by jessicaturner on November 11, 2008

Update: Thanks for all the great feedback. It was great hearing from so many of you who have totally been there. I will be checking out Target (a favorite of mine), Old Navy and Kohls. I always forget about Kohls. I actually went on Ebay and bought 20 $5 gift certificates for $17! Talk about saving some money. They have to be used on individual transactions, but even if I only use half of them, that is pretty cool. :) I’ll be sure to share what I find.


I have a dilemma this morning. I actually seem to have it a lot of mornings lately. You see, I am about 12-15 lbs from being at my pre-pregnancy weight. I gained 60 lbs., so I am thinking this is pretty good. But now I am at the place where everything is just a few lbs. from fitting tolerably. The problem is that my chest, thanks to breastfeeding, rivals Dolly Parton’s. This is not an exaggeration. It is rediculous. Therefore, pretty much none of my tops fit. And it is getting cold in Nashville. I want to wear a sweater. But none of them will go over my chest.

I need to go shopping. But,
a. We are on a budget;
b. My chest is hopefully not going to be this big for very much longer, since I plan to stop breastfeeding in two months, therefore;
c. I don’t want to buy clothes that I am not going to wear very long.
But I seem to have no other options. Nashville has some great second-hand shops. I guess I could go to one of those… My colleague Jan is the queen of finding amazing clothes at second-hand shops, so I know cute, reasonably priced stuff is out there. I just don’t want to buy more clothes that I am not going to wear very long. Anyone found any great clearance deals lately?
Anyway, I thought I would vent. I guess I need to go back to the closet and try to find something…
Those of you who have had babies – what did you do during this transitional time?

{ 47 comments… read them below or add one }

KellyB November 11, 2008 at 1:15 pm

Do you guys have Kolh’s? That place is always having crazy sales!


Southern Gal November 11, 2008 at 1:19 pm

Ha! I’ve never had that problem!!Breastfeeding gave me a ‘normal’ sized chest for about a year. Then it’s back to nothing for me. Now in the hip area…

Wish I could help. I would probably find and buy a sweater or something versatile I could mix and match with other things until I got back to where I needed to be.

A bit of advice and a chance to be thankful; if you get pregnant with your last child at 38, you can forget losing that last 15 or 20 lbs. My boy is worth every pound though!


jkhenson November 11, 2008 at 1:24 pm

I am in the same boat as southern gal, but I did borrow my husband’s big sweatshirts, too. If you go to a secondhand/consignment shop, you could sell them back in two months when you’re done nursing?


Jen November 11, 2008 at 1:35 pm

Have you ever tried the GoodWill? It’s the best! Great bargains. It is one of my favorites. No one usually wears things out-they just don’t want it anymore for whatever reason. Really nice items for a great price can usually be found. Sometimes you have to go more than once to find your treasure, but you will!


Kelli November 11, 2008 at 1:45 pm

I bought a few transitional tops from Kohl’s and Target and when I was done they went in with my other maternity clothes. You could get some neutral pullover sweaters!


Miranda November 11, 2008 at 1:51 pm

Because I was still on maternity leave and not out and about, I wore what I could of my maternity tops. But like you just said, it is getting cold – so those maternity tops, cute as they are, probably won’t be much use if they are short sleeved.
What about finding some sweaters that are a size or two too big overall? That may help out in the chest area. I know I have some tops that are meant to “hug” to me, but some others that are more loose fitting. And I think sweaters are suitable if they are loose fitting also! Hope this helps.


Eric and Emily November 11, 2008 at 2:17 pm

My Son is 6-1/2 and since his birth I have been about 5 different sizes, it’s so horrible. I like your second-hand shop idea, I would check that out!


Mary Lou November 11, 2008 at 2:20 pm

Do you have a friend you can borrow a few sweaters from? I like the neutral sweater idea, you can always wear a belt around them later! That seems to be the style right now too : )


Everyday Thoughts November 11, 2008 at 2:24 pm

I understand….I think you are doing great though! My son is now 16 months and I STILL have those 12-15 pounds to go. Now we are thinking about have a second and I am wondering if I will ever lose them!
I had a HUGE chest from breastfeeding as well and to be honest, it didn’t go down as much as I would have hoped. Everyone is different though!
I usually find some great tops at Old Navy when they go on sale. I am not sure what size you might need, but online has some great sales right now.
Hope all goes well! Keep up the good work!


Jen November 11, 2008 at 2:52 pm

I did a lot of layering. If you can get just a few maternity long sleeves (I know, you don’t want to buy any more maternity clothes, but they are much longer, and won’t ride up when accomodating your chest) and layer them under the clothes that fit ok, you might be able to get by for a few more months.

I’d also check out a secondhand shop for cute cardigans that you don’t necessarily have to button all the way up. Then they could still be something you’d wear after you finish breastfeeding.

