Having children can be expensive. Having two children at the same time — and having two preemie babies at the same time who both have special needs — can be even more expensive and challenging. While there are many expenses you can’t avoid, there are several ways that you can save money on baby basics. One of the best ways to cut costs is to make some of your own products. You don’t have to be a sewing expert or have a workshop in your basic. These projects can be made with a beginner’s knowledge. Here are a few ideas for products that you can make yourself for your baby:
1. Cloth Diapers
When I started using cloth diapers, I was confused just trying to figure out the difference between a diaper cover and an “all-in-one” diaper. (The latter has a non-removable lining pad.) After purchasing them, I quickly realized how easy and convenient they are to use. However, they can be quite expensive (though less expensive than the lifetime cost of disposable diapers). To cut those costs, you can make your own all-in-one diapers with some flannel or knit cloth, some old towels, and a bit of repurposed shower curtain. Here are some easy-to-understand instructions for a basic diaper. Imagine diapering both your babies for less than $50!
2. Baby Wipes
Next to diapers, wipes may be the product that you buy the most. They are also one of the easiest things to make yourself. The process is simple: Use a large, sharp knife to cut a roll of paper towels in half so you have two rolls similar to toilet paper rolls. Mix a basic cleaning solution of two cups of water, one tablespoon of baby wash or shampoo, and one tablespoon of baby oil. Put one of the rolls into a plastic container (either a reused wipes container or a Tupperware container) and pour the cleaning solution over it. Fasten the lid and turn the container over, allowing the solution to saturate the towels. Voila! You are done. Variations on the cleaning solution are possible by adding drops of essentials oils.
3. Wrap or Sling
There are several fancy baby carriers available that have designer prints or ergonomic promises. They also cost anywhere from $30 to $200. You don’t need a name brand label or feats of physics to help you carry your baby. You can create a simple cloth sling for only a few dollars — without having to sew anything. There is a very easy-to-follow tutorial here. You can choose any colors you want and make as many as you want. If you find fabric on sale, you can make this for as little as $5.
4. Baby Foods
When your infant is ready to start eating solid foods, it is easy to buy processed cereals and jars of baby foods. However, these products can be very costly over time, and they contain chemical additives that are not healthy for your baby. To save money and ensure that you are feeding your baby only the best and most healthy foods, you can make your own. You don’t have to purchase an expensive food mill or baby-food maker. You just need a good blender and some quality produce. Dr. Sears offer some tips here. Basically, start by steaming your produce, blend with a little water, and store in small serving sizes.
5. Baby Toys
From stuffed animals to small crinkle toys, a little felt, ribbon and stuffing can go a long way. If you’re really handy, you can even carve blocks and other wooden toys. Check out Make Baby Stuff and DIY Mommies for some tips and patterns for a variety of toys, including stuffed animals, rattles, blocks, and more. A little imagination goes a long way, and you can create toys that are a unique fit for your baby.
Learning how to make diapers, toys, and other items for your baby can help you save a lot of money and ensure quality control. Other fun projects can include blankets, tutus, hair bows, seat covers, and more. Have you made any of these items for your babies? Share your successes in the comments!
Heather Green is a freelance writer for several regional magazines in North Carolina as well as a resident blogger for onlinenursingdegrees.org. Her writing experience includes fashion, business, health, agriculture and a wide range of other topics. Heather has just completed research on kinds of nursing degrees and nursing degrees in florida.
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