Posts tagged breastfeeding
BREASTFEEDING FRIENDLY SPRING DRESSES

Dresses and breastfeeding are not mutually exclusive - you just have to find the right ones.

The best breastfeeding friendly dresses (and jumpsuits) I think are probably the ones that open at the front - although look out for dresses with a loose neck that can be pulled down or ones with massive sleeves/ arm holes that allow boob access from the side.

Marks & Spences have a couple of good options in at the moment here are my two favourites:

I love the lilac colour of this dress - it’s so pretty but I also like the modern cut of it. It can be worn both smart and casually. It would be great layered - you could wear a long sleeve polo neck (i’d probably go with a stripped one) and tights under it in the winter and then either bare arms or a short t-shirt in the summer.

Linen Rich Double Button Front Midi Dress £59 / Button Detailed Denim Jacket £35

This is such a good summer dress - super useful and perfect for both Summer in the city and on holiday. The style is very flattering and it is a great length. This is defiantely a ‘go to’ dress that when you can’t decide what to wear this one will never let you down.

Linen Blend Button Front Waisted Midi Dress £39.50 / Pom-Pom Clutch Bag £29.50

This post was kindly sponsored by Marks & Spencers and is part of my ongoing partnership with them. All words and choices are my own obviously.

Photography by Jane Looker

BRAND TAYLOR WREN

Taylor Wren focus on beautiful, well made, socially concious clothes for women who prefer to buy classic, long lasting pieces.

Taylor Wren is a new brand founded by a husband and wife team who create timeless clothes and acessories for modern women. Taylor Wren's premier collection is beautifully refined, perfectly curated and focuses on quality not quantity.

I love this Liberty print skirt and top - it fits so perfectly and can be worn together or separately, for example the top with jeans or the skirt with a t-shirt. Because this is a skirt and top it would be a perfect breastfeeding outfit too (you would wear a vest under the top, the top top would lift up and the vest would pull down). I plan to wear this to a friend of mine's wedding in a couple of weeks, but would also wear it to work or a party.

Taylor Wren is the type of brand that you would never regret buying from, the pieces are so well made, classic and versatile that they would last a lifetime and surpass trends. Plus because most of the pieces are limited editions you are unlikely to meet anyone else wearing the same thing.

Here is some more information about this modern, classic brand:

NAME OF BRAND/COMPANY: Taylor Wren

DATE IT WAS FOUNDED: March 2016

BY WHOM IT WAS FOUNDED: Fran Taylor Wren and Simon Wren- newly wed husband and wife duo!

WHY WAS IT CREATED: To provide beautiful, thoughtful, well made and socially conscious clothing for the modern woman. Something that could be worn and loved season after season.

We were growing increasingly disillusioned with the 'fast fashion' concept of buying and wearing clothes, not to mention the increasing environmental impact of this type of buying. For the woman who is not dictated to by trend and can afford to spend a little more, it makes sense to invest in key pieces to create an individual and lasting look.

WHAT WE NEED TO KNOW ABOUT YOUR BRAND: We are London brand with a passion for creating socially conscious clothing that not only looks great but feels great to wear season after season. Made for the modern woman, Taylor Wren provides the ultimate balance between perfectly polished and stylishly undone to create a capsule wardrobe that works anytime, anywhere.

WHAT WE SHOULD BUY FROM YOU: You should be buying everything from us of course- our debut collection is a capsule collection of 12 key distinctive and refined pieces that can be mixed and matched with each other but also with everything else in your wardrobe allowing you to both create and emphasis your own personal style.

In particular we think you should be buying the gorgeous Liberty printed pieces, inspired by the vibrant flora of an English meadow, resplendent in the spring sunshine, this bold painterly floral gives classic shapes a modern twist. Each piece made here in London and with only 30 of each available you're safe in the knowledge that you own a truly unique piece.

taylorwren.com / @taylorwrenltd

BRAND: MOTHERS LOVE FASHION

Mothers Love Fashion is a breastfeeding / nursing wear brand that has been designed and developed to fill the gap in the market for easy to wear, fashionable, modern nursing wear. Their premier collection features four styles - three dresses and a jumpsuit, the pieces are simple and can be dressed up or down.

