Q. What is your first name, age and profession?
Jennifer, 38, mom of two daughters, full time student (junior at CSU Stanislaus, biological anthropology), and fashion plate since 1985. Former retail manager.
Q. Is fashion important to you?
Fashion is so important. It is a living artwork. It does more than just clothe us, it's self-expression. I grew up wanting to be a fashion designer, and I still design things from time to time for fun.
Q. Describe your fashion style, likes/dislikes prior to becoming pregnant.
I wore a lot of feminine/masculine looks, suits, very tailored, great pants and button downs and then great little dresses at night. But always modern and always clean lines.
Q. What was your maternity style like?
Comfortable! I stuck with my regular wardrobe as long as possible and then discovered maternity jeans. I was pregnant during the summer the first time, so I wore a lot of layered tanks and more floaty things. The second time was fall/winter, so I wore sweaters with the same maternity jeans. Both times I paid a lot of attention to my hair and made that the focus of my style. And I never hid my bump!
Q. Since becoming a mother, how would you describe your style? Has it changed?
Comfort! I've managed to lose all the baby weight with both girls, so I've largely been able to wear my old clothes, but my body is different, and styles have changed. I rarely wear high heels anymore, and I used to wear them everyday. Now it's just for evenings out, which are far less frequent. I probably look more "mom" than I used to, and that's out of necessity: my girls are still young enough that my nicer stuff is just a bad idea. So, a lot of jeans with fitted tops and sweaters, ballet flats, ankle pants; I like knee length skirts with boots and tights.
Q. My favorite clothing brand or brands are:
Express and J.Crew, but a lot of my stuff comes from Target. Convenience is key.
Q. Name up to three celebrities/notable moms whose style you admire.
Jackie Kennedy Onassis: she's a big influence on my personal style and she was always flawless.
Michelle Obama: I'd love to have those arms, and she's easily the best dressed woman in the Beltway today.
Gwyneth Paltrow: well, she's just always flawless, dressed up or down. Her style is simple but classic but often with a twist.
Q. Is your child/children’s fashion important to you?
Sort of. I struggle with issues of appropriateness with them (no, it's too cold/hot/fancy) but I like them to express themselves and I remember wearing one fancy to dress to school in fourth grade that I shouldn't have but I just *had* to, and the jeans and Wham! t-shirt I wore every other day in fifth grade because I loved them so much, so I get it. As long as they stay warm in the winter, it's usually fine.
Q. Sarah doesn’t think having a baby means the end of a woman’s time as a stylish, modern woman. Do you think moms can be fashionable and practical at the same time?
Yes, and we have to. Like I said before, some things are just a bad idea with kids, but we can still be the women we were before we became moms. I go to school, and when I started, I wore what I used to wear to work, because school was my "job." Plus, it gave me a chance to wear those clothes that I wouldn't at home. And when I'm home, it's more casual because it's practical, but I'm still me, and now that the girls aren't nursing or in diapers, I'm getting more into my own style again.
Q. What are your best fashion tips for moms?
Flaunt your best feature, especially if you're still losing the baby weight. Comfort doesn't mean styleless. Go for cute shoes, dress up with accessories, play with fun lip or nail colors. Don't forget you're a woman and not just a "mom." Your confidence with rub off on your kids.