Posted on

Shop Smart: Maternity clothes for breastfeeding

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail

Make your maternity wardrobe work harder by choosing clothes that will work for breastfeeding after baby is born. Look out for…

Midnight Knot Front Maxi Dress (Crave Maternity)1. Boob access – look for either maternitywear specifically designed for nursing or with easy boob access (you only need to be able access one at a time usually, even with twins!). Wrap styles, crossover and button fronts are easy.

2. Stretch fabric – to pull back into shape as you do, and make breastfeeding access even easier.

3. Tummy flattering styles – Even if they offer breastfeeding access, some styles just don’t work for new mums. Bodycon styles make a baby bump look gorgeous, but just leave you feeling self-conscious after the birth – if you want to get more value from your maternity wardrobe, mix bumptastic styles with more forgiving shapes. Something that skims your belly will give you confidence postnatally.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail
Posted on

Seraphine at John Lewis – Voucher Giveaway!

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail

To celebrate the launch of the Seraphine maternity and nursing range at John Lewis, I have £50 of John Lewis vouchers to giveaway to one lucky reader.

I was keen to take a look at the range as it’s always good to see nursing wear in high street stores. At first glance the clothes are lovely, but other than one breastfeeding top, it looked like it was all just maternity wear. Don’t be put off – not only are there lots that work well from pregnancy to breastfeeding, but when you click through and read the descriptions, you realise that a number of the designs are made for nursing mums too. As it’s not always immediately obvious, I’ve highlighted breastfeeding friendly Seraphine designs here.

My range highlight is the knitwear, which is really well-thought out for future nursing mums. It’s always hard to find something other than a cardigan for warm winter feeds, so I would definitely have been tempted by a jumper designed for the purpose, had I actually been able to find one when I was breastfeeding.

Seraphine Maternity/Nursing Jumper
The top of this jumper pops down for breastfeeding access. Also available in purple.
Seraphine Crossover Jumper
The crossover top on this jumper is designed to accommodate breastfeeding and the tummy will stretch back over your diminishing belly.

To enter:
For a chance to win £50 John Lewis vouchers, click through to John Lewis, leave a comment below and tell me what you would spend the vouchers on. For a bonus entry either share this post on Facebook or tweet the following:

I’ve entered to #win £50 of @johnlewisretail vouchers with @milkchic http://milkchic.co.uk/60522 #fashion

Please share the love – tell your friends about this giveaway (or even post it on a few forums…) The more entries, the more giveaways I can host and John Lewis sells everything from clothing to kitchenware, so you don’t have to spend the vouchers on nursing clothes! For more breastfeeding-friendly John Lewis fashion, check out the shopping pages.

Terms & Conditions: Entry open to UK & Ireland only. Closing date: 30th September 2012. Winner will be chosen at random from all valid entries. No cash alternative. If the winner cannot be contacted after 7 days, an alternative may be chosen.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail
Posted on

5 Fab Offers at Babes with Babies

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail

As many of you know, I’m not a big fan of “nursing clothes“.

Ever since I treated myself to a lovely looking nursing dress for a christening, handing over an obscene amount of money to receive a badly sewn and cheaply printed dress made out of t-shirting that Primark would be ashamed of, I’ve eyed breastfeeding fashion with distrust. They clearly paid more for photography than production.

For the most part, I feel you can feel just as confident and comfortable in carefully chosen high street fashion, which is why I started MilkChic.

Xmas Pudding Shoes

One company that I rate is Babes with Babies and I do list their clothes. I’ll be honest – they’re not cheap. Their prices are on a par with the top end of the high street, at about £70-80 for a posh dress. But… their design and production standards are on a par with a £70-80 dress on the high street. They’re well made and designed to make a new mum look and feel fab.

They also have some rather lovely maternity and baby things – Xmas pudding baby shoes anyone??

So I was rather excited to open my e-mail this evening and find a whole load of December deals, just in time for Christmas and New Year. There are far too many to just tweet them or post them on Facebook, so I thought I’d give them a whole blog post. Here they are:

  • £20 off any 2 dresses with code: FF678
  • 5% off orders above £250 with code: LSA36A
  • 10% off orders above £350 with code LSB39F
  • Free portrait session and print worth £250 on orders above £150
  • Free £5 voucher on all orders until December 31st 2011

Enjoy!!!

