I am a minimalist when it comes to my wardrobe. When I am at home, I am almost always in a pair of yoga pants and a workout shirt. When I venture out of the house, however, I have a tendency to wear the same basic things and keep my style pretty consistent…
Comfortable, Cheap, and Functional
I don’t spend a lot of money on my wardrobe simply because my clothes get stained, a lot. If it isn’t spit up from the baby, it is peanut butter or strawberries from the toddler. I don’t keep clothes too long because I can’t keep things stain-free and looking good for too long. Also, I don’t want to get upset and frustrated because my $100 wool sweater got ripped because it got stuck in the stroller. It is simply not practical to buy nice things that I will worry about ruining at this stage in my life.
I put together a basic list of the clothes that I love to wear, are inexpensive, and they make me feel good about myself. They are also really comfortable for my job of taking care of small children.
1) Simple outerwear – chambray shirt or cardigan- You can dress up a basic t-shirt and jeans outfit really easily when you throw on a cardigan or a chambray shirt. My favorite cardigans I find on clearance at Banana Republic for less than $20. If I can’t find anything within my budget there, I go to Target. They always have lots of cute, inexpensive cardigans. My favorite chambray shirt I found at Target on clearance for $16.
2) Basic t-shirts in many colors and sizes – I have found in my last 4 years of being in a perpetual state of changing clothing sizes between pregnancy, postpartum, and breastfeeding that it is important to have a variety of sizes available in your closet. I usually get my t-shirts at Target or Old Navy. They are comfortable, inexpensive, hold up fairly well, and I don’t care if they get ruined.
3) Workout tops – These are my favorite thing to wear around the house in the summer. They are cool, so I don’t get sweaty when I go in and outside all day. They also wash really, really well. I usually get the Danskin Now brand from Walmart. They are around $5-7.
4) Tall leather boots – I live in my tall boots in the winter, and my flats in the summer. I love getting real leather boots from Nordstrom Rack. They are pricey ($80-$100), however they last so much longer than pleather, thus, you don’t need to replace them year after year. I bought my first pair of real leather boots over 4 years ago and with heavy use every winter, they still look brand new. (They don’t crack like the fake leather ones.)
5) Comfortable flats – My favorite flats are Me Too (if you remember my post about my traveling outfit); I wear them everywhere. I can wear them for miles without my feet hurting. I originally bought my first pair for our trip to Paris in 2011. This same pair still looks great.
6) Yoga pants – Yep, we wear them everywhere, and nope, you shouldn’t feel guilty about it. They are comfortable, practical, they fit so much better than most of my jeans, and they don’t seem to ever wear out. I wear mine everyday while I’m sitting around the house or taking the kids for a walk. I have gotten over my guilt about wearing them too much. You should too… I love the yoga pants at Target. The best part for me is they come in size tall!
7) Maxi skirts – They are sooooo comfortable! They also are very flattering for pretty much every figure and very forgiving for changing body shapes. They are my go-to “going somewhere nice” outfit. Maxi skirts are at about every store now, so I’m sure you won’t have a problem finding one you like.
8) Skinny jeans – My favorite postpartum pair of jeans that I bought were from Walmart. They were so stretchy, came in size tall, and allowed me to get down on the floor with my son to play, and change a ton of diapers in comfort. I have seen them for as little as $13 on sale, so I’m not too upset that they are now too big; I can just go pick up another pair.
9) Fedora or a cute hat – These are great for those “I didn’t have time to shower” days. A good hat instantly makes a mediocre outfit look a lot better.
10) Stud earrings – My baby pulls on my earrings a lot! A couple good pairs of stud earrings allow me to wear earrings, but my baby can’t grab them as easily. My favorite spot to pick up really good earrings for not a lot of money is Banana Republic Outlet at their 40% off clearance sale.
11) Scarves – Scarves are great for a whole host of reasons. They dress up an outfit and pull everything together. They draw the attention up to your face, which hides the mom pooch that we all don’t like. They also hide stains that happen when taking care of small children, and breastfeeding (check out my nursing essentials post for more on this). My favorite spot to get unique, inexpensive scarves is Amazon. I can regularly find really fashionable scarves for around $3-5.
Happy shopping! Did I miss anything? What is your favorite mom-style item?