Thanks to some innovative mommy designers, maternity apparel has come a long way. They have made it easy for pregnant moms to look chic and feel comfortable during the nine months it takes to grow a human. I found that the real wardrobe challenges begin after the baby is out, when your body is on the road to recovery and you are possibly nursing.
Personally, I found getting dressed during this phase of life rather daunting. The majority of my wardrobe (filled with dresses) didn’t work because they lacked easy access to breast-feed. Even if you’re staying home with your baby, taking your clothes off every 3-4 hours just doesn’t work. Inevitably, that’s when the UPS delivery man will come to drop off another signature required package from diapers.com.
Relentlessly, I over-shopped maternity stores (where most true nursing wear is sold) and looked for ready-to-wear. I started scouring the racks of department stores for stylish pieces that I could also easily nurse in. I found myself constantly asking the shop assistants for “easy access” tops and dresses. The response I got from the early 20-something non-moms was complete confusion. “Easy access to what?” was the most common question. My response, while glancing at Olive in her stroller, “Well to be frank, my boobs.” That was about the time I would give up and leave the store feeling frustrated.
I soon turned to ordering online but without someone to test drive the clothes for me, I wasn’t sure if they would actually be nursing-friendly. Let’s face it, model boobs tend to rest a little higher than nursing boobs. It seems to me that fashion continuously caters to a younger and younger crowd. Where are the 30-something moms supposed to shop? The harsh truth is that we are not 21 forever.
To help fill this fashion void, my husband and I launched www.shopburu.com last September with the mission to help new moms shop for mommy-friendly (and nursing-friendly) fashion from the comfort of their sofas. Specifically, we aim to bring “easy access” to nursing moms in a fashion forward and fun way. Luckily, ready-to-wear provides many interesting options for easy access. Here are a few of my favorites:
The Snap Front
Provides easy, one-handed access and a drape front to conceal left over baby weight– a snap closure is one of the best tops for nursing. Don’t forget to pair with a nursing tank underneath. It will give you a little cleavage cover and feel good around your freshly deflated tummy.
The Zipper Front
Zippers allow for very fast and convenient access. Plus, they often make a unique fashion statement. We love to find subtle working zippers that take incognito nursing to a new level.
The Wrap Dress
Most dresses are not nursing-friendly at all. A wrap dress can be a great option if worn correctly. By that I mean wear it with a cropped camisole. Cleavage can take on a new form when the milk comes in. A simple cropped camisole can take a wrap dress from nighttime-only to office-friendly.
Whether snap-front or button-down, this classic style is perfect for nursing. Plus, if purchased in the right fabric, it can be a year round staple piece (nursing or not).
The Button Down
Button-down shirts are the most obvious and abundant tops offering easy access. Every closet (breast-feeding mom or not) should have a classic white men’s style shirt in it.
The Pull Down or Lift Up
Most often, a pull down or lift up access comes in the form of a comfy t-shirt. This also means that it’s most likely washable which is key for a new mom. Stretch is an important aspect, but a henley collar t-shirt is also a great, easy access guarantee.
With these “easy access” options, we will help you nurse in style in no time!
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