wonderfully made: the girlfriend's guide | nursing mama summer wardrobe

Monday, April 18, 2016

the girlfriend's guide | nursing mama summer wardrobe

My friend Amy is always coming up with great post content for my blog. She should really start her own because now I feel the pressure! But really, she is good for her ideas and today I'm honoring another one of them. Amy asked if I would do a post on nursing friendly summer clothes. Her daughter Emma is just about eight weeks older than Beau so she and I share the same clothing concerns. We will both be nursing over the summer and believe it or not, dressing ourselves can get tricky.

Amy also shared this all-too-true meme with me a few weeks ago and I died laughing:

So I've put a bit of thought into this and have come up with the following requirements for my wardrobe: no sundresses that I can't pull the neck down or unbutton (this is the WORST - I live in dresses in the summer!), nothing that requires a strapless bra (because NO), and nothing that would make me melt during June in Texas.

First, I gathered some of my favorite undershirts. I started wearing tanks under my shirts in college and although it's not for everyone (my mom gets overheated), I really like the look and I always have one underneath my clothes. Since becoming a nursing mom, I found that it's even more important to have a tank and the stretchier, the better. I've purchased these from Target and these at Nordstrom Rack (size UP), but so far my favorite for nursing is this one. (Before and during pregnancy I really liked these from Old Navy. They hold their shape forever and they are super soft. I haven't tried nursing in one but if you have, let me know!) I'm still looking for one in the $5 range that I can stock up on so if you have a suggestion, please let me know! Anyway, I wear these under EVERYTHING.

Secondly, I just want to touch on the undergarment issue really quickly. I hinted at how uncomfortable I was during pregnancy in my bras (the WORST) and everywhere I looked recommended this bra from Target (and found online). I was hesitant to 'invest' that much in something I hated SO MUCH so I found these on Amazon, read the reviews that said they are pretty much identical, and bought them. They were the only bra that relieved my pain. After they wore out a bit, I splurged for the one everyone recommended and guess what, it was EXACTLY the same as the Amazon bra, but I preferred the Amazon bra the best. I've since invested in a couple 'real' nursing bras (even one with under wire - yuck) but for the most part, I live in these. They get worn out, but they are just about the most cost effective you will find.

Right now when I shop I'm looking for something a little bit flowy, light weight, and easy to lift up or pull down to nurse Beau. I'm not a fan of button up shirts so I don't have many of those.

For loose tops, I've been obsessed with this online boutique. I follow the shop on instagram and try to strike when she is running a sale but otherwise I just like looking at all the fun things she has. I have these three tops and love them:

And this one is in my cart just waiting for a sale. I'm obsessed with it!

For summer, I'm all about tanks and tees. I have this side split tee from Target in grey and it's the comfiest shirt ever. I always feel super comfortable in it and it is so easy to nurse in.

I've seen this style tank at Target and at Old Navy and I think it's really flattering, especially from the back. The split would make it easy to nurse in (and I would wear a tank underneath, of course!)

High neck tanks are in and these two are cute, especially the plaid (it's on sale!)

Most of my shopping is done online, at Target, or at what we call "Dirty Dillard's".  There are two Dillard's clearance centers in the area and not only do they have great deals, but they really can be dirty. I compare it most to a Ross, or something like that. Anyway, all of the merchandise comes in at 60% off from Dillard's stores. The stock is either overstock, items that didn't sell, or damaged. I've bought clothes in perfect condition at the outlet and then saw it in the stores for full price later, so you just never know. There is good stuff, friends! 

Also, Dirty Dillard's is ALWAYS doing a sale. It is usually on about half of the store (women's summer clothes, etc.) and they are marked down between 40-60% on top of the already discounted price. I've also been in before when they were doing buy 1 get 2 free on dresses. So, yeah. 

I always end up going towards the same brands somehow and when I was there a couple of weeks ago, I picked up some items by Chelsea and Violet, M.S.S.P., and a tie-dye tank by Karen Kane. I also got some Gianni Bini shorts. They were doing buy 1 get 1 free on summer items. Of course I can't find the exact items to link them for you, but if you have a Dirty Dillard's near you or you just want to check out the regular store, those are the brands that I like. I included some options in my collage below.

Another thing I think I'll do this summer is what I did when I was 7 months pregnant and up last summer: kimonos. I *think* they are still on trend this year and honestly it's the best way to stay covered, stay cute, and stay cool in Texas heat. The kimonos I have are so lightweight that you don't even feel them. Mine are from Target and SheInside last year but here are some that I'm eyeing:
Also, don't forget about swimsuits! I'm going with the one piece trend this season for obvious reasons...but there are some SUPER cute one pieces out there! Some more conservative than others, but all super cute:

The hunt for dresses is really tough. I might break my own rule here and make an exception for strapless dresses (with a strapless bra) because I cannot go all summer without wearing a dress. I gathered up a few options for button down and wrap dresses so I'll have to give those a go as well.

Lastly, here is a roundup of items I think would be great for summer and great for nursing from H&M. They are a favorite for affordable options!

Mark is going to KILL me because I found lots of cute things for myself while writing this post. I won't tell if you don't! Anyway, if you found something you love (and I hope you did!) write back and let us know how it worked for you. And if you're shopping online, don't forget to use your eBates! (Here's my latest testimonial to eBates in case you missed it!) It makes a huge difference and who says no to extra cash in their pocket?

Happy shopping, mamas!

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