Sunday, October 30, 2011

This Week's Mass Cloth Diaper Giveaway Link-Up

If you have an open giveaway relevant to cloth diapering, please add your link to the widget below! Be sure to check back to this post daily to see all the new links & opportunities that come rolling in! :)



Saturday, October 29, 2011

bumGenius 4.0 Review & Giveaway

I'm so excited to finally be able to say I've tried one of the biggest names out there in cloth diapering! bumGenius is a name that's been around quite a while in the cloth diapering world. Their diapers have evolved through various different designs and models, and they've finally ended up with their super popular 4.0 version--this diaper has been my segway into trying bumGenius for the first time, care of Figure 8 Maternity, my lovely sponsor for this review!

Figure 8 Maternity is a super cute online boutique (their website makes me feel uber posh as I browse it from my pajamas at home! lol--check out their cute graphics & you'll see what I mean!) specializing in all things pregnancy, mom, and baby. They carry a bunch of hip, gorgeous maternity clothes, nursing bras, breast pumps, post-partum shapewear and accessories, and a huge selection of cute and unique baby gear, wear, and accessories, including cloth diapers. I love that this is a "one-stop shop" where a pregnant mama really settling into her "nesting" phase could get a lot accomplished! heehee! ;)

Up for review, Figure 8 sent me a bumGenius 4.0--a stay-dry pocket diaper in the gorgeous "Zinnia" color! This color is probably my new fav in our stash for our darling little Aurelia--it's so feminine but punchy and bold at the same time. I would say that this diaper is a "heavy duty" diaper that has great structure and workmanship. The velcro on it seems super-strength! It is thick and supersticky, which can frankly be both a good and a bad thing. The good is obviously that once put onto your baby (or your toddler, especially!), it stays PUT! They could not easily fiddle with this velcro, and you won't find it easily snagging on clothing, etc and yanking free. The width and heft of the velcro does make the waistband of this diaper feel slightly less soft & flexible than the snap diapers I'm used to, though. The super-sticky feature of the velcro means that if you don't properly fasten your diapers before putting them in the wash, you might find yourself having to unsnag the velcro from a huge "diaper chain" or from other covers and laundry in the load. The bumGenius 4.0 does have AMAZING fold-back diaper tabs built in, though, just for the laundering purpose. Simply fold the tabs back before tossing into your pail, and these tabs won't move an inch while in the wash (they have never come undone yet for me). I did have to pick the occasional hair or lint out of the velcro band post-wash cycle, though.

These fold back laundry tabs hold tight in the wash
This diaper comes with two thirsty microfibre inserts (one newborn size, and one adjustable size for infants/toddlers). Although microfibre can have its issues over time (buildup & stink), I never have a problem with new microfibre inserts, and these ones have done a good job at staying white and fluffy when dried with my dryer balls over the past month or so. Over time, I know bumGeniuses have a bad rap for getting stinky with buildup or residue, so in the long run, I think stuffing the pocket with other bamboo or cotton inserts from my own stash will probably be best. For now, though, I'm happy with what came included with the diaper. I also love the generous pocket opening that is easily stuffed come folding time.

Two microfibre inserts are included with every shell you buy

The inner lining of this diaper is a soft, synthetic microsuede that comes clean very easily. Although I have primarily microfleece diapers in my stash, I am always happy when my little toddler is wearing a microsuede lined diaper come time for a #2 diaper change--they are so, so much easier to clean over the toilet, especially since I don't ever use a diaper sprayer. This diaper was no exception; it cleaned particularly well with the old dump & swish method, sparing mama extra work in the washing department ;)

A generous pocket is easy to stuff with a clean insert, and the soft microsuede liner is easy to clean!

This diaper is made one-size by its adjustable rise snaps, and it should fit most babies from 8-35lbs. The outer PUL shell is snug and trim and has held up very well through my intensive laundering regimen (which even includes vinegar in every pre-soak--a big no-no, I know, but a step that is necessary for our household at this time!).

Although (I confess!) I still love snapping diapers most, I love that this is a diaper that I can leave when daddy, grandma, or another babysitter is watching Aurelia for the day. Even for the cloth diapering faint of heart, this diaper couldn't get simpler to clean and use--it really does go on just as quickly & easily as a disposable--a definite plus once you've got a walker on your hands like we now do with 14 month old baby girl!!


