I recently read this article, entitled Why I won’t dress like a mum, on the Guardian website by Molly Gunn.
The writer disclaims herself at the beginning, by saying she doesn’t want to be a traitor to fellow mums, and admitting it’s hard enough being a mum without having yet more pressure of looking tip-top while doing it. She goes on to suggest ditching the mummy “frumpification” of cosy knits, Ugg boots and “mum” coat for bright Millionhands jumpers and Nike Air Max. She also goes on to cuss babyish change bags and says she just uses her Marc Jacobs hobo.
Ugg boots? Over 200 euros. Marc Jacobs Hobo? 400 euros. Millionhands jumpers? 80 euros. Exactly which mums are you talking about?
I would buy “boring” darker coloured tops and jumpers because, guess what, I can wear them 2-3 times (stains allowing) with different combos and look like I’m mixing things up. I can’t do that with a loud print from whatevs shops you go to, I could wear that once a week max. Maybe that saves me money, maybe that saves me thinking too much. And to be painfully honest, I haven’t bought a new jumper since 2005 (I’m all 2nd hand, baby!).
I use whatever bag I have lying around as a change bag, usually a cloth shopping bag. If I had a fancy printed changebag, I would use that and I wouldn’t give a crap if it was deemed babyish, I would be with a baby in tow for christ’s sake!
I find it a bit distasteful to be talking about things like this when so many people are in financial dire straits. But maybe that’s my problem, maybe I have a chip on my shoulder.
I find it a bit distasteful to heap on the pressure to mums, read: new mums, when there is so much else (dare I say more important stuff?) to think about than whether I wear my Ugg boots or swap them (too frumpy!!) for some Nike Airs.
I’m all for not letting your appearance “go” after having kid. But we all coast for a while, until the time is right. I do get slightly sad when I see my friends get a “mum cut” (or myself!) but I also swell with pride that she (for the moment) has put her sanity and her kids first by eliminating something that can take up precious time.
I’m also proud of her when she goes and gets that haircut finally, and sports a new outfit after she admits that, 6 months after birth, it’s perhaps time to ditch the maternity jeans.
I wish I could see so much more solidarity amongst women, especially on their post partum journey.
And in the unlikely event that Molly Gunn does read this, I think you look f-ing fab in every outfit you chose. And though you didn’t mean it as a tip, I think the idea of getting a waterproof jacket with a hood (‘cos you can’t push a pram holding an umbrella) is genius and I wish I had thought of that one!