Good luck!


Jessica Miller Kelley November 11, 2008 at 2:55 pm

Maybe cardigans would be a good choice, or those kind that wrap and tie, since you could just wrap and tie them tighter once your chest is back to normal.

I’m sort of dealing with the same thing right now, in that I have two more months of pregnancy to go, and am resisting buying more maternity clothes, but the stuff I’ve already bought isn’t warm enough anymore! I’m wearing a lot of cardigans over short sleeves.


VanderbiltWife November 11, 2008 at 3:00 pm

Hehe…I am two weeks postpartum and just this morning I was like HOLY COW my chest is gigantic. I was a DD to begin with so it’s not a pretty sight. I am not sure any of my tops are going to fit and it scares me…


J. P. Morrison November 11, 2008 at 3:13 pm

Time to do some Goodwill Hunting–my favorite lunch break activity!


Vern ~ Inspired November 11, 2008 at 3:17 pm

My advice would be to get a few sweater or knit tops and change them around with a scarf, pin or necklace to make them look different every week.

Borrow a top periodically from a girlfriends closet…Swap with her something from your closet! You both will expand your wardrobes!

Old Navy and Target have great bargains…and of course those great thrift stores!

If you lived closer I would hand me down some of my hand me downs!
I have stuff in my garage I need to get rid of!

Have fun shopping!
Hope you find some great bargains!


Gina November 11, 2008 at 3:30 pm

TJMAXX or Marshalls!


Christie November 11, 2008 at 3:58 pm

Try cardigans or other button up things that you can leave the top few buttons undone with another top underneath. Then, when your top half gets smaller, you can continue to use them. I still have this problem and haven’t breastfed for over 2 years. The “girls” stayed about the same size. That might happen to you! So be prepared for the possibility. :-)


Open your Eyes. November 11, 2008 at 4:03 pm

Best of luck in finding a solution…Im sure the clothes you do buy will come in handy if you have more children…so not a total waste :) xxx.


ryanandjessicaepp November 11, 2008 at 4:22 pm

Buy a couple bigger stretch,long sleeved shirts from Target… but don’t dry them. Accessorize with cute scarfs, necklaces, and earrings. Buy a couple cheap sweaters from Ross for warmth…maybe longer sweaters..the longer ones make me feel skinnier! After those last lbs. are off…. shrink away in your dryer! Your face looks so slim in all your pictures.. you are doing great! I’m 6 months pego and feeling like someone should stick a fork in me already… I hope I can get this lovely chub off as quick as you are!


Pam November 11, 2008 at 4:44 pm

Once Upon a Child in Franklin sells secondhand baby/kid clothes, plus maternity wear. They are in great condition, it’s a really nice store. The baby doll/maternity wear look is in, so I have bought shirts there for $5 before. My chest stayed several sizes larger after my babies (youngest is now 20 months), so I have just stuck with cute maternity shirts.


Sarah November 11, 2008 at 4:56 pm

You’re doing great, you look great in the pictures and videos.
Those last 10-15 lbs. are always way too slow coming off.

I would check out a few places, maybe Old Navy, Target, Maurices (it’s kind of pricey though) and buy a few items now just to get you through a few more months. They usually have reasonable prices.
But, I feel your pain. I have been through that transitional time 3 times now, it’s not fun.
Hang in there!


Cheryl November 11, 2008 at 5:06 pm


Kohl’s, Target, and JCPenney have AMAZING deals.

Don’t count on your chest getting back to its normal size. I was a B cup before I had my first child, and after my second (who is 15 months old) I am still a G cup. I quit breastfeeding him at 5 weeks old, so I was really hoping that I could be back in real clothes. I always have to put a camisole under everything, or it is all way too low. Good luck.


Chatty November 11, 2008 at 5:15 pm

Oh I am THERE with you. This is my third time in the transitional phase, and it’s SO HARD to go out and buy clothes when you know you’re going to “hopefully” not be in them for very long.

I tend to hit up Old Navy. Cardigan and wrap sweaters over my shirts seem to help…actually Old Navy has a cute handkerchief cardigan right now that will help with the chill but it’s an open style so you don’t have to worry about buttoning it over the girls. 😉

Otherwise, if we don’t have anywhere to be, I’m in yoga pants and my nursing tank (with a cardigan- it’s also quite chilly up here in New England!)


3QTGUYS November 11, 2008 at 6:02 pm

Hey, girly! Go to Ross……you can find some super cute sweaters for less than 1/2 the price! And, they will be trendy enough…..and get you by!

Good Luck!