I have and love the black jumpsuit. I wore it to meetings during the day then gave it a breastfeeding test run in the evening and found it so easy - you just lift the top layer up then the slits in the under layer open and milk access is granted! Plus if you are out and about and are worried about exposing yourself the top layer acts as a cover.

Here is some more information from the founder Natalie on how and why it all started.

NAME OF BRAND/COMPANY: Mothers Love Fashion

DATE IT WAS FOUNDED: October 2015

BY WHOM IT WAS FOUNDED: Natalie Smith

WHY WAS IT CREATED: When my daughter was three months old, spring time was approaching and I was finally starting to feel a bit ‘normal’ again after getting to grips with the sleepless nights, establishing breastfeeding and realising I was ready to step away from the baggy tops and jeans/leggings. I wanted to wear dresses again day-to-day and I had loads of occasions coming up that I needed something great to wear, (I wanted to look good and prove that just because I was now a mum I hadn’t ‘let myself go’!) I like a ‘lift up’ style of dressing for breastfeeding, but anything ‘nursing’ I bought or looked at was also maternity, and quite frankly was expensive, boring, frumpy and not my style. I wasn’t pregnant anymore, I didn’t have a bump anymore, and I wanted to dress like ‘me’. I loved the functionality of some of the specialist ‘nursing’ clothes out there, but the designs and style just weren’t me, so I decided to design a range of clothing that mirrored current on-trend styles that any woman would want to wear, but just happened to feature easy- access for breastfeeding.

WHAT WE NEED TO KNOW ABOUT YOUR BRAND: We’re committed to providing quality, affordable clothing to stylish mums who happen to be breastfeeding. Designed exclusively by us, our styles have been created with breastfeeding mums in mind, not for pregnancy. They’ll last for breastfeeding and beyond.

WHAT WE SHOULD BUY FROM YOU: Our debut collection consists of 4 simply stylish versatile styles that can be dressed up or down for any occasion. I particularly love the Jumpsuit as it’s a really unique piece that is unlike any other ‘nursing’ item you’ll find. I also love our boat neck dress for its classic simplicity and mix of comfort & style. Watch this space for new lines currently being developed.

@motherslovefashion

STYLING TIPS FROM BUMP, THROUGH BREASTFEEDING AND BEYOND:

A friend of mine Clemmie Telford has a website called the MOTHER OF ALL LISTS. She writes funny, informative and honest lists that are always worth a read.

Here is a list i wrote for her awesome website on styling tips from bump, through breastfeeding and beyond:

