6 Tips for Breastfeeding in a Dirndl (and a step-by-step how to!)
After giving birth to my son, I was getting kinda antsy to wear my dirndl again. It had been a solid 10ish months that I was unable to fit into my dirndl so when the time came and that bad boy zipped up, I was very excited. But then I realized that I was going to run into some issues when it came to nursing my son. I had to figure out the best way to accomplish this without having to bring him into a public restroom and basically disrobing. I am an advocate for breastfeeding and I don't believe that a woman should have to hide or be quarantined to a yucky bathroom stall to feed a baby. After a bit of trial and error I figured out some serious tricks to breastfeeding a baby in a dirndl and I'm excited to share them with you!
1. Wear a nursing bra - You might be thinking... "duh", but for me, my dirndls still fit better with a slightly padded bra. I thought I could get away with a regular bra, and it worked ok, but wasn't as comfortable. I like this bra by bamboobies a lot but I also like this one from target that has a little more padding.
2. Wear a 1/2 blouse - Most of the Rare Dirndl Blouses are 1/2 blouses, but some blouses are full length and to avoid extra fussing, I HIGHLY recommend wearing a dirndl blouse that just covers your boobs. I recommend the Rare Dirndl Sweetheart Blouses or an Off-the-Shoulder Blouse.
3. Get a nursing cover - Even if you are a momma that believes you shouldn't have to cover up to feed your baby in public because, Hey! It's natural! Amen to you sister, but breastfeeding in a dirndl gets to be odd looking... things are open, blouses are scrunched weird, in my personal opinion it looks super distracting and I felt 100% comfortable with the cover on and I would have felt super uncomfortable and my anxiety would have been through the roof if I didn't have the cover. Here is the one I have from Milk Snob.
4.1 Choose a dirndl that doesn't have a lace-up/corset style front - Dirndls that are just zip and go are ideal for festing and feeding. Trying to re-lace yourself and juggle a baby and try not to look like a hot-mess (which is probably every new mom's daily goal haha) can get real tricky.
4.2 OR choose a dirndl with a deep scoop neckline - Rare Dirndls like the In Bloom, sports dirndls, Leopard dirndl and others have this deep scoop neckline that dips around the bustline and makes it pretty easy to just lift your blouse and whip it out without even messing with the zipper or the lacings.
5. Keep some extra boobie pads handy - whether you like the disposable ones or the re-usable kind (these are my personal favs). It's good to have an extra pair in your purse (they do fit in an apron purse!), especially in the first few months when just the sound of someone else's kid crying can bring on some unexpected leakage.
6. Practice at home first - I didn't do this and I wish I had. Before heading out for your first adventure with your baby in your dirndl, try it at home. Make sure you're comfortable with the bra you have on, the blouse works well for you and you don't have any mishaps with the nursing cover.
HOW TO: Ok, so here is the step-by-step process I use when nursing my son in a dirndl.
- Put the nursing cover on with one arm out. So if you are starting with the left Tata, keep your right arm out.
- Un-zip your dirndl to just above the waistline
- Put your baby under the cover
- Lift your blouse up to expose your bra
- Unlatch your nursing bra
Switching sides involves a bit of strategery, but I usually like to latch the bra, switch around the cover by putting my arm in (so it's just around my neck) and then putting my other arm out the hole and then move the baby to the other side. Then unlatching the other side. It can be tricky, so that's why my #6 step is to practice it once at home first.
I hope you find this information helpful and I hope that after you successfully feed your lil baby in public in your dirndl you feel more like a bamf! (I know I did!!) Rock on Mommas!! And if you are looking for German festivals or restaurants to go to so you can breastfeed your baby in your dirndl in public like a badass earth goddess click here to get a copy of my e-magazine that has a list of German Festivals by state and over 700 German Restaurants!
Ooo... and if you're just not into the public thing and you feel more comfortable finding a private area to nurse your baby, that cool too. My friend Rebecca from imthepacificer.com has these awesome privacy door hangers if you want to be left alone or are pumping (because let's face it... that might be the most awkward thing ever). Click here to download your set of privacy door hangers.
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As always, ideas and opinions expressed in this post are entirely my own. - Erika