Friday, October 03, 2008

Make your own nursing tank?

Found a big bag of ribbon for 99-cents at the thrift store before my doctor visit!

Now if only I could locate a good hospital robe and some new nursing bras without leaving the sofa...

Mrs. Fussypants recommends slicing a long athletic tank instead of buying nursing camisoles. Has anyone else tried a similar method?

In other news: we may be having the baby next week, depending on how much protein I'm spilling. That means I'll miss the FREE blogging conference held in Nashville October 18th. Click over to snag one of the remaining seats.

50 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi Meredith! We are also expecting a baby (#2) in the week or two...and am feeling enormously pregnant right now!! :) I had a very hard time find nursing tanks the first time around, as I'm well-endowed and most of the tanks had built-in bras which made the shirts sit way too low for my liking. I ended up just buying long tank tops with spaghetti straps, then cutting the straps and attaching a closure like you'd find on some bras and swimsuits (looks like a fancy letter "a") as well as a piece of elastic. This allowed me to unhook the strap (like my nursing bra) - and voila! Nursing tanks that were modest and a fraction of the price!

Kari:)

Kerri said...

I actually bought men's undershirts. I got the tank kind with a T-back. I bought the largest size available, XXL. That way I did not have to cut it, the armholes were big enough to slide over.

Fussypants would not have liked that! But it worked for me. It covered my belly, and that was important in cold weather.

Tenille said...

I haven't tried it, but someone suggested to me wearing men's racer-back tanks backwards as a base layer. Thought that was a good idea!

Susie said...

I sliced into an old tee shirt and wore it under sweatshirts as it was December when I had my last child. It worked nicely and if I ever have another, I'd try a tank because it hides the belly and is a cheap alternative to nursing shirts.

Meg said...

After 7 babies, I have tried oh-so-many nursing bras. My favorite for those first few days plus for lounging and sleeping is the Katie Rose sleep bra from birthandbaby.com

http://www.birthandbabyorders.com/index.php?p=172

I haven't tried making my own cami, frankly- camis just don't offer the support this girl needs.

May the Lord bless your body and bring baby in His perfect time. May the labor be short and the birth smooth. May your family have great joy in your newest little one!

~Meg
shoeprints.blogspot.com

Anonymous said...

Great deal on the ribbon! Ribbon is my passion!

Oh, my, you may be having the baby NEXT WEEK and you still don't have any nursing bras! I say pick up the phone or go online today and get some STAT if your feet are too swollen to go shopping. That little guy may decide to come even sooner!

I know you are so excited that you will soon have another son in the house. Good luck with an uneventful delivery!

Adventures In Babywearing said...

I have done this- making nursing tanks- and you can often find very cheap clearance tanks at Target, or just shop Goodwill. I really prefer not cutting (as sometimes the slits can show through your top shirt) and instead like wearing a tank that the top can be easily lowered so that my tummy stays covered, and I layer another top over it for more discreet nursing.

Steph

mama k said...

I have tried a similar method with what I call the "wife beater" or more properly "A shirts" They worked ok, but my fav nursing tops were ones that someone made for me from two t-shirts. It looks like these: http://www.boobdesign.com/boob_eng.html
She got two t-shirts from old navy and took the front off of one of them to create the bottom panel. She stitched some thin elastic at the top of the underlayer so it stayed up. Then you just pulled it down for use.

You can also buy clasps to covert your regular bras into nursing bras. I have some for next time I'm in need of them. :)

Rae said...

It sounds like that scene from Mean Girls, where they cut holes out of the popular girl's top to humiliate her, but end up starting a trend?

Elena said...

Wow Meredith - your pregnancy has gone by really fast!!! Sending prayers your way for a healthy mom and baby!

Kacie said...

Wow! I can't believe it's already almost time for you to meet your new baby. Best wishes! Can't wait to see pictures!

NeedANap2 said...

Good luck with the protein spilling! :) Depending of course on which option you want. I remember telling my supervisor (when I was pregnant with the first) that I needed to go home (after getting back from my doctor's appt) because I couldn't stick the lovely HUGE brown container into the fridge at work!! he he

Anna said...