Kelli November 11, 2008 at 6:08 pm

I totally bought new clothes…but I did buy them mostly from Target, and I layered tees so as not to buy sweaters, b/c I felt the added bulk around my chest only increased the DP look…LOL

but I’d where a ton of layered tees (Old Navy, Gap and Target) and the same jeans, the comfy jeans that were now my tight jeans! LOL

B/c when I finally lost all my baby weight after having my 2nd child (which she was born in 05, but i finished loosing back to prepreggo in May 08!) but all that too say, all those clothes were not cool anyways, and now i’m buying all new stuff, or having my clothes altered…ugh. Remember this is supposed to be encouraging LOL


Jennifer November 11, 2008 at 6:23 pm

I had 4 children, breastfeed all of them…however it’s not as magical as it seems, a least for me it wasn’t, it took months for my boob to go back to normal size..but it you lose your next 15 lbs you will see them go down some when you completely stop. But know, if you buy clothes now your probably will still fit them for sometime.

second hand stores are great..I do a lot of e baying, you could also try Walmarts George line for work. In my option the woman sizes run big in that area. hope this helps.

love your blog


sw November 11, 2008 at 6:41 pm

It is a real problem..not having anything to wear and all..
but seriously you should be way less into yourself


-brittany- November 11, 2008 at 7:06 pm

sw, that was rude. Just because someone wants to look presentable and cute does not mean they are into their self. Someone wants told me that if you stop caring about yourself, then your husband will too. Jessica, you always look cute and I am sure you will find a solution. I am like Southern Gal and jkhenson…my girls were not much to begin with :)


Lauren November 11, 2008 at 7:17 pm

I will be your story of hope. I had my second child two weeks after Elias was born. I have lost all of my weight and then some, but my nursing chest is still big. I bought spandex nursing tanks and wear them under my regular button up shirts, and have several cardigan sweaters to mix and match. Also, if you live near a gap outlet, they have the best long sleeve t-shirts. Specifically, they are the “favorite tee.”

And my chest did go back to normal size after my first child. It is possible.

Sometimes, you hang onto those last 10-15 pounds until you stop nursing. That happened to me the first time around, and the doctor said it was totally normal.

You look great, and don’t give up!


Jenny November 11, 2008 at 7:29 pm

I beg, borrow, and steal from my bigger chested friends.

I am about 5 pounds from my prepreggers weight…and I wish it was in my chest. Nope, it’s all on my tummy and bumper.


tangerine November 11, 2008 at 8:27 pm

Ahh I have this problem and I don’t have any children yet. In fact I’m quite terrified of how they will be when I am pregnant. I’m tiny and yet getting tops that actually fit over my chest is hell. I find round cut neck woollen jumpers (not high neck, that just rest above the chest) are really useful…. and stretchy enough that when you bounce back you should still be able to get good use out of it. I say try second hand stores… they are a little more effort for EXACTLY the same thing you’d get in a store but cheaper :)

And for SW, do you seriously have nothing better to do?


gitz November 11, 2008 at 8:35 pm

Oh, sw… if she were too into herself she would have gone out and spent money without regard to her husband and child. She’s just stating a problem that’s relevant for many new moms who don’t fit into their clothes and are trying to be responsible in a tough economy.

I’ve never had a baby and have the same problem because of having to go on and off steroids. It’s not about being too into herself… it’s about being in a situation that many others are in and helping each other find the good solutions.

I, for one, appreciate her sharing.


Linny Best November 11, 2008 at 9:20 pm

I am TOTALLY in the same boat you are…I had a 5 week old and don’t know how much I’ve already lost…I can’t fit into my pre-pregnancy clothes, pants or tops, andit’s all because of my newly developed spare tire…and the budget is closed for business…

But I did find great deals at Old Navy this weekend…they have a Maternity section and there were tops and bottoms that would work for non post-pregnancy also for as low as $1.50! Definately worth a look and a $15 shopping trip!


California Isoms November 11, 2008 at 9:20 pm

Have you ever heard of freecycle? You could put up a “wanted” post for sweaters. And it will cost you all of NOTHING! Check out freecycle.org. Good luck!


Dawn November 11, 2008 at 9:48 pm

I LOVE this post! I am right there with you! My son was born July 15 and I've got about the same amount of weight to lose as you. But my boobs are huge! And it's hard to find tops that fit. I recently tried on a bunch of sweaters and ended up not buying a single one because they just looked ridiculous in the boob area even though they fit everywhere else. So, I appreciate the advice others have given you. I did find a couple reasonably priced tops at Kohl's and New York & Company that will work as "transition" pieces – I had to buy a size bigger so that they cover the girls. :)


mpeachyk November 11, 2008 at 9:51 pm

Along the lines of freecycle, craigslist and ebay might be a good choice, too. Does your church have a bulletin or community board? Maybe you can do an exchange…cute, sassy larger tops for a fun layout or two? :)


Linda November 11, 2008 at 9:52 pm

I was in the same boat as you about a year ago after I stopped breastfeeding my daughter, but my enormous chest never did go back down! I still kept hoping it would, but now that I am 34 weeks pregnant with my second child, I am even bigger than I was the first time! My advice would be to buy some bigger sweaters that you can layer. Target, Kohl’s and Penney’s always have great sales! Good luck!


