Shake Up Your Style by MSW

Lifestyle with Melanie Suzanne Wilson
Fashion | Motherhood

Stylish Mother Outfit Inspiration

December 10, 2018
Casual trendy mother and friends having coffee

Fashionable Outfits for a Working Mother or Stylish Dressed Up Parent

Motherhood is a unique experience. The children are the top priority. Countless hours go into supporting the family, whether you work outside or at home with the little ones. You’re still a person. Keep your sense of identity and self-esteem. Dress for yourself, even as you serve others.

 

Classic Smart Casual Day Outfit

Young mother in midi skirt with blouse and sandals
Young mother in midi skirt with blouse and sandals, pushing a stroller.
Image: iStock, edited

A midi a-line skirt looks really smart when paired with the right top. It’s great when going out for coffee, popping into the office or feeling extra stylish at home. Find ways to look properly dressed up without going super formal.

What makes a casual outfit stylishly practical? Beautiful quality comfort shoes. Parenthood is serious active work, and our feet need enough support to stand through the day. The sandals in this picture tick all the boxes. I now look for comfy footwear from Diana Ferrari Supersoft or similar styles. Have a look at the practical footwear in your local pharmacy. Some sandals have arch support and a cute strapped look. After just a bit of searching, you can find shoes that support your feet throughout the entire day.

Now it’s time to elevate those day-off clothes. Even when going to the park or local small shops, it doesn’t mean we should go daggy. Consider alternatives to the leggings and tee shirts. Keep a small section of outfits for going down the street. I’m a fan of black jersey outfits for days at home and in the neighbourhood. I feel especially fond of separates because of easy feeding access. Right now as I write this article, I am wearing a roomy black midi skirt under the bust. A simple black top is layered over the skirt. This outfit can be worn tucked in to emphasise an empire silhouette. It also could be worn untucked for a relaxed feel. That’s my current day-off outfit as a default. Every mother can figure out what outfits feel most comfortable and stylish for everyday living.

Keep those garments clean. Yes, parents may struggle with stains on clothes. I have two ways to minimise my stain marks. Firstly, I rinse a stain immediately when it happens. Even if I’m out, some fabrics can be rinsed without looking too obvious. That’s best with thicker materials or darker colours. I just run the stained spot under a tab in the bathroom. Look to the care instructions on the tag. Search for extra creative stain removal options on Google. My second strategy involves wearing darker clothing that can get messy. Even though white has been ultra trendy lately, black can hide stains more easily.

Choose pieces that fit your body shape to instantly look more put together. I feel stylish just by putting on a wrap dress. Some ladies now feel more freedom in a jumpsuit. Get familiar with that one type of outfit that looks great on you. Don’t worry about what other women are wearing in the neighbourhood or on the fashion pages. Be practical. Be yourself.

This picture is some inspiration for classic casual wear. The model is wearing a sleeveless collared shirt tucked into an a-line midi skirt. I prefer to wear a midi skirt with a draping or fitted top. Having a larger bust, I worry that a puffy shirt could add bulk to my chest. That puffiness would combine with the skirt to feel too shapeless. I would instead wear a large skirt with just a v-neck wide-strapped top. A fitted camisole can be layered underneath for modesty. The main exception involves a shirt dress. I bought a classic shirt dress with quite a flared out hem. However, the collared top of that dress felt too fitted. I only just get away with it, by keeping many top buttons unfastened. So my dresses need to accommodate my top half. But for a skirt and top combo, I prefer a fitted top to feel more balanced. This was just one example of a smart off-duty look. Maybe your most flattering casual outfits looks different to this. Whatever it is, go for durable washable materials that can endure a day at the park and everything that happens.

LBD Anytime

 

Mother wearing heels and a black dress in the city
Mother wearing heels and a black dress in the city.
Image: iStock, edited

 

Even during the hectic phases of parenthood, there will be times that require more dressing up. The right little black dress can survive most events – such as family celebrations or a date night when there’s a babysitter. A durable LBD also has great dark colours to hide stains. It’s a single piece that creates an effortless outfit.

Mothers have plenty of priorities to deal with. Choosing an outfit should be easy. One favourite LBD can be the easiest piece for any night out. This pictured dress is slightly versatile. It is gathered at the waist with a decorative belt. I would choose a black dress with no embellishments (beads and other attachments). That will be more easy garment to clean and better layered to mix-and-match. Also, let’s skip any bits and pieces that might catch or get pulled. Stay safe from any hazards. Then you can wear that amazing frock with confidence.

