Archiv der Kategorie: Child

Testing the new DM Paper Liners

Recently, the well-known German drug store DM has started to sell paper liners for cloth nappies. The cloth diaper community seems to be quite excited about it, because up to now it was not possible to simply buy equipment for reusable nappies just around the corner. I bought our paper liners on the internet or drove all the way from Bonn to Königswinter, to the only store I know that sells the Disana paper liners.

So when I heard about the Pusblu liners, I started looking in the DM stores and found it directly in the Kaiserpassage near Bonn’s main station. You can find it near the Alana products and it costs 3,95 € for 100 sheets.

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Of course I bought a roll and compared it to the Disana liners that we normally use. At first sight, they look alike, only the single sheets have a slightly different structure.

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The biggest difference is the length: the Disana sheets are 36 cm long, while the Pusblu papers are only 28 cm in length. Both are 16 cm wide. Here you see the two sheets next to each other and, for comparison, next to a Little Lamb fleecy liner:

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We are currently using nappy covers by Blueberry and Milovia in the one size version. Inside we stuff cotton prefolds, fleece liners, and the paper liner goes on top. The Disana sheets covers the prefold and can be stuffed into the pocket – the Pusblu papers however are smaller and cannot cover the inserts completely. You can see it in the pictures below, even though I did not stuff the diapers all too well: in the top row, the Pusblu paper liner is used in the Blueberry Capri on the left and the Disana sheet covers the inserts of the Milovia cover on the right. In the bottom row, the Capri is used with the Disana liners and the Milovia with the Pusblu sheet. In both cases, there is a part of uncovered fleece liner visible where the Pusblu paper is used.

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Both paper liners can be machine washed, then they crinkle a bit and thus get a little smaller again. The producers of both say you can also dispose of them in the toilet, which I usually do not – you never know what will happen and I do not want to risk a clogged loo.

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Personally, I will probably stay to the Disana paper liners, even though that means I have to order it online or buy it in stores farther away. Simply because it is longer and thus fits better into our diaper system. We also have shorter all-in-one nappies that go well with the short liners, but right now we are in the process of sorting them out because they don’t fit the big baby.

Maybe if I will use newborn size nappies again, I will change to Pusblu – on the other hand, you do not really need paper liners for breastfed newborns. Hence for us, another size of about 8-10 cm more in length would be so much better! If there was another size, I would directly change to the Pusblu brand because of the cheaper price and the better availability.

tl;dr: the German drugstore DM sells paper liners! If the sheets were longer, I would certainly use it.

 Disana  Pusblu
 Price  4,90 € for 100 sheets  3,95 € for 100 sheets
Availability in 4 stores in Bonn, according to Disana in many DM stores
 Size 36 x 16 cm 28 x 16 cm
Miscellaneous
machine washable; can be disposed in the toilet machine washable; can be disposed in the toilet

Short Notice Baby Jackets

After I had knitted my first baby jacket from leftover yarn, I wanted to make something that actually fits my child. A little research on Ravelry patterns led me to the Short Notice jacket – a seamless and easy to knit pattern.

In my local yarn store, I bought Forte from Lang Yarns because I really liked the look of it. Instead of using the recommended 8-9 mm needle, I used a rather small one of 5.5 mm. This resulted in a very compact jacket, which I like to use on cold days in the stroller. Instead of making a buttonhole every 8 rows, I only made one in 12 rows, which is still enough (try to close seven buttons on a moving baby!).

I am not a fast knitter and I have only little time to knit (the short hours after the baby went to sleep and before I am all too tired myself), but still it took me only one week to make the jacket. I love these things that are finished before I lose motivation! Actually, I was so thrilled that I made another one in a smaller size for a friends‘ child. This time, I used the Forte yarn only for the border and made the rest in Lana Grossa Superbingo, and I used a 6 mm needle. Both yarns are 100 % virgin wool, so they are warm and cosy for the babies. In the second jacket, I made one buttonhole every 16 rows and crocheted the buttons. Admittedly, I like the look of the second one more, because the Forte yarn changes color too fast for the seamless pattern.

So, two jackets in three weeks! If only all my projects went that fast… At the current temperature, my daughter really wears the jacket quite often, so it was worth the work. Except financially, because the jackets‘ materials were about 30 and 20 Euros, respectively. You could buy at least one jacket for the same price, even all virgin wool. Still, it is a nice gift for children at the current time of the year.

We have some issues with the web hosting, so I can only show one picture right now. I will update once we have everything figured out! In the meantime, you might want to check out the respective projects on Ravelry here and here.

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Farm Yard Friends Blanket

Remember the pastel pink cake I made for a baby shower? Guess what – the child is born, and she is the sweetest little thing. I visited this brand new person yesterday, and of course I brought a gift.

Since the proud mother is one of my best friends, I knew quite early she was pregnant and had a lot of time to think about and prepare my birth gift. So I decided to crochet a baby blanket and bought the farmyard friends pattern from Mary Maxim.