Sarah November 11, 2008 at 10:09 pm

Unfortunately…I stopped breastfeeding my son almost 4 months ago and my chest is still HUGE. I can’t wear ANY of my prepregnancy tops! I’ve been buying cardigans and just plain colored long sleeve tops, like at old navy or kohls, when they are on sale. I am down to my prepregnancy weight, but my body has completely changed shape and my little jeans with no hip room definitely don’t fit anymore. I completely feel your pain. :)


TXJohnsons November 11, 2008 at 10:46 pm

Don’t worry. There’s A LOT of us out there on a budget too, so by your post and all the comments, it could help someone out there. So, I appreciate that.

I’ve found some great tops recently at KOHL’s for $3 – $6. Everyday, they have items on clearance for 60 – 80% off.
[I’m assuming that there’s a KOHL’s near you]..

If you’re really on a budget, then you can check out the ‘FREE’ listings on craigslist.org.
Just make sure you choose Nashville, TN.

Also, please don’t anyone respond to sw’s comment.. Just a lonely soul trying to get some attention..

Good luck with your findings Jessica, and may God bless your sweet family this holiday season.. and always!!..


Catherine November 12, 2008 at 12:26 am

Jessica, I think a cardigan or 2 with a nice scarf would work nicely right now… you don’t have to button it up and you can dress it up with different scarves…

Also, if you get a couple ones in your basic colors (black, cream, navy) you might be all set!! Good luck!!!


Rebecca November 12, 2008 at 12:45 am

Kohls is great right now! gosh… I always had my babies in the summer. can you wear Matthew’s?? just an idea!


Timothy November 12, 2008 at 3:35 am

I love the clearance racks at Target and even Walmart! Old Navy also has a great clearance. Also, my chest was enormous for the first 6 months of breastfeeding. At about that time, breastfeeding is much more on a schedule and my breasts are a much more normal size. :) Finally! STick with it; it’s wonderful and your breasts will become normal size again soon.
I think I have 4 or 5 different wardrobes. Really I think it is best to find a few staple pieces. A few tank tops (the nursing tanks at Target are so comfy and nice looking), a few wrap pieces, and some sweaters.
~Kara~ (not Timothy, that’s my husband, lol)


Ashley McWhorter November 12, 2008 at 5:31 am

I went and found some cute but reasonable clothes. You have to make yourself feel good during this “awkward” stage.


Mrs. Elle November 12, 2008 at 12:01 pm

This might seem like an odd suggestion but have you tried Ebay? I’ve had really great luck getting both baby clothes and clothes for myself on there and even though you are getting gently worn clothing, your transaction is STILL backed by Ebay’s guarantee so you can always get your money back if the item isn’t accurately described.


Nanja November 12, 2008 at 12:34 pm

In Holland we have a website where you can publish pictures of everything people don’t use anymore, like an online garage sale. We buy everything from there: Strollers, cloths for the children, furniture, toys, bikes, cloths, name it and it’s on there. Don’t you have anything like that in America? Otherwise you should make one. The inventors in Holland made millions by hosting this. You can always start in your own area.


AsIponder November 12, 2008 at 1:14 pm

You’re getting alot of great ideas here! I concur with the ladies who say try the thrift shops..GoodWill being a great one. Find some neutral sweaters (just 2 or 3 or 4) and in my area you might have spent under $20.00. The belt idea is great. I personally haven’t had your issues but I am on a weight reduction path and don’t want to spend big dollars for new sizes so try to hit the re-sale shops. Another plus, you could always re-sell whatever you can’t wear later at a consignment shop!! Good luck!!


Tirzah November 12, 2008 at 9:56 pm

I have two boys, and after my first I really put off buying clothes that fit. I didn’t gain much weight, but the last 5 lbs. just wouldn’t come off, and I kept WAITING. I finally broke down and bought a few basics, like jeans and t-shirts, and I’m glad I did. I didn’t have to wear them long, but it was so much less frustrating to get dressed everyday. After my second son, I had an extra 10 lbs. for about nine months; having learned my lesson the first time, I bought a few outfits from Target and Old Navy. Just accept that your body is going to be different for a while, buy some clothes that fit and focus on enjoying your gorgeous baby :)


missmctague November 14, 2008 at 5:18 am

Hey Jessica!

I met you at Angie’s on election night…you know…the one that Sawyer decided to pee on :)

Anyways, I found my way over to your blog and #1) SO cute, #2) go shop at Forever 21!!! They have one at Opry Mills, and maybe somewhere else. They’ve got great prices!

Hope that helps!!!



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