Terry squares folded into a pad and held in place with poppered wraps. No pins, no kite folds, no fancy velcro. Cheap as chips (well the wraps aren't, but you can sell them on afterwards) and when your nappying days are over you have a lifetimes supply of cleaning cloths.
For very tiny newborns you can use muslins instead of terries.
We found plastic pants tended to go brittle with washing, and to crack easily. Also the elastic is so very thin it cuts in. We preferred Bummis pull on pants, they're made of PUL coated nylon so are softer, much harder wearing and are not crackly so are much quieter when on. Also the leg elastic is very comfortable.
we had some of those and they constantly leaked... never had a problem with brittle/cracking plastic pants, in fact still have most of them to use for DC2 when it arrives. nappies are really a case of suck it and see, you won't really know what you'll get on with until you try. At least terries are v cheap to try
BumGenius Flip - they're amazing for my heavy wetter. I've sold some used ones on Ebay for about half the price I paid so it's worth having a look as the Flips were new to market early this year so any second hand ones will only have been used for 1 baby in theory! I think I spent about £90 in total on brand new nappies, but did have the benefit of a £30 rebate from my local council - do check if yours does the same.