Styling Tips + Tricks for the Postpartum Mama with Kristy Miller

It is VITAL to surround yourself with mama friends. I cannot stress enough that YOU. NEED. A. TRIBE. Raising a baby takes a village, but so does raising a MAMA. I am so lucky to have some really awesome mama friends who have helped me learn and grow into the mama I am today, and will continue to do so as I trek along in this motherhood journey. Today, I am sharing another one of my mama friends with you –Kristy Miller, personal stylist based out of Dallas, TX. Kristy is a mom of 2, a girl (8) and a boy (6). She has been married for 14 years, and has been styling people for over 20 years!  She loves dogs, and tries to adopt them all! Kristy is going to give us some of her best styling tips + tricks for a postpartum mama or any mama struggling with her wardrobe. If you’ve ever stared at your closet and not known what is going to work for your new mom bod, Kristy is going to share some game changing advice!

Ailana J.: Your kids are older now, but let’s take a quick trip back. What was the biggest challenge for you in learning how to navigate postpartum body changes?
Kristy Miller: With my first child Ava, it was super weird.  Learning to balance being a mom now, trying to take care of myself, and still be a wife was a lot on my plate. I remember having ideas before I gave birth of what the "plan" would be for getting back in shape and those things went out the window. I quickly realized with nursing that I was thirsty 24/7 and did not have time to sit and eat real meals, but I was constantly snacking and trying to drink tons of water.  So not ideal nutrition.  I did not get in good “me” time for exercise - just lots of walks with baby to keep moving.  So my "plan" to bounce back just ended up happening organically and decided to keep an extra 10 pounds. LOL It is also so weird having huge boobs that would get hard as a rock, be painful, and leak!  Having to wear nursing pads almost all the time was definitely new and so strange.

AJ: Definitely the huge boobs thing for me too! I could NOT believe it, and I felt like all my clothes refused to fit because my boobs were giant. What were some things you wish you would have done then in terms of your wardrobe now that you have some perspective? 
KM: I think, like building any good wardrobe, I wish I would have had a good quality, simple, clean line with flattering basics that I could go to for any occasion and feel good in.  I think having a few great fitting pieces you look and feel your best in is so much better then wasting your money on so-so pieces you are not happy with.  I ended up running to Old Navy and Target for cheap button up tops that did not fit well, but I needed for the boobs and easy nursing.  I did not look or feel my best, and honestly just wasted my money.

 AJ: SO true. I cannot stand wasting money on stuff that I don’t even like or doesn’t fit me well just because it was easy and/or inexpensive! It’s so frustrating. But finding clothes postpartum is frustrating in general. You’re a personal stylist in Dallas. What are some of the most common issues a new mom faces with dressing herself postpartum? 
KM: Feeling confident in her new body.  It just performed a miracle and we don't give ourselves enough grace and time. There are also not really many pieces specifically built for this time in a women's life.  I, just like the women I am styling, have to make do with what I can find that will work. It is not necessary ideal.

AJ: I think there is this weird pressure to “bounce back” as quickly as possible, and you are so right – we need to give ourselves a little more grace and time. What are some tips and tricks you’d give a client of yours who’s struggling with her new mom bod?
KM: Buy things that are comfortable, easy to navigate all aspects of your life, and that you feel good in.  If you don't feel good wearing it, then it is not a good match and should not be purchased.  We know this is just one phase of their life, but she should still feel her best.  Even though we all like to say clothes, looks, etc. don't matter, they really do make a big difference in someone's confidence level, how they carry themselves and how others look at them.  Look good, feel good.

AJ: 100%! When I am in a really amazing outfit, my confidence is exponentially higher than when I’m wearing something I don’t love. But I really struggled with finding something amazing, but easy to wear when I went back to work. How would you style a working, breastfeeding mom with limited time to get ready each morning? 
KM: I would look for the easiest pieces to get in and out of quickly.  Wrap tops/dresses, button up tops, soft comfortable forgiving fabrics that allow movement.  Really anything that opens up easily so mom does not have to completely disrobe.

 AJ: Yes! Not having to get completely naked each time you nurse/pump is #goals! What would you recommend for a work from home, breastfeeding mom who needs to looks presentable for her zoom calls and what not, but may still be chasing around after the kids or doing distance learning in between (like you minus the breastfeeding!)?
KM: For everyone in this category, soft forgiving comfortable fabrics that are easy to maneuver and navigate, but have a great flattering fit. If the pieces look right, no one will know you can use them for nursing.  As far as the mom aspect, if you are comfortable and it’s easy to move in, you are happy!  Also washable!

AJ: Machine washable is SO key! That was super important to me personally when designing Ailana J.! Mamas don’t have time for dry cleaning! Okay, what about stay at home moms and working moms on their days off? Especially during COVID, it’s so easy to want to just wearing leggings or sweats every day! 
KM: Still similar advice with looking good feeling good -we have all slacked, but we still see it in the mirror.  I think if there is a comfortable, easy, and cute option, it would be a go-to piece, even with leggings!  The problem is mostly tees and tanks fill this void, even though they aren't built for nursing, so we end up stained and half naked in our houses.  I spent most my home days in a nursing tank and I had to layer something over it to feel comfortable going out.  Not ideal.

AJ: Any other advice from a mom who has been there, who also happens to make people look good for a living?
KM: As long as you are comfortable and feel good in something, it is a good choice for you.  It is always better to get fewer great looking pieces, even if they are more of an investment in terms of price, than things that just fill a void, but you don't love.  You will find that you feel better wearing those items and you can do more with them, such as add a jacket or accessories to change the look. You will always feel good and you will gravitate to them again and again, which is totally worth it.

Now, who wants to go shopping with Kristy?! If you’re local to Dallas, you can find her at Nordstrom at NorthPark Center. If you’re NOT a Dallas local, if you’ve been staying home due to COVID, or BOTH, connect with her virtually! Click the link below to connect with Kristy for a virtual styling experience. For all other inquiries, e-mail or text at the contact info below. Happy shopping, mamas!

Click here to connect & shop with Kristy 
E-mail Kristy:
Text Kristy: (972) 945-9422 

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