Hatch is one of my favourite maternity fashion brands — I love the way they design clothes that are wonderfully flattering and comfortable to wear during pregnancy, but also very much so beyond. I’m still wearing the pieces I bought when I was pregnant with Casper, and in fact, I just placed another little order from the Hatch Plage summer collection. (No, I’m not pregnant, nor planning to be!)
Hatch just came out with a new product called ‘layers‘, consisting of a basic black legging, a white tank and a long sleeved shirt. Designed to fit over your growing belly and made from the softest knit, it provides the perfect basic wardrobe foundation. Just throw over a trendy tunic, stylish dress or cool kaftan and you’re all set, in all comfort. It’s the perfect piece to invest in when you’re pregnant – I’m pretty sure you will wear it every day, even after your pregnancy.
Also — this Denim Legging looks perfect to me. This is the piece I’ve been (unsuccessfully) looking for throughout my pregnancies… so I’m glad to see Hatch decided to add it to their collection. So cool, pregnant or not!
Tila is deeply, strongly and firmly in the “WHY WHY WHYYYY and WHY?” stage. She just wants to know everything in great details. And recently she asked me two questions that made me clear my throat.
The first one was how did a baby get into my tummy and the second one was where exactly does it come out.
On the first one I simply answered that mommy and daddy love each other so much and wished for another baby so he decided to finally come. She raised her eyebrows and asked again (by touching and pushing against my tummy – demonstrating) – “but how did he get in?!” Then I just said I’m sorry sweetie but I’ll have to answer that when you get a little bigger it’s not the right time since this is a topic for older kids. She was ok with that.
I really try to always give her honest answers – her age appropriate of course. I still have trust issues with my mum because she didn’t do that while I was younger and I don’t want that to happen with us two.
Then when she asked where will the baby make its exit I took a moment and decided to tell her the real, bare and unembellished truth – from the vagina (well, we have a cuter name for it in Slovenian that all the kids use but it’s the same thing) and after I did it I was kind of confused for a while and wasn’t sure I did the right thing but after I saw she was satisfied with the truth, kind of proud to know it I was confident I did. I just hope it doesn’t bite me in my be-hind when she starts a conversation about it at the checkout line in the store.
What are your thoughts on this? How do you answer these kinds of questions? Are you straight forward and honest? Or do you change the topic and hope they don’t notice?
By the way – don’t you love the pregnant mommy doll on the photo? I’ve been meaning to get one for Tila for a while now and I think it’s the perfect time now. They are from Frida Tierchen and come with a baby that is united with an umbilical chord (a cotton string), and there are magnets in both of them that allow the representation of breast-feeding! Every doll also has a carrier to carry the baby in after the birth. And if that’s not cool enough the materials used are wool, cotton and polyester filling from recycled plastic bottles. Perfect or what?
To read more from Polona, go to her cute blog Baby Jungle!
We’re nearing the end of summer… and we will miss it! Those juicy watermelons, the long days on the beach and the perfect picnics in the park. But, drinking hot chocolate after a long walk in the forest, and curling up cosy with the kids in front of the fireplace also has its charm!
Seeing the new Hatch collection online today really gets me in the mood for autumn. I’m loving the cosy, comfortable pieces that are so stylish and easy to wear. The gorgeous tartan flannel, the luxurious warm and soft cashmere pieces, the fun overalls and jumpsuits… Perfect!
Sending birth announcements is a wonderful tradition. Here in the Netherlands, one of the first things we do after a baby is born is to let the printer know what the name, weight and time of birth of the baby is so that the birth announcement can be printed and sent out as soon as possible. I love receiving them from my friends and family!
Aren’t these custom designed birth announcements by ColorQuarry just gorgeous? Amanda McCorkle started designing them from scratch for clients around the time her little girl Ada was born in 2010. I think they are so, so lovely — there is so much detail and originality in each and every one of them.
Amanda designs beautiful wedding announcements too. Do take a look at her Etsy shop!