  • If you are pregnant look out for non maternity clothes that are loose fitting and that you’ll be able to breastfeed in afterwards and can wear during maternity leave. 
  • Buy a few key maternity basics – like statement jeans, dungarees, maternity tights/leggings. 
  • Don’t bother getting maternity bras, get nursing bras they are the same apart from the little clasp. 
  • ‘Future proof’ your purchases – think about how they’ll work as your bump is shrinking but your boobs are still growing 
  • Vests – lycra, thin strapped stretchy ones, wear them under everything – top top comes up, vest comes down, nipple comes out, tummy stays hidden. 
  • You can wear dresses – you just have to think about access and dress around it. 
  • Lycra boob tubes can be used as belly bands, they will allow you to wear your normal t-shirts/ tops that once you have a bigger belly sill fit shorter. 
  • Get some cool trainers – some that are super comfortable and that you love as you’ll be walking a lot. 
  • Dungarees – are cool and are made for breastfeeding. 
  • Jumpsuits – you can get loads of different styles – smart ones, casual ones they are an outfit in one. They are perfect for breastfeeding, are flattering and you won’t get ‘mum bum’ in rhyme time when you are sat crossed legged on the floor. Don’t assume they won’t suit you until your try one on. 
  • Scarves – thin ones in the summer – can also double up as a shade over the buggy when it’s hot. Thick warm ones in the winter – can also double up as a blanket if the baby gets cold. Can also be used for breastfeeding modesty if you feel you need it, and they brighten up an outfit and can be strategically placed over milk, yoghurt, food smear stains. 
  • ‘Nappy Bag’ – mines a Tiba + Marl one but any cool big bag will do. You can buy an inner bags that hold nappies/ wipes/ changing mat etc. OR put the bits in a wash bag and put that in the larger bag. Do NOT think you need to buy a plastic, owl printed, striped strapped nappy bag (unless you love them then go for it) you have options. 
  • Cross the body bag get one you love (maybe a leopard print one?!) – super useful to keep phone, wallet, lipstick in (then all of the baby stuff can go in the above mentioned nappy bag). 
  • Lipstick is your friend – it detracts from a tired eye (which i guarantee you will have) go bold, go bright and wear with a smile. 
  • Get a good CC / BB Cream / Foundation and blusher – all helps to wake up your face, eyelash curlers are good to. 
  • If you have always been interested in fashion and enjoy wearing clothes do not loose site of this and forget what you love to wear. It’ll help you stay you while in the midst of baby world madness. 
  • Do not be influenced by what other mums who were never interested in fashion in the first place are wearing. Stay true to your style and do not be afraid to try something new. 
  • Future proof your maternity purchases – think about things you can wear post baby body and to breastfeed in. 
  • Don’t save to much stuff for best – it’ll never get worn, instead wear it and enjoy it. 
  • If you like it wear it – you’ll have a better day if you are feeling confident.
BREASTFEEDING PARTY OUTFITS

Its sparkly Christmas party outfit season so i thought i'd do a quick round up of some outfits that are cool AND breastfeeding and bump friendly.

JUMPSUITS

Jumpsuits are great to wear if you are breastfeeding and if you have just had a baby. They are flattering, easy to wear and versatile - you can dress them up and down and wear them for loads of different occasions.

Look out for ones that are loose around the waist - or have a waist that is adjustable and that open up at the front or are cut low at the front. High or tight waisted are not comfortable or flattering on the mum tum and ones with high necks or that do up at the back won't work for breastfeeding.

Wear a vest underneath - the vest comes up or down and the jumpsuit opens. You could either wear a vest the same colour as the jumpsuit or i have a leopard print one that i wear under every colour/ pattern.

Here are a couple that'd be good - you could wear them with a bright coloured or sparkly jacket on top, red lips and some cool shoes.

If like a lot of people you are a different size on your top than on your bottom or if you have found it hard to find a jumpsuit that fits, you could try getting a matching trouser to shirt / top. This gives the illusion of wearing a jumpsuit but without the fitting issues.

DRESSES

These two dresses are maternity / nursing / non-maternity dresses so would be a great investment if you are pregnant this Christmas. You 'd be able to wear them everywhere - to work, pub, parties etc. They are designed to breastfeed in so you just lift the top panel. 

Other dresses to look out for are shirt dresses that open at the front or thin strapped dresses - where you pull the strap down over your shoulder to breastfeed. Alternatively you can wear a looser fitting dress then wear another slip type dress underneath it and use the same tecnique as the vest (top dress up, bottom dress down).

 

MATCHING TOP & SKIRT

Wearing a matching top and skirt is a great outfit to wear if you are breastfeeding - it gives the illusion of wearing a dress but it is in two parts. Also if you are a different dress size on the top and bottom of your body then this is a way to get around the sizing problems of a dress.

You can either wear the top tucked in or out depending on how much you want to draw attention to your waist. Wear a vest underneath that comes down then the top top comes up.

STATEMENT JACKET

A cool statement jacket is a great way to jazz up an outfit. These kind of jackets are designed to be worn open so it doesn't matter what size your bump or breasts are. You can wear them with jeans and a t-shirt or over a dress but they are an easy way to dress up an outfit.

