Monday 7 September 2015

I wish I'd thought of that!

One of the greatest things about the Internet is that no matter what you're interested in, somewhere in cyberspace there will be a group of likeminded people to chat to and share ideas with.  There is a Facebook group especially for people who love to make their own cloth pads, and I really enjoy being a part of it.  Whether troubleshooting misbehaving sewing machines or discussing the pros and cons of different fabrics, this group of friendly, creative women help each other to create fabulous cloth pads.

Apparently, a lot has happened in the cloth pad world since I took a break from it for a few years.  Here are some things I have learned:

- Reusable menstrual products are now widely known as RUMPs.  How did it take so many years for someone to think of this?!
- People are making their own underwear using a pattern called "Scrundies", and they look amazing.
- Penis pads are a Thing.  Menstrual pads.  In the shape of penises.
- Also vulvas, teddies, sharks, owls, Batman.  Pads are no longer just pad shaped!
- You can now buy snaps in the shape of hearts and stars.
- HOW many different types of menstrual cup?!

Sometimes people post pictures of pads they have made using the Luna Wolf patterns, and seeing those makes my heart do a little happy flip.

A couple of people have done some really clever, creative things with the patterns, and I am sharing them here with their permission (thanks, ladies!).

Ranela De Guzman came up with a way of cutting out the pattern so that she can trace the cutting line, sewing line, AND core stitching line, all within the same template:

I just love how clever this is.  Everything is already perfectly aligned, centered, and ready to draw around.  I have seen templates cut out on both the cutting and sewing lines, but they always looked flimsy, and I wondered how they would keep their shape.  Including the core stitching guide in the template anchors and stabilises it, totally solving this issue, while having the guide ensures the core stitching is always in the perfect place in relation to the edges of the pad. This is one of those gamechanging ideas that I wish I had thought of, and I can't wait to try it myself!  (Picture by Ranela De Guzman.)

Siena Snedeker adapted the 9" pattern to create a "pocket and insert" style pad, cutting the top and bottom off the template to form the pockets:

She repurposed an old swaddle blanket for the foldable inserts.  You could also make a couple of serged cores to use as inserts, and vary the number used to increase/decrease absorbency.  I can see this working really well for a heavy flow if you used PUL backing, and instead of changing the whole pad, you could just change or refold the insert.  I want to make a couple of these to wear to work on my heavy days so I don't have to fit a whole load of AIOs in my bag, just a few inserts.  I'm really looking forward to trying this!  (Picture by Siena Snedeker.)

Thank you so much ladies for letting me use your images and share these cool ideas!