I loved wearing Hatch clothing when I was pregnant. It is such a cool and stylish collection, and the pieces are so easy to wear and care for. I loved it so much, that after my pregnancy I continued to wear the pieces, which made the initial investment of getting them so worth it! This is why I love Hatch, they work for pregnancy, and beyond. I even got myself some new pieces this summer (and I’m not planning to be pregnant ever again)!
A few weeks ago when we were still in France, we went out for dinner and I wore some Hatch pieces. I asked my husband to take some photos to show you — Hatch really works, also when you’re not pregnant!
The cut of the pieces, and the way they combine, are also very flattering for post-pregnancy bodies and so, so comfortable to wear. (I’m wearing the Everyday Pant and the Button Down in the photos above.) Right now, the summer collection is on sale, so it might be a good time to invest in some Hatch pieces… pregnant, or not!
This weekend I was sitting in a park in Paris with Courtney and Emilie, feeding Casper. The three of us were talking about breastfeeding in public, and Courtney then took this photo of Casper and me which started up a discussion: Could we post this photo? Would we post this photo?
When I had my first baby I was much more shy about my boobs than I am today. Yes, I would breastfeed in public, but first I would find a dark corner somewhere and I made sure my boob and baby were covered with a scarf completely. I had the feeling breastfeeding in public was frowned upon, and it should be done in private.
Now, 8 years and 4 babies later, I don’t feel that I have to cover myself completely anymore. I’m so much more comfortable! I feel I am breastfeeding my baby, which is a very natural and beautiful thing to do, and I think I shouldn’t have to be shy about it. I also have the feeling that these last years, breastfeeding in public has become a bit more acceptable; people are getting used to it now and the general feeling about it seems to be more relaxed. Which is so great!
So, I decided to be bold and bare (!) and post a photo of me feeding Casper in a public park in Paris. Is it too much you think? Do you breastfeed in public? Would you? I would love to hear your thoughts about it.
PPS Following up on our discussion in the park, Emilie sent me this link — a fabulous poem by Hollie McNish which helped me decide to indeed post this photo here. Nobody should have to feed her baby in a public restroom.
Sweetcase is a most wonderful concept started by mother of two Murielle Sitruk. When Murielle was expecting her second child, and was preparing her hospital bag, she was looking for one place where she could find the most practical and beautiful bedding and clothing for her soon to be born baby. And unsuccessfully so! Thus, she decided to start producing her own suitcases, solely focussing on a mother’s stay in the maternity ward.
I’m super impressed with the design and functionality of the suitcase. It’s made from a thick and sturdy, mouse grey cotton canvas with leather details, and it is lined in cotton voile with one of the two gorgeous signature prints, designed for Sweetcase by studio Minakani — birds or triangles. There are some very handy pockets and compartments both on the inside as the outside of the suitcase (one being the perfect size for baby’s health book). This suitcase is not only perfect to bring to the hospital, but will continue to accompany you and your child on your future travels without a doubt.
The suitcase can be purchased by itself or pre-filled with a selection of newborn essentials of the best quality. There’s a beautiful collection of baby bed linen & accessories and newborn basics designed by Murielle herself for Sweetcase — all the clothing is made from the softest and finest pima cotton you can imagine, and the bedding and accessories are available in a thin cotton voile in the pre-mentioned darling signature prints. Besides this, Muriel has selected some great clothes for the first weeks of baby: organic, pima cotton pajamas by Limo Basics, and simple, soft and casual chic designs by kidscase, Pequeno Tocon and Bieq.
A complete Sweetcase pack (suitcase plus content) is available in different colour choices and can be completely customised (all the products are for sale separately as well). What a perfect and luxurious present — either to yourself, to your wife, or to a good friend!
I love the idea of this new hospital box from maternity label, Hatch. It’s a box of luxurious hospital necessities for new mothers to wear after they’ve given birth. The box contains a knee-length nightgown designed to feel like your softest t-shirt, as well as a grey jersey robe, a pair of Cosabella black briefs (full coverage, but still pretty), and a pair of luxurious grey cashmere socks.
