I hear it all the time, “I don’t like FOE” or, “I do not use FOE”. FOE or fold over elastic is the edging on the covers that I sell from the ArtistryCreates pattern. Now, I can totally understand why the one factor of pilling can make one to feel like they should stay away from FOE. As we all want our ‘stash’ to be in the best of condition, right? However, I believe the positive factors that these covers can bring to your cloth nappying system far outweigh this one negative ‘issue’ and I will show you how and why it isn’t really an issue.
A lot of people I know really would like to use Cloth nappies, however the start-up costs to cloth a bub full time in the beginning is seemingly high even though it is significantly less than using disposables. They estimate you can cloth nappy a bub for about $250 for a basic cloth nappy system which can then be used on other bubs including being sold 2nd hand to recoup costs. Sorry ladies ‘Embroidered Pretties’ costs a lot more than this unfortunately. They also estimate that it costs about $2,000 to use disposables for one child for a cheaper disposable brand – that’s $4,000 for two children and $6,000 for three children– no reusing here! These figures are taken from The Australian Nappy Network website:
Guess what, Nifty Nap covers can be used as part of this basic system if you wish to keep costs down, which is a big plus in my mind! For example: you really only need 2 or 3 covers per size (e.g, newborn, small, medium and large) if you wash every day or every other day as they do not need washing each time you change bubs. You can change the absorbent part at change time and reuse the same cover all day. Thus, from birth to toilet training you will only need between 8 or 12 covers all up – please visit my website for prices: http://constellationkids.com/store/2. They dry very quickly and in the Australian sun in summer they will dry in under an hour. Actually at home in the summer I sometimes forgo the cover and let bubs stay in a fitted nappy and thus less covers are required at my house thus saving me even more money. They are only really needed for naps and going out.
Some ladies I know wash the covers at each and every change time, this will make your covers look shabby faster – trust me ladies, less washing equals less pilling and did I mention less washing? They really do not need washing each time. Yep another great factor of using covers as part of your cloth nappying system – is less washing and less water used – great for your pocket and even better for the environment. The only time I wash covers is when the FOE has been touched by poo or if I have used it for a day. If you use a fitted or a prefold correctly then the chance of poo touching it is quite low – but if it does a backup cover is recommended just in case. Thus I recommend 3 covers for when they are little but when they are on solids and the poo is more formed I would recommend 2 covers.
Another way to keep your covers looking new is to not wash them in with other items that contain velcro, or if you have other covers or nappies that have velcro use a big bra bag. The times when I do wash my covers when they haven’t been touched by poo is the time I wash them in a bra bag. Otherwise all other velcro nappy shells are thrown into the bag. This isn’t too much work really – it is less work then AI2’s really as there are many more shells to contend with when using AI2’s. Washing cloth nappies in general isn’t too much work and is a common misconception – but that’s a whole other blog.
So the pilling to me isn’t really an issue compared to the thousands of dollars you can save especially since the pilling is an aesthetic issue and it doesn’t affect the performance of a cover at all. Thus there is no need to be afraid of FOE. Thank you for reading. Susan
A couple of covers with FOE: