This week is World Breastfeeding Week, and we didn’t want to let it pass without a post about the joys of breastfeeding. Specifically, the sartorial joys. After all, we celebrate, promote and enable breastfeeding all year round – in our collection of nursing-friendly clothes.
You see, we believe breastfeeding is beautiful. But it can, at times, feel a little undignified. And we are firm defenders of a woman’s right to flash her nipples in public, where the nourishment of an infant is her goal. However we also recognize that some times a lady likes to keep her Bristols under wraps.
Allow us to share with you our trade secrets for breastfeeding in style. These are the three qualities we look for in a breastfeeding top or dress:
Yes, you’re breastfeeding, but you don’t need to shout about it. A bulky clip can ruin a pretty strap, and an obvious opening spoils the line of a top. Worst of all are those breastfeeding tops where the access is so generous you might as well strip off – meaning you need to faff around with scarves or turn your back to the room in order to feed with dignity. We look for discreet openings, usually hidden below a layer that offers you a nice smooth outline. We are, it should be said, not above spending an afternoon on the sofa with our dressing gown wide open revealing our comfiest nursing bra. But when we go out into society, we like a little more discretion.
A forgiving fit
The sheer size of lactating boobs can be quite a shocker to those of us used to a smaller bust. Plus there’s that new mum tum to think about – or rather, to try to ignore. And breastpads can be bulky. We choose soft, loose drapes that skim over our lumps and bumps – or ruching, which flatters by confusing the eye.
There is a limit to how much flesh you want to flash. And there’s a limit to how much your baby, from a practical point of view, needs access to. The very best breastfeeding tops and dresses allow your little suckling babe to get to your nipple and that’s about it. They’re a little trickier to get used to, but once you’ve got the hang of it you have mastered breastfeeding in style. We call it the ‘my baby’s eating my cardigan’ look. It means no-one else needs to see soft skin, blue veins, or anything else you’d rather keep hidden from view.
What’s your approach to breastfeeding? Out and proud? Or something you only do in privacy? And what are your best dressed breastfeeding tips? Talk to us on Twitter (@babeswithbabies.com)!
For more breastfeeding inspiration, and some of our favourite breastfeeding garments, check out our Pinterest board.
By Isadora Watts