It's common in the cloth diapering world for families to have what we call mixed stashes. That is, cloth diaper collections that are made up of more than one style or brand of diapers. There are many reasons to have a mixed stash including two babies in cloth, baby growing, multiple caregivers and more.
In this article, we're going to discuss mixed stashes, the definition of a cloth diaper, why people have mixed stashes and what mixed stashes can look like.
Let's start with the basics.
What is a cloth diaper?
The basic elements of a cloth diaper are always the same, no matter which style you choose to use. You'll need an absorbent component and a waterproof component put together to make an effective cloth diapering system.
These components can come together in many different ways and their differences are part of what makes up a mixed stash. Mixed stashes can be made up of all types of cloth diapers including All In Ones, Fitteds and Duo Wraps, and Pockets.
Why do families have mixed stashes?
- Budget - different systems fall on different sides of the budget spectrum. Systems like Duo Wraps and lay in inserts are more budget friendly than systems like One Size Natural All In Ones.
- Different diapers for different times of the day - Night time diapers often require much more absorbency than say day time diapers. Nap time diapers require more absorbency than day time diapers, but probably not as much as night time. Depending on the time of day, you may have different preferences for the type of cloth diaper you want to use.
- Two or more in cloth - Having two or more kiddos in cloth at the same time can also lead people to have a mixed stash. You may love one style for your newborn, but need something totally different for your two year old. No matter what their ages, having two in cloth will most likely mean that having a mixed stash is exactly what you need.
- Needs change as baby grows - As your baby gains weight, begins to eat solid foods and starts walking, your diapering needs will change. Newborns output is made up of small amounts, many times during the day. However, toddler outputs are made up of large amounts just a few times during the day. As your baby grows and changes, your diapering needs will change too and a mixed stash is the best way to meet all those needs.
- Consider the caregiver - The most common reason we see for mixed stashes is multiple caregivers. Mom may prefer a different style than babysitter or grandma and dad might have his own style that he likes too. Remember to consider the caregiver when choosing your mixed stash and you're more likely to keep everyone happy.
What does a mixed stash look like?
- Main style of diaper + diapers for different circumstances - Most mixed stashes have one main style of diaper plus a few different styles for specific situations. For example, many families like to use AIOs during the day, but find that they need more absorbency at night, so they have just a handful of fitteds and duo wraps for overnight.
- Several different styles and brands - When polled, many of our Thirsties Groupies said that they have not only different styles in their stash, but different brands too. We know Thirsties isn't the only cloth diaper brand out there and other brands may have found their way into your stash too. Having a mixed stash of different styles and brands completely works for some families!
- One style and different brands - Some stashes may actually stick to one specific style across different brands. There aren't too many rules about building your own mixed stash.
- Different closures - The last way to mix up your stash is to have some combination of the above, but in different closures. Many families have one parent who prefers snaps and one who prefers hook and loop! Whatever works for your family is the 'right' way to cloth diaper.
Want more info? Checkout Laura's #ThirstiesLive all about mixed stashes, what they look like and why Thirsties families love them.
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