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The pattern calls for Mary Maxim Worsted Weight yarn, but I did not know where to buy this yarn in Germany and did not want to order from overseas. So I decided to use Myboshi No. 5. The next problem was to find out how much yarn I would need. This was particularly challenging because the Mary Maxim Starlette yarn comes in balls of 180 yards on 3.5 oz and is crocheted with a 5 mm needle. Myboshi No. 5 calls for a 6 mm needle, and has 50 yards on 0.88 oz. So even with the knowledge that I would need one ball of yellow Mary Maxim yarn for the sun, I did not know whether the full ball or only part of it was needed, which made a difference in the number of Myboshi yarn balls to order.

So I tried to make an educated guess and ordered the following colors (where I replaced the original color of the sky with a nice blue):

  • 2 x cocoa brown
  • 6 x white
  • 6 x cloud blue
  • 1 x beige
  • 4 x black
  • 4 x grass green
  • 4 x emerald green
  • 1 x signal red
  • 2 x dandelion yellow
  • 3 x curry
  • 3 x raspberry
  • 2 x ocher
  • 2 x silver
  • 1 x magenta

I turned out, I overestimated my yarn needs a little. I bought one ball too much of curry, grass green, raspberry, ocher, black, and silver, and I had two full balls of white left in the end (which I later used for the unicorn hat). Because I decided to use different colors for the border as well, I needed to buy one more ball of cloud blue in the end.

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Apart from guessing yarn quantities, the pattern was easy to follow and I really like the result. It was a long-term project though – I started in August and finished not until January! Still I was on time before my friend gave birth, so everything went well. Actually, the hardest work was to weave in all the ends.

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After I had finished the blanket, I went to a local store and bought some fleece, which I sewed as an extra layer to the bottom of the blanket. Sewing by hand is not my strongest ability, but I am still happy with the result! Now I hope my new baby friend likes her blanket as well.

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Welcome to the world, L.M.!

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Carnival Hats

Only 10 more days until my daughter’s first carnival will start. Unfortunately, I cannot sew at all, but we could rely on her grandmother to make a costume. My task was to make the carnival hats.

One of the family’s children will be Yoda this year. I crocheted his hat loosely after the instructions from Nerdspirations (in German). For my little unicorn, I bought one of the great unicorn headbands from Graciosa, a very nice woman from Colombia. I know her shop for two years now, because I bought carnival headbands for myself from there. So I only had to knit a colorful hat and did not have to think about unicorn ears or a horn.

Now carnival can start – Alaaf!

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Baby Jacket

It is quite some time ago that I knitted something. Since I wanted to start again and we could use a baby jacket, I took some wool scrap and looked for a very easy pattern. I found it (in German) at wolldiskont.

The pattern calls for Schachenmayr SMC Baby Super Soft, which has 163 meters on 50 grams and recommends a 3-4 mm needle. However, I wanted to use a thicker yarn, since I do not have as much time for knitting and the baby grows so fast. Also, I still had bulky yarn – admittedly in black and white, which is not so appropriate for baby clothing. Still I started to knit.My daughter wears size 80 and is growing rapidly, so I used the maximum size of the pattern, which is 92/98. I started with Wolle Rödel Multi on an 8 mm needle. According to the gauge, I had to use about half of the stitches in the pattern. But the yarn was only enough for the jacket’s back and a part of the left front. I had another skein of wild wild wool, which required another gauge and was enough for both sleeves on a 7 mm needle. When I tried to get new black yarn for the remaining front parts, I had to learn that Multi is not sold any more. So I bought Wolle Rödel’s Big as the shop assistant told me. To sum up, my very first knitted piece after a long time included three different yarns with different gauges and a lot of roughly estimated stitch and row numbers.

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According to the pattern, the jacket in size 92/98 should be about 32 cm in the back at a length of 30 cm, and the sleeves should be about 28 cm long. My jacket is 30 cm in both width and height, and the sleeves are 25 cm long (22 cm if rolled up). Fair enough. I made a simple blue border instead of the one the pattern called for. To make the black and white jacket a little more suitable for children, I found owl buttons.

In the end, the jacket is way too big for my daughter – I pretty much overestimated her size. Still it was a good project to get back in the knitting business. And maybe I find someone who needs the jacket…

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Cloth Diapers – Basic Equipment: 5 months later

In October, I postet an overview of our basic cloth diaper equipment. Today, after about 5 months with my baby, I can say what we actually need. We tried a lot, invested money, had one or the other accident, and after all, we found a system that is suitable for us.

I did research before buying – about tie-ons, all-in-ones, fitted nappies, prefolds, covers… However, it is a different question which system you actually like with a real baby in your real life. By now, we use different diapers for daytime, nighttime, and on the road.


Daytime

At home, we use covers with cotton prefolds. We tried covers from Rumparooz, Blueberry, and Milovia, and prefolds from Cosies, xkko, and Blueberry. You simply fold them, put them into the cover, and then on the baby. Optionally, you may use fleece liners or paper to keep liquids from baby’s skin and other parts from the cover, respectively. We tried paper from Stoffywelt and Disana and fleece liners from Little Lamb and TotsBots.

