Wednesday, December 21, 2011

What is Zorb? And Zorb 2...

In cloth diaper-making, there is the quest for the perfect fabric for the soaker (the inside part).  It must be highly absorbent (for pees) yet dry quickly (for washing).  It must be thin (for wearing).  It must soak quickly (as not to leak when it is peed on).  It must hold the moisture (until a diaper change).

There are many options for this piece of the diaper, and one option is Zorb.  Recently Wazoodle, the company who makes Zorb, introduced Zorb 2.  But what is it?  They won't say.  It is supposedly natural enough that it is okay against baby's sensitive skin.  From what I have read and seen, it most closely approximates a thick microfiber shammy.  

The original Zorb used to come in blue but now it is white.  It comes by the yard or as pre-cut soakers.  It is fairly thick, sort of like felt.  And it falls apart in the wash when not sandwiched between other fabrics.  But it is highly absorbent and really fabulous at absorbing quickly and holding the moisture, and at drying quickly after a wash.  Though to get it to hold moisture, you need to have a layer of a natural fabric between layers of it (if you use more than one layer in an item); for example, you must put a flannel layer between your Zorb layers as the soaker.

Zorb II is possibly Wazoodle's fix for the stiffness of the original Zorb, and its lack of being a standalone fabric.  It comes in quilted or dimpled, and in a cream color.  I have found it not as absorbent as Zorb, and it takes much longer to dry.  There is an advantage to being able to use it right on the skin, but the edges must be completely covered (not just serged or zig-zagged over) or it sheds its insides, which are stringy white pieces of fabric which look like thin Zorb.  It is quite absorbent, but not really a miracle fabric like I found Zorb to be.

These are baby pants I made out of Zorb 2.  I used FOE (fold over elastic) on the hem and waistband.  The inner seams shed even though I zig-zagged an overstitch on the seams.  These are nice instead of a diaper to hold a pee.

These are toddler pants with FOE on the hem and sherpa and hidden braided elastic on the waistband.  The inside seams also shed.  I made these for warmth, since the material is a nice winter-weight quilted thickness.

These breast pads have Zorb inside.

These lap pads are Zorb 2 with a cotton binding on one and FOE on the other.  They seemed to leak through when the baby peed on them and sat in that spot-- ie the moisture didn't distribute far enough to allow the excess fabric to help hold it (it didn't soak fast enough, maybe).  In the background is an orange-ish pad.  It is cotton on the outside and Zorb on the inside.  Zorb works great for piddle pads.
Other Zorb posts: here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here  Pin It

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