Overall, I now know why bumGenius is still one of the top names in cloth diapering today. Although the diapers do come with a bit of a larger price tag than some other overseas made brands, many customers feel that the 1 year warranty on each diaper more than pays for itself in terms of ease of mind that any problems will be remedied!

And now, read on to see how Figure 8 Maternity is providing you with a wonderful opportunity to win a bumGenius 4.0 for your own baby!



BUY IT:
Head over to Figure 8 Maternity right now and pick up a bumGenius 4.0 for yourself!

WIN IT:
Figure 8 Maternity is also offering one lucky winner a bumGenius 4.0 pocket diaper in your choice of available color!


GIVEAWAY ENDS 11/6/11 at 11:59 PM MST
OPEN ONLY TO CANADA & THE UNITED STATES
Please read all the Giveaway Policies and Rules before participating.
**EACH comment must have an easily accessible email address**


REMEMBER:
- leave a separate comment for each action completed
- don't forget your email address for each entry


WAYS TO ENTER:
  1. Follow the Cloth Diaper Contests & Giveaways blog with Google Friend Connect (leave username in comments if not obvious)
  2. Visit Figure 8 Maternity and mention in a comment something else that you'd be interested to try from their online shop
  3. ‘Like’ Cloth Diaper Contests & Giveaways on Facebook
  4. 'Like' Figure 8 Maternity on Facebook and leave a quick comment on their wall
  5. Follow @CDcontests on Twitter and leave your Twitter username in your comment
  6. Follow @fig8maternity on Twitter and leave your Twitter username in your comment
  7. Tweet this contest and tag @fig8maternity and @CDcontests (max. 1 tweet per day). Leave the permalink in the comments section. (1 entry each tweet) You may use the following tweet if you wish:
  8. #Win a @bumgenius 4.0 stay-dry diaper from @fig8maternity via @CDcontests (11/6) http://bit.ly/vHoj97 #clothdiapers #contest #giveaway
  9. Subscribe to email updates from the CDC&G blog
  10. Follow our blog with the Networked Blogs widget in the sidebar (leave following name)
  11. Share a link to this review & giveaway on a message board and leave us a reference link to where it's been shared
  12. Vote for our blog on Picket Fence Blogs - can be done once daily (1 entry each time)
  13. Grab our blog button and post it on your blog. Leave a link to where I can find it (add 3 entries)
  14. Blog this giveaway and leave a link to the post in the comments section (add 3 entries)

Final details: I received financial compensation for this review or giveaway as well as receiving the sample item free of charge. All opinions shared are my own, and I was not persuaded to share anything other than my own thoughts.  Other users may have different experiences with this product than what I have shared. This giveaway will end on November 6, 2011 at 11:59pm MST and is open to residents of Canada and the USA only. Winner will be chosen randomly using random.org’s services. The winner will be contacted by email and will have 48 hours to reply before a new winner is chosen. The prize will be supplied and mailed out to the winner by the sponsor of this giveaway.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

This Week's Mass Cloth Diaper Giveaway Link-Up

If you have an open giveaway relevant to cloth diapering, please add your link to the widget below! Be sure to check back to this post daily to see all the new links & opportunities that come rolling in! :)


Saturday, October 22, 2011

Winner of the Sew Is Your Baby Diaper


Congratulations, JuRita!  Please check your email and reply to me within 48 hours to validate your win :)

Sunday, October 16, 2011

This Week's Mass Cloth Diaper Giveaway Link-Up

If you have an open giveaway relevant to cloth diapering, please add your link to the widget below! Be sure to check back to this post daily to see all the new links & opportunities that come rolling in! :)

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

**CLOSED** Swaddlebees Prefold Pack Review & Giveaway


The product I'm reviewing today is one of my favorite items to have ever tried because it broke me into a whole new realm of cloth diapering--using prefolds! When Swaddlebees offered to send me a 6-pack of their cotton prefolds along with a coverall to use, I was both excited and nervous. I have never tried prefolds before. I had never used pins or a Snappi. I wasn't sure if I had the skill to do such things. I had fears about rash, leakage, or staining. I am so excited to report back that after delving into the world of prefolds, I have nothing but love for these simple diapers I'm about to review!

