How to make your Summer dresses work for Autumn

The weather has certainly turned this week, and there is much more of a chill in the air.
But before you start reaching for the jumpers and jeans, think about how you can make those Summer favourite last a bit longer!

Here are a few ways to ‘winterize’ (not sure that’s a word 🤔 but you know what I mean) your dresses.
It’s all about being creative and adding a layer.

  1. Add a blazer and boots, this is a very ‘now’ look. You want quite a oversized blazer for this look and not an ‘officer’ style one.
  2. Layer over a jumper. This works really well with a shirt dress as you can leave the colour out. Make sure that the jumper finishes at your waist or it can look shapeless.
  3. Add a sweater vest! These are going to be in all shops this autumn, and they are perfect for making that lighter weight dress work for Autumn
  4. Add a jumper underneath. I love a polo neck personally, but if you are quite busty go for a lower neckline.
  5. Layer up with a long cardigan and a pair of thick tights. This is a super easy was to make your fav dress work for Autumn. Pick out colour from the print or choose a complimentary colour and try and match the accessories for a effortless look.

If you want to maximise what you already have in your wardrobe, I can help.
With a wardrobe makeover, I can show you had to make the most of what you have, what pieces you are missing that could make more of your wardrobe, show you how to organise your clothes, shoes and accessories and help sort out what shapes, styles and fabrics work for you and not against you.
To find out more click here or drop me a message.

How to create a stylish mum wardrobe

Being a mum is hard work and creating a wardrobe that is not only chic, but also practical can seem like a daunting task. But it is possible with a few simple tricks.

The key to nailing that effortless mum style is having key pieces in your wardrobe that work for you and not against you. This means avoiding fabrics that require loads of ironing or dry cleaning. Investing in certain pieces such as outerwear and footwear and keeping things simple. Combine this with a few styling hacks and you have a fail safe formula for simple and chic mum style.

So here are my perfect pieces and styling tricks to help you create you mum wardrobe.

Get yourself a pair of stylish trainers

As a mum one thing is certain, you are going to be on the go all day. This means that you need a pair of comfortable and flat shoes that are easy to throw on but still look good. In my opinion a pair of leather style trainers with a good solid sole are the perfect shoe for busy mums. They are easy to wear, easy to care for and comfortable. I would recommend either going for a white, black or neutral coloured shoe to ensure that they go with everything in your wardrobe. If you can stretch to real leather it is definitely worth its as they will last longer and age better than faux leather shoes.

There are a huge range of trainers available and you can still show off your own style personality with them. If you are more attracted to an edgier style, look for leopard print details, prefer something more classic, keep it simple with a plain lace up style. The key is that they work with everything in your wardrobe. Make sure that your give them the occasional quick wipe over to ensure that they aren’t covered in mud and that’s it. Wear them with skirts, dress, jeans or trousers.

Think about outerwear

Don’t think of outerwear as an after thought. If you have a fab outfit underneath and a shabby coat thrown over the top you are going to ruin your look. However a fab jacket or coat can actually elevate and pull a very basic outfit together.

For Autumn and Spring I love a simple utility jacket in a heavy cotton. You can get so many different cuts to suit so many shapes and they can look edgy, classic and feminine depending on the styling details. Many of them are machine washable too which is an added bonus and you can pick them up everywhere and at every budget. I like to roll the sleeves back a little to elongate my arms and add interest to the outfit.

For Winter, I would advise getting a wool style coat. This can be long or short, but as a busy mum myself I think a short to 3/4 length is most practical. If you can go for a coat with a high wool content, then I always recommend this. You can get good quality coats from places like Zara and Mango and in fact my go to coat is 90% wool, is over 10 years old and only cost me £70 from H&M.

What ever style you choose, make sure that it works for your shape and is practical for you.

Go for a dress

On those morning where you don’t have time to think about what to wear take a shortcut and choose dress. With a dress (or a jumpsuit) you don’t have to worry about what top goes with what bottom. Simply chuck it on, add your go to trainers and your done! There are so many different styles in the shops right now, you are sure too find something that suits your style and shape.

