Do you think of wool as itchy, hard to clean, and only for the coldest of winter days? We used to too. Luckily we've come to learn a lot about wool over the years, and we now know that there's more to the wool story. Like many other natural materials, how the wool is processed and what breed of sheep it comes from can be a game changer in terms of the final product.
After a summer spent working and staying on a sheep farm on Saturna Island, BC a few years back, our interest in wool was piqued! These animals are beautiful, soft, intelligent, and a joy to be around.
We started to look into wool products and started our journey to surrounding our lives in wool. Our first purchase was a wool duvet made from wool from the very sheep we were getting to know! We were excited to have a blanket that would keep us warm on those cool and damp west coast nights. Imagine our shock when that same duvet stayed on our bed during the hot summer nights and kept us perfectly comfortable. We came to learn that wool is excellent not only for keeping you warm, but also keeping you cool. Wool is breathable and is able to react to changing body temperatures with its incredible moisture wicking properties.
Wool has many more incredible properties.
Our bedroom is now complete with a wool mattress and many wool blankets. Our closet is full of wool clothes, wool slippers, and wool accessories. We use wool to help dry our clothes and our baby loves to play with wool toys. We even have a wool covered car seat!
The latest addition to our wool collection is the Bumby diaper cover.
*Image from Bumby Facebook page.
We started cloth diapering from birth. Our little one has sensitive skin and when wearing PUL covers he would occasionally get rashes. The first few months of his life were often spent in flats or prefolds without covers whenever we could. As he became more mobile these diapers would fall right off and it became a choice of messes or potential rashes. In search of a solution, we found wool covers. These diapers have changed our whole diaper game! While the PUL covers last a few changes before getting smelly, the wool does not smell when dry due to it's antibacterial properties. If it gets soiled, you simply spot clean it and when it's dry, the smell disappears. Airing the cover in the sun has also proven to be a great way to freshen up the diaper. We do this 2-3 times a week for a couple hours in full sun.
The Bumby cover is made from super soft Merino wool woven with some lycra for a bit of stretch for everyday wear, and to prevent the wool from shrinking or felting too much when the diaper is washed.
Lanolin is an oil naturally produced by the sheep and coats the strands of wool. This oil gives wool it's water-resistant qualities, making it a great choice for damp conditions like diapers! The prefold or fitted diaper absorbs all the liquid and the lanolin-coated wool stays breath-ably dry for light to moderate amounts of liquid. (A heavy wetter would require more frequent changes, extra layers of absorption, or a wool booster.)
Because we don't want this hydrophobic quality to disappear, a careful wash is required. We're two months in with the wool diaper cover and are just finally thinking it might be time for a regular wash. Luckily, Bumby is machine washable, so we'll wash it inside out with like colours on cold, with a gentle spin cycle, a mild detergent and a splash of vinegar. We'll lay it flat to dry out in the sun.
At the end of this diapers life cycle, (another baby or 3?) this diaper cover is 100% biodegradable.
We hope EWE enjoyed our first official blog post!