Remember do not let breastfeeding, a baby, a mum tum or a negative attitude get in the way of a good outfit this Christmas. 

BRAND: AMORALIA

I have been wondering for a long time now, why no one has considered that pregnant and nursing mums want to have beautiful, comfortable, sexy, practical and stylish underwear. 

Maternity and Nursing underwear feels like such an after thought for so many high street brands and as a result they have got it so wrong. Which is why it is great to see a company who is investing in research in this sector, who are really understanding what it means to be the woman wearing this underwear and therefore catering for it perfectly.

I am so happy to have discovered this brand.  The underwear is stunning and super comfortable (wearing it now) it's clever and innovative and I will be wearing my bra long after i finish breastfeeding. 

Here is what the founder Jules wants to tell us about Amoralia.

NAME OF BRAND: Amoralia

DATE IT WAS FOUNDED: February 2005

BY WHOM IT WAS FOUNDED: Jules Canterbury. I live in London with my husband Rich, and our 3 year old son, Sacha.

WHY WAS IT CREATED: Ten years ago, whilst working as a planner at one of London’s top ad agencies, I was working on a brief (no pun intended!) for a lingerie client and spotted a gap in the market. My pregnant sister, colleagues and friends, were all desperate for something beautiful, that made them feel special. I had what I felt were some really strong ideas and opinions and so Amoralia was born! At the time, I hadn’t had kids myself, but I did know that the right underwear could instantly change my perception of myself and help me feel more feminine and better, so why would pregnant women not want to feel the same?

WHAT WE NEED TO KNOW ABOUT YOUR BRAND: We offer the most stylish, comfortable and best quality maternity and nursing lingerie on the market. We want pregnant and nursing women to look and feel beautiful, but understand just how crucial comfort is at this special time. From sexy sets to snuggly sleep bras, we offer a wide range of practical and stylish pieces for women of all shapes and sizes, catered both to during pregnancy and throughout nursing. A huge proportion of our time is spent researching, testing, tweaking and improving to ensure what we create is the best garment out there. Our ethos? Beautiful lingerie for beautiful mums.

WHAT WE SHOULD BUY FROM YOU:

  • Our new Allure is the first ever nursing bra on the market to have a removable flexi-wire! This means mums can have support when they need it, but take it out when tender, for peace of mind in the early stages of breast-feeding.

  • Our Seamless Sleep bra is softer than your baby’s bottom. With easy lift up nursing access it’s a great help to tackle the4am nightfeeds, but is still provides enough support to wear in the day.

  • Our Second Skin organic bra a simply cut, modern nursing staple. Every piece from this range is produced with organic cotton and eco-friendly dyes to respect not only mums’ skin, but also the environment. The cotton sits softly again sensitive skin and is breathable too – bye-bye hot flushes…

  • Our Nursing Tunic doesn’t look anything like the usual plain-Jane maternity or nursing nightwear. The marl fabric is luxuriously soft and is not only on trend but practical too. It’s ruched sides cocoon a growing bump or new-mum-tum comfortably, with quick and discreet nursing access zips. Plus the design means it can be teamed with our PJ leggings at night AND with jeans for a super easy day-time look.

BRAND: CLARY & PEG

Clary & Peg design and make vintage-inspired maternity clothing.  

Inspired by photographs of their mothers in their maternity clothes, the duo behind the brand spotted a gap in the market for vintage looking maternity wear and have created an easy to wear, classic cool collection - that can be worn with or without a bump.

Here is what Edwina & Johanna (the founders) would like us to know about their brand:

NAME OF BRAND/COMPANY: Clary & Peg

DATE IT WAS FOUNDED: May 2013 (A week after the birth of my second child and 5 weeks before the birth of Johanna's)

BY WHOM IT WAS FOUNDED : Edwina Gieve and Johanna Kociejowski (We met heavily pregnant with our first children at an ante-natal class)

WHY WAS IT CREATED: When we were pregnant we struggled to find things to wear that were as stylish and unique as our pre-pregnant everyday clothes. Mostly we felt that we had to compromise and make do, so we wanted to create a collection that allowed women to enjoy dressing when pregnant and to feel fashionable regardless of how big their bump was. We wanted to create clothes that women want to wear even if they are not pregnant. We also both wear a lot of vintage and there was nothing out there that married "vintage" and "maternity". We were inspired by pictures of our Mum's in dungarees and smock tops, we felt that it was a niche that needed to be filled.