Go hands free

Free up your hands with a cross body or backpack style bag. Not only are these style really on trend right now, but they are practical and stylish. After all what mum doesn’t need an extra pair of hands? I personally love the leather cross body bags with the interchangeable straps, as they add personality and really jazz up a simple outfit, but a back pack can look super cool too.

Stock up on easy to wear basics

As a mum you often have very little time so having good basics that you can throw on is vital. That’s way having a good stock of t-shirts, both long and short sleeve and a few sweaters and a cardigan in a neutral colour is an important part of building the perfect mum wardrobe. Remember though, that just because these are your basics, it doesn’t mean plain. Slogan and graphic tees and sweatshirts are a great way of adding personality to your look. Or try experimenting with ‘neutral’ prints, such as stripes, spots and leopard. I call these prints ‘neutral’ as they can be layered up together and still look fab.

The same applies to basic bottoms. Choose a few different styles that you know are easy to wear, comfortable and can be mix and matched. As a mum I know that I find myself being drawn more to trousers, so my basics bottoms would be a pair of mid blue slim straight jeans, a pair of leather look jeggings, a pair of nice plain leggings and maybe a leopard skirt. All of these work with my t shirts and jumpers, so I don’t have to think too much about how to put an outfit together.

Just a few examples of some good basic tops

Choose hassle free fabrics

Now I love cashmere and silk as much as the next girl, but these are not everyday mum clothes. For a practical mum style you want fabrics that are easy to care for. That means that they need to be non iron, machine washable and can be dried on the line or airer. If the label says ‘hand wash and dry flat’ walk away! It’s just not going to happen, and they will either end up languishing in the laundry basket or end up misshapen or shrunk to baby size because you accidentally throw it in the machine.


You have your basics, you have your go to trainers and outerwear, and you have you hands free bag. All you need now is few funky accessories to jazz up you look. Simply choose a couple of patterned scarves, a couple of pairs of earrings or a necklace or maybe a belt and make sure that you add just one of these to finish you look. It is amazing how just by adding one accessory you can look and feel more put together.

Need help creating your mum wardrobe? I can help. Samantha Woodbury Styling offers both online and in person styling packages that include advice on creating a capsule wardrobe. All styling services can be booked online or you can book a free styling call to see how I can help.

Breastfeeding fashion hampshire

Dressing For Breastfeeding With Style

Being a mum and dressing stylishly can be a challenge. You are time poor, your body shape has changed. And if you are breastfeeding, you have the added challenge of trying to find feeding friendly clothes. Luckily, these days there are many more high street retailers that offer postnatal wardrobe solutions. However, it is possible to create a breastfeeding-friendly closet with just a few essential items and your existing wardrobe, ensuring that you look and feel like you again. Breastfeeding with style is feasible.

Invest in a good nursing bra

A good nursing bra is essential if you want to be breastfeeding with style. If you buy nothing else to help build a breastfeeding-friendly wardrobe this one item will make all the difference. When I had my first child, I just went for a basic practical bra from M&S. This served me well, but it did nothing for my self-confidence and left me feeling frumpy and middle-aged.

What we wear under our clothes can have as much an impact on how we feel about ourselves. When I had my second, I made sure I did the research and found a nursing bra that was pretty, had a bit of lace. It was much more stylish.

There are a number of brands that do ‘sexier’ nursing bras, including Freya, Panache, Hotmilk. It is important to make sure that you get yourself measured by a professional. This is to ensure that you get the right fit. It is also recommended that you get measured very late in your pregnancy, or even wait until your milk has come in. This is because your boobs can get even bigger once you are feeding.

Look for easy access details

If you don’t want to spend a huge amount of money on nursing clothes, one way of making your wardrobe work for you is to look for items that open up at the front to make it easier to feed. Button and zip through fronts are the most obvious styles, but there are other alternatives including, tie front detail or straps that can be undone when needed, shirred bodice details or stretchy cross front style tops that can be pulled aside for easy feeding or look for wrap tops and dresses that can be undone when needed.

If you are buying new things, think about whether you will wear them after you have finished feeding, as this will give you a good indication as to whether the items suit your natural style personality and help in creating a more sustainable and hardworking wardrobe. 