Up for review, Swaddlebees sent me a 6 pack of their natural cotton prefolds in the Medium/Large size (there is also a Newborn/Small size available). They also sent a pair of large coveralls (in the super sweet & girly 'Pink on Chocolate' polka dot print!) to create a truly leakproof system! When I first opened up the pack of prefolds, I was perplexed. I had heard that prefolds were extremely absorbant, but the fabric felt thin and wimpy to me. I recalled the importance of prep-washing and crossed my fingers that some magical tranformation would take place through my repeated cycles of hot washes. And something magical indeed did take place! After a few hot, soapy washes, my prefolds came out super plush! All the fibres bulked up at least tenfold. The fabric was no longer scratchy but was cushy and soft. Now I was beginning to believe in the absorbant properties of these prefolds, but I still had to put them to the test!

The prefolds here in their state prior to prep-washing

Not being comfortable with pins, I used a Snappi fastener with my prefolds. The cushy cotton allowed lots of thick layers for the Snappi to grab onto so that there was no fear of the claws going through and digging into Baby Aurelia's tummy. When we began using these prefolds, Aurelia was going through a nasty diaper rash (mostly from teething), so it was real relief to be able to put her in something totally natural and breathable. Around the house, we left the prefolds on coverless to allow for maximum air-flow to help heal her bottom. Even if she wet her diaper during playtime, these prefolds really were thirsty enough to not leak through--only a bit of dampness would begin to spread so that I could tell when she needed to be changed. This dramatically helped me to clear up her rash. These prefolds were also a lifesaver during a heat wave we recently had--again, they were much more comfortable and breathable during the heat and humidity. These prefolds would also be terrific for potty-learning or Elimination Communication as they allow both baby and parent to get a sense for dampness spreading (while still comfortably containing all accidents!).

After prep-washing, the prefolds are super plush and absorbant!

What really shocked me, though, was just how AMAZING these prefolds perform at nighttime. As Aurelia has grown from a newborn to an infant to a one year old toddler, it's amazing how many changes we've had to make to our nighttime diapering routine! As she'd recently become a tummy- or side-sleeping heavy wetter, pocket diapers (even double stuffed) were just not working well for nighttime anymore. We tried everything and often reached for the disposable diaper at night to ensure dry sheets in the morning. I wanted to give these prefolds a nighttime go but was extremely skeptical that they would work. I fastened them on in a basic newspaper fold (our favorite), added a stay-dry microfleece liner from my own collection just for a little extra wicking power, and I covered the whole shabang with the pink polka dot coveralls that Swaddlebees had sent along. It was amazing! It was miraculous! These prefolds absorb and absorb and absorb and have NEVER, EVER leaked after weeks and weeks of repeated nighttime use! In the morning, the prefold feels like it's about 5lbs heavy when I remove it, but Baby's bum is dry, with no redness.

This cover is totally leak-proof with double rows of snaps at the waist, an adjustable rise, and double leg gussets!
Laundering out the prefolds is a breeze! Occasionally I'll rinse my night diapers to cut down the ammonia smell in the pail (especially in the summer's heat). However, with or without pre-rinsing, I find that these prefolds wash MUCH cleaner in the laundry than my synthetic fibre pocket diapers, and I end up with far fewer issues (like "funky" smells!) than with microfibre, etc.

At only $19.95 for a pack of 6, these prefolds are all-around powerhouses. Next time I have a newborn baby, I will honestly be going with prefolds and covers rather than Frankensteining together my own system & collection. Once you get over the fear of folding & fastening, there is really nothing easier (especially in terms of care, laundry & maintenance) than this age-old system!



BUY IT:
Head over to Swaddlebees right now and pick up a pack of these thirsty prefolds for yourself!

WIN IT:
Swaddlebees is also offering one lucky winner their own prefold prize pack (with your choice of prefold size as well as your favorite size/style of diaper cover!)




