EC, or elimination communication is a great way to go diaper free, even part time; that will further cut down on your expenses as there are no diapers to wash or purchase!
The focus of my blog post today will be making inexpensive "pants" or legwarmers to use when practicing EC. Remember, you can start EC with any age baby/toddler, doesn't have to be a newborn and it is NOT all or nothing. Many ECer's are part time and use cloth diapers at night, during naps, in the car or with caregivers. That is for you and your baby to decide!
For more basic information on starting EC with your child, check out this beginners/just getting started article from Boulevard Designs.
|Find them in MamaBearBabyWear's Etsy shop here|
First, the EC training pant. This is one of my
favorite items! Easy to make if you want to
do it yourself, reuses something you may
already have, or inexpensive if you are not
craft-savvy and need someone to make it for
you. Upcycle your prefolds in to some pretty
and easy to use training pants. Elastic around
the legs and waist make it easy for you to pull up and down, or little one when able to do so by themselves. Plus these have snaps at the sides for easy removal when there a is a missed opportunity to use the potty. Yours don't have to be as colorful or professional as these to get the job done but these are fun to look at! Why do you need something like training pants? They are nice to have when your child eliminates in an appropriate place regularly and you need just a little protection for occasional mishaps. For us, training pants or tiny panties were nice to have since our children potty trained completely at an early age and were very small for their age making store bought underwear impossible to find, in a size 9-12months.
Next, EC or splitcrotch pants. These pants work by having the crotch seams open, sometimes in an overlapping style so you don't have to remove anything to help your child eliminate. Hold your child in a squat position or place an older child on the potty and no hurrying to pull pants or underwear down. This is a great piece to have for a smaller child that may not signal the need to pee long before letting it go. Also great for those able to walk to the potty but not skilled enough to remove own clothing. Here is a free tutorial with pattern to make your own from Do-it-yourself EC.
Last is my favorite EC accessory, fleece legwarmers. We used these the most and they were perfect for winter and with cloth diapers too. The reason I use fleece is because it wicks away moisture if there is a diaper leak or if your child doesn't make it to the potty in time. Cotton or cotton blend knits will absorb moisture, meaning you'll have to change them and will need several pairs! With fleece you could get by on 3 pairs, rinsing/washing as needed. They are easy to make and warm enough to keep little ones comfy in the cooler months too. For girls, put them under a dress and they are ready to go!
To make your own, measure your child's thigh circumference, add about 2-3 inches for growing room. Measure the length and add 3-4 inches for hems and growing room. Sew the long seam first. You can get by with elastic only at the top if needed. Turn the top down 3/4" to 1" leaving a small opening to insert the elastic. Thread elastic through using a safety pin , sew both ends together and sew opening closed. You can do both ends if you desire. To determine how much elastic, pull a piece around your child's thigh to a comfortable length or cut it 1-2 inches smaller than the circumference.