I think it would make for a lovely gift to give yourself as you’re gearing up for labour… or for your husband to give to you! I don’t know about anyone else, but the outfit I wore after giving birth was always the last thing I thought about before I went into labour, and I often ended up snatching my husband’s t-shirt and throwing back on the outfit I wore into the hospital. There was nothing special about it at all. I sort of like the idea of adding a bit of luxurious comfort to the equation, and feeling that bit more elegant in the special first days after your baby is born. (Not that I will be doing it ever again! But still!)
As I mentioned in this post, I took my first yoga class when I was pregnant with Marlow and after just one class I knew it would become an important part of my life from then on. I don’t know what took me so long to start up yoga, but I am so thankful I finally did. I loved taking pregnancy yoga classes when I was pregnant, and I am so convinced it helped prepare me mentally and physically for the birthing experience I had always longed for.
When Marlow was 8 weeks old we started taking yoga classes together. Once a week the two of us hop on a bus and head over to Triyoga in Primrose Hill for the Mummy & Me yoga class with Nadia Narain. It is always a highlight of the week for both of us! I love that I get to practice yoga even though I have a little baby who still can’t be left with a sitter, I love that every Wednesday I wake up and my muscles are slightly sore from the previous day’s work out, I love being surrounded by other mums with young babies and chatting to them about motherhood and baby stages, and I love ending the class with a little dance with Marlow – a special time for the two of us to share with each other. Marlow loves the bit at the end when we sing songs (Incy Wincy Spider is her favourite!), and she loves checking out all the other sweet babies in the room — I’m certain that she loves our yoga class as much as I do.
p.s. Marlow’s romper in the photo above is from Marie Puce.
When Esther and I were in NYC last month, we stopped into the super stylish HATCH studio in Soho for a meeting with the impressively chic founder/designer, Ariane Goldman. She gave us a piece-by-piece tour through their collection, showing us the swanky new spring/summer items. Stylish, chic, swanky: three words that sum up the HATCH brand. Need I say more? Well… only to say that the clothing is truly meant for before, during and after pregnancy. The pieces are designed to be worn whether you’re pregnant or not. So, even though Esther and I will not ever be pregnant again (we promise!), we were still tempted by the weekend shorts, the boyfriend dress, the jumper and pretty much everything else!
There’s something so contradictory about the first weeks after giving birth. Of course there is that wonderful, magical feeling of bliss — the birth, that beautiful, earthy smell, seeing and holding your baby for the first time, admiring every detail of him (her), spending your days on the couch, in bed, being so proud, feeling the love, the connection between your loved ones, changing miniscule nappies, dressing that tiny wrinkly newborn in those tiny little outfits you so carefully piled in anticipation for the big day, hearing him, smelling him, learning everything once again. Amazing.
And then there’s the part no one ever really talks about. The pain! Piles of enormous pads between your legs. Walking as if you’ve been horse riding for 3 weeks straight!
Being so tired, so drained. Being angry, being sad, being emotional. The tears! The confusion! The frustration. Endless hours of breastfeeding, every 3 hours, every 2 hours, every hour. Cracked nipples, strong afterbirth pains that make you cringe, the thirst, the sweat, and then, the engorgement. Boobs the size of melons, so big, so hard, and so painful.
I wish I had these Relief Pads from Boob Design when I was suffering from engorgement after the birth of my children. Especially after Ava it was pretty bad! It took a whole week — my boobs were huge, painful, hot, they were red and white and purple and I had to ‘sleep’ sitting up which wasn’t so agreeable to start with! I SO needed these pads. Made out of 100% organic cotton and filled with natural flax seed, the Boob Relief Pads can be chilled in the freezer to soothe or heal tender and swollen breasts, or help relieve blocked ducts. They can also be warmed in the microwave or oven to warm up your breast before nursing, stimulate milk flow and prevent blocked ducts. And, they have a healing effect when breasts are inflamed or if you have mastitis.
Boob Design gave me a pair when we met at the Playtime fair, and even though my boobs are now doing fine, I still like to warm my pads in the micro and stick them in to my bra every now and then. It’s just so soft, warm and comfortable! They can also be used to pre-warm baby’s bed or push chair, or to stick around your neck for some relief after carrying a baby around for too long. All in all, if you’re (planning on) breastfeeding, I definitely recommend getting a pair!
