We knew before our first son was born that we would be cloth diapering. But we decided to wait until after his birth to purchase our stash. I’m so glad that we did! It’s very important to take into account the shape and size of your baby when choosing the perfect cloth diapers. The better the fit, the better your experience (i.e., less leaks!) you will have. We also wanted diapers that would grow with our baby, so we knew we needed to choose ones with a higher weight range.
Our first choice was the Happy Heiny’s one-size pocket diaper. I cannot rave enough about this diaper for people with chunky babies. I’ve often heard that people have problems with leaks with these diapers, but it’s only on babies with tinier tushes. For the chunky monkeys – these diapers cannot be beat. For a one-size pocket diaper, they have the best weight range and fit. Our son fit in them from 3 weeks until 18 months (he was 35 pounds at 18 months and had ginormous thighs, so these would fit most kids much longer).
After our son grew out of the Happy Heiny’s, we made the switch to prefolds and covers. Not only is this a cost-effective and surprisingly easy combo, it is perfect for big babies. I’ve found covers that have a much higher weight capacity than pocket or all-in-one diapers. Thirsties Duo Wrap size 2 diapers were our favorites (especially in snaps), until he grew too big even for those. This not-yet-three-year-old boy is a monster! Our new favorite cover is Bummis size Large. They say they fit up to 40 pounds, but they are still plenty roomy on our 45 pound kiddo.
I’ve also entered the world of sewing my own covers. This is a particularly convenient way to ensure you get just the right fit. It’s easy enough to make covers, but I still use my Oso Cozy unbleached prefolds for the stuffing – those things are super reliable and absorb even the biggest of messes that my toddler can make!
In January we had our second baby, and he seems to be on the same weight-gain track as his older brother. Even at 3 weeks, we never needed to use the newborn size covers or prefolds. If you know you are going to have a bigger baby, I’d go ahead and start with medium sized prefolds and Thirsties Duo Wrap size 1 covers. These covers can still fit those little newbies, but they can size-up quickly to accomodate those chunkier babies.
Hopefully our toddler boy will fit in covers/prefolds until we enter the crazy world of potty training. Until then, I’m happy cloth diapering my HUGE toddler and his baby brother who is following his footsteps!