I am lucky that Macks and I have had a great nursing relationship thus far. He latched on right away and my supply is enough to keep him content (because the boy does love to eat!) While nursing is one less thing I have to worry about post-baby, my wardrobe is not. I’m not down to my pre-baby weight yet (not even close) and I can’t wear half the things in my closet because of it. With the weather finally getting a little bit warmer, the clothes that I can fit into is dresses, however every single one of the dresses that I own is not nursing friendly. I have a few nursing tops that I love, but I can’t wear them every single day. I’ve been searching the internet for a stylish nursing friendly wardrobe when I found Morgan, the founder of BURU, on Instagram.
Morgan Hutchinson is a stylish nursing mom that founded BURU after having the same issue I am having, not enough stylish clothes for the nursing mama. Thankfully BURU is a site dedicated to finding stylish clothes for nursing moms. All of the clothes on her site are hand-picked by Morgan herself. Morgan gives us her tips for finding a stylish wardrobe that can accommodate nursing.
The act of nursing (the over supply, the under supply, the chaffed nips…) is difficult enough. The last thing a mom needs is to stress over what to wear. At least not any more than she does getting dressed under normal circumstances.
Here is my Top 10 List of things to consider when shopping for a wardrobe to Nurse in Style:
1. Don’t Wait
During your pregnancy is a great time to start thinking about clothes that will work after the baby arrives. Even if you can’t nurse or decide it is not for you, there is no harm in having pieces of your maternity wardrobe that will also work for nursing. A great example is the Rachel Pally Caftan dress. It accommodates your bump, looks fab after pregnancy, and it offers easy access to nurse.
2. Start with a Great Foundation
If and when (most likely when) your bust line begins to grow during your pregnancy, invest in a nursing bra, rather than buying a regular bra in a larger cup size. I made the mistake of buying bras that did not allow for easy nursing and then they were too big to wear after I stopped. Money wasted. With all of the cute (and sexy) options available in the nursing bra arena, I suggest buying one (or three) sooner rather than later.
3. Easy Access
Until my second week of nursing, I really didn’t think about the need for easy access. I was still wearing loungewear for the most part, staying home, and if I was wearing a top without access to nurse, then I just took it off. This method doesn’t work in the outside world. By week three, I understood the importance of accessing my boobs.
Be sure to thinking about the tops and dresses you purchase. My favorite access is the zipper (the tasteful zipper I should write) as it can be done one-handed. Second to that is the snap front. Of course old faithfuls like the button-down or wrap dress are great too. Just be sure to consider how much access you will need. Some tops are better for pumping (2 boobs at once) than for actually nursing your baby when only one boob is needed at a time.
4. Select Fabrics Wisely
It is particularly important in the first few months of nursing to consider fabric choices – i.e. buy as many washable tops and dresses as you can. As the spit-up frequency subsides, you can be less choosy. Also, if you are going back to work and pumping will be your main gig, more delicate fabrics like silk can make their way back into your everyday life.
5. Treat Yourself
It is said that if you look good, then you feel good. Of course this is not always the case, but feeling clean (a mommy luxury) and dressed in something chic can definitely inflate your mood. Don’t forget to buy yourself a few (or more than a few if the budget allows) special pieces for this phase of life. Truth be told, investing in garments that you really love will save you money in the long run because you will still be excited to wear them long after nursing is over.
6. Consider Your Shrinkage
Getting the baby weight off is always a bit of a challenge, but when it happens you are going to want the items you purchased in the interim to fit. Consider the advantage of a wrap dress (it can be tied tighter) or a blazer (maybe you wear it open at first). We try to consider items that can easily be altered like shirtdresses with simple side seams that can be taken in for little cost by a local tailor. Chic elastic waist pants are a great option as well.
7. Grab the Basic 5
These 5 items will get you through the wardrobe slump:
• White Button-Down Shirt
• Black Leggings
• A Classic Trench Coat
• LBND (Little Black Nursing Dress)
• Tailored Blazer in (Black, Navy, or Ivory)
8. Nursing Tanks
As your tummy gets (semi) back into place, you might want a little extra coverage under loose tops or added cleavage coverage for your plump bosom. A regular camisole might make for tough access to nurse or pump. Special clips or a super stretchy neckline are key elements to a workable nursing tank.
9. Care for Your Clothes
The days of dry cleaning everything you own might be a thing of the past. First of all, it’s inconvenient to drop it off, let alone remember to pick it up. Secondly, it gets expensive when you can only wear an item once before it’s covered in spit- up. Thankfully, The Laundress has created a variety of delicate washes that allow you to care for many items that instruct you to “Dry Clean Only”. Be sure to invest in a detergent that is safe for baby and allows you to care for your clothes properly in the comfort of you own home.
10. Undercover Mama
Many mamas are comfortable letting it all hang out, but if you are on the more modest side of the nursing in public line – then a chic nursing cover is a must. There is NO need to sport an awkward looking version of an apron or a hula- hoop contraption around your neck, when a simple (and beautiful) scarf and broach will do the trick. Better yet, try the Rachel Pally Rollo Wrap top or the Mother’s en Vogue Waterfall Wrap. They give you the coverage you need in a chic and stylish way.