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April 18, 2011 10:58 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for recommendations for dressy, breastfeeding-friendly outfits to attend a wedding (or two!) in.

I have two weddings that I'll be attending in the fall, when baby T will be about 11 months old. I'd like to wear something I can nurse him in that's still dressy enough for an evening wedding, and I was wondering if folks had any recommendations for styles or specific pieces that worked for them.

Other possibly-relevant stuff: These weddings are happening in a cool climate (Wisconsin and Maine), but I have shawls I could wear with a lighter dress. I'm broad-shouldered without a lot of waist or hips--about a size 6 for low-waisted pants, an 8 on medium-waisted pants, about a 10 on top. I generally go for relatively un-frilly shapes, cuts, and colors. If a dress, I'd want it to hit at or below the knee. Not worried about price, but the more expensive, the more versatile I'd expect it to be.
posted by tchemgrrl to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (9 answers total)
By that time you're going to be such a pro that you'll be able to get away with anything that has some type of opening to the bodice. I'd recommend a classic wrap dress a la Diane Von Furstenberg, which can be found every season at every price point, pretty much. You could even wear a camisole (nursing-specific or not) under it for a little extra coverage, both while actively breastfeeding and just in case you're still exceptionally boob-tacular by that point.

Alternatively, you might consider fancy separates. I like foofy skirts and sparkly sweaters as evening wear in general because you can get so much bang for your buck, without being so much at the mercy of trends or season, but when I was breastfeeding, that was a magical combination
posted by padraigin at 11:05 AM on April 18, 2011

Japanese Weekend makes really lovely crossover tops that even a private person can nurse in in public, if you're careful (fabric opens from below or the side rather than having to pull the neckline down - minimum exposure). Pair with a sparkly skirt and a wrap or fancy cardigan.
posted by Mchelly at 11:14 AM on April 18, 2011

"Foofy skirt" + fancy top would be a good route -- satiny silk top with a 'gauzy' skirt? Or a really smashing white shirt with a fancy skirt; coupla pix, hrm, iconic... But I mostly wanted to say that my daughter was largely done with nursing in interesting places at that age -- wouldn't have been able to even talk her into it at something nifty like a wedding at 11mo; she'd have been way too busy. Even if we'd been there all day she would've just mooched off my plate and out of my cup and not thought to nurse.

There is often a little drop-off in the whole deal around 8-11mo; they are more interested in the world, a PITA to put to bed and to nurse as the interaction with the world must be non-stop! And then they get just a little bit older and things settle back down and nursing frequency goes back up. But a little 'OMG, only once today?!' often occurs around the age he'll be for this wedding, so great is the distractibility. If you have a slightly fussy outfit I wouldn't fret as I think it's very likely you will be looking at little if any nursing over the evening.
posted by kmennie at 11:24 AM on April 18, 2011

Seconding kmennie. You'll likely not be nursing for sustenance at 11 months, and if your kiddo is like mine and a good majority of the nursed kiddos I know, he'll be down to once or twice a day (first thing in the morning and just before bed). They're so distractable at that age that I couldn't even nurse in the same room with the TV on (or other people around). It was a darkened, quiet room or no nursing at all.

If you do end up needing a nursing-friendly ensemble, I can't recommend separates enough!
posted by cooker girl at 12:00 PM on April 18, 2011

I agree with the wrap dress idea. Or, a jersey knit dress with a V neckline that can be easily stretched.

There is a brand of dresses that I'm partiularly fond of called "Lily" (not lily pulitizer, just lily). Their stuff would be perfect, but I can't find links to it online. It's mid-priced, and sometimes carried at nordstrom, but I lived in their dresses during breastfeeding. I'll keep googling around to see if I can find some.
posted by dpx.mfx at 1:02 PM on April 18, 2011

I have to say that neither of my kids were down to once a day so don't be sure that'll happen. But I definitely agree that they'll be pretty easy to distract and that you'll be a pro by then so a wrap would be nice and something with a side or midriff opening would be best.
posted by dawkins_7 at 2:04 PM on April 18, 2011

Definitely plan for a nursing outfit. I distinctly remember thinking for two separate wedding with two different almost one year olds that my dress was fine, the baby barely ever nurses any more. One whined with her hand down my dress for the entire reception and the other one got taken to the car and fed with my dress all askew in the parking lot. I'm going to nth separates! Stretchy top and skirt.
posted by artychoke at 3:23 PM on April 18, 2011

My 14 month old nurses a lot more than 1-2 times per day (and not to go too far off topic, an 11 month old actually should be nursing for sustenance)... And I am worried about the same thing for a friend's wedding in May. I went with a strapless dress and intend to pull down. Your comfort level may vary, and the foofy skirt/separates idea is a good one (wish I had thought of that!). There are also a ton of high end clothing stores that cater to the nursing mom - Motherwear has some cute stuff, but it may not be dressy enough.
posted by LyndsayMW at 11:40 PM on April 18, 2011

Thanks all! I found a really cute vintage skirt and I'm going to have a nice nursing tank and/or fancy sweater on top. Sounds silly but I hadn't thought much about separates beforehand.
posted by tchemgrrl at 7:13 PM on May 1, 2011

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