GIVEAWAY ENDS 10/23/11 at 11:59 PM MST
OPEN ONLY TO CANADA & THE UNITED STATES
Please read all the Giveaway Policies and Rules before participating.
**EACH comment must have an easily accessible email address**


REMEMBER:
- leave a separate comment for each action completed
- don't forget your email address for each entry


WAYS TO ENTER:
  1. Follow the Cloth Diaper Contests & Giveaways blog with Google Friend Connect (leave username in comments if not obvious)
  2. Visit Swaddlebees and mention in a comment something else that you'd be interested to try from their online shop
  3. ‘Like’ Cloth Diaper Contests & Giveaways on Facebook
  4. 'Like' Swaddlebees on Facebook and leave a quick comment on their wall
  5. Follow @CDcontests on Twitter and leave your Twitter username in your comment
  6. Follow @swaddlebees on Twitter and leave your Twitter username in your comment
  7. Tweet this contest and tag @swaddlebees and @CDcontests (max. 1 tweet per day). Leave the permalink in the comments section. (1 entry each tweet) You may use the following tweet if you wish:
  8. #Win a #clothdiapers prefold prize pack from @swaddlebees via @CDcontests (10/23) http://bit.ly/nmkMrw #baby #contest #giveaway
  9. Subscribe to email updates from the CDC&G blog
  10. Subscribe for the Swaddlebees Newsletter
  11. Follow our blog with the Networked Blogs widget in the sidebar (leave following name)
  12. Share a link to this review & giveaway on a message board and leave us a reference link to where it's been shared
  13. Vote for our blog on Picket Fence Blogs - can be done once daily (1 entry each time)
  14. Grab our blog button and post it on your blog. Leave a link to where I can find it (add 3 entries)
  15. Blog this giveaway and leave a link to the post in the comments section (add 3 entries)

Final details: I received no financial compensation for this review or giveaway, though I did receive the sample item free of charge. All opinions shared are my own, and I was not persuaded to share anything other than my own thoughts.  Other users may have different experiences with this product than what I have shared. This giveaway will end on October 23, 2011 at 11:59pm MST and is open to residents of Canada and the USA only. Winner will be chosen randomly using random.org’s services. The winner will be contacted by email and will have 48 hours to reply before a new winner is chosen. The prize will be supplied and mailed out to the winner by the sponsor of this giveaway.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

**CLOSED** Sew Is Your Baby: Review & Giveaway


There is nothing better than stumbling upon a shop that carries a huge selection of pocket diapers. Though I've dabbled in all sorts of other styles, snapping pockets really are my favorite to come back to time and time again. With little WAHM businesses cropping up all over the place, it's hard to keep track of where all these diapers come from. But, I have a great new place I'm happy to recommend to you--Michelle from Sew Is Your Baby is offering up an ENORMOUS variety of cute, inexpensive pocket diapers to bulk up your stash! ;)

Sew Is Your Baby, like so many online shops, is a home-run business by mom Michelle. Working from home, Michelle is blessed to spend lots of time with gorgeous baby girl Parker. Cloth diapering was an early passion for Michelle as she and her husband Donovan fought to learn the most they could about it, even though they were the only ones they knew using fluff at the time. After successfully finding their groove and passion for cloth, Michelle took that love to a new level by starting Sew Is Your Baby, an off-shoot of her other sewing and crafting endeavors through SewIsYourFace.com. Having partnered with an off-shore manufacturer, Michelle has literally over a hundred different items in her online catalogue, including pocket diapers, reusable flannel baby wipes, leggings, pants, and accessories.

Up for review, Michelle sent me a minky pocket diaper in the gorgeous, feminine Pink Butterflies & Roses print. I've had mixed feelings about minky diapers in the past, so I was curious to see what I thought of this particular diaper. As soon as I unpacked it, I was impressed. The materials and snaps were of good quality, and minky was soft without being overly thick and bulky. The inside of the diaper was a smooth and soft microsuede. The diaper came with a soft, microfibre insert to stuff in the pocket.

I love this diaper and have absolutely no complaints or reservations about it! It fits a lot like my other favorite pocket diapers (Kawaii, Hipkiddo, Dinkledooz) in that it has great fit & stretch, as well as square tabs that can be crossed over for an even better fit. This one-size diaper has an adjustable rise and will likely fit most babies from 8-40lbs.