Layer a simple camisole underneath

If you are feeding in a top or dress that does not have easy access to feed, then you will most likely be lifting your top-up to a nurse. Whilst this is fine at home or with family and friends, you might not feel quite so comfortable doing this in public and exposing your tummy. This is where a stretchy camisole or nursing vest comes in handy. All you need to do is simply pull down or unclip the neckline and you can feed easily without flashing the flesh. This is one of my favourite and simplest tips for breastfeeding with style.

Accessorise with a lightweight scarf or nursing jewellery

Breastfeeding in public can be daunting so if you would rather cover up, then try adding light weight scarf to your outfit. This will not only elevate your overall look, but you can use it to conceal baby feeding by simply draping over to one side when you are nursing.

If you have a wriggly feeder, you could also try adding some nursing jewellery to help keep them focused with the job in hand! This used to work for my nosy firstborn, who used to bob on and off the boob, pull off any cover I had on him or turn his head whilst still having my nipple in his mouth! Ouch!

Have fun with fashion

Remember, just because you have this added requirement from your clothes, don’t make it your only focus. Get creative with clothes. Could you wear that top with the zip-back, the other way round? Could that cross-front dress stretch enough at the neckline to allow you to feed? If you layer up an item with a camisole underneath do you have more outfit options?

Most importantly, think about whether you actually like the item? Would you wear it if you weren’t breastfeeding, and does it go with other pieces in your wardrobe? If the answer is no, then move on and look for something better. As a mum, it is all too easy to lose your style identity and slip into a rut. Remember just because you are a mother, doesn’t mean that you have to forgo looking stylish and feeling confident for practicality. You are still the same fabulous women, just a little more tired and exhausted

I have put together a breast feeding friendly style board at Moonsift

photo of woman breastfeeding her child
Photo by Wendy Wei on

I hope that you have found these simple tips helpful and you feel more capable of reviewing your wardrobe and seeing how you can dress for breastfeeding with style.

If you would like any more advice on creating a postpartum wardrobe , I offer personal shopping both online and in person across Hampshire, Surrey, Berkshire and West Sussex. Why not take advantage of my free initial style consultation, simply book via the website, call me on 07764996596 or send me an email.

Orginal article posted on

Finding the right jean for you

I was thrilled to be asked, by to share my top 5 style tips for Mums on shopping for the perfect jean. Here is my article “Finding the right jean for you”

How I Find The Right Jeans That Flatter My Shape?

I often get this question with many mothers asking how to cover their muffin tops? Or just wanting to feel more confident. Honestly, finding the right jeans is like searching for the holy grail. But it is possible with these simple tips.

Find your waist

Knowing where your waist is will help you determine the rise of jean that will flatter your body shape the best. If you are pear or hourglass-shaped, you will most likely look best in a high rise of jean. However, if you are a rectangle of an inverted triangle, a mid to low rise will suit you better.

Think About The Colour Of The Right Jeans

If you are concerned about your bum and thighs opt for a darker pair of jeans with little to no distressing or embellishment. If you are lucky enough to have slender legs, make the most of them by wearing a lighter colour. 

Look At The Fabric Content

Jeans need to be comfortable but you don’t want too much elastane in them as they won’t last. Over time fabric conditioner breaks down the elastic in the fabric, so the higher the elastane content the sooner they will go baggy at the knees and bum. 2% elastane is ideal.

Balance Your Shape

When choosing the fit of your jean, think about how to balance your shape. If for example, you are a bootylicious pear-shaped mama, you’ll want to look for a pair of jean that skims the hips and thighs and then kicks out a little to balance your curves; such as bootcut and straight leg jeans. If on the other hand, you are a slim-hipped inverted triangle, you will want to balance your broader torso with jeans that add a little volume to your lower half; boyfriend, mom and wide-leg jeans will look fab on you.

Always go for a jean with belt loops

I always recommend that you go for a jean with belt loops rather than without. Not only will this prompt you to add a belt to your outfit and instantly make it look more put together, but it makes the waistband much more substantial and less likely to fold or roll down.

I hope these tips will help you with finding the right jean for you. If you would like any more advice on shopping for your shape, I offer personal shopping, body shape analysis and wardrobe makeovers both online and in person across Hampshire, Surrey, Berkshire and East Sussex. Why not take advantage of my free initial style consultation, simply book via the website, call me on 07764996596 or send me an email.