WHAT WE NEED TO KNOW ABOUT YOUR BRAND: We design and make vintage-inspired maternity wear. All our clothes have been designed so they can be worn with or without a bump. It is very important to us that we are designing clothes that women will want to wear even when they are not pregnant. Our clothes are manufactured in London.

WHAT WE SHOULD BUY FROM YOU: Key pieces for this season - Pinafore, Shirt-dress, Swing top, Jumpsuit. All work through all stages of pregnancy and after. All suitable for breast feeding and very versatile, can be worn everyday and dressed up or down. Staple pieces that that are both comfortable, stylish and unique.

BRAND: MAMAS LITTLE SECRET

Mamas Little Secret was founded by a breastfeeding mum who was looking for something flattering, comfortable and fashionable to wear while breastfeeding - and when she couldn't find anything she liked in the shops, she decided to make her own!

Here the founder (and above mentioned breastfeeding mum) Keely tells us what we should know about her brand Mamas Little Secret.

NAME OF BRAND/COMPANY: mamas little secret

DATE IT WAS FOUNDED: July 2013- however due to our twins being born that month, all came to a stand still and the website went live the following year - July 2014

BY WHOM IT WAS FOUNDED: Keely Coburn

WHY WAS IT CREATED: When I breastfed my first baby, I found it a struggle what to wear everyday….torn between ease and comfort which often meant me loosing my identity (wearing something I would usually wear, to be able to feed in public). So I bought myself a sewing machine and made a few tops, that were flattering, and gave me confidence to feed out and about, in fabric I would felt myself in.

WHAT WE NEED TO KNOW ABOUT YOUR BRAND: On trend breast feeding tops, because easy access breast feeding shouldn’t mean mamas style shouldn’t be compromised

WHAT WE SHOULD BUY FROM YOU: The Moli style top is proving to be the best seller. its perfect for summer and great for layering in the winter



H&M PICKS

I popped into H&M yesterday and spotted a few breastfeeding friendly (but also cool if you aren't breastfeeding) items that i'd thought i'd share.

The high neck dress isn't usually a style that you can breastfeed in but this one has buttons down the front that would allow for access.  Personally i would wear a thin vest underneath in one of the colours of the dress that i would pull down under my breast and that would keep my tummy hidden.

H&M do great thin strapped, in-expensive vests in loads of different colours - these are so useful for wearing under your normal t-shirts, tops, shirts etc.  They have recently launched a longer length which is even better as it would come down and cover your waist.  This style vest would also be great if you are pregnant as it would easily cover your belly and could be worn in the same way - under many of your existing tops.

I spotted this easy to wear jumpsuit (£29.99) with buttons down the front and this flattering chunky off the shoulder knit (£29.99) to.

BRAND: A DAY IN A LIFE

While looking for the perfect black jumpsuit i came across a new brand called A Day In A Life.

There are many things that i like about this brand - I like that the collection is so versatile, i can imagine wearing the same dress/jumpsuit to a wedding, party and to work and it being perfect for every occasion.  I like that the pieces are ageless and would look amazing on both a 60 year old and on a 20 year old.  I like that there aren't to many pieces in the collection and that they never have sales, instead the collection will grow and more seasonally appropriate items will be added.  

I recently got their black silk jumpsuit and i love it - i know its going to be one of my default items of clothes and will stay in my wardrobe forever.  It can be dressed up or down and worn at every occasion - from a meeting to on holiday.  There is a draw sting waist that you can tighten up high on the waist or lower on the hips - you could also wear this if you are pregnant as it is a loose fit.

