When I breastfed my first child, I lived in Breton stripped nursing tops and skinny jeans. At the time, I embraced my stripes as a breastfeeding mama. What I didn’t realise was, I was wearing the unspoken uniform of the motherhood, how had I fallen into this conformist fashion trap, the worst thing was I liked those stripes and I felt proud to be in them. Second time around, I decided it was time to mix up the stripes and see if nursing apparel got fashionable.
My search began with the high street; brands such as Topshop, H&M, ASOS, Seraphine, Isabella Oliver and Jojo Mama Bebe have some great staples, all of whom are fashionable and complimentary to a postnatal figure. However, I was looking for ‘wow’, yet practical piece that will grow with my figure and not break the bank. Is that not too much to ask?
My research led me to the small independents who have created a haven for fashionable nursing mamas.
Mothers Love Fashion; produce formal nursing apparel for those breastfeeding mothers who have regained some sort of normality with their figures. The outfits are fashionable and perfect for nursing during those formal occasions. I bought the Boat Neck Coral dress, which is flattering, timeless and utterly gorgeous. I initially worn it to a wedding. However, it can be dressed down with a pair of flip flops, pumps and a chunky necklace.
Just Polly London, produces a wonderful mix of pre-post and nursing attire. It has an extensive range which can be adapted to suit your changing figure. The collections are timeless so you know you are investing in a piece for the future with or without a bump.
Mitera Collection; A wonderfully beautiful collection of pre-post-nursing pieces which thoughtfully designed with your Mama lifestyle in mind. Every piece is classic yet fashionable, aspirational but most importantly functional.
So before you embark on piecing together your nursing wardrobe, here are a few things to consider;
Do it, invest in a good maternity bra. Don’t skim on your boulder holders. Your boobs will constantly be changing in size, so get one that can be adjust and that is comfortable. Comfort is key.
Breastfeed in a biniki top. I know sounds bonkers but you have easy access, it doesn’t matter if you have spillages and are perfect for those night/day sweats.
Shirts and shirt dresses; they provide easy access. The bigger the better. Can be layered with a jumper, gilet or a cardigan.
Layering; if you want to use your pre pregnancy clothing, layering with a vest underneath a top or a shirt and jumper will help you maintain a level of discretion when feeding your little one. Also, if spring a leak, the layering will conseal any mishap.
Dresses..the non fitted variety; I lived in dresses in the early days of breastfeeding. Dresses provide easy access and quite often will compliment your changing figure. Oversized dresses are in so embrace it.
Maternity clothes; Don’t be afraid to use your pregnancy clothing. Quite often those clothes are engineered for breastfeeding.
A nursing apron or a large Muslin. There are tons of brands on the market, I bought Bebe Chic. Another favourite amongst my mummy buddies were Bebe au Lait.
Dungarees. These little beauts made a big come back last year and are still a key stable of any mamas wardrobe. Invest in a pair of these as they are trendy and provide quick & easy breastfeeding access.
Patterns. Patterned tops can quite often disguise milk spillages or leaks or lumpy breast pad filled bras.
Light clothing. Perfect to conseal any leaks or spillages