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My personal favorites are the Milovia covers, directly followed by the ones from Blueberry, together with Cosies prefolds and Little Lamb fleecy liners. Here is what it looks like:

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Right now, we have 9 covers in size 2, 26 big and 40 small prefolds, and 15 fleece liners. This is by far enough, only the fleece liners are sometimes used. Then I take paper or nothing at all.


Nighttime

Cloth diapers for the night are a real challenge around here. My daugher wakes often at night and drinks, and accordingly, she pees a lot. We only change her diaper once a night, so the diaper needs to take a lot of liquid.

We tried different fitted nappies (TotsBots Bamboozles, Hu-Da One Size, Anavy XL, Petit Lulu, Fluffy Fly) with TotsBots and Blueberry covers. Most of the time, the diapers held everything, but some of them make a very big package and all of them are really wet after half a night. Like soaking wet all around the baby.

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Furthermore, the fitted nappies take comparatively long to dry. Considering two nappies per night and one wash every three days, you need six nappies. We do not own a tumble dryer, so if it takes three days for the nappies to dry, we need another six. Twelve nappies plus covers however are quite expensive, and I would only invest the money if I was really satisfied with the system.

Since we neither want to change 3 – 4 times a night, nor leave our daughter to sleep in a wet diaper, we simply use disposable nappies for the night. Two per night are enough and the child is warm and dry. Maybe we will switch to cloth diapers if the perfect system comes around or our baby pees less per night.


On the road

When we are not at home, we use all-in-one diapers. Additionally, I sometimes take readily prepared covers with prefolds with me, but most of the time I find it to be easier to change the complete nappy. Put the new one on, the old one into the wetbag, you don’t need to fold or sort anything.

In our diaper bag, we have a BumGenius Freetime, a TotsBots EasyFit, and a Pop-In minky. Okay, to be honest, the Pop-In is not an all-in-one diaper, but we ignore that and use it as such. Back in the days where we still used newborn sizes, we also had a Blueberry Simplex and two ImseVimse all-in-ones. If I feel like it and have the time, I also have paper or fleecy liners in the bag.

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Besides a wetbag for the used diapers, we own a Hoppediz Wickelmaxx and a SkipHop box for washclothes. Normally, we are not on the road everyday with our complete diaper bag, so four all-in-one diapers and two wetbags are enough. If we happen to be away for longer or more days in a row, I take prefolds and covers, and either reuse the same wetbag for two days or simply use a trash bag.


These are our experiences so far. Now I can finally say that we have everything we need – maybe we could buy one or two more all-in-ones or fleece liners. At daytime, we get along very well. Even though we do not use cloth diapers at night, we save a lot of garbage and do not have to buy new nappies as often as other parents. Next time, I will report our experiences with the different nappies.

By the way: even though I write about all the brands I use, we bought everything ourselves and I am not sponsored by any company.

Cloth Diapers – Basic Equipment

As an Öko (hippie) mom, of course I use cloth diapers. I like the fact that we produce less plastic waste, and personally, I think it is fun. Yes, it is expensive at first and also a lot of work – you are washing and drying and assembling all the time. Therefore, I would not recommend cloth diapers to people who do not have at least a little enthusiasm for the topic. Anyways, for us it works, and there is much less garbage involved. I will not get started with any eco-balance; we use more water and power, and manufacturing the diapers also comes at a price. But after using disposable diapers for only the first week, our garbage can was full. It was so full, we used the one of our neighbors. To circumvent this and having my baby’s bum packaged in cute designs is enough for me.

During my pregnancy, I learned a little about the different systems and ordered an initial equipment. We did not want to use tie-on diapers, because this was too far away from the „normal“ and easy way. Hence, I ordered a mixture of all-in-ones, covers and prefolds, and fitted nappies for trial. Here is what it looked like:

All-in-Ones:

  • 1 Blueberry Simplex, newborn size
  • 1 BumGenius Freetime, one Size
  • 2 ImseVimse diapers, newborn size
  • 1 TotsBots EasyFit, one Size

Covers / Prefolds

  • 1 Rumparooz cover, size 1
  • 2 Blueberry Capri covers, size 1
  • 1 TotsBots Stretchy Wrap cover, size 1
  • 10 Cosies prefolds, size 1
  • 1 Thirsties Duo hemp prefold, size 1

Fitted Nappies

  • 1 Petit Lulu fitted nappy, size 1
  • 1 Hu-Da fitted nappy, one Size
  • 2 TotsBots Bamboozle, size 1

After about three months, I can say it was a good choice, but too little of everything. The only thing we hardly used was the Thirsties hemp prefold. I tried different layers of prefolds a few times, but it made a very big package and I did not get the advantage.

Soon I will post my opinion about the individual nappies, covers, and prefolds. There will also be our personal cost-benefit analysis, and whatever else comes to my mind.

New Category

I did not post a lot during the last nine months. The duration of this blogging break however is no coincidence, and therefore there is a new category.

Hence, there will be new topics like diapers, toys, and other baby stuff. This song (in German) sums it all up quite nicely: