When we were kids, my mom always used cloth napkins. We may have used paper napkins if we had a lot of company or if we were on a picnic but cloth was normal.
I have also always used cloth napkins except for the same reasons as my mom. It wasn’t difficult for me to use them since I was used to them.
We have some nice cloth napkins but the others are just whatever I’ve found on sale/clearance or even the thrift store. I have found several brand new packages of cloth napkins at the thrift store through the years usually somewhere around $1.
We use them for napkins and to wipe up anything that needs wiping up and toss them in the wash. We’re doing laundry already so it’s no big deal.
**Tip** look in the clearance aisle after holidays for cloth napkins on sale.**
Cloth Rags~ when I was in college, I went with friends one weekend to help at a church they worked at. We stayed with a family while we were there and she was folding laundry. She had tons of cloth rags cut up from old tee shirts and clothing. I thought that was a brilliant idea.
One time, I did try cutting up an old tee shirt that I would have thrown away but decided that was too much work. Most of the time when we have a tee or other cotton type clothing that has seen better, days, I just toss the entire thing in a bin in our back hall.
When there is a painting project, oil changing, cat puking (Oh GROSS!), or any other filthy project, we grab a shirt or anything out of the rag pile and just clean and toss.
**Tip** Keep old cotton clothing somewhere where you can quickly grab it and use it one more time before tossing.
Cloth baby wipes~ I already posted this tip when baby was little. You can check that out here. We’re still using cloth wipes but these days, I just get a handful of them wet in the sink and toss them in an old plastic wipes box. I don’t add the oils or baby soap and it’s working just fine. I don’t grab too many because they get stale smelling if not used up in a day or so.
These could also be used for washcloths or to wipe up stuff around the house if you don’t need them for baby wipes anymore. I feel they have paid for themselves over and over already. I think I have ended up with about 70 wipes. It may be about 20 too many but then again, a few extra wipes can’t hurt!
**Tip** Check on Etsy or Ebay for homemade cloth wipes. I was least happy with Bummis brand wipes. The edging started coming off right away and holes started developing. To be fair, Bummis did replace one package but they quickly did the same thing. I am using them anyway because let’s be honest–they are just being used to wipe a baby tush. My favorite wipes were purchased from a friend who purchased them on Etsy. They are 2 layer (double sided) flannel and just nice and sturdy. If you’re looking on Etsy, search cloth baby wipes double and you should be able to find some.
Cloth Pads~ Ok ok I know I know! I’ve used them off and on since James was small. I never had very many so I got out of the habit. Over the past year or so, I’ve collected a few more sets so I almost exclusively use them now. (Sorry if that is just too much to know about me).
They really are not anywhere near as weird, gross, (fill in the blank) or dirty as you’d think. Actually, they are very nice and many women have found that they lessen their PMS type symptoms.
**Tip~** Check on Etsy for sellers who make them at home. I have also seen them for sale on some natural websites.
Cloth Swim Diapers~You don’t have to cloth diaper at all to use cloth swim diapers. I explained it all on this post.
**Tip** ~Check out my post!
Cloth Diapers~ I haven’t written my “how I use cloth diapers” post yet but I probably will one of these days. Cloth diapers are nowhere near as nasty/gross/weird as I thought they would be either. In fact, I LOVE using cloth diapers.
If you have questions you’d like to know before I get that post written let me know. I’ll be happy to help if I can.
**Tip**~ Let me know if you have cloth diaper questions, or stay tuned for the cloth diaper post one of these days.
Cloth for Cleaning~ I can’t remember my mom using many paper towels when we were kids. We wiped things up with dish cloths or towels and washed. I’m sure if something was nasty, my mom tossed the cloth. I’ve done pretty much the same thing.
I did discover Norwex cloths awhile ago. I was pretty cynical but when I gave it a try, I was pleasantly surprised. I haven’t purchased paper towels in months. Money Saving Mom did a little review if you want to check it out.
**Tip**~ See if you have a Norwex consultant in your area and give it a try. I think you’ll be as pleased as I was.
The only cloth thing that I just haven’t begun using is Family Cloth (another name for cloth TP). Since I use cloth diapers, wipes, and pads, you’d think nothing would stop me from using cloth TP.
Well, I know wipes, diapers, and pads may have an EWWW factor but for some reason I just can’t see doing it.
I’ve considered it a few times since using cloth wipes and seeing how it’s no big deal to keep them clean and sanitary. Maybe some day I’ll just try it for the “little jobs” and keep paper TP for the “other jobs”. I drink a ton of water and run to the bathroom so often that the baby even knows Mom always has to run to the bathroom. I do believe it would be cheaper to use them for all those trips I make but like I said, it’s just not quite something I’ve decided to implement.
Do you have any tips to add to my using more cloth post?
Have you tried any of these?
Are you a happy family cloth user and have tips for me?