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail
Posted on

A-Z of Breastfeeding

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail

Cake – tasty food with a high concentration of calories – excellent for sustaining breastfeeding (as part of a balanced diet…). Best combined with tea and supportive friends.

Chocolatesee also cake…

Calories – Breastfeeding naturally uses up to 500 calories a day.

Clothes – clothes for breastfeeding need, above all to be accessible. There is nothing more likely to make you feel flustered than trying to undo layers of clothing one-handed while your baby screams! There are some good nursing clothes available but, once you know what to look for, it is just as easy to find high street fashion that works for breastfeeding and you’ll have a lot more choice.

Cluster Feeding – a term used for feeds spaced very close together. This often happens in the evenings and can mean your baby is gearing up to sleeping longer at night (yay!). It is also common for newborns, who need very regular feeding, and during growth spurts. Cluster feeding can feel tiring but it is normal and will pass. Read Kellymom for reassurance and make sure you are prepared with dinner you can eat one-handed and a good book or TV remote for those “glued to the sofa” hours.

Colostrum – The first milk you produce, which is thick, yellow and sticky. It is perfectly formulated for a newborn baby – easy to digest, high in nutrition and full of antibodies. Read more about the amazing properties of colustrum at La Leche League.

Combination Feeding – Feeding your baby breastmilk at some feeds and formula at others. While some studies suggest this does reduce the benefits of breastfeeding, many mums find this a successful solution particularly if they find it difficult to pump and have to return to work before baby weans, and some “mixed feed” long term.If you plan to combination feed, wait until your baby is at least 6 weeks as it can interfere with your body’s ability to manage milk production.

Comfort Feeding – suckling not primarily for nutrition. While breastfeeding is a great source of nutrition, it is also a great comfort when a child is ill, unsure, tired or grumpy. Ignore anyone who suggests that comforting your child is bad – they have the wrong idea of what parenting is about! Suckling without really eating also serves to increase milk supply so if your little suddenly starts comfort feeding more than usual and there have been no other changes which may be unsettling them, they may be building up to a growth spurt.

Confidence – Something that successful breastfeeding gives you in spades. When you look at your baby, remember that every ounce came from you – impressive, aren’t you?! If confidence is an issue for you and a fear of breastfeeding in public is preventing you from getting out and about, fake it until you make it. You’ll be amazed how supportive most people are.

Covers – There are huge debates on the merits of breastfeeding covers. Some people like them because they are concerned about feeding in public and a cover makes them feel safe. Others hate them because their very existence suggests that breastfeeding should be covered and feeling they need to cover up while latching can make breastfeeding much harder than it should be for a new mum. In a nutshell… they are not a necessity, but they are also not a crime (although the way they are marketed can be). I prefer to just wear breastfeeding friendly clothing rather than buy something special.

Covering up – Breastfeeding mums are legally protected wherever and whenever they choose to feed in public. Covering up, or not covering up while feeding is a personal preference. As is watching someone else breastfeed. But if you don’t want to watch, it’s your job to leave the area. Move on, avert your eyes etc. etc. etc.

Cracked nipples – A lot of breastfeeding mums do suffer from cracked nipples at the start. Theoretically, with a good latch there should be no problems unless you have thrush or similar. But most of us aren’t perfect and until you’ve got it right, a good nipple cream can be a godsend. I used Lansinoh, which I found effective but there are lots of others – pick one that doesn’t need to be washed off before feeds. Kellymom offers some good tips for healing cracked nipples.

Crimes of breastfeeding – the things other people feel they have to right to tell you off for.

Criticism – see above. New mums seem to under a constant barrage of criticism for all of their parenting choices, breastfeeding included. Please try to avoid doing this to other mums. If you come under fire yourself, here are some readymade responses that work.

Cropped tops – Tops that you can wear over a nursing vest for lift up style breastfeeding. Easy access clothing that also allows you to cover up if you want to.

