Thursday, April 5, 2012

Diaper Conversion

I mentioned yesterday that I intended to take on a project with some of my cloth diapers. Well, I did it. I have six bumGenius one size pocket diapers, two of which are brand new and four of which I used with Jamie and Micah. BumGenius diapers are some of the best out there, but the ones that close with velcro are notorious for having that velcro wear out. Then the diapers will not stay fastened, and it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that is going to be a big problem.

A few weeks back I looked into finding someone online who could convert them into snap closures instead of the velcro. I found someone who looked good, and I prepared to ship my diapers to her. But, being in Canada, it costs a bundle to ship anything anywhere, no matter how light it is. Once I discovered the total it was going to cost me, I said forget it. I decided I would bite the bullet and buy the equipment to do it myself. I bought something called snap pliers from a site called, and got 300 snaps with it. I figured if I was spending the money, I might as well get lots of snaps so I could use them for other projects in the future. Two days ago, I finally got my snap pliers and snaps from the post office. Here is what they look like.

They came with a screwdriver so I could switch that little black piece for different size snaps, and also with the sharp pokey tool with the bone coloured handle, called an awl. It's for poking holes in the material where you push the snaps through.

So I spent Tuesday removing the velcro from three out of four of my diapers. It's a bit of a chore, so I didn't get them all done. Here is a picture of the one I hadn't done yet, just to show you where the velcro goes.
The next picture shows one of the diapers after the velcro was removed. You'll notice there are snaps on the front of it, but they all come like that. Those are so you can fold the diaper down and snap it to smaller sizes. That's how the one size option works for bumGenius diapers. You might not be able to see those snaps because they match the fabric perfectly!

So, with much fear and trepidation, I followed a YouTube video of instructions on how to replace the velcro with snaps. It was scary only because I had the potential to ruin the diapers, and they are not cheap. They cost on average about $24 each in Canada, and while that saves a lot of money in the long run because of not having to constantly buy more diapers, if I had to replace four now that would set me back over $100 with shipping and taxes. As I mentioned yesterday, I will not be doing this post as a tutorial, because there are plenty online that are good. I'm just going to show you the results of what I did! Here is my first diaper with the new snaps on.

Below is a closer up shot of the rows of snaps I put across the top front of the diaper, where the large strip of velcro used to be.

And next is a closer up shot of one of the "wings", the tabs you use to close the diaper.

Okay, now below is a shot of the brand new bumGenius 4.0 diaper that has velcro, beside my newly converted bumGenius 3.0 with snaps. The 4.0 looks smaller, but that's because it's set to the smallest setting right now so the snaps on the front of the diaper do not show.

 And finally, a closer up shot of my handiwork. 

Sadly, it took me close to five hours to complete the first diaper, and that doesn't even count the time required to remove the velcro, which I did the day before. But I am extremely pleased with the results. I am not posting pictures of the other ones, but they turned out well too. The light green was the only one that I had snaps to match the colour exactly, so it looks the most professional, I think. 

Anyway, I was thrilled to finally be able to tackle and complete a baby-related project, and now I have four more diapers that I can use hopefully until this next one is potty trained. We'll see. I will not be converting my two brand new ones until their velcro dies. I figure I might as well use it while it's fresh. The velcro is very fast and easy to fasten, which is handy. In fact, I would probably prefer it if it didn't wear out so fast. 

And just to update briefly on Cody, he is still sick, though is fever is now gone, or at least it is for the moment. The rest of us are still okay, except that Jamie and Micah have colds. Colds I can deal with. I am still praying we will be spared from whatever this horrible stomach thing is that got Cody. I'm off to tackle some housewifely duties. The dishes and laundry beckon, as usual.

2 comments: said...

Great job on your diaper conversion! It looks very professional! Hope you find a lot more uses for your snaps & pliers! Judy @

CAT said...

Thank you! I must say, it feels very addictive and I found myself brainstorming for other projects I could tackle. I know I will find other uses for the snaps and pliers for sure. Perhaps after the baby comes I'll get really brave and try making a sleeper or some other article of clothing and use snaps on it. I love to sew but am very inexperienced, so I'm not that brave. But I'd really like to learn. Definitely glad I bought the pliers and snaps myself instead of having someone else convert the diapers!