Sometimes fashion can feel like such hard work. Staying on top of trends is like trying to stay on top of the laundry…it inevitably falls through. Good thing awesome bloggers like Ain’t No Mom Jeans‘ Shana are here to sift through the piles of fashion trends and find the perfect pieces that fit a mom’s lifestyle. In fact, Shana isn’t so keen on “trends.” Yeah, that’s right, she said it! Now that doesn’t mean you don’t have to occasionally drop a little money. Aint No Mom Jeans focuses on CPW or “cost per wear” to find the right price point, trend and overall value. There are also tips on shopping your closet and re-mixing old pieces to make amazing new outfits. As she says, “Knowing yourself and stretching your wardrobe are much more powerful tools than shopping.” Shana also knows that sweatpants happen to good people…and moms. But, you can still apply your fashion style to the comfort. Find a type that suits your shape and look for cuter colors or match it up with a nicer tee to step it up a little bit. See, she has amazing practical advice. It’s all about finding your “momiform” as well as your personal style. So, if you are already in your sweats, it’s okay. After reading this interview, we are sure you will find some new inspiration and fashion motivation!
1. What inspired you to start writing your blog? After my first baby, I found myself struggling to find something to wear that was practical for my new life…but that still felt like me. Prior to having a baby, I wouldn’t be caught dead in flat shoes, and didn’t own a sweatshirt. So yeah…once the baby came, getting dressed in the morning was a challenge. I tried looking for “mom-friendly” inspiration elsewhere and came up with….nothing. Most magazines cater to a young, working crowd….but if you need something machine washable and playground friendly it’s really hard to find. I originally started Ain’t No Mom Jeans as a way of organizing my thoughts, and because so many of my friends (who were also having kids) were asking me for advice.
2. What is your favorite aspect about being part of an online blogging community? Oooo…so many things. The dialog and support for one. And the brainstorming potential! For example, I asked our readers (via our facebook page) what were their hands-down, most comfortable (yet cool) shoes for all-day walking around. We received so much feedback that we turned it into a blog article: The Comfiest and Most Stylish Shoes For All Day Exploring
3. What is your favorite topic to blog about? Personal style. We can cover trends all day long, but I don’t think trends matter all that much. They just provide great inspiration. The key, I think, is to know yourself. Know what you like, what you think is cool. Everything else should follow. One of my favorite articles was a quick-n-dirty method to discover your personal style. We still get feedback from readers who have tried it and used it, or have added their own twist. So much fun.
4. In your opinion, what is the best feature on your blog? I started a Shop Your Closet series last year that was pretty popular. I’ve been accused of being a “shopping enabler” in the past (guilty as charged!) so this was my way of pointing out that new clothes don’t always equate to better style. Knowing yourself and stretching your wardrobe are much more powerful tools than shopping.
5. Where do your fashion ideas come from? Oh my…everywhere? I know that’s a lame answer. But I’m so passionate about this topic that my mind is always churning on it. I pour over fashion mags, catalogs, Pinterest, Instagram, other blogs, people on the street, and, surprisingly, my kids. It’s amazing what you can learn from someone who has no concept of societal norms, LOL! But to get an outfit to be mom-friendly, more often than not I have to spend some quality time standing in front of my mirror, trying things on over & over & over, asking myself, “But is this practical? Is it me? Would I actually wear this to the park? Can I play soccer in it?” Inspiration is everywhere, but to get to a stylish, practical outfit, I really have to work at it.
6. What fashion advice do you have for busy moms and women that don’t have a lot of time to get ready? Find a blogger or celebrity whose style you admire, and follow them! That takes away a ton of guesswork. Even better if you have a similar body type. But in general, busy moms do well with a standard uniform. (We call it a “momiform” on the blog.) Figure out what works, and then just iterate on the theme. My current momiform is skinny jeans, ankle boots and tshirts. I add an oversized sweater if I’m cold…but nine times out of ten, that’s what I’m wearing. If I want to change it up, I’ll wear printed skinnies (pictured) or a tshirt with an interesting cut. If you know what your standard outfit is, you can always look for special upgrades when shopping. It narrows your focus. For example, I don’t bother shopping for ballet flats anymore…I love them, but it’s just not what I reach for in the morning.
7. What is your favorite fashion accessory? I have two: Interesting shoes and bags. So many women (especially moms) get this wrong. They settle for boring, comfort clogs or big athletic shoes. It’s amazing how much shoes (or boots) can make an outfit. And you really don’t have to sacrifice comfort for style. There are a ton of stylish, comfortable options out there. Just be picky. Keep looking if you don’t love them.
And bags? You can find fab bags at every price point. Seriously. EVERY price point. I actually hate “it” bags…I totally don’t get spending a fortune on a handbag. But pick something with style! Pick something that is you.
8. What is one piece that every woman should have in their closet? Cute sweatpants. We’re moms…sweatpants happen. It’s amazing how much better I feel about myself if I’m wearing cute sweatpants. Sweatpants with a droopy bum make me feel slightly deranged by the end of the day.
9. What fashion item says “Super Mom” to you? Big, dangly earrings! How do they do it? How do they keep grubby little hands off those things? It’s a total mystery to me.
10. Who is your celebrity fashion icon? Oooo…I love Sienna Miller’s style. But so much of it involves high heels and faux-fur (lovelovelove)…which hasn’t translated well to my post-baby life. But now that she’s expecting, I’m excited to see how her style evolves.
11. If you could style any celebrity, dead or alive, who would it be? Definitely Jennifer Garner! She seems like such an involved, fabulous mom. Her kids are adorable, and she always looks like she loves being a mom. I really identify with that – I too love being a mom. It’s such a gift. BUT…she’s often photographed around town wearing schlumpy jeans and big athletic shoes. With a few small tweaks, I think I could help her get a look that is infinitely more flattering, yet just as comfortable. Jennifer, call me!!