Flat Diapers (Birdseye and Muslin)

Birdseye White: go to item ordering page button

Birdseye Natural Unbleached: go to item ordering page button

Muslin : go to item ordering page button

 how to fold flats tutorial link See the tutorials to learn some of the various ways to fold flat diapers.

muslin flat diaper wrapped on baby cloth-eez muslin diaper wrapped around a baby One-size Muslin just wrapped around baby with no fastener or pins.  The wrap style diaper cover you put over it helps it stay in place pretty well.

mirror flip on baby front flip mirror on baby back twisted birdseye twist birdseye fold The one size birdseye flat diaper looks like it is fastened but it is not. The diaper is folded in the origami fold and the ends are just tucked in near her hips. The diaper cover holds it all together. A nice trim fit with more effective containment than padfolding can offer. Flats are easy to use and easy to wash. This baby is 7 months old and 18 pounds.

pickman fold cloth diaper fold on a baby how to pin a muslin flat on a baby  3 months old, 14 pounds in a one-size muslin flat, pinned with GMD Slide-lock pins, Pickman Fold.

kite fold muslin flat diaper  Kite fold with 2 pins.



Muslin size Newborn

how to use a newborn muslin flat with diaper pins   Newborn muslin flat diaper on a 2 week old baby Newborn muslin flat with one Slide-Lock diaper pin.  2 weeks old, 8 pounds 13 ounces.  You can tell this diaper is a size newborn muslin because of the orange edge thread.  Size newborn has orange edge thread while size one-size muslin has off-white edge thread. 

newborn baby flat birdseye diaper  Size one-size birdseye white on a newborn baby.  

muslin flat diaper on 9 pound newborn baby  One-Size Muslin flat on a 9 pound baby.  It is bulky and very absorbent. This shows that it is possible to get it on a young baby.  The amount of cotton in this diaper is the same as a medium prefold, so choose a roomy cover over it.  Many will prefer the size newborn Muslin flat for this age for a trimmer fit. Scroll down for more pictures on babies.


Size Half Birdseye

 Size Half is available only from Green Mountain Diapers.  This is about 16.5 x 27.5 inches. My (Karen's) reason for making this size is that sometimes one flat is not enough absorbency, but double diapering (using two flats at once) is too much diaper.  So adding half of a flat is just right.   Size Half also makes a really nice newborn diaper or preemie.    They also work well for customizing absorbency in pocket diapers, or any diapers.    Boost absorbency of any diaper with easy washing, quick drying Half Flats.     

half flat  halfflatpadhalf flat any length  or adjust the length (or width) of the pad-fold by varying the first fold.  

5 pound baby in size half flat For little babies, size half works nice. By around 8 or 9 pounds baby will out-wet this little diaper and need a doubler added to it or move up to the size One-Size flats. Then later on, use the size half flats as doublers in your size One-Size or size large flats.

Size Half is good for preemies and tiny newborns. The same fold ideas work for the Newborn Muslin Flats and the One-Size Flats, too.


How to pad fold

red edge on made of organic cotton small one-size birdseye flat diaper The diaper shown unfolded

fold in quarters Fold into quarters (fold in half and then in half again). Then fold in one side and then the other side.


fold in one sidefold in other sidepad fold flat diaper A pad folded One-Size flat is about the same as a size small yellow edge prefold. If you need it to be longer, just don't fold down the first side as far and you can make it any size you want it to be.

12 pounds 3 months Total comfort. Size One-Size shown.

Snappi fasten, pin, or pad-fold. There are so many ways to use them.

flats for the win on a new baby One-size birdseye flat on a young baby.

muslin flat diaper on a baby

birdseye flat on newborn Size One-Size on a newborn

3 months in birdseye flat Loosely origami folded and Snappi fastened. Almost 3 months old in size One-Size.

pad fold flat diaper in Thirsties Duo diaper cover It is very easy to fold a flat diaper. Just pad-fold it and place it in the cover. If you can fold a hand towel, you can do this.

unbleached birdseye8 weeks old, 11 pounds. Origami fold.

birdseye flat on 8 week old baby 8 weeks old, 13 pounds 10 ounces in size One-Size. This is folding it as if it were a prefold. The fold probably has a name but I just call it "the pretend it is a prefold and make a rectangle and pin it just like a prefold" fold. This is my favorite fold and the one I like to use the most, change after change. I (Karen) think this is THE most comfortable way to diaper a baby. It happens to be the least expensive but I really do think this is the BEST! So comfortable for baby. Amazingly soft unbleached fabric. Total freedom of movement for baby. Great containment because it's pinned. It can fit birth to potty learning. Easy to wash  (HE machine-friendly, handwashing-friendly) and easy to dry. This truly is the perfect diaper. I do really enjoy pinning, so that makes it fun too! It's easier than you may think. Try these diapers. Really. Even if you end up not using them as diapers, you still can't go wrong because they are also the most fabulous dishtowels you could ever use.

unbleached birdseye flat4.5 months old, 16 pounds.

birdseye flat diaper2 months old, 14 pounds

unbleached birdseye 5 months old

unbleached flat diaperdoubled (2 diapers) on a 3 year old.

unbleached birdseye flat diaper8 months old, 22 pounds.

birdseye flat diaper pinned on a baby

birdseye pinned diaper 7 months, 19 pounds

 wrap a flat diaper on a baby  Wrapping the diaper around baby and tucking it in.  When just wrapping and not fastening it like this, always use a wrap style cover (not a pull-on) because the wrap cover helps to hold it together under the cover.  Thirsties Duo Wrap and Cloth-eez Wrap are examples of wrap style covers.