Keep a pair of shoes in the wardrobe for indulgent occasions. Go with something glamorous but sturdy. If you feel physically comfortable in heels, get those shoes ready for a night in town. I really don’t enjoy heels. It’s just not what I prefer. So I have some black loafers and strappy sandals that look more formal. Remind yourself about what it feels like to dress up.

Comfy Classic Anytime Dress

Modern mother in dress and wedges
Modern mother in dress and wedges.
Image: iStock, edited

Simplify life with dresses or separates that can transition from the office to family appointments and even relaxed family nights out. Minimise the amount of outfit-changes in the day. There are more important ways to spend time than changing clothes.

This pictured dress looks polished just on its own. Even better, this dress is suitable for almost any purpose. A classic dress could be thrown on for dinner, work or birthday parties.

It would even look proper with just minimal accessories. I’m still nervous about wearing very dangly jewellery around my daughter. If special accessories are preferable for part of the day, carry these in a large handbag. Just bring out the extra accessories when they’re actually needed.

One significant change in this picture keeps the look more casual. The wedges say weekend, but the dress says weekday. Bring this dress back into Monday to Thursday by swapping the wedges for black flats or heels. My secret solution in winter was a pair of black boots. They had good rubber soles for walking around all day. My ankle boots looked more proper than sneakers. Whatever footwear is chosen, wear it with a day-to-night dress like this one.

I like to visually create a lower neckline with necklaces. I would wear a similar dress with a string of pearls to elevate the look. Although I would choose a short practical necklace when holding my baby daughter. If you’re worried about staying practical, use a simple beaded necklace instead. Or when there’s enough freedom, stand out with some chunky costume jewellery. Find the right moments for practical accessories and then dramatic statement pieces.

Casual Cool

Casual trendy mother and friends having coffee
Casual trendy mother and friends having coffee.
Image: iStock, edited

Some days are all about chilling out. The seemingly effortless look is especially important in places where most people dress down. Some coastal cities embrace the informal look. A quiet suburban coffee trip might be less dressy. Even when a style looks effortless, a few minutes of planning can prepare wonderful low-key casual fashion styles.

This picture is a great example of casual styles that don’t look daggy. Natural makeup is minimally applied for a time-saving beauty routine. Nails are painted to literally look polished. A watch is worn to become the only needed accessory. Simple steps were taken to go from hiding-at-home to stepping-out-in-style.

Coordinated colour will seem instantly cooler. If you’re not sure about what hues and shades go together, wear a single colour. Trust me. These lovely ladies went for pastels. Those gentle colours look more soothing than loud bold brightness. Lots of street style now features neutrals such as white, black and grey. I would maybe have one bold item if the rest of the outfit is neutral. If choosing an outfit to keep my child’s attention, I would pick one bold colour preferably for the top. Whatever colour options you choose, keep it unified.

The mothers in this example went for quality lightweight outerwear. The white coat is textured to be more interesting. This grey blazer is a clever move, taking a typical work wardrobe piece and chucking it over a relaxed weekend ensemble. Yes, the shawl is rather surprising. But that’s a smart item to bring to chilly places like the beach, the movies or a flight.

I’m loving very gentle outer pieces, such as a lightweight waterfall cardigan or layered unbuttoned shirt. I also have a very thin blazer that feels great in warmer weather. Some wrap tops are also hanging in my wardrobe for when I don’t need long sleeves. These outer layers are perfect when warming up in the breeze, modestly feeding a baby or covering up a stained top. Versatile cross-season layers can rescue a parent.

Don’t be afraid of a shorter skirt. These chicks have gone for short hems even when pushing a pram. Sure, avoid flashing. But find pieces that represent your actual age instead of a decade above. See how this middle outfit has a mini skirt that enlivens an otherwise serious outfit.

 

Be your stylish self during motherhood

 

These are some ways to feel fashionable during parenthood. Mix a few essentials into the wardrobe. Keep a smart casual outfit for casual Fridays or afternoons in the park. Find that magical versatile dress that transforms you from the work office to the doctor’s waiting room. Have a little black dress ready for date night after booking a babysitter. Layer a sophisticated jacket over trendy casual gear. Thoughtfully add great shoes and minimal accessories for a more complete outfit at any time. Embrace the importance and responsibility of parenthood. Then experiment with a wardrobe that bring you back to yourself.

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