Here's a little secret no one tells you: getting dressed after you have a baby is actually harder than getting dressed when you're pregnant. Your body is likely looking and feeling different than pre-baby, and your clothing needs have changed.

Many mamas look at their closet and reject at least a third of the clothes hanging there, because:

  1. It's too precious. "I can't wear that silk shirt! The baby will spit up on it or my toddler will wipe his peanut butter hands on it and it will be ruined."
  2. It's too low cut or too short. "Bending over to pick up my child will show everything I have."
  3. It has no stretch. "I actually can't even bend over to pick up my child in this."

Mom life requires its own uniform and mom style is back and cooler than ever before.

Designers have made beautiful options that can take you from the office to the playground to date night in style.

Here are our five must-have items to create your mom uniform.

1. Loose fitting, long top

Keep it stylish but comfortable with flowy tops that have plenty of length to cover your waistband. The key is to find tops with a tailored look that don't add volume so you look polished. If you're breastfeeding, look for tops with built-in nursing access to make your life easier. Bonus points if they don't wrinkle.

2. A dress that floats over you

Convenience wins on those busy days (and aren't they always?) Throw a dress on and you're done, and that's critical when you're a mom.

Stock up on pretty dresses that look equally great with sneakers as they do with heels so they can do double duty. Also look for dresses that aren't overly dainty, complicated or short so you can chase kids and don't have to worry about running up a dry cleaning bill every time someone smears something on you.

Personally, I avoid off-the-shoulder and low-cut looks for everyday wear in favor of dresses I can wear with my most comfortable bras. Again, if you're breastfeeding, there are lots of great options with built-in nursing access.

3. Great pair of elastic waist pants

You read that right. Great looking elastic waist pants are not an oxymoron. The key is to find a pair with a quality fabric that holds its shape and looks tailored. Linen is great because it's actually supposed to be a bit wrinkly.

Pay attention to the waistband — you want a wide flat band that won't roll on you so the pants don't look like sweats but still remain comfortable. Choose a pant length and style that elongate your legs.

I like a pair that tapers in with cuffs at the ankle because I find them so easy to move in. Plus, the high-waisted look is back so tuck in a blousy top for a romantic, fresh and slimming look.

4. Jumpsuit or overalls

Here I go again with the one-piece dressing, but it really does simplify life! That said, it doesn't have to be boring.

You can dress up a jumpsuit with a blazer and heels, make it funky with booties and statement jewelry or keep it casual with sneakers. Jumpsuits are very flattering and much more forgiving than fitted outfits, and they feel like you're wearing pajamas.

I love the new more tailored overalls. Super belly friendly, and they look so cool with pointy-toed flats and a fitted striped tee.

5. Fabulous diaper bag

You know how a great bag and pair of shoes can elevate any outfit? Think of your diaper bag the same way, because it's the bag you're going to be carrying around most often for a few years.

You might want to splurge on a bag that is crave-worthy and makes you feel cool but is also functional and built exactly for what you need. I carry this NONA bag and am constantly asked where I got it. I love that it gives my outfit a little rock and roll feel from the unlikeliest of sources. Plus, we love these stylish ones that don't sacrifice style.

Once the littlest of my crew is out of diapers, I'll just swap out diapers for snacks, books and water bottles.

Motherly is your daily #momlife manual; we are here to help you easily find the best, most beautiful products for your life that actually work. We share what we love—and we may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

You might also like:

Back when my husband and I were creating our wedding registry, it was a fun, low-pressure opportunity to select some new dishes and linens. After all, I knew a thing or two about stocking my home and making the "wrong decision" with thread count was the only thing that posed any risk to my sleep at night.

Fast-forward a few years to when I created a baby registry before the birth of my first child—and I found the experience to have a much steeper learning curve. Unlike those sheets, it felt like a bad swaddle or bassinet selection would be catastrophic. Unsure of what to expect from motherhood or my baby, I leaned heavily on advice from friends who already ventured into parenthood. (Starting with their reminders to take deep breaths!)


Now a mom of three little ones under the age of four, I'm happy to be in a position to pass along some baby registry wisdom.

Go shopping with a veteran parent

As first-time parents, my husband and I barely knew the difference between a bouncer and a swing, let alone what specific features we would want. So when a mom friend recommended we head to Walmart to build my registry together—because she found them to carry the trendy brands she loved AND make registering a breeze during her pregnancy—I leapt at the chance.

By walking through the aisles together and actually getting to see the products, I was much more confident in my registry selections. Thanks to that quick, in-store tutorial from my friend, I understood exactly how to match a perfect infant car seat with an extra base and stroller—which is something I would have been clueless about on my own.

Include items at a variety of price points

When it comes down to it, a registry is really a wish list. So, while I had a personal budget for a stroller if it had to come out of my own pocket, this was an opportunity for me to ask for the stroller of my dreams. And, wouldn't you know it? A few family members went in on it together, which made a bigger price tag much more manageable.

At the same time, it's nice to include some of the smaller ticket items that are absolutely essential. I can't even begin to tell you how grateful I was to skip buying my own diapers for those first few weeks. (With super cute patterns, these are also surprisingly fun to give, too!)

Think about the gifts you would like to give

The first time I bought a mom-to-be a gift after my own child was born, I knew immediately what to look for on her registry: a diaper bag backpack, which I had come to have very strong opinions about after battling falling straps with my first diaper bag. This allowed me to feel like I had a personal touch in my gift, even if I brought one pre-selected by her.

I also appreciate it when my friends clearly incorporate their style into their registry choices, like with adorable baby outfits or nursery decor—and there's no sweeter "thank you" than a picture from a friend showing your gift in use.

Ask for things to grow with your child

Even though it's called a baby registry, there's no need to limit yourself to gifts to use before their first birthday. (To this day, I still have people who attended my baby shower to thank for the convertible bed that my oldest child sleeps in!) Knowing that, I would have included more options with long lifespans into my registry—namely, a baby carrier that can be used during the newborn months, baby months and well into the toddler years. A well-designed baby carrier would have saved my back from serious pain because it would have allowed me to comfortably and ergonomically carry my toddler as she made her way into the 25lb+ club. One brand that's designed to grow with your baby and accommodates 7-45 pounds (up to about four years old) and offers both inward and forward-facing positions is Ergobaby. With several different design and style options, you can easily find one that caters to your parenting needs. From an all-in-one carrier, like the Omni 360, that grows with baby from the newborn stages into the toddler years or a newborn-specific carrier, like the Embrace (and don't worry you can later upgrade to a carrier for an older baby, I recommend the 360 Carrier). The best part? All ergonomic designs are supportive and comfortable for both baby and parent, offering extra lumbar support with breathable, lightweight mesh styles. Everyone (even grandparents!) can get a kick out of babywearing, which is a nice and welcomed break for parents. Having one of these on my registry would have certainly made those first few years so much easier.

Motherly is your daily #momlife manual; we are here to help you easily find the best, most beautiful products for your life that actually work. We share what we love—and we may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

This article was sponsored by Ergobaby. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

You might also like:


Whether I live next to you or across the country, social media makes it easy for us to stay updated on each other's lives and that's a wonderful thing. I love seeing pictures of your kids and I think it's great that you choose to share videos of your child singing, giggling and taking his or her first steps.

I simply choose not to share pregnant pictures, or even a family photo from the hospital once our daughter arrived because my pregnancy, birth and growing family are parts of my life I wanted to protect from the outside world.

Keep reading Show less