Apr 9, 2011

DIY Nursing Pads

Aren't these the cutest?  
HA!  Kidding.  
A few weeks ago I was messaging with one of my moms...

Side note: Did you know that when you have babies, your mom's breastfeeding friends from 30 years ago become your mom too?  Indeed they do.  Some background... my mom was active with the local La Leche group when I was born and well, we won't get into how long she breastfed me - we'll just say that my sister needed them and leave it at that. ;)  Mom was lots of help when we came home from the hospital with Rover and in the first few days I frequently called to ask her question about boobs.  Because she stopped going to La Leche meetings after weaning her babes, she had forgotten some of the things I needed help with... some of her friends were still involved though and this is when I learned a few things about moms and boobs.

1) Moms who breastfed (or breastfeed) love to help others make it happen.
2) They become like your mom because you can and do call them just as often for help.
3) They are boob nazis.  (Mom didn't care for this at first, but she's embraced it now.)

("Did he eat?  How much?  When?  How long?  Which boob?  Tickle his feet.  He needs to stay awake and eat.  Your nipples will be fine.  Did he poop?  What color was it?  Did it look seedy?  He should eat again in two hours.  Do you need someone to wake you up or will you set your alarm?"  -Boob nazi)

... so a few weeks ago I was messaging with one of my moms because I was still very sore and the lanolin didn't seem to be helping anymore.  She was telling me that some breast pads will actually keep you moist instead of dry and suggested I make my own pads.  Well, she first said to hang loose, (that did help lots) then she said to make my own pads so that moisture would be sure to wick away from my skin.  Hmm, maybe I could convince Smartwool to make nursing pads?!

She said her daughter, my friend Hope, had recently made some and after messaging with Hope, she agreed to send me instructions.  (Thanks again Hope!!!)  They were so simple!  I had my mom send me some flannel and terry cloth because I knew I couldn't get to JoAnn's for a while (it's a good 30-45mins away).  I whipped up four pads in about 15 minutes - including prep time.  

If you're interested in making your own, Hope recently posted instructions on her blog.  Definitely check it out!  They're very easy and you can modify them as needed.  She mentions that she made them about 4" in diameter and wishes she'd made them bigger, so I made mine a little bigger but I think I could still use a slightly bigger size so I'd say maybe starting with 5-5.5" diameter.  I used a plastic cup as a stencil and then cut a little wider around it.  I also didn't add as many darts because we were heading out soon and I had to hurry.  Also, it's cold this time of year and I knew I'd be layering my shirts so it wouldn't matter if they didn't sit perfectly under my clothes.  These actually look fine with regular shirts now that it's April and much warmer.

I used one layer of flannel on the outside and one layer of terry on the inside.  If you make these, definitely be sure to pre-wash your fabrics in HOT water and dry on the hottest setting on your dryer.  I recommend washing twice as I washed once and my pads still shrunk a little after I finished them.

Here's a picture that shows the size a little better and my stitches. 

Now that Rover is on a pretty good schedule, I don't really use pads when I'm at home and I only wear them when we leave the house as a back up.  I will often use them a few days until they are actually 'used' and need to be washed.  I do advise a mesh bag for washing though since they're small.  


Mommy S said...

I'll take some! Haha! I can't sew ... or rather never have. I don't have the equipment. I can sew a button on though! I totally feel this blog. I skimmed it. Gonna read it later when I have time :)

Brittany said...

This will definitely have to go on my to make list! Thanks for posting about it. How is it possible that your baby gets cuter every day!?!

GinH said...

Suzanne, it's way easy! Try it!

Britt - I need your blog address, I thought the link you sent me worked but it was just the invite :(
You're sweet... and I have to agree with you - how does he get cuter?! :P

"Sometimes I'd like to ask God why He allows poverty, famine, and injustice in the world when He could do something about it, but I'm afraid God would ask me the same question."
You don't change the world by trying to change the world; you change the world by changing yourself.
-Gerry Straub