to the IBB Facebook page
  • All entries must be posted by October 31st
  • Feel free to post as many photographs as you'd like
  • I will select a winner no later than November 2nd
  • Winner will be announced both on the IBB Facebook page as well as on this very blog
  • Any and all photographs you post must be your original artwork and, by posting, you agree I can use the winning photograph for my blog or website