I would stand in front of my closet, staring at all of the clothes but still feeling as though I had nothing to wear. As the piles of outfits that didn’t work mounted beneath me, so did my frustration level. Cue the negative self talk brought on by memories of what used to be. That fit me when I was smaller, when I had a job to go to, when I did fun things outside of the house and when I had plenty of time to get ready. Before I wasted anymore time, I would settle for leggings and another tee, I guess mom life is what it is. Frumpy. Settling for a below average confidence wardrobe and hit the road.
I was 36 when I had Max oh HEYYYY geriatric pregnancy and super slow metabolism. Everything changes when you have a baby. If I had a dollar for every time I heard that line…
But it’s true isn’t it? And it’s something that I didn’t understand until it happened to me.
My body grew and then it… deflated? That seems like the most appropriate description. I had great boobs and round booty. Then I had huge boobs and a somewhat large behind. Now I have awkward shaped boobs and a pretty sweet pair of blegs (butt and legs that have melted together as one). It’s fine.
There’s so much solidarity in the hot mess express of motherhood and I’m pretty sure that I fit right in- if not became the captain of the train for a quick second there. I’ve encountered a lot of mama’s who told me that my life would now consist of top knots, dark circles, leggings, and MAYBE a shower on a good day. Motherhood is to equal chaos, we’re supposed to band together in our frumpy wardrobes with our cold coffee because… TIRED. Is 3pm too early for wine? It’s like a competition for who can look the worst, be the most tired, and drink wine the earliest. Sex and date night? Wait, what are those again?
Since when did settling for survival mode become an invisible trophy that moms across America are fighting for?
What if there’s more to mom life than that? Can we actually thrive, (gasp) enjoy motherhood, and look good doing it? Can we get through the day showered, not needing a glass of wine, and possibly connecting with our spouse before collapsing into bed with a “headache”?
I wanted to get to that place but where did it start? My closet.
Style is often the last thing to catch up with a new lifestyle, especially transitioning into motherhood. I knew this from years of working with new moms, overhauling their wardrobes to match their new lifestyle. But it wasn’t until I was faced with that same scenario that I truly understood.
After too many mornings wasted trying to find something to wear from this pre mom bod wardrobe, frustration levels high, body image squashed, elusive confidence, and cold coffee I knew I needed a change.
Were there jeans with enough compression and stretch to give leggings a run for their money? Could I really pull together an outfit for date night that made me feel sexy again?
It would be easier to just stay aboard the hot mess express, wouldn’t it? Do I really want to stand for something that goes against society’s norm? I knew I would be judged for being selfish or materialistic. But really, how does mama pour from an empty cup? She doesn’t. She can’t, and anyone telling you that they do is lying.
And so the journey to find my new sense of personal style began.
It took me several months and a lot of trial and error to find my style, to curate a cohesive wardrobe that worked for my life. There is no magic pill for instant style. I had to do the WORK.
5 Tips For Finding Your Mom Style:
ACCEPTING MY BODY
This doesn’t happen overnight, but I started to practice gratitude towards my body. I grew and birthed a human, I’m not who I was but I became excited about who I was becoming. I started to appreciate how my body served me and my family. I began to move more instead of complaining about it’s imperfections. I started to realize that I could be content while improving.
CREATE A ROUTINE
I remember the days of lazy mornings and nobody to take care of but me. Motherhood changed all of that. I’ve always been a fly by the seat of my pants kind of person and I have to FIGHT not to be like that now (I’m not near perfect at this). Finding a routine for my mornings before Max wakes up is a game changer. It took time but I found a workout I love, a hairstyle and makeup routine that work for me- getting ready before Max wakes up instead of waiting to see if I can fit a shower into my day makes me SO MUCH more productive- not to mention I am more likely to get out and do fun things, not be embarrassed at the grocery store or when the UPS guy comes to the door.
EDIT MY CLOSET
Chaos causes overwhelming anxiety, depression, frustration, anger… ALL THE THINGS. There were clothes that I would never wear again, heels far too tall, jeans much too low. Old memories of a different, smaller, and less squishy body causing negative self talk. I packed up the pre baby life outfits for good.
DEFINE MY (new) STYLE
You know who I would love to be like? One of those instagram moms who is ALWAYS perfectly put together. Their playdate outfits rival my GNO ensembles. But as I did the work to define my style I realized something- I had to set my own expectations. I’m not willing to chase my boy at the park in full makeup and wedges, nor do I want to. It sounds nice in theory but it wasn’t what I TRULY wanted for my life. I know that as the seasons of motherhood change so will my style, but for now it’s less wedges and more sneakers. Style is personal and I know that if I compared myself to the internet too often, I would be setting myself up for failure by trying to copy what someone else does instead of defining what I think is cool for myself.
CURATE MY WARDROBE
There is no ultimate list, no one size fits all, no trend to get FOMO over. Signature style is personal, it’s authentic, it’s here for the long haul.I had to figure out what message I wanted to communicate when I got dressed. I wanted to be a mom who respected herself and took my job of care taking seriously, I wanted to be a business owner who meant business but still showed her edgy style and a little bit of sass, I wanted to be the wife that still had fun and felt sexy with her husband. I knew that if I wanted to curate a wardrobe that worked for my lifestyle, it would take time, trial and error, and intention.
I found that I love the way good quality high waisted denim makes me feel, I know what silhouettes and styling tricks (hello half tuck) help create proportion. I began to understand the need for machine washable fabrics and kitten heels. Instead of wishing I could carry the cute purse everybody else was- I splurged on the super cute diaper bag and invested in a nice work tote for days I don’t have Max.
It was working, my mornings got better.
Life was changing, I could feel it. I started to feel like ME again. Not like the old me, she isn’t who I want to be anymore, but that doesn’t mean that I had to lose myself in motherhood. I wasn’t on the train anymore, I found a better way. I knew that if I wanted a better life that I would have to dress up, show up, and create it. I could have spent more years of my life wishing I could have fun and flirty date nights again while sitting on the couch in my sweats OR I could find an outfit that made me feel confident and sexy while enjoying a night out with hubs.
I’m now at a point where getting dressed is actually enjoyable again. I know how I want to feel and which outfits will make me feel that way on any given day. I’ve curated my own Momiform™ and from that experience I’m able to help moms like you create their own too. I genuinely love what I do, yeah I get to help moms shop which is fun and all but the true joy comes from the stories I hear after, stories I can relate to.
We’re in this together!
Studies Show that there is a link between getting dressed and confidence and production levels. Similar to the study on making the bed each morning (which I also practice). So the more frumpy a woman dresses, the lower the confidence levels and higher the stress.
Look better, feel better do better. Style is a tool to get what you want in life.
Having style after motherhood is attainable. Curating a closet full of clothes you love to wear is a real experience. And it’s an experience I want you to have. You can thrive, you can be confident, productive, and show up as your best self for you and your people. That’s why I created the Momiform™ Style Guides. A free resource for you to start your style journey and build your dream Momiform™.
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Are you ready to hop off of the hot mess express and join me in a new style journey? Make sure to join the other mama’s on this journey and get on the Stylish Mom List! This post is a the first in a series of 8 simple steps to finding your mom style!