Sunday, December 08, 2013

Fashion Rut

When I think about my post-baby fashion life, I imagine spending significant amounts of money on designer staples. But the reality is that I am still not happy with my post-baby body and don't even want to spend Banana Republic or Anthropologie prices, let alone troll the boutiques in town.

At the same time, I have no in-the-meantime clothes because life has conspired against me.  In fall 2010, I was skinny.  In 2011, I was fat as a cow and very postpartum and thought I would lose the weight quickly so I only wore yoga pants and big sweatshirts.  SPOILER ALERT:  I did not lose the weight, quickly or otherwise.  In 2012, I was pregnant.  And now, here I am with no recent clothes to my name, some fat-ish stuff from 2008 that fits but is no longer in style, 2009-2010's skinny clothes that taunt me, and the cheap, dumpy stuff I bought after I had Cooper (I am wearing a size large flannel from Old Navy and some pink velour Target sweat pants right now, and that outfit absolutely looks as good as it sounds).  The jeans I bought after Cooper are generally OK but dumpy and super "mom" in fit and cut.  Most of the shirts I bought were from Old Navy or J Crew and totally fell apart, and everything is just blah.

But, I am losing weight sort of-- or I want to at least-- so now is not the time for investment pieces or even slightly more expensive than usual pieces.

So what's a girl to do?

Well, last night I hit up Gap and H&M and got a few things to last me through the next 15 pounds:

2 pairs of skinny jeans.  Add these to the skinny jeans and jeggings I bought a couple months ago at Old Navy, and I have at least 4 pairs of jeans I can layer dresses and sweaters over and tuck into boots.
 Drop-waist dress that would be a great dress if I were not nursing but will be cute over jeans
 Super cute tunic-- it is really boxy in the shoulders and swings into an a-line
 Another drop-waist dress, this one beaded on the sleeves and collar
 Totally boring cheap-o boots from Journeys where I never shop.  But I could not get waited on at a department store to save my life, and I am really not sure what I want to do about boots.  Buy a few pairs of cheapies?  Get some Fryes?  Another option entirely?  Advice, please. (I had a pair of tall brown riding boots from Old Navy, purchased 2 years ago for $25 and they were FANTASTIC, but I am an adult, and I need adult shoes-- these are a placeholder on the way).
 And a couple packs of inappropriately youthful tall boot socks to go with my boots because I attend 3 mommy and me classes a week and need socks in the winter when my pedicure is not fresh and my heels are cracked.
I have a really squishy tummy and shirts are hard to buy because my boobs are bigger than the rest of me.  Mediums won't button, and larges make me look fatter than I am.  T shirts look bad around the middle, and I have a hard time with all the awesome, open cardigans this season because I have not found the right thing to wear underneath. (But I loved every single cowl scarf at Gap even though nothing else looked cute on me.) Hence all the dresses and jeans combos (which is pretty much what I wear everyday anyway, but some of my dresses are at least 6 years old, hence the update).

So, seriously.  What the hell else can I buy?  No, really, I am asking you sincerely.


  1. I have almost no helpful suggestions since I'm very, very much in the same place, but I think your dresses are cute :) I've been doing the tunic-y sweaters and skinnies/leggings to death. And showing more leg when I can and accessorizing with scarves detracts from my belly (or at least it does in my head).

  2. That's a cute haul!

    Zappos for boots? I found a couple of biker tough-chic boots that are very now fashion wise *and*weather wise.

  3. Love the red one! I look so ridiculous in a drop waist though it's not even funny. I need your advice on the Things To Wear with Leggings category. Looks like I need to break down and go to H&M!

  4. Do you ever read the Big Mama blog? I like to read it on Fridays when she does a fashion roundup. She posts lots of stuff that is mom-friendly but not dumpy--super cute tunics, swingy shirts, cardigans. A lot of it is Nordstrom stuff (often on sale) and Free People. I bought a couple things from Modcloth that she posted and I've been really happy with them!

  5. I'm in the exact same place as well....but I look "frumpy mom" and look at you like "super chic mom", so you are being WAY too hard on yourself. Check out for cute ideas and fit advice. The blog is kind of hard to read, but SUPER cute stuff....

  6. This is my new favorite mom fashion blog--
    For boots, I actually got a decent pair from the Kenneth Cole Outlet that have lasted for several years, and they were much cheaper than regular Kenneth Cole boots, but still well made. I've only had to get the toes polished after it wore away some.

  7. Hi Sarah-
    Read your blog all the time but don't think I have ever commented before. Love your book recommendations and have read many- thanks for those!

    Am on a similar weight loss journey & also trying to look cute & somewhat stylish without breaking the bank- muffin top is also my worst problem- my recommendations-

    I was going to say get the Gap 1969 legging jeans in the dark wash- which I think is what you bought. I have found them to be the best cheap skinny jeans- although they do stretch some & I constantly have to hike them up. I think that may be a muffin top issue though & at least they don't stretch out in the knees & rear like most cheaper jeans.

    The puffer vest is my best friend- wear them almost daily & you can get cute ones cheap at Old Navy & Lands End. These look stylish & totally hide the stomach (it's not that cold where I live though).

    If you need to look more polished at somewhere like work- do you know about the J Crew Minnie pants? I like them, but find the Ann Taylor version to be a little more forgiving when I am carrying a few extra pounds (also I am only 5'2" and AT clothes tend to fit me better than JC). Both are $98 but as I'm sure you know both have a sales constantly.

    Also ponte pants...the J Crew Pixies are the best but the Factory ones (called Gigi) are half the price & pretty good if you aren't at your best weight. The damn side zipper will make you think you might stitches but hey...what price fashion.

    Boots- just ordered the Ugg Carabys which am pretty sure are going to make all my casual outfits much more hip and probably change my life for the better!

    Hope this helps!