Once the baby is out, the first thing you will want to do having spent nine months with a creature strapped to your front is SHOP, SHOP, SHOP for all the glorious clothes that will now fit your new body.
(You’ll also likely want to down a large glass of wine, sleep on your front and eat a hefty wedge of Brie, but hey, that’s not what this post is about).
The only problem with that is that a) your body will continue changing and growing and shrinking and doing bizarre shit for at least another nine months (although the first three were the major ones for me) and that b) if you’re breastfeeding then you’ll notice further restrictions on your wardrobe.
I did loads of weird and wonderful ASOS hauls in the weeks following Atti’s birth in a desperate attempt to regain my old identity, or at second-best, claw out some new semi-stylish half-mum, half-old-Hannah identity.
The reality is that I spent a shit load of money I wish I’d just saved for maternity pay on clothes that didn’t fit or that I didn’t even like once I started getting enough sleep to look at myself properly in the mirror.
So these are my tried and tested pieces you’ll actually wear, will actually be practical and will see you out of the fourth trimester and beyond.
Long-sleeved striped tops.
Always opt for oversized styles, or go a size or two up so that they have a nice slouchy fit. Can be worn over maternity leggings and jeans, stuck under dungarees, or even tucked into elasticated midi skirts if you’re feeling 10 out of 10 fancy.
If you’re feeling self conscious of pulling up your top to breastfeed, stick a thin strappy cami underneath – the top can come up and the cami can come down and BOOM, easy boob access.
As you’ll likely know by now, I’m a big lover of the Matalan dungarees which come in both blue and black for their incredible comfort and stretch. I wore mine up until about seven-months pregnant and they were one of the first things I reached for in the early days for little family voyages out of the house.
Beyond Nine also do an awesome jersey jumpsuit that is a slouchy, comfy godsend both in pregnancy and once out the other side.
Most days you will likely stay in your pyjamas and dressing gown and guuuuurl there ain’t no shame in that, but for days where you want the same comfort factor but really quite desperately need a Tesco pitstop for more giant adult nappies and a bar of chocolate, meet your new BFF – the humble oversized cardigan.
Feels like a dressing gown, looks like clothes it is acceptable to leave the house wearing. Love this under-£20 one from H&M.
A bloody wonderful pair of trainers.
If you’re going to splash out and treat yourself to something in those desperate late pregnancy oh-my-god-this-baby-is-about-to-fall-out-my-vagina days, make it a pair of really sexy trainers that make you smile.
You’ll likely spend a lot of time popping out for fresh air (also known as plz lord send coffee and make this baby go to sleep), and if you’re going to be pounding the pavements you may as well make sure your feet are happy in the process.
My current faves? LEOPARD CONVERSE.
Oversized white shirt.
One of my fave pieces in my maternity wardrobe was a men’s XL plain white shirt from H&M. Cost about £20 but I wore it religiously because it went with everything, comfortably covered my bump and yet still made me feel just a tiny bit chic.
It worked well in my new mum life because it allowed for super easy boob access and was still loose and comfortable unlike a lot of my old wardrobe.
Anyone who tells you you will never leave the house with a small bag again is a liar. A LIAR I TELL YOU.
I mean sure, you might have a baby bag or rucksack shoved in the pram basket, but honestly small cross-body bags became a bit of a lifeline.
They leave your hands-free, but also they allow easy access to the important things (phone, keys, bank card, money, lip balm). Which will save you having a sleep-deprived meltdown whilst wading through nappies and wipes on the floor of Starbucks when you just want to pay for your coffee damnit!
A bloody excellent high street brand for post-baby wear as so much stuff comes up slouchy and comfortable and glorious.
I have a couple of their jumpsuits and find their wide-leg, drawstring waist ones a particular delight on hangover days where I need to at least pretend to be presentable.
They regularly bring out new prints and designs, always have excellent sales – and yes, some styles have a button-down front so super easy for whipping out a nipple when needed. Shop here.
Posh trackie bottoms.
I used to have a pair of these from H&M and wore them until the bum split. But good news lads, Matalan have saved the day with this budget pair. They feel a lot like a trackie bottom and yet are made from a slightly smarter fabric so give off the impression you mildly have your shit together.
Also very excellent because they won’t cling to your Tena ladies. They’ll buy you at least another few months away from jeans.
Stretchy jeans. If you are desperate to get back into a pair of skinnies, try the Tu ones as they’re high waisted, have loads of stretch and are the most comfy I’ve tried.
A beanie hat. Will hide the fact you haven’t washed your hair since Queen Victoria was in power but also gives off ‘I’m a cool, casual, hip and happening mum’ vibes.
Wide leg trousers with elasticated waist. Wear with flat shoes, oversized shirts and slouchy jumpers.
Slogan tees. Minimal spend for a lot of wear. Marks & Spencer have a really great selection at the moment for £6.50. I would size up.
A decent tracksuit. Most of us have some gross grey, holey, sexual things hiding in a drawer somewhere, but if there is ever a time to scream fuck it and invest in that leopard print two-piece.
Anything else you’d add to the list?