Wardrobe boot camp: post maternity clothes

Wardrobe boot camp: post maternity clothes

Nikki Parkinson Fashion, How to 43 Comments

Editor’s note: Welcome to the first of a series in which I help Styling You readers solve a particular wardrobe or clothing crisis with a little advice and some shopping suggestions. If you think you’d like to be featured as part of a Wardrobe Boot Camp post, then please email me ([email protected]) with a couple of photos and a brief run down of what specific help you would like. 

Disclosure: Stacey Roberts is my neighbour. She’s also the very gorgeous blogger behind The Veggie Mama. We share a fence but not enough wine as she’s been pregnant or breast feeding for the past two years. But that’s ok because she makes extremely beautiful babies and occasionally sneaks over for a glass of red or champers with me as we solve the problems of the first world.

Oh, and did I mention that apart from blogging and being a mum of two under two, she works part-time as a uni lecturer? She’s also completely and utterly gorgeous – on the inside and on the out.

Quite frankly, I was surprised to receive her SOS email asking for some help in the post maternity clothes winter wardrobe department. She always looks mighty fine to me … but here goes …

Veggie Mama Stacey Roberts

The plea

I am in desperate need for some winter wear, as I am not pregnant this season, YAY!

All the pregnancy clothes I bought for when pregnant with now-five-month-old Pepper (bar one pair of Just Jeans maternity jeans which were awesome) were horrible. I went to my local shopping centre one day and headed straight to the back racks of cheap chain stores. I bought whatever was on sale (nothing over $10) and I just bought oversize everything. Boring black and grey long-sleeve shirts and anything roomy. I paired with leggings from two seasons before and just hoped for the best. NO MORE!

Online is the most helpful as I don’t want to be clothes shopping with two small children, and I like getting stuff in the mail. I just need to know the best places that will serve my needs but am woefully out of touch. I have just ordered some things from Forever21 (I think US sites are great at the change of seasons, they’re sale-ing what I need!) but I really don’t know what other sites are good.

The wardrobe wishlist

  • skinny jeans
  • cute leggings
  • a-line skirts or miniskirts
  • loose, maybe oversized tops
  • chunky cable-knit longish sweaters
  • Peter Pan-collar and button-up shirts
  • cute cardis
  • some booties

The tips

1. Buy less but spend more on each item that you buy. It’s great to have a bargain but if it falls apart after one season, it’s not a bargain. Now that you’re not pregnant, then think about building up your wardrobe based on quality pieces, not throw-away stuff is a big plus for the environment, which I know is a big thing for you.

2. Yes, look to overseas online sites for sale pieces but don’t discount Aussie independent boutiques and etsy (also your style). By doing so, you’re supporting small businesses that really need our love.

3. Winter is such a short season in Queensland, invest in layering pieces that will take you from the cold morning through to sunny days and back again to freezing.

The shopping

Stacey’s style is young, a little vintage-y and a little rock-chick-y. She’s not afraid of the quirky and showing her personality with what she wears. I’ve been conscious that she’s wanting to stick to a budget so have trawled the shopping interwebs and found 10 value-for-money pieces … many of which are on sale. I’ve stuck to a mainly neutral palette with a couple of pops of colour because these are building block pieces.

There is a show pony piece in there – the Black Milk Clothing Star Wars leggings – which you might be shaking your head at but knowing what I know (that Stacey owns an R2 D2 one-piece swimsuit), I think she may just go for them.

Wardrobe boot camp: post maternity clothes

1. Black Milk Clothing Yoda and Luke leggings $105 | 2. Sancerre top $19 (on sale) | 3. Toi Et Moi sweater $35.99 (on sale) @ The Iconic | 4. River Island cardigan $40.24 (on sale) @ ASOS | 5. Pleated mini skirt $US49.28 @ Etsy | 6. Monkee Genes jeans $49.27 (on sale) @ ASOS | 7. Antipodium blouse $65.70 (on sale) @ The Iconic | 8. Boom Shankar mini skirt $30 (on sale) | 9. Mel vegan-friendly ballet pumps $55 @ Style Tread | 10. Ina boots $79.95 @ Style Tread

Did you feel the same way, post pregnancy? Thinking that you had to start your wardrobe all over again? Tips for Stacey?

Comments 43

  1. Now that I’m post-pregnancy, I can assure you that the affordable maternity wear you had bought were not a waste of money. Funny thing is, you don’t get your figure right back. I was just ever so thankful to have a few well-made items to wear to the pediatriacian.

  2. I’m in the same post pregnancy haze at the moment and when I look in my wardrobe I have no idea what to wear. I still feel body conscious and not confident enough to purchase new clothes as I feel my body shape has changed since becoming a mum 4 years ago. But my wardrobe is in dire need of a re-haul.

  3. Those yoda leggings are soooo not for me, but really; I do think the gorgie VM could be placed in an organic hessian bag and still look stunning. Some ladies are just oozing classy goodness. The vegan shoes are fabulous and so well priced…off to take a closer look.

