Right before Babe was born, I was itching to shop. I was so tired of the limited amount of clothes in my wardrobe which I wore on repeat because they accommodated my humungous belly. I could only accessorize so much to make an outfit look new again and I missed the incomparable joy of styling new pieces into my wardrobe.
So, five weeks postpartum I took an hour to myself and ran down to our, ahem, “scrubby” mall. It’s the mall where there are about fifteen super inexpensive shoe stores (how exactly can they even make shoes that cheap?!) and I’m pretty sure Hot Topic was once a tenant there. But there is a Target and a Gap, so just enough to get my hands on some new pieces and satisfy my fashion craving.
I definitely wasn’t back to my pre-baby weight but I was SO TIRED of yoga pants. Like, more tired than I felt after those (seemingly endless) sleepless nights. I needed to find the in-between pieces and wanted to purchase items that would work as I continued to drop the baby weight.
After working with a couple clients with the same goal, here is what I learned shopping postpartum.
Post Partum Style
1. Buy pieces that multitask. Before purchasing any items, pay close attention that you can wear it multiple ways. Plain t-shirts in nice fabric can be dressed up or down. Tees with a mix of cotton and modal or made with pima cotton have a nice, soft finish but can be thrown in the washing machine (I always recommend on gentle cycle, line dry. It makes your clothes last wayyy longer). Tees with cotton blends look great with jeans and shorts but also pair well with a blazer and a skirt later on. Invest in high quality basics that will grow (or shrink!) with you.
2. Pay attention to cut. Are you breastfeeding? Make sure to look for button downs or tops with a clasp that can be undone. Unless a maxi dress is cut strategically, they can be tough to nurse in. Try a skirt and top instead. There is no need- and I repeat- there is NO NEED to buy tops made especially for nursing (although nursing tanks and bras are an exception). They are charging a premium for an extra cut in fabric when a lot of regular tops do the job just as well and you can wear them for much longer.
As you relish in the in-between stage, you may want to look for blousier items. Beware of cuts that are too blousy. You want a little movement so that it doesn’t hug every new curve but you also want it to lay well so it doesn’t add bulk.
All tops from J Crew
3. Be conscious of your new mommy lifestyle. Ladies, there are some FABULOUS trends right now that fully embrace #momlife. Birkenstocks? Comfiest shoe EVER. New Balance tennies? Perfect for chasing after those crawlers. Graphic tees, boyfriend jeans, hats? YES, YES, YES. These are all really easy ways to stay on trend but be super comfortable and active. You don’t have to wear every trend to be in style. Pick a couple and own it!
4. Accessorize, accessorize, accessorize! This is how you will make those basics go the extra mile. You can mix, match, and re-wear items tirelessly by pairing them with different combinations of jewelry, shoes, and belts every time. No one is going to pay attention that it is the third time you have worn a grey tee if they are too busy admiring the beautiful scarf you paired it with! When looking for a belt, buy in cognac. It is a shade that looks good with every color.
5. Embrace the moment you are in. This is the most important. So, your body is different post-baby. Guess what- it’s SUPPOSED to be! You spent nine months nurturing a human. Sit on that for a minute because it is really important. You may be a different size and clothes may fit differently than they did before. That’s ok, mama. No matter what size you are, you deserve to feel good and be the best self you can be. When you are out there shopping for the first time (or any time, actually) buy clothes that make you feel good. Put those yoga pants in the back of the closet and invest in some pieces that make you smile. You deserve it.