Tuesday, December 30, 2008

12.30.08: What Not to Wear -- Maternity Clothes

As I was preparing for interview with What Not To Wear Co-Host Clinton Kelly, it occurred to me that the majority of my tops were maternity wear.

I haven’t been pregnant since February.

My closet was mix of hopeful hangers full of things that fit me when I returned from Kilimanjaro, when I felt great about my weight. They haven’t moved for more than a year.

The only thing that I could come up with was a purple maternity sweater, something I picked up at Target when my belly started to grow. My daughter is 10 months old and it still fits.

The truth is, I have been feeling downright frumpy these last few months. I work from home so I don’t have to dress up. There have been days – with the balance of baby and work -- when I’ve been lucky to get a shower. There are days that moments after I put on a fresh shirt, it’s full of baby something. Baby spitup. Baby food. Baby snot. I stopped bothering to change my shirt when it gets a spot, figuring it will be the canvas for that day’s baby happenings.

In fact, when it came to my interview with Clinton, who was appearing at the Bridgewater Borders to sign his book Freakin’ Fabulous, I couldn’t remove my parka because my shoulder was smudged with my concealer. (Note to self: Don’t trying applying makeup while holding daughter).

Clinton was a nice guy – and was used to being asked what to wear – and What Not to Wear. I didn’t bother asking his opinion on my outfit, but when he started talking about the frumpy women on his show, I took note.

He said many mothers who come on the show put themselves last on their priority lists, and feel they are being better mothers because of it. He said actually they are doing a disservice to themselves and their children, by showing a lack of respect for themselves.

Looking frumpy, for me, is a consequence of feeling frumpy on the inside. So I decided it was time for a bit of a makeover, starting with ditching all my maternity clothing. It was my own little intervention.

I took an afternoon to myself, something I hadn’t had in a long time and hit the post-Christmas sales, armed with something to return – an ill-fitting boxy jacket with the tags still on it, a gift card and a few of my own dollars. I spent about two hours in the mall, just trying thing on – making sure to search deep in the clearance items as my budget wasn’t big. I looked for things that made me feel good and could be easily tailored. I took his advice about buying a good-fitting bra, a structured jacket and other feminine tops (as recommended on the show).

You might say, why not just wait until you're well into this year's Save The World Diet challenges, when your old clothes will fit again?

Well, I’m sick of feeling frumpy – and feeling good about myself starts now.

What kind of wardrobe makeover can you do – whether revisiting old clothes or shopping the sales – can you do to make yourself feel good at this moment?

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