Size One-Size Birdseye is better for young babies. There are many ways to pad fold. This is just one idea:

step 1 pad fold large birdseye flat diaper step 2 padfolding flat diaper step 3 how to fold a diaper


Pad-folded in a cover:

flat birdseye cloth diaper in a diaper cover    You can adjust the length by folding into longer or shorter length. The straight, unadjusted pad fold is simply:

Fold the diaper in half

Fold the diaper in half again to make a square

Then fold to the rectangle pad. It's super-easy. It's like folding a napkin. 

Layer 2 diapers for an older baby. Use unpinned in wrap style cover, or pin it under anything.

birdseye diaper snappiCan be pinned or Snappied. This is Snappi fastened. Pins are preferred since Snappi Diaper Fasteners or orther clasp style fasteners can make pullers in the fabric over time and sharp pins don't do that. This is 2 Flat Diapers Snappi Fastened with and older-style red Snappi. One on the outside that you can see which is Snappied. Inside this is another flat folded up long and thin like a doubler.

Link to flat folding videos (and the bottom of this page).

How to fold a flat diaper into a prefold shape

Fold one end to get your desired length

fold diaper to length For extra absorbency for older babies, I fold a second flat into a narrow rectangle.
fold it in Fold sides in to get the width you want.
pinned flat birdseye diaper Pins work nicely with flats. Or use unpinned in a wrap style cover.

Origami Fold in pictures:

   Fold down the back to shorten for a young baby.

On a newborn, use the origami fold shown above, then fold the back down to make it shorter, then:

birdseye diaper

birdseye diaper white Fold up the wing to make it narrower

birdseye folding Fold in the wing then bring it to the front

folding diaper Same thing, other side: fold up wing to make it more narrow, fold in, bring to the front

snappi diaper Attaching Snappi

folding flat diapers

fold flat diaper

The larger newborn covers work over this, such as Thirsties Diaper Covers and Thirsties Duo Wrap size 1, pull-ons and wools.  Really tiny preemie or newborn covers don't have enough height at the hip or room inside for this much diaper.


Go retro! Birdseye flat diapers are versatile. Flats are so easy to wash and dry! These are the favorites for handwashing situations, traveling, adoption trips, homesteaders, missionaries, shared laundry and laundromat washing situations - anytime easy washing and quick drying is important. Plus, they are the most economical way to diaper a baby. Add covers, and you may be able to diaper a baby birth to potty for not very much money at all. Large also work as receiving blankets, and have a multitude of uses. Ours are custom milled for us out of soft  cotton made in Pakistan and they are OEKO Tex Certified to Standard 100, so you know they are safe and good. They are not made in China. Most places don't tell you the fully shrunk dimensions, and some don't even tell you the before washing dimensions, so who knows what they are. 


birdseye unbleached square diaper  

100% cotton birdseye diaper that shrinks to sort of close to a square. The size called "one-size" shrinks to about 27.5 inches by 27.5 inches, and 28x29 inches before washing. Size Large (in natural unbleached only) shrinks to about 29x29 inches when shrunk. 33x35 inches before washing. Now, cotton is a variable fabric and they will never be perfect squares consistently with any brand due to the nature of the fabric, but these are the most "square" birdseye around.  Versatile and easy-washing. Please don't expect perfection for squareness. It's just not possible with this fabric. They are very nice, high quality cotton birdseye weave. 


See another set of HOW TO PICTURES on a different newborn baby using the origami fold.


Cloth-eez Muslin Diapers

Muslin Diapers. Similar to the Birdseye flats but in a different weave and a little bit thicker. They are double-weave, which means more cotton is used to weave them. The Muslin Diapers in size One-size are close in absorbency to a medium size red-edge prefold, whereas the Birdseye in One-size is close in absorbency to a size small yellow edge prefold.  Thus, the One-size Muslin is too big on a newborn baby.  Size Newborn Muslin Flat is the right size for newborns.

muslin flat on a baby Muslin size Newborn

One pin:

one pin on a muslin flat cloth diaper

pinned muslin flat diaper on 3.5 month old 13 lb baby 3.5 months old, 13 pounds, in muslin diaper size one-size.

muslin snappied toddler in muslin diaper

sitting baby in a muslin flat kite fold  muslin flat on baby 9 mo 9.5 months old, 16.5 pounds, kite fold, muslin size one-size.

kite fold muslin flat cloth diaper on a baby Kite fold with 2 pins.

 Swaddle/XLarge size:

 swaddle Need an even bigger size? This is also available in Swaddle/XLarge size for fabulous nighttime absorbency.

all sizes of muslin flats compared Muslin Flats sizes compared

Snappi fasteners are great with our prefolds and Workhorse Fitted Diapers! Can you Snappi the muslin (gauze) or the birdseye fabric? I recommend pins. But Snappis are so popular that many people Snappi their muslin and birdseye diapers anyway, even though we recommend pinning for the longest fabric life. You can choose to use Snappis though, as many do, and it works. The pictures show them because it is a popular way to use them. Please do not try them with the diaper until the diaper is fully prepped, as prepping shrinks and strengthens the weave. If you choose to use them with your flat diapers, please pull out to release the grabbers from the fabric. Don't yank them upwards out of the fabric because that might hurt the fabric.  By pulling in an outward direction to release the grabbers, it should be ok. Still, I (Karen) recommend pinning flats. 

See the instructional  how to fold flats tutorial link page to learn various ways to fold flat diapers.

There are many other ways to use the lovely fabric throughout the home beyond the diapering years that you just can't do with any other style of diaper.  

birdseye bathroom hand towel White Birdseye size one-size as a hand towel.

Birdseye White: go to item ordering page button

Birdseye Natural Unbleached: go to item ordering page button

Muslin: go to item ordering page button