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Topic: [Tutorial] How I make my pads  (Read 4995 times)
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Sanity8080
« on: March 04, 2008 03:19:47 PM »

I was home sick from work recovering from having my wisdom teeth extracted and didn't feel like sewing anything new or innovative, so I figured I would type up my tutorial for how I make cloth pads.

I got the pattern from http://www.manymoonsalternatives.com/make_your_own_pads.php, with the sole exception of the soaker piece, which I came up with on my own.  The fabrics I used were thus:

yard of PUL, which can be found at http://www.verybaby.com/ccp0-catshow/pul.html

yard of hemp jersey, although any cotton fabric will work.  I just LOVE hemp jersey because it is comfy and only gets more so the more you wash it.  Just make sure you prewash it before cutting it out, something I did not do, because hemp jersey (or any hemp really) will shrink something fierce in the wash.  http://www.verybaby.com/ccp0-catshow/hemp.html

1) Cut out your pieces.  You will see here that I have stacks of each piece cut out.  I am sending these to http://www.goods4girls.org hence why I have so many cut out.


2)
Fold the soaker piece in half lengthwise and center it on the backside of the top pieces.  Sew around the edges.

3)
Fold the straight edge of each PUL layer (you should have one narrow one and one wide one) sew down as a hem.

4)
Pin the pocket pieces to the soaker and top pieces, with the laminate facing up and the "clean" side (the side the has the stitching but not the soaker sewn to it) facing the knit, non laminate side of the PUL.  Note that the pocket pieces will overlap in the center.

5)
Sew around the edge, being careful not to run over your pins.  I know it is time-consuming, but it takes less time to stop and remove your pins then it does to replace your needle because you broke it.  Yes, I pinned on PUL.  Note that I pinned the seam allowance, and for this pattern the little tiny holes caused by the pins are not going to make a difference.  Besides, once you throw them in the hot dryer, the dryer will melt the holes closed again.  Also, since the laminate side is sticky and has a tendency to stick to the bottom of your presser foot, I dab some oil on my finger and rub it on the bottom of my presser foot.  This helps the fabric glide underneath.

6)
Turn right side out and top-stitch very close to the edge, all the way around.  This gives it a professional, clean looking edge.

7)
I also top-stitch straight down, where the wings would fold in, to give kind of a guideline for the wings to fold on. 

Cool
Add a snap to each wing and you are done.  I don't like to use velcro, because it tends to chafe the inside of my thighs and doesn't hold well.  You can get cards of sew-on snaps at JoAnn's, Wal-Mart, and even some grocery stores in their sewing section. 

9) The reason I use snaps is that it allows you to fold the pad in thirds, hemp side in, and snap the wings around it, as shown.


10) This style allows you to have a normal sized pad for normal flow days, but also gives you a pocket to add more absorbency for heavier days.  To make the insert, cut 2(or more) layers 8 x 5 inches of hemp jersey.  Fold in half and stitch, the same as you did for the piece you sewed to the top layer, except you are going to straight stitch around the entire piece, and then zig-zag very close to the edge (half on and half off) to make a faux serged edge.  This gives you a 4-layer insert.  Cutting 3 pieces would give you a 6-layer insert, and 4 would give your 8-layers.  I wouldn't go heavier then 8-layers (4 pieces) as it may take too long to dry and there may be questions about it getting completely clean.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2008 03:27:13 PM by Sanity8080 - Reason: I forgot something » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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sweet_apple_pie
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2008 03:28:19 PM »

how cool! great job!
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weird_lover_wilde
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2008 03:35:00 PM »

You are a goddess!  These are both amazing and beautiful--and super good for the environment and inexpensive!  Great job!

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panda
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2008 03:42:03 PM »

very nice.....thanks for the tutorial
« Last Edit: March 04, 2008 04:05:54 PM by panda » THIS ROCKS   Logged

Sanity8080
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2008 03:43:22 PM »

I've been using cloth for almost 6 years now (I started when my daughter was 6 months old, right around when I switched her to cloth diapers) and I could never go back to disposables....I've slowly been converting my house to reuseable stuff....
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jezebel_1982
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« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2008 03:47:47 PM »

Those are well done, and look really pretty Smiley

I'm gonna have to make myself some for when I start menstruating again. I hate disposables.....
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wakeupdonnie
« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2008 03:59:44 PM »

That sounds like a good idea, but jeez. I can't stand pads and I definitely wouldn't want to wash them. lmfao.

Sorry environment :/

I'm a little amazed though, I didn't think cloth pads would really work
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Sanity8080
« Reply #7 on: March 04, 2008 04:08:26 PM »

That sounds like a good idea, but jeez. I can't stand pads and I definitely wouldn't want to wash them. lmfao.

Sorry environment :/

I'm a little amazed though, I didn't think cloth pads would really work

They actually work quite well...I've seen it happen to me and to friends that I've helped switch that suddenly their periods that were super heavy suddenly became lighter.  Whether that is because there is something in disposables that make you bleed more (my conspiracy theory) or if you just seem to change disposables more because it seems like you've bled more than you actually do, I'm not sure.  I do know that my monthly visit is lighter and a bit less crampy then it was when I wore disposables.
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Sanity, Working Mom to my Kindergarten Princess, and Loving Wife to Silver, the only man who completes my soul.

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ademareej
« Reply #8 on: March 04, 2008 04:56:02 PM »

What a great tutorial!  I love the rainbow of cloth pads...and the snaps are quite ingenious.  I'm with sanity8080 on the whole something in traditional disposable pads that makes periods heavier and crampier - I actually don't use pads, but switching from conventional tampons to a cup I have found the same thing - my period ends up being much shorter, lighter, and relatively pain-free!
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kjlutz
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« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2008 12:15:51 PM »

Thanks for the tutorial and the link to Goods For Girls, I now have an ever increasing to do list... 1-finish paper for tomorrow.  2-buy PUL. 3-Make some cloth pads for me.  4-make cloth pads to ship away. 
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