Mamas, are you getting as sick of the boots-over-skinny-jean uniform as I am? Not that there's anything wrong with it (it is the most practical mom-i-form for messy winter months), but GAH. I needed a sartorial break. And now that we're in Philly, I couldn't count on Denver's surprisingly mild climate to bail me out anytime soon (although I hear Denver's winter has been brutal this year).
What I wanted was a dress. A sweater dress maybe, or something mod with a short hem and a high neckline. God, after four (almost) straight years of nursing, I dream about high necked dresses. While I have learned to nurse in a crew-neck top, pulling a dress all the way up is beyond my comfort/skill range.
Finding this dress, this everyday, chic, yet nursing-friendly dress became an obsession. I trolled my usual haunts - Shopbop, Piperlime, Revolve, Nordstroms, etc. Nada. Amidst the flurry of ordering and returns there were a couple of close calls, but they were either too expensive for the style (Read: Not cute enough for the money), or they were too sexy for everyday or too cold or too...too...something. Not right.
I had just about given up when I, in desperation, tried Zappos. Only because they ship virtually overnight for free, and I wanted this holy-grail-of-an-everyday-dress in time for the weekend.
WHOA. A total score.
You've shopped Zappos for shoes, right Mamas? I love that one can browse their shoes, then down-select on virtually any shoe feature: style, heel height, color, even accents like bows for crying-out-loud. Well....when shopping for dresses, Zappos employs the same genius search technique. Many of the searchable features you can find anywhere: shop by color, style, or brand. But additionally, Zappos also lets you browse dresses by crazy-helpful features such as sleeve length, collar style, fabric and accents.
This means, Mamas, that if you are looking for a nursing-friendly dress, you can simply check the boxes that say "V-Neck" and "Cowl Neck".
There are currently 998 results.
Down-select further by choosing your sleeve length (I wanted long) and the type of dress (I wanted casual) and you're looking at 95 day dresses, almost all of them perfect for nursing mamas!
While prices range from $40 - $400, the vast majority of the dresses are under $200, with many amazing choices in the $40-$70 range (mine was $50!!).
Now pooch-hiding is a bit trickier, since it really depends on the cut of the dress and how it hits your particular figure. As an experiment, I down-selected on Empire-Waist, Dropped Waist, then added in V-Neck and Cowl Neck for a nursing mama. This one popped up, on sale for $50:
Wow. Not bad at all. This dress (RSVP's Celeste Dress) would certainly hide a post-partum pooch, and I'll bet that neckline pulls down easily for nursing.
Personally, I ended up with a nursing-friendly dress that requires major Spanx for the pooch.
But at the end of a night filled with too much pizza, wine, and then The World's Best Gelato at Capogiro, even the Spanx had trouble keep the pooch in control. But I didn't really care. I was just happy to be wearing a dress on a Saturday night.
I hate to admit this, but I find Spanx insanely comfortable. Just sucks me right in, and supports the back. Whiiiich makes me sound about a hundred years old. Ah, well. I still wore a dress on a Saturday night. That's success in my book, Mamas.