Thursday, October 25, 2012

Giveaway: Nursing/Maternity Wear $75 Gift Card & Virtual Bra Fitting from A Mother's Boutique {11.25; Worldwide}

This is a joint giveaway between Natural Parents Network and many other natural parenting sites. You may enter for all of the giveaways at one site only. Please find the section marked "Win it!" for the mandatory entry and optional bonus entries.

Natural Parents Network Holiday Gift Guide

Welcome to the Natural Parents Network Holiday Gift Guide!

Natural Parents Network, Hobo Mama, and 24 other natural parenting bloggers are giving away 89 items perfect for gifting for the holidays as part of the Natural Parents Network Holiday Gift Guide. The combined total value of all of the items is $2,550.

Have you finished your holiday shopping? The NPN Holiday Gift Guide is a great opportunity to complete your gift-giving purchases for family and friends, while supporting many naturally-minded small businesses. The companies who have provided items for giveaway are almost exclusively made up of small businesses or work-at-home families.

The Rafflecopter entry system is at the bottom of this post (and on every post participating in the Gift Guide). Please visit some of the other review posts listed below and read about the fabulous companies offering giveaways in the Natural Parents Network Holiday Gift Guide.

Please continue reading to learn more about A Mother's Boutique, which is offering our readers a giveaway of a $75 Gift Card, to use for a wide selection of nursing and maternity wear. Judy also offers a free Virtual Bra Fitting service for you or a new mama friend who needs the perfect nursing bra!

Say Yes to the Bra!

Having a cup size well down the alphabet, I have a hard time finding nursing bras that fit — much less that are supportive and stylish to boot. I was really excited that Judy of A Mother's Boutique offers a FREE Virtual Bra Fitting service.

You simply email the answers to five questions asking about how your current bra fits, your measurements (and she instructs you on how to take the measurements accurately), how your size has changed during or after pregnancy, and what you're looking for in a bra. Judy takes that hodge-podge of information and works her bra magic.

old Anita nursing bra — A Mother's Boutique giveaway
Since I am no bra model, I'm trying my best to keep these pictures small and unobtrusive, ha ha! This is my Anita bra in the too-small cup size. The arrow points to where I'm squooshing out of the cup. (Yes, that's the technical term.) Yet the band is parallel around my back and not uncomfortable. Diagnosis: Bigger cup size needed!
I had been wearing an Anita bra in a 36H, because that was as high a cup size as I could find in the underwire style I need for support. I was skeptical — yet hopeful — that Judy could find a nursing bra that fit better and was as comfortable as my current favorite.

And yet I really, really needed a new bra. I'd had three, which is a decent number — one to wear, one to wash, and one as a backup. And yet two had gotten old enough to pop their underwires, and the final holdout was getting … kinda gross. Let's just say you should be glad that photo is not smell-o-vision. This review opportunity could not have come at a more appropriate time!

Based on my measurements and my description of the Anita's fit, Judy, in a thorough and explanatory emailed fitting, agreed with me that the 36 was a good measurement but that the cup size was too small. She recommended that I try going up probably two cup sizes but possibly down a band size, to see if the cup size would work better for me while staying taut in the width around my rib cage. (Even though the band width is supposed to stay the same, larger cup sizes can run larger around as well.)

She suggested three bras to try in her incredibly helpful email, listing both pros and cons of each bra and her reasons for recommending each:

Cake Lingerie nursing bra — A Mother's Boutique giveaway
  • Cake's Licorice Bra: This is a delight to look at, and one of the bestsellers at A Mother's Boutique. I was really excited to get my paws on one of these beauties! She suggested a 36J and said this was a great bra for nursing moms because the underwire is flexible so doesn't put pressure on the milk ducts. As pretty as it was, though, it didn't fit me well enough to offer the support I needed. I was bummed about that, though I know it works well for many other people.
  • Comfortzone Nursing Bra: Judy suggested I give a supportive non-underwire a try in a 34K. As Judy puts it, it is one of the only bras that offers separation between your breasts without an underwire. I liked the support and didn't feel my breasts were drooping any more than with an underwire. I didn't, however, like that the sides of my breasts seemed to migrate outward under my armpits instead of staying front and center. I think I'm just an underwire girl!
Elomi Smoothing Underwire Nursing Bra in black — A Mother's Boutique giveaway
  • Elomi's Smoothing Bra: Judy said this underwire bra provides great support and lift for larger bust sizes and that the nursing clasp was also designed with large breasts in mind. Sure enough, it's a two-hander — I've had to get used to that slight inconvenience. Since Elomi uses European sizing, she recommended a 34H, which is equivalent to a 34K in US sizing. However, I found that the 34H was rather tight in the band, so Judy sent me the next size up to compare the two: a 36GG (36J US). Once I put on the new size? Instant bra heaven. I had found my nursing bra! You know you've found the right bra for you when everything fits in and nothing feels off, and Judy had found me the just-right bra!

Elomi Smoothing Underwire Nursing Bra — A Mother's Boutique giveaway
One of Judy's suggestions, the Elomi Smoothing Underwire, was just the right bra! After working out what combination of band and cup size I needed, I finally had a comfortable bra that actually fit. Astonishing!
Now, don't get me wrong: No bra is perfect. The Elomi is more substantial than my old Anita, which means that, yes, it covers my breasts better — but it also tends to stick out of my lower necklines. I'm still not sure what to do about that one, except invest in higher camis.

It's also been a little more work getting used to the two-handed closing mechanism of the nursing clasp, but it does make me feel like this bra is built to last, through all the nursing sessions Alrik and I can throw at it! The opening has fabric circling the opening for the nipple, and I like that it discreetly hides most of the visible breast tissue even if I'm not using my shirt for coverage.