Bless you, Meredith. I pray that God watches over you in these last few days/weeks.

I have heard of people making tanks like that, but I haven't done it myself. Mostly, I'm a shirt-lifter, anyway.

TJ said...

I really enjoyed just wearing a big ol t-shirt. Lifting it up really wasn't bad, because there were plenty of blankets around to cover my midsection.

Sorry you will miss the conference, but yay for baby! My friend will likely have hers next week also, and our church is filled with pregnant women, so there will be many new babies this Fall and Winter!

Indie said...

I just wear a tank under and pull over the neckline (it helps if the tank is lowcut or elastic) under a regular shirt. Since I tend to wear more fitted top shirts I can't just cut a hole in the tank bc it would show.

Also, I never wear nursing bras anymore. I just get one I like from VS and pull the cup aside to nurse. It will get worn out sooner but oh well.

Carrien said...

Here you go, nursing bras.

And the slashed tank does work, though just layering two works also and pulling one up and one down. It's just too hot for me most of the time.

Here are simple instructions for turning your favorite bra into a nursing bra. I actually did this and it worked. You can easily convert those cheap shelf bra tanks into nursing tanks though using the same method and hiding the hooks behind a bit of ribbon or flower or something. You can cut away the front fabric, attach the hooks and some thing pretty to finish the edges and then you just unhook and pull up the elastic bra part to nurse and it's very discreet.

Domestic Accident said...

Take care of yourself. Don't let that BP get too high. Thinking of you!

julianne said...

I tried it. The look is, um, weird. The nursing tanks from Target are cheap and look a lot better under a shirt.

julianne said...

I've tried it. The look is, um, weird. Target nursing tanks are pretty cheap and look a lot better under a shirt. I think they're worth it to not look weird.

Anonymous said...

Good luck Meredith. Hope the delivery goes well. You are in my prayers. Roxie

whimsy said...

I found that the white men's undershirt tank tops (you know the ones with the ugly name) work GREAT. I bought them a little large - and the armholes were large enough to just slide over and allow access.

Not as pretty - but great for around the house - kept everything covered and kept my belly from getting a chill.

Ewokgirl said...

Oh, a nursing tank top! I was picturing something horrible like a big metal tank hooked up to a cow's udder. I couldn't fathom what on earth you could be talking about in terms of human nursing! But I was picturing it all covered in pretty red ribbon! LOL.

Forgive me if this is too nosy, but you mentioned spilling protein. Are you having kidney issues now? I hope not!

Anonymous said...

I always wear a nursing bra, but use a long (to cover my belly) tank under my shirts that I have made slits on the side (like by my armpits - but long enough to pull myself through for breastfeeding.) That way, when I lift up my shirt to feed the baby, my big white belly doesn't hang out and I don't worry about covering my belly and sides up!
:o) Rachel

Emily C said...

I wore regular camisoles (bought at Costco for $5/piece) underneath all my shirts, but turned them around backwards because they were all lower in the back. This made nursing without showing skin or underwear so much easier.

I just pulled up my regular shirt, and pulled down the top of the tank enough to nurse.

Tubo Family said...

I've used similar in the wintertime but not when flushed with hormones, in that case too hot with so many layers. But winters here are usually only in the 50's during the day. Another option is a bella band type of tube along with bra and a button shirt. Have you tried ebay for the robe yet?

I know your doctors will keep you & baby safe but hope you can stay somewhat comfortable the next week or two. Good luck & best wishes!

nea said...

you are almost there!
here is a link to jan andrea's site, which offers nursing patterns. bottom left column.
http://www.sleepingbaby.net/jan/Baby/index.html

Anonymous said...

The idea of using the tank sounds like it would work and the double layer as suggested by comments there sounds good ..especially as the weather is turning cooler and layering won't be too hot then. Being Very pregnant in the summer is not fun is it Meredith! Love the trims!! I wouldn't see a bag of them for 99c here...it would be $2.98 and up. Even one is 99c. Glad you found them!!Jody

Mom of twelve said...