The pocket stuffs from the back with a cinched, elasticized opening that lays flat without ever gaping or having excess fabric sneaking out the back to cause wicking. The microsuede lining remained soft (though it does get the tiniest amount of pilling from time to time, especially if there is any velcro elsewhere in your load!) and was SUPER easy to clean. I always prefer microsuede to microfibre when cleaning solids off the diaper, especially as I don't use liners or a sprayer and simply rely on the shake & scrape method for removing my toddler's poop! The microsuede dumps SO easily into the toilet and washes perfectly clean (without stains!) every time.

This diaper fits great, had no leaks, and doesn't leave red marks

I love how soft & girly this diaper is, and Michelle honestly has so many other great prints to choose from (my other favorites for a girl would definitely be the Hieroglyphics and Pastel Swirls minky prints!). Although I'm ALWAYS a square tab lover, she also carries round tab pocket diapers for those who might prefer their look or fit on their little ones. Basically, there is something for everything at her shop, which is great! Prices typically range from $13.00-$14.00 per diaper and far less for other items & accessories. She still also offers free shipping to the USA, as well as a variety of package deals, and she offers a 30 day money back guarantee on all her diapers!

I know you're all likely racing over to check out the huge inventory she has, so while you're scoping out, also stop to consider what you might want to WIN from Sew Is Your Baby, and be sure to enter our giveaway to win a pocket diaper below!! ;)



BUY IT:
Head over to the Sew Is Your Baby right now and buy your baby a cute new pocket diaper starting for only $13.00. There are literally dozens and dozens of cute prints and styles!

**Use coupon code clothme! for 10% off orders of $40 or more. Also, enjoy free shipping on all US orders, anytime!

WIN IT:
Sew Is Your Baby is also offering one lucky winner their choice of cute one-size pocket diaper (with microfibre insert) from available inventory!


GIVEAWAY ENDS 10/10/11 at 11:59 PM MST
OPEN ONLY TO CANADA & THE UNITED STATES
Please read all the Giveaway Policies and Rules before participating.
**EACH comment must have an easily accessible email address**


REMEMBER:
- leave a separate comment for each action completed
- don't forget your email address for each entry


WAYS TO ENTER:
  1. Follow the Cloth Diaper Contests & Giveaways blog with Google Friend Connect (leave username in comments if not obvious)
  2. Follow Michelle's blog, Sew Is Your Face, with Google Friend Connect, and leave a comment with your username
  3. Visit Sew Is Your Baby and mention in a comment which cloth pocket diaper you'd like to try from their catalogue, if you win
  4. Make a purchase from the Sew Is Your Baby online shop and allow yourself one extra entry per item purchased!
  5. ‘Like’ Cloth Diaper Contests & Giveaways on Facebook
  6. 'Like' Sew Is Your Baby on Facebook and leave a quick comment on their wall
  7. Follow @CDcontests on Twitter and leave your Twitter username in your comment
  8. Follow @sewisyourbaby on Twitter and leave your Twitter username in your comment
  9. Tweet this contest and tag @sewisyourbaby and @CDcontests (max. 1 tweet per day). Leave the permalink in the comments section. (1 entry each tweet) You may use the following tweet if you wish:
  10. #Win a cute pocket diaper from @sewisyourbaby via @CDcontests (10/10) http://bit.ly/qEGzGt #clothdiapers #baby #contest #giveaway
  11. Subscribe to email updates from the CDC&G blog
  12. Subscribe for the Sew Is Your Baby Newsletter
  13. Follow our blog with the Networked Blogs widget in the sidebar (leave following name)
  14. Share a link to this review & giveaway on a message board and leave us a reference link to where it's been shared
  15. Vote for our blog on Picket Fence Blogs - can be done once daily (1 entry each time)
  16. Grab our blog button and post it on your blog. Leave a link to where I can find it (add 3 entries)
  17. Blog this giveaway and leave a link to the post in the comments section (add 3 entries)

Final details: I received no financial compensation for this review or giveaway, though I did receive the sample item free of charge. All opinions shared are my own, and I was not persuaded to share anything other than my own thoughts.  Other users may have different experiences with this product than what I have shared. This giveaway will end on October 10, 2011 at 11:59pm MST and is open to residents of Canada and the USA only. Winner will be chosen randomly using random.org’s services. The winner will be contacted by email and will have 48 hours to reply before a new winner is chosen. The prize will be supplied and mailed out to the winner by the sponsor of this giveaway.