I need to write more posts about cloth diapers, so if you're not into cloth diapering, I won't be mad if you skip this post. Either that, or read it. You might find it interesting and decide to give cloth diapering a try. Since I started trying to sew my own cloth diapers, I've only used synthetic materials:
These are man-made, not produced from any plant or animal-based fiber. I cannot begin to tell you the troubles I've had with most of them. But I will, in another post.
A few weeks ago, I decided to order a 20x20 cut of sherpa from diapercuts.com for $3, which is usually 80% cotton, 20% polyester as a backing to give the cotton more stability.
What I noticed right off the bat was how soft and lovely it was. It FEELS organic. Not organic in the sense that it was made with organic cotton, but that it's from the earth. It felt REAL, like it was just sheered from a sheep or something (even though it's cotton). The poly backing is nice. It feels solid, but is stretchy with a lot of give. It does a great job of holding the fibers together.
So, I used some sherpa to make a soaker for an AIO (all-in-one) and honestly have no idea how it's doing in that AIO since it's sandwiched between the inner fabric and some microfiber.
Today however, I used a rectangle (folded up to create several layers) of it for a pocket diaper I made, so when I changed Nōweo and removed the insert, I could see just how much it soaked up. It was really heavy, so that tells me it caught quite a bit. One half of it was soaked (the half that covered her bottom) and the other half was wet, but not soaked (the half that covered her front). That's mostly because she was cradled in my arms while she was wearing the diaper. So as a soaker, I'm pretty impressed. I think it would work well if topped with a fabric that spread liquid over it's surface quickly, so the wetness would even out through the whole soaker, instead of being isolated in one area, therefore making it more effective. That means the topper would have to absorb more quickly as well.
I'd like to try sherpa has an inner, but not quite sure if it would absorb quickly enough to prevent leaks.
What I REALLY like sherpa for is for burp cloths, and subsequently cloth wipes. It has a wooly texture with raised fibers that are hard to describe, but that makes it PERFECT for grabbing on to spit and poo and HOLDING it. I have about a million pre-fold burp cloths - the kind made from birds eye and it's ok, but sometimes I think it's a little rough on the face, especially for chronic drooling and spit-up, and it doesn't take long before it feels soaked. But I was able to combat a milky volcanic disaster one day with a scrap of sherpa that grabbed EVERYTHING and held it within its' fluffy fibers. Maybe I'll try backing it with PUL to make a water-proof burp cloth. Don't you hate it when you put the dirty side of the burp cloth against you? The PUL would keep your clothes clean...hmmm....an idea worth looking into.
In short, I think sherpa is gonna be my new go-to cloth wipe. It's softer and more flexible than flannel, and I HATE using baby washcloths. I think those things are the most useless "cloth wipes" ever. That's just my opinion. Anyway, back to sherpa. It's one of my new favorite CD (cloth diapering) fabrics. Try it. You'll love it!