Remind us, how many weeks will you be next week? Praying for wisdom for your doctors and a healthy baby and momma!

~jerri

Sweetpeas said...

I haven't made a nursing tank like that, but when my twins were babies (before nursing camisoles existed, to my knowledge, I remember Glamourmom coming out w/ them, and then Motherwear and Target following close behind . . .) I figured out that what worked best for me (nursing 2 babies a once in 2 ringslings isn't especially difficult (at least for me/my kids) but does require pulling the entire front half of your shirt up to above boob level LOL) was to get the kind of men's tank tops that have HUGE armholes (I think of them as basketball shirts, but I'm not sure why). I wore those (over a nursing bra (the whole pull it to the side thing works much better on B cups than on J cups or whatever I was while nursing LOL, under a regular shirt, though styles weren't so form fitting then, but then, I prefer to not wear the form fitting now either, What Not to Wear wouldn't approve, but my goal is modesty more than fashion thankyouverymuch. Anyway . . . to nurse I'd pull my regular shirt up and push the armhole of the tank-top toward my sternum so my boob was sticking out the arm hole, but it was the armhole that moved, not my boob, it worked quite well both in the sling and just sitting down nursing one or both babies, and in the sling, had the added bonus that the armhole provided abit of extra support under my rather large floppy breasts to help the baby hold it in position. Downside, at least around here, those shirts can only be found (inexpensively) in the summer, but maybe you're far enough south to have them out year round?

Kenj said...

Meredith-

I've not bought nursing bras for the last four or five babies. I find I like not having to fuss with fasteners, and all that stretching to nurse in a regular bra has not ruined one yet (and I buy cheap bras).

~Kendra

Elizabeth G. said...

Don't know much about nursing tanks...They are worn over nursing bras? I used the bras, but not a tank.

I am very happy for your impending event. I'm under the impression that you have too much protein in your urine. I had that because of a kidney problem and preclampsia (sp?). Docs like to induce when that's the case.

I will say a prayer for you, Meredith. You are such an inspiration for so many of us who stop by your blog. I pray that the Lord will bless you and smooth out the path before you. I will ask that your little one will be born happy and healthy.

I know that babies are so much work, but there are absolutely incredible on the heart.

God bless,
Elizabeth

Anonymous said...

I'm sure you've gotten a lot of comments by now, but we'll be thinking of you next week! How exciting to finally welcome your little one!! Do you have a name picked out yet?
I loved the cheery red ribbons. They will be cute on a project that you make. What a great price for all that ribbon!
Susan

Meredith@MerchantShips said...

I'm at the end of my 36th week. I added a due date calendar to the bottom of the blog for anyone who's keeping up!

The doctor tests your urine for protein at every visit to monitor pre-eclampsia. My level jumped up, although my BP is stable for now. Combined with swelling and weight gain of 5-6 lbs a week (!!!), it's something to monitor for safety.

At this point, the delivery date is day by day. Gestational diabetes can delay lung development by 2 weeks, so I really need to keep this baby inside for as long as I can.

Penny in VT said...

Good luck Meredith, I'll be praying for you :)


Penny

Beth said...

Praying for you, Meredith! I know about those protein tests...have you had to do the 24-hour pee jug? Blech!

Both of my kids were born at 33 weeks due to pre-eclampsia, and neither had any lung issues. But PE speeds up lung development. If you combine PE with GD would it average out to normal lung development??

At any rate, I'm praying for you to go as long as necessary so your little one will be as healthy as possible. I know you must be miserable a lot of the time, so I'll pray for comfort and patience, too.

Shannon M said...

Meredith = I could swear I left I comment yesterday but I've been ditsy lately so I'm going to leave another one:)
I made a tank just the same way that Alli describes except I made two cuts under each side (their is just really no classy way to talk about your own breasts, is there? - ALli is too funny when it comes to this topic!) - right in line with the band of my bra. It still was easy and comfortable, but it didn't show under any of my tops that. Alli's way had a sort of bullseye effect on me in one shirt, altough it would probably work fine on most women.
I'm so excited for you! I know you can't wait to get your hands on that precious baby! I'll be praying that he is completely ready when it's time. And if there's anything else I can be praying about for you - let me know:)

Vanderbilt Wife said...

