By request (sorry for the delay)
Bill over at Fathers Know Best posted a recipe for home made baby wipes awhile back. In the Comments box, I promised to post info on the hows of cloth diapering (at least from my perspective as the mom of 6 all of whom were cloth diapered even with 2 in diapers at the same time). Mea culpa, it has taken me a while to get around to it. But better late than never. I think that the Sleepy Mommies may also have a few posts on the topic, so check them out also.
Basics: well you need diapers, a way to keep them on the baby, and at least some times you will want a diaper cover to protect baby's outerwear.
I'm old-fashioned - I like fairly simple fabric that can be folded to fit, and I prefer to use diaper pins like these - all metal, and locking. Here is another mom's rant about diaper pins vs velcro. My experience with the velcro diaper cover type systems has been that any reasonably agile 9 month old can remove them faster than I can replace them. I did not have any kids who could remove a properly pinned on diaper until they were of potty training age. So I am a big fan of pins, and trust me, these lock so well that you don't have to worry about baby getting stuck. This is sort of what it looks like in use (except that I always pointed the pins the opposite direction from this pic).
There are other ways to fasten diapers, but this is what has worked the best for me.
As far as diapers, the basic categories are prefolded and fold-to-fit. The prefolds can be rectangles or contoured shapes (or sometimes thick pads that are fastened into panty type things). Fold-to fit gives you the most flexibility and the same diaper can be folded to fit any baby from a 4 lb premie to a large toddler. More absorbancy can be obtained by double or triple diapering. The fabric should be very absorbant and easily washed. The three basic common choices are (100% cotton) flannel, gauze (tightly woven!) and a weave called birdseye or diapercloth. Whichever type of diaper you choose, a minimum to have on hand is 36 or so, and I highly recommend investing in having around 90 so you can wash less frequently.
You can buy cloth diapers by the dozen at places like Target as well as lots of on-line places. They are between $12/dozen and $30/dozen. The really inexpensive way to make a lot of diapers used to be to buy a bolt of 100% cotton flannel and cut off squares of the flannel (if the width is 27", they will be the standard size, but larger widths can be used as well) and quickly machine-hem the edges. If you can find birdseye diapercloth, that it also great to sew for yourself. Fold-to-fit diapers dry very quickly because there is no thick panel in the middle as there is with prefolds. Gauze suitable for diapering seems to no longer be available except in prefolds. I used to have a few dozen fold to fit gauze diapers but they have all gone the way of all dust cloths.
Here is a slide show about how to fold a diaper - and also links to how to change a cloth diaper.
Once you have the diaper snugly on baby, then you need to think about a diaper cover. I admit to being very fond of the nylon panty style pictured below.
They are about $5 each and are made by a company called Alexis - one place you can find them is here but there is also a cheaper Gerber clone that is at Target and other stores.
Finally, there is a good diaper web site with lots of links to other places that you may wish to explore. Good luck, and happy baby bottoms!
Addendum - Some comments about another option - not diapering at all.