Cloth diapers seem to fall into two main categories: fitted diapersand prefolds. Some people also designate a third category for contour diapers, which are a shaped but flat diaper, not featuring things like elastic or built-in closures. Contours, however, seem to be fading from many diapering product lines, so most people deal mainly with the first two basic categories. Prefolds are all generally the same, making these choices easy to understand. Fitted diapers, however, see many different types, styles and choices all in the same category.
Basic Fitted Diaper
The basic fitted diaper has several features that are almost always included. Understanding these and the advantages can help you make a decision as to what to purchase. Fitted diapersbegin construction using a contoured and shaped pattern piece. To this base, waist and leg elastic is added to further shape the diaper. These features make the fitted diapersfit and work better, containing leaks and contouring to your baby’s shape. Most fitted diapersalso feature some kind of closure, either a Velcro-type material or something like plastic snaps. There is an absorbent core that contains moisture; this may be built into the diaper body or attached externally in some way. Fitted diapersgo on and off just as conveniently as disposables, offering the same fit and features that modern parents have come to expect. A basic fitted diaper may require a separate cover to avoid leakage.
The pocket diaper takes all the advantages and concepts used to make fitted diapersand adds a few more twists. The shaping, including waist and leg elastic is still present. However, instead of sewing or snapping in an absorbent core, the diaper body is a shell comprised of an outer layer of waterproof fabric and an inner wicking layer. An opening in the top or inside of the shell allows parents to customize the absorption by adding one or more absorbent pads to the core of the fitted diapers. Many parents who find one-size diapers appealing favor the pocket style. This is because only the thin cover material needs to be adjusted to cut down on the overall bulk of the diaper.
Another commonly-recognized category of fitted diapersis the all-in-one style. These diapers are the most like disposables, both in use and design. Any diaper that has the waterproof layer built into the diaper design can be designated as an all-in-one. All-in-one diapers can be pocket style or can have the entire diaper design integrated into one fitted diaper. All-in-one diapers always have a built-in closure, either Velcro or plastic snaps. All-in-one diapers may be available in both sized or one-size versions, though one-size diapers are usually more difficult to adjust and excess bulk may be an issue.
Different families favor different types of fitted diapers; there are definitely pros and cons to each type. To get a feel for what is available and which styles you prefer, you may want to try several of the fitted diapersthat are offered at Kelly’s Closet.