Please let me know if you find a good hospital robe!! I've been searching for a long, fluffy, zip-down one. The only one I've even come close to finding like that was $50!!! No way! I'm thinking about hitting the Goodwill 1/2 price day today...

Joanna said...

As a midwife I'd say make sure if you use a cami top that has a good supportive built in bra otherwise your boobs will head south far more quickly than not. In the UK I'd recomend a M&S cami-top but I'm about three years out of touch with shopping in the states.
Good luck with baby and enjoy the ride!

Vanderbilt Wife said...

P.S. I didn't know our due dates were just one day apart. Best of luck keeping baby boy inside as long as you can. I keep telling myself as much as I want this baby OUT, she need to stay in there and get healthy lungs for another two weeks or so.

God's Dancing Child said...

I didn't read through all the comment, so please forgive me if I am reposting anything!

Jan Andrea has a TON of baby/mommy patterns, free, at her site... including how to fix ne of your favorite regular bras into a nursing bra for VERY cheap. Nursing tops, etc. :)
http://www.sleepingbaby.net/jan/Baby/index.html

Kate McDonald said...

Good idea!

Karen said...

Pretty ribbon! I am so impressed you found it (nd your postpartum wear) at thrift stores. I bought a few Target nursing tanks but will check out Mrs. Fussypants' article -- sounds interesting!!!

We are scheduled to have baby boy #3 on October 8, after 2 checks for lung maturity in prior weeks that said he was not quite ready. I hope you are feeling well, and I will be thinking of you and looking forward to the news of your arrival! Blessings to you and your family!!!!!

PleaseRecycle said...

Guess I'm a little late, but the best thing I had was called a Bellaband (or some generic version of the same thing). They are kind of like a big stretchy tube top. You wear it around your waist (bonus: it holds your pants up if you're still wearing maternity but they are a bit too large) and you can pull it up to your bra level. Then just wear a regular nursing bra (more supportive) and no fleshy bits hang out when you life up your shirt to nurse. Perfect solution, IMO.

Anonymous said...

I made the tank top tummy nursing covers you mentioned they worked wonderfully. I cut vertical lines though.

I also made some out of turtlenecks for winter.

I felt better having something covering my tummy for modesty and warmth.

Anonymous said...

Thinking of you and hoping all is well! Great deal on the ribbon.

SB in Michigan

Amy said...

I am continuing to think of you guys- you are in my thoughts & prayers!!

Sheila said...

My friend just designed something for this purpose. http://www.undercovermama.com/Home_Page.html
I wish she'd done it when I was nursing!

Anonymous said...

I bought a jersey wrap robe from GapBody for the hospital and it was awesome! It can get hot and stuffy in there, it was the perfect weight, and looked good on - I still wear it!

Regina said...

hi Meredith,
we recently moved and I have been missing your blog! It's refreshing, now that our internet is back up, to get back 'in touch' with you :)
I am also interested in the make your own nursing tank. My concern with the ones that just alter the straps is that the usual nursing tank has 2 layers, one keeps the straps and under-layer anchored to your body while the front flap folds down (same concept as nursing bras). I read this description in a mothering.com forum discussion and I think it would work the best for cute tanks. I'm thinking for hanging around the house, the men's tank would be the best and easiest solution!
"take 2 stretchy tanks, cut the top off one and the bottom off the other. Overlap the two, and sew them together in the back and up the sides. Now you can just lift up in front to nurse."

I'll have to make one and see how it goes, I would love to be able to make these for expecting/nursing friends!

hsgbdmama said...

I finally gave up on the nursing bras and went with sports bras (the ones with the spaghetti straps). They're comfortable, you can sleep in them, they hold *ahem* everything in place, and if you need to use nursing pads, those stay pretty much put too.

I wish you a smooth and joyful delivery!