Why to Buy a Set?
In webforums or some seminars about cloth diapering, you will hear that it is not wise to buy the whole diaper set in advance. However, we in Bamboolik do recommend buying the complex sets and sell them a lot, and we receive plenty of positive reviews from parents who have purchased one (usually the complete one) set themselves. So how is it then?
Well, it is quite easy. There are two different approaches towards building your diaper layette.
Multi-type/ multi-brand layette
One way you can approach it is: before you decide which type or which brand of diapers you want to use during the whole diapering period, you should test a few of them first. How many kinds/ brands to test? This depends, some say it should be as many as possible, some recommend to try 2 types maximum. You base your diaper layette on these, and after some time, you will see what suits you best and will purchase more of that type or brand.
The advantage is, you will learn about more kinds of cloth diapers. A lot of mothers who choose this way become experts in cloth diapers, sometimes even passionate collectors. They often discover that the varied layette suits them, so they don‘t end up unifying it, but they buy more and more different items, they sell the ones they don‘t like … basically, the cloth diapers become their hobby (sometimes quite an expensive one) or even a profession.
The disadvantage? It is pretty complicated. Especially for fresh mums of their first child, when they want to start cloth-diapering as soon as possible, it might be difficult to remember what belongs where, which insert fits into which diaper, which diaper needs a diaper cover and which does not, and so on. Not mentioning the fathers, for some of them it becomes basically incomprehensible, hence they cannot help with the changing at all. The same goes for occasional babysitters (aunts, grannies, grandpas, friends), who have not come across the cloth diapers before. Also, posting ads for selling the unwanted diapers and constant looking for new ones is not exactly everyone‘s thing. Those who are looking for a simple solution might even be scared off from using cloth diapers by this approach.
Complex solution - a set
The second approach for creating your diaper layette is based on the fact that cloth diapers are a product of daily baby-care just like any other. Similarly as with prams, baby carriers, cots and other baby products meant for several years of usage (and then passing on to another child), you simply need to think the purchase through thoroughly, choose the product carefully (or ask for professional help when choosing), learn to operate it and then just use it every day.
The disadvantage of this approach, of course, is that you might make a bad choice with the diaper type or brand. Just like you might make a bad choice with the pram or carseat. However, for all these products, the rule is, the more quality product you choose, the lower the risk that it will be completely unsatisfactory. If it does happen, you can usually sell it easily. Let’s be honest, how many prams or cots are you planning to test before you actually purchase one? And, as mentioned, you can always ask a professional for helping you do the right choice!
Purchasing a complete diaper set has several advantages - finances to start with: the bigger the set, the more favourable the price - this is the case with most producers and distributors. Another plus is simplicity and comprehensibility: all pieces of your layette fit together, so you can easily combine them and don’t have to think about what to put where all the time. It will always be the same system, so you learn to use it very quickly and the diaper manipulation will become perfectly automated for you soon. This is highly appreciated especially by fathers, as they can focus on enjoying the precious moments with their baby, not having to think (or even, Heaven forbid, having to ask the mum :D ) about which piece of diaper goes where.
This approach also guarantees it will be much easier for you to explain the handling of the diapers to those occasional babysitters. If the whole set consists of the same type of diapers, you can for instance “assemble” the whole-day’s lot of diapers to be ready to put on when the grandma comes to look after your baby while you run your errands.
But every child is different?!
Yes, kids vary in sizes, body build and proportions, and also by the amounts they are able to drink and excrete. And not only one from another - this might vary for one child during different periods of their growth. Nevertheless, for dozens or hundreds of years, all children have been wearing the same “diaper solution”. The reason is actually quite simple: every child has one bum and two legs. This makes the construction of any diaper quite straightforward :) If you have chosen a quality diaper and have learned to use it correctly, it won’t be hard for you to adjust the diaper size according to the current proportions and needs of your baby.
Even every parent is different!
Your needs are as important as those of your baby! It is you who will need to handle the diapers on a daily basis, which means they need to be convenient not just for your child but for you too. The present-day market offers a large scale of cloth diapers, from traditional through to the modern ones, from simple through to the most comfortable ones, from very cheap through to luxurious pieces. You will surely find what suits you best.
Is a set the right thing for me?
If you enjoy doing research and reading every single bit of an article related to cloth diapers, if you have a clear overview of Czech and foreign diaper producers on the market even before your child has been born, if you are dying for having all the newest designs and materials, then do NOT buy a set. It seems that you are a born diaper collector and you would soon feel deprived of all those beautiful new diapers you have not tested yet. Yet still, if this is your case but there will often be a situation when someone else will look after your child (husband, babysitter, grandma,…) and this person does not share your passion, purchasing a set will be a good idea. But definitely not the complete one, get yourself just half the gear, and you can gratify your collector’s needs on the remaining part of your layette :)
However, if you are looking for a simple solution, if you just want to read the handling manual and nothing more, if the most important thing for you is having all the necessary equipment at home and being able to use it all the way round, then the set is the right choice for you. You only have one small detail left: pick the right one for you and your child :)