I had never done yoga before… until I found myself at 32 weeks pregnant with a breech baby. A good friend (and fellow pregnant mama) recommended I try yoga, both for the physical benefit as well as to calm my mind and find a sense of peace with my pregnancy and baby. I figured I would give it a go… if, for nothing else, just to have the quiet time to myself and to dedicate a small portion of my busy day to the baby inside me.
Anyone who’s ever taken a pregnancy yoga class at Triyoga will, no doubt, be familiar with Nadia Narain. Her name is practically synonymous with yoga. I can’t tell you how many people recommended Nadia’s pregnancy yoga classes to me before I even took my first step into her class. ‘You want yoga? Oh you must speak to Nadia’.
One pregnancy yoga class with Nadia and I was a changed woman. I felt so empowered by her words, so comforted by her support, and, for the first time in my life, so prepared for my impending labour. I really believe it is thanks to her (and this book !) that I was able to achieve the labour and delivery I had always wished for. I still remember hearing her words in my head as I entered the final stages of labour. ‘Relax your body, relax your mouth, slow down your breathing…’.
It is a subject I almost find difficult to write about. You know the feeling where you have so much to say, you don’t know where to begin? Where your thoughts get so jumbled up in a rush to be spoken?! I feel this way when I think about the transformation that took place in the final weeks before Marlow was born. I just want to stand on a big soapbox and preach the benefits of yoga, to sing the praises of Nadia, and to tell every pregnant woman to read this book .
Instead, I will simply say that if you live in London, you should definitely take one of Nadia’s classes. If you don’t live in London, you can buy her pregnancy yoga CD which is awesome (and nearly as good as the real deal!) as well as her gorgeous aromatherapy candles… so that, no matter where you live or how busy you are, you can still benefit from her yoga and her teachings.
Jumping down from my soapbox now. : )
Feeling is believing! The layette Welcome collection by Oeuf, made from 100% unbleached, untreated, organic pima cotton (‘the cashmere of cottons’), is truly as soft as it gets. Blankies, hats, beanies, onesies, mittens — you will find everything you need to dress a newborn baby, and you can be sure it is all lovely, of great quality, and free from impurities or harsh chemicals that could irritate your baby’s skin. What a wonderful selection to shop from when you’re about to give birth, or when you’re looking for a truly special (and practical) gift for a pregnant friend. Those little Welcome bags are just too cute.
I have gotten to the point in my pregnancy where the only thing I can comfortably wear are leggings. (I had a funny conversation with my 7-year-old the other day where he asked me why I always take him to school in my ‘pyjamas’. I told him they weren’t my pyjamas, they were ‘leggings’ and he said ‘but they look like your pyjamas’. I had to set him straight right then and there: there are the good leggings I can wear out of the house and then there are the thinner, grosser leggings I wear to bed! And the two are DIFFERENT!) My poor kids probably think I’ve been running around town in my pyjamas!
Anyway, I’m so thankful for my good leggings – the Koka Mama pair that has gotten me through this pregnancy… as well as this tunic style dress, which is SO comfortable it practically feels like pyjamas! Actually, the entire new collection at Koka Mama is both stylish and cosy, and definitely worth the investment to get you through the 40th week of pregnancy, both stylishly and comfortably.
On the brink of giving birth we asked our super talented photographer friend Sue Cowell to shoot some photos of pregnant me with my family. It is, after all, my last pregnancy! I really like the outcome of the shoot — I love how natural Sue’s style is, the moments she captures are just full of character, and nothing is too ‘over-posed’ or ‘perfect’.
Here are some of the photos of the shoot — such a wonderful documentary to have for all of us! (I also asked Sue to come after the birth and shoot some images of the new baby and us — so more photos to come soon!)
Check out Sue’s website here, and her blog too with even more beautiful photo. Sue lives in Amsterdam but is British and travels around a lot, so don’t shy away of contacting her if you would like her to capture the essence of your family too!