    1. NO, Claire, I can not imagine you in them … or me for that matter. That’s what I love about the potential of this series … it’s really showcasing that no one style is the “right” one! And yes, VM could wear a hessian sack!!

  4. I love the idea of a series based on particular wardrobe crises. I wish there’d been as many online clothes shopping options when I was pregnant/home with newborns – so much easier! I remember being very glad to get groceries and a fruit/veg box delivered to the door! I would have been happier to have gorgeous new clothes delivered instead 😉

  5. Hi Nikki, thanks for this, I have been either pregnant or BF for the last 5 years -3 boys later, I am ready to wear normal clothes Yay! Not sure about the Luke & Yoda leggings but love everything else. Ps. I mentioned you on Monday at my blog: talking bloggy heroes/blogs to read.

  6. Aced it SY! Online shopping can be problematic for me as I get stuck on one particular website, thinking that it’s unlikely you’ll find a better deal elsewhere. Also I do get sucked into crazy cheap prices & buy pieces I never wear. Except for Bonds online, never too many undies!

    1. Have found TrixanBody.com.au stocks tons of Bonds undies and clothing as well as other brands like Mesop. All their swimwear is also on sale now…though don’t think they stock R2D2 swimmers – sorry Veggie Mama! Great picks Nikki.

  7. I love the idea for this as a series. We are all built so differently with different tastes and styles it is very confusing for most of us on how to make a certain look or the new seasons fashion work for you. I love that pleated mini skirt.

  8. Love those suggestions Nikki, especially that shirt/blouse. Whilst I have not been pregnant or plan to be, I have just lately decided there are so many clothes in my wardrobe whilst they fit and look good I just don’t love them any more. I would seriously love to start my wardrobe over again. Here comes another clear out I think.

  9. I recommend Mesop (a Melbourne label like Metalicus but funkier and in 3 different sizes) they have a website, an online shop and a fabulous Facebook page where the girls in the clearance shop put up photos of sale stock and available sizes and you can purchase via email and over the phone. Super easy and convenient. Their stuff is stretchy, gorgeous and often mixed with merino wool in Winter. The best ever stuff for layering!! Oh yes….. and Jag and Country Road (CR) for jeans and CR for their fantastic merino wool cardigans (that are machine washable), don’t shrink or pill and last for years. Hope that helps!

  10. I have not been pregnant for about 22 years ,gee that makes me feel old,but I do remember thinking after I had my babies especially my son,what do I wear??? my boobs had their own postcode and I had him in October so right on change of seasons it was hard back in the day with no internet ,with my daughter I found it a little easier I had her in July and fitted back into my leggings and pants straight away and my boobs were a tad smaller,but you do feel fat frumpy and out of touch after you think you are so skinny after giving birth.I do Think Stacey has an advantage over most women she has you next door and I think has an amazing figure,and would suit just about anything.I love what you have chosen for her and can see her in those cute leggings and skirts. I think she should get a little denim tunic dress and style it up with a longsleeve under for the cold days a scarf and some bright opaque tights and some ankle boots,which she could wear to work or out and a pair of pleather panelled leggings for going out on the town and some ponti leggings as well would be good additions to her wardrobe.I love my ponti pants for winter and will never go back to cheap cotton ones they are worth every cent IMO and warmer for this cold house.
    Stacey I have never seen you look horrble either I agree with Nikki ,and you are a beautiful girl inside and out and you do make beautiful babies,enjoy shopping for winter clothes.

    1. Gosh I hadn’t even heard of ponte, thank you! And love the sound of the tunic dress with fun tights, I will see if I can get one that undoes from the top so I can still breastfeed. Right on the money with these tips Lisa 🙂

      1. Great article Nikki! I think I may nominate myself for this series… watch your inbox 🙂

        Stacey – ponte pants are great. I love my pair from Witchery. I recommend getting them from a better store as the cheap ones are too thin and you can see through to your undies… not exactly classy (but depends what look you are after, haha!).

  11. Holy shit, you nailed it! Right down to the vegan shoes! This is exactly what I wanted, but I’m not up with what online stores are good – now I am! I can’t thank you enough, this just saved me hours of confusion and possibly buying stuff that wasn’t going to work. THANK YOU xx

  12. Not at all pregnant (I promise, as soon as WE know, YOU’LL know!), but have had some big ups and downs with my weight over the last few years so I got to start afresh with a new Winter wardrobe last year.
    I completely agree with the neutrals, I steered clear of brights until I knew the direction I wanted my wardrobe to take, and chose lots of slightly loose (not baggy) layering pieces in different shades of coffee, chocolate, toffee, caramel and latte.

    Oh man, typing that has given me a MASSIVE craving for Zarraffas. *gets in car and zooms off*

    1. Me too Katy! The coffee I mean. This rain is giving me the sheisters. But i have found one online store that I love lately – Bamboo Body – the clothes are soooooo comfy and great if you have ..aherm… “dynamic” weight – pregnant or not! And they swap and return really well as you sort out your sizes – also can buy some of their range at Synergy at the Natural Foodstore complex. But I am sure Nikki has already featured their brand….maybe that is where I found out about it ha ha.

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