A Day In A Life's clothes are well thought through and curated.  The Engineered Knit Slip Dress which is a kind of spanx dress that holds everything in can either be worn as a dress on its own or underneath the looser fit dresses.  This is the type of thing that'd be useful for after you have had a baby to hold everything in, plus you can breast feed in it by pulling the strap to the built in bra down.  The Stretch Printed Bodysuit is another versatile and useful piece that can either be worn on its own or underneath something - again great for breastfeeding and tummy hiding.

The pink coat is amazing - it kind of feels heavy and swings, the cropped jumper is fun to and would look cool on top of the shirts or over the long sleeve jumpsuit.  The quality is amazing and you can only buy directly from the brand meaning that there are no wholesale costs. 

I meet Davina who is the Founder and Creative Director, she has an impressive fashion CV having worked for some of the worlds best fashion houses, she is also really nice and a mum to!

You can see the full collection here: A Day In A Life and for 10% off the jumpsuit from today until August 2nd enter promo code 'DLAM'.

WHAT TO WEAR: WHEN YOU'RE BREASTFEEDING AT A WEDDING

Here is a piece I wrote for the awesome cool crafting website Ladyland last week - when they asked me "How do you breastfeed at a wedding and maintain your fashion composure!?" 

I think one of the hardest outfits to find is a breastfeeding-friendly wedding guest outfit. There are so many things to consider, but most importantly you want to look good and feel comfortable.

The same rules apply as with any breastfeeding-friendly outfit: the top part must either undo or come down, or the straps of the top must come down over your shoulder. Personally, I tend to wear a thin stretchy vest under everything that can be pulled down or up – depending on which way you are getting nipple access.

But, there are other factors to consider: if you have very recently had your baby you may not feel super confident or comfortable wearing anything too tight. I avoided waist bands as I found them very unflattering – they would be tight around my waist and my mum-tum would poke out the bottom. Nice! Also, in the early days of breastfeeding you tend to sweat – so best to avoid clothes and fabrics that will enhance sweat patches or leaking milk! And, of course, over exposure of your breast is something you might want to avoid: you don’t want detract from the bride!

It's very important to stay true to your style, so try to wear something that you'd wear even if you didn't have to breastfeed. If you're wearing something you don’t feel comfortable or confident in, you won’t enjoy yourself as much.

Here are some ideas:

One option is to wear a jumpsuit (one that you can unbutton or that you can pull the strap down over your shoulder). This one by Whistles unbuttons; it’s fairly plain but with the right accessories could look really chic.

An obvious choice but one that works well is a button-up shirt dress. This dress is good because it buttons all the way up the front (good access), the style is not too fitted so would be flattering on the waist and tummy, but you could also wear a belt with it or tie it tighter at the back.

Co-ords (a matching top and bottom) are perfect because the top comes up for easy access. This outfit is good as it looks like a dress; the loose-fitting top that goes over the skirt would be more flattering than if the top was tucked into the skirt.

Love this waistcoat and culotte combo:

I love this dress – it looks so comfortable and flattering. You could lower the strap down over your shoulder and maybe take a scarf to drape over if you felt self-conscious. You could wear anything with this, like a brightly coloured jacket or big flower in your hair.

There are certain accessories that are a bit of a no-no while breastfeeding – think hoop earrings or big dangly ones – they are too tempting for the baby to rip out of your ears. Also, chunky or pointy textured necklaces that they could head butt should also be avoided, but this gold 'Mother' chain from Cult of Youth is perfect.

Cross-body bags are a good idea as they mean you’ll have you hands free (the nappy bag can travel separately – don’t let it ruin your outfit!)

Comfortable shoes are important, like these shiny flats from Zara. I nearly always wear flats anyway, but definitely avoid ones that you can’t balance in – chances are you’ll be carrying a baby!

And finally, lipstick! Wear it bright and with confidence; it will brighten up your face which, if you are breastfeeding a baby all the time, might look a bit tired. Let's hear it for the lippie!