Cues – Signals that a baby wants to breastfeed. There are lots of early signs that a baby wants to feed that you will become aware of long before they start to cry. These can include rooting (a reflex present in young babies where they automatically turn towards the breast and make sucking motions with their mouth, or stick their tongue in and out), fussing, sucking their hands, opening and shutting mouth and lip-smacking, fidgeting and squirming, hitting you on the arm or chest.

See the full A-Z of Breastfeeding so far, and feel free to add your own in the comments!

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail
Posted on

Personal Shopping: Pink Dresses for a Cornish Blonde!

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail

I was asked by a lovely breastfeeding Twitterer to find her some dresses to wear to an upcoming wedding. Here are a selection of finds in her favourite pink!

Pink dresses for a Cornish Blonde!
Boohoo, Peacocks, Fly 53, WGACA, Warehouse
A little personal shopping exercise – something for a breastfeeding mum to wear to a wedding.

1. Julie V neck waist bobby maxi dress £15, Boohoo.com – Either pull down to feed, or possibly sleeve feed – add a nursing vest underneath for extra coverage.
2. Rochelle Chiffon Frill Top Layer Detail Dress – £15, Boohoo.com – I’m not 100% on this one as the sleeves may not be wide enough to feed, but at £15 it’s so cute I’d be tempted to order it and see…
3. Floral Vintage Dress £85, People Tree – Pull down feed – wear with a nursing vest or add a cute cardi buttoned at the top for extra coverage while feeding.
4. Parker Double Flared Sleeve Dress with Print – £142.48, Shopbop – Button down for easy feeding, flattering to a mummy tummy and incredibly stylish, but it is dry clean only. Wear with a nursing vest for extra coverage.
5. Button Front 50’s Dress Was £65 Now £45, Warehouse – I love this as it’s something I might have worn to a wedding before I was breastfeeding. It has a button front for easy pull down style feeding and wide straps to hide a nursing bra!
6. Marc by Marc Jacobs Carmen Silk Jacquard Dress £209.78, Shopbop – Not exactly a budget buy, and it is dry clean only, but the colour is stunning and the style is a classic and very figure flattering. Button down for easy feeding.
7. Short Dress £39, La Redoute – The smocked bodice and adjustable straps will allow for easy feeding but the narrow straps mean it’s best paired with a cardi if you want to hide a nursing bra. Unbutton the bottom of your cardi and it will give you extra coverage for feeding too.
8. Pink Kinsella Dress Was £135 Now £79, Thomas Pink – A very posh shirt dress. Button down for easy pull down feeding – add a nursing vest underneath for extra coverage. Again, dry clean only.
9. Long Floral Print Dress £65, La Redoute – The wrap top and smocking under the bust will allow for a pull down feed and wide straps mean no showing your bra. Wear with a nursing vest or a cardi buttoned at the top if you want extra coverage when feeding.
10. Rachel Pally Newport Dress £163.09, Shopbop – The crossover top and stretch fabric on this classic Grecian style maxi dress will work well for a pull down feed. Wear with a nursing vest for extra coverage.
11. What Goes Around Comes Around Bianca Dress £227.96, Shopbop – Not a cheap option, and dry clean only, but the hidden button down front is great for feeding and I love the simple style, which is loose over the tummy and will show off a good pair off legs.
12. Fly53 Womens Repent Strappy Dress Raspberry £44.99, M&M Direct – A slightly more casual option for a relaxed wedding, the button down front will make feeding a breeze. Wear with a nursing vest or little cardi for extra coverage.
13. Ladies Tea Dress £20, Peacocks – A really cute print dress with covered buttons for a chic look.  Wear it as it is, or style it up with a contrast belt and a net petticoat to create an hourglass silhouette and the illusion of a miniature waist. Wear with a nursing vest for extra coverage.

Personal Shopping note: MilkChic is not a big company. In fact it’s… erm… well… just me. I also have a day job and a toddler, which can make it difficult to find hours in the day, but it does mean I always offer a personal service! If there is something you are looking for, please contact me and I’ll try to find it for you.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail