At the end of my pregnancy, when I was barely squeezing into one pair of pants and rotating between two shirts, I had these fantasies of being able to dive back into my pre-pregnancy wardrobe soon after the baby was born. I was clearly delusional, not taking into account lactating breasts, my new and stubborn paunch, hopefully-not-permanently widened hips and most of all, babywearing.
I knew I wanted to babywear before V arrived, and prepared myself accordingly. I spent hours researching different wraps and carriers (check here for some handmade favorites), and was all kitted out by the time the third trimester rolled around. Once she arrived, she cooperated with my plans (for once!) and took to wrap or sling like a champ. We call our Ergo carrier 'baby Ambien.' It's powerful stuff.
What I forgot to consider was what to wear while wearing my baby. As S told you in her New Year's post, the topic of babywearing-friendly fashion will come up more than once on ANMJ this year. I'm here to tell you the basics of how I get by day to day. My criteria for getting dressed for babywearing include comfort, ease of breastfeeding, and looking moderately put-together.
Here are some basic tips I've compiled:
- Babywearing will shorten the shirt/dress/tunic you are wearing. So if your outfit relies on your bum being covered, wear something a few inches longer than what you normally would since it will ride up when your carrier is on.
- I LOVE a statement necklace. I literally have a drawer full of them. But they don't work when babywearing. Necklaces in general get in the way if baby is resting his/her head against your chest, and you might want to avoid things with buttons/snaps/embellishments that might get in the way of baby's comfort.
- Layers are key. I don't know about yours, but my baby is like a little space heater and when I'm wearing her I tend to break out in a sweat. If it's sweater weather I wear short-sleeves, and plan to put my sweater/coat over my shoulders after baby is on, making it easy to remove once I begin soaking through my tee.
- Patterns stand out. What you're wearing tends to take the backseat when you are wearing your baby, so I like to wear something bright or patterned underneath.
- Accessorize! Even though I miss my necklaces, I have had fun adding chunky bracelets, headbands with rosettes, cocktail rings, earrings, cute boots and hats (bonus: I don't have time to do my hair anyway) when wearing little V.
What are your babywearing tips? Share your essential outfits and accessory ideas!
Contributing author Lane is an intentionally unemployed social worker who is currently a new mom, following her husband's dream, trying to stay relevant, and practicing her mothering skills on two rescued dogs, Enid and Falcor (in addition to her new addition, baby Vesper). Check out her fabulous blog, the Overseas Trapeze.