I love how Sue came in the morning and stayed while the kids got dressed, capturing daily moments like Ava waking up with her dummy and ‘bearbear’, the kids getting dressed in their bedroom, Sara putting on her tights on her bed, me in the kitchen preparing sandwiches for a picnic…
The bed for baby is ready! Set up in our bedroom, waiting, waiting… The one very special thing about this little bed is the sheet that was embroidered by my late grandmother in the 1940s of last century, for the birth of my mother (her oldest daughter). It’s 70 years old! I love that little sheet.
I also like Pablo, the Oeuf pigeon on the nightstand, guarding the crib. Now that everything is ready, I’m starting to wonder — when is this little baby going to announce himself?
The Il Tutto Georgie Hobo is a changing bag in good disguise. Not made from wipeable plastic material with ugly prints, no oversized shoulder straps or giant buggy clips in sight. Instead, it is made from luxurious and soft Italian leather, featuring the most beautiful detailing, with a cool and relaxed, slouchy look. In fact, it is as fashionable and stylish as any other it-bag of the season! But don’t be tricked — this is, in fact, a proper baby bag, with all the necessary and handy practicalities you could ever wish for. Like insulated pockets, large zip pockets, a removable change mat, bottle holder and wet pack, a dummy clip, phone holder, pen pockets… And it does come with that extra, strong and adjustable buggy strap. The waterproof lining can be easily zipped out and washed, and, best of all, once it is removed the bag is also fully lined, making it super easy to transform it into a regular handbag. Clever!
I keep thinking I have a couple of months left, but the reality is… that today I have only two weeks left until my due date! So it’s about time I prepared some things for the imminent arrival of our baby. This morning I packed my hospital bag. I must say I feel a bit more relaxed now!
So this is what I packed… (more…)
Being in the final stages of pregnancy, walking around with a nice plump bump, I’m reminded of that wonderful, sweet secret of pregnancy: there is some sort of unspoken yet certainly acknowledged ‘club’ that pregnant women belong to. Other pregnant women will always acknowledge you, even if it’s just in their eyes, and you feel this comfort in knowing that someone else understands what you’re going through. It’s a special bond you can have with a complete stranger, someone you have never even seen before…and there’s something so wonderfully supportive about it.
What I also love is that everyone, strangers even!, become so much more friendly. There seems to be different rules of engagement whenever pregnant women are involved. You suddenly become so much more approachable. People will smile and ask you how much longer you have to go. Are you having a boy or a girl? How are you feeling? etc. It’s so nice! I really wish it were always like this.
And, as I remember from previous babies, the funny thing about it is that… boom! the minute your baby is born, you are no longer a part of this ‘club’. Pregnant women will no longer send you that little knowing, comforting look, and you suddenly feel like you’ve lost a whole support system, just because you no longer have a baby bump. Does anyone else know what I’m talking about? I remember very specifically after my first pregnancy, trying to give a pregnant mom ‘the look’ and she just looked up and looked down, and there was nothing in her eyes that showed we shared anything in common. Isn’t that so interesting? I quickly learned that if I wanted any sort of supportive ‘I know what you’re going through’ looks, I should specifically look for other new mothers.
Please share your experiences. Do you know what I’m talking about, or have I just imagined it all? I would love to hear.
Madderson London is a new London-based maternity label that is chic, comfortable, luxurious, and easy to wear, no matter what sort of occasion you’re heading off to. Be it something fancy for work, looking dressy for an evening out, or a simple but stylish dress for a weekend lunch with friends? Bingo: a Madderson London dress will make you look beautiful and make you feel ever so comfortable and relaxed. For instance the gorgeous Saturday dress: it’s much more agreeable to wear than jeans, and paired with sandals it’s great for wearing during the day, whereas with heels or cute ballet flats and some chunky jewellery the perfect option for evenings. Or the Juno dress, made from beautifully printed stretch-silk — such a statement piece! Pregnant or not: this dress is a winner no matter what. Personally, I’m wearing the Olivia dress today. It’s really flattering in all the right places, and so comfortable to wear. What a wonderful new maternity brand (I’m glad I can still enjoy it for a little while longer)!