When I was pregnant (and naive), I thought the only style consideration I’d have to make once Jack arrived would be finding clothes that were loose fitting around my tummy. Now that I’m nursing my little one, I realize that my tummy is actually not much of an issue at all—but rather the much fuller chest I have for the time being, as well as the need to have access to that chest at all hours of the day to feed the kid.
I’m sure I’m not the only one with this problem, so I thought I’d put together a post dedicated to postpartum style—specifically for mamas who are breastfeeding. These are my personal must-haves for comfort, easy access (haha), and style.
LEGGINGS AND LONG TOPS
Since many of my pre-baby clothes don’t fit yet, and comfort is my top priority, I’ve been relying on black leggings, long tops and long cardigans as my everyday look. It’s so easy to wear around the house, and not embarrassing to have on to run errands in.
My favorite leggings are the Belly Bandit Mother Tucker Compression Leggings because they hold everything in and smooth out the soft postpartum belly. As far as tops go, I rely heavily on nursing tanks—specifically these and these—and long layering tanks with straps that can easily slide off for nursing.
While I feel a bit like Catwoman in just leggings and tank, a long cardigan makes the whole thing look put-together (and ensures your bum is covered). As you shop, anything described as “boyfriend cardigan” will do the trick. I’ve included several great options for this look below.
For days when pants just aren’t my thing, the shirtdress is a life-saver. I love the loose fit of this style, and of course depend on its button-down nature in order to feed the little guy. An obvious pattern choice for fall, of course, is plaid. I ordered this one from Gap a while back and am eagerly awaiting its arrival since it’s been on backorder. If you’re looking for a budget option, definitely turn to Old Navy. I have their black poplin-crepe shirtdress and love it.
BABY WRAP OR NURSING PONCHO
Since making nursing easy is such a key part of postpartum style, I can’t write this post without including baby wraps and ponchos.
Whether the Solly Baby Wrap, Happy Baby Wrap, Moby Wrap, Baby K’Tan or whatever else is out there, baby wraps are an easy way to incorporate color and pattern into the postpartum wardrobe. As a bonus, they also help hide the lingering baby bump and give you your hands so you can get things done around the house, run errands, etc. During the few outings I’ve done with Jack, I’ve opted to wear him rather than put him in the stroller and it’s been a success every time! Though I’m yet to master the whole nursing-in-a-baby-wrap thing, it’s for sure a goal of mine. If it’s a goal of yours too, just be sure you’re wearing a top under the wrap that can easily be unbuttoned (or pulled down).
If babywearing isn’t your thing, or nursing your little one in it just doesn’t work for you, I highly recommend a nursing poncho in lieu of those strange apron-like nursing covers that are out there. I have a charcoal poncho and a striped poncho from Etsy and love that they can easily be turned into infinity scarves if I’m not into having a poncho on all day.
Below are some favorite button-down tops to try under a baby wrap or nursing poncho (a nursing tank works well under a poncho, as well!).
COMFORTABLE CHIC SHOES
With your wardrobe in limbo, shoes are a fun investment that you know you’ll be able to wear even as your size changes over the coming months. I recommend treating yourself to a new pair because, hey, you just pushed a person out of your body and you deserve it. Obviously comfort matters immensely, especially if you’re carrying your baby a lot rather than putting him in a stroller. Personally, I’m sporting low-heeled ankle boots, tall (flat) boots, ballet flats, and sneakers. I just got the Sole Society Chelsa Booties and New Balance for J.Crew sneakers and am completely obsessed with both of them! Below are more of my top picks for the season.
There you have it—my top style tips for nursing mamas! Feel free to share your tips in the comments below—I’d love to hear them!
Image via Madewell