The bra comes in nude or black, so I'm going to snag it in black next, for a little hint of sex appeal. No, this bra doesn't have the simmer of the Licorice bra, but I'll take what I can get in my size!

All in all, the Elomi feels very well made, and the price is right for a high-quality nursing bra: $55. I can't believe I'm saying that considering I used to buy my bras at Target for $12, but the increase in comfort and quality from a well-constructed bra has become totally worth the higher cost to me now, and this Elomi Smoothing bra is on the low end of the price range for quality nursing bras. (Win the gift certificate, or treat yourself — or both!)

And if you're not certain what size or style to buy, email Judy first! Did I mention her bra fitting service is free and yet invaluable in worth?

About A Mother's Boutique

I love all the other items A Mother's Boutique stocks — from chic pregnancy clothes to useful and stylish nursing and pumping wear along with breast pumps, slings, breastfeeding accessories, and more: making a gift certificate to this store pretty much the perfect one-stop shop for pampering a new (or established) mama!

Below are two of my favorite items — the Diana Rouche Top in Bamboo and the Ivana Tie Dress in Bamboo, both from Annee Matthew, Judy's own chic brand. Both are versatile in that they can go from pregnancy (stretch fabrics and clever fitting) through breastfeeding (discreet openings) — and then continue to look stylish long after the fact!

Diana Rouche Top in Bamboo Maternity Shirt — A Mother's Boutique giveaway Ivana Bamboo Tie Dress — A Mother's Boutique giveaway

And just because I was looking for large cup sizes, don't let that dissuade you if you have a smaller size: Judy's selection of high-quality nursing and maternity bras is the stuff of legend!

I love supporting A Mother's Boutique because I so admire the mom behind the shop:

A Mother’s Boutique is a woman owned and operated business. We are the only independently owned store of our kind in the greater Pittsburgh area!

My son was born in July 2005. After a 4-month maternity leave, I went back to work and survived for nearly 1 year working in corporate America before I decided that the long hours in the office and the out-of-town travel associated with my job were too much for me. In October 2006, I quit my corporate job to stay home with my son.

After a few months of being at home, I decided that I wanted to help other new mothers to breastfeed. Breastfeeding isn't always as easy as one might expect - and I wanted to help as many new mothers as possible to be successful in their efforts to breastfeed their babies.

Judy advocates for breastfeeding through providing fabulous gear and supplies in her store (and only products that truly support breastfeeding), running a wonderful blog that gives out sisterly advice on breastfeeding (including pumping, weaning, and going back to work — it's a very gentle, non-preachy sort of lactivism — just the kind I love!), and by employing several other mamas through her business. As a fellow work-at-home mama, I applaud her integrity, generosity, and commitment to making something so important to her — breastfeeding — her actual business.

Be sure to connect with A Mother's Boutique:



Elomi Smoothing Underwire Nursing Bra in nude — A Mother's Boutique giveawayYou can purchase your own Elomi Smoothing Underwire Bra at A Mother's Boutique for $55. Standard shipping is free on orders over $60 to U.S. addresses, and international shipment is available. Returns on clean and unlaundered clothing (such as nursing bras, as I found out!) are easily and conveniently accepted.

Besides nursing bras, shop A Mother's Boutique for high-caliber brands of nursing and maternity wear, breast pumps and accessories, and other pregnancy must-haves!

And just for Natural Parents Network and Hobo Mama readers, A Mother's Boutique is giving a 10% discount off virtually any item in the store (certain exclusions apply) from now through Nov. 25. Enter code HOBO10 during the ordering process. Plus, my affiliate link to the store includes an automatic $5 coupon for anyone who clicks through and orders $50 or more, so keep that in mind for future orders.


A Mother's Boutique giveaway buttonFor your own chance to win a $75 Gift Certificate from A Mother's Boutique, enter by leaving a comment and using our Rafflecopter system below. (Rafflecopter will be live November 1-25).

The winner will receive an emailed $75 Gift Certificate to use on any items in the store. Contest is open WORLDWIDE. (If used outside the U.S., international shipping charges apply to purchases.)

Our Rafflecopter entry system is now open.

MANDATORY ENTRY: In the box provided in the first Rafflecopter entry, tell us where you would have your prize shipped if you are one of the winners. You must enter your name and email address while leaving a comment in the Rafflecopter system for your entry to count.
Leave a valid email address so we can contact you if you win. Email addresses in Rafflecopter are not made publicly visible. Please leave the same valid email address in your mandatory comment so we can verify entries.

This is part of a larger giveaway hosted by Natural Parents Network. You may enter the whole giveaway at one site only, and we'll be recording IP addresses to ensure that there are no duplicate entries. That said, please do visit and enjoy all of the participating sites!

Please note that each entrant can win only one prize, and NPN will be randomly assigning prizes to the winners. One of the giveaway questions asks which are your top five prizes so we can try to match winners to their preferences.

See the Rafflecopter entry system for bonus entries to increase your chance of winning after completing the mandatory entry. All bonus entries are entered directly into Rafflecopter. Give it a try, and email sponsorship {at} or leave a comment if you have any questions!
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Thank you for your interest in the Natural Parents Network Gift Guide! We invite you to read the reviews of other participating bloggers and return to enter the giveaway between November 1 and 25. Many of the giveaway items are open worldwide!

Here are the participating sites and companies. (Reviews go live between October 25 and October 31, and all links will be live by November 1.) We’ve included any coupon codes the companies have offered so you can get your holiday shopping under way!

Publishing on Thursday, October 25, 2012

Publishing on Friday, October 26, 2012

Publishing on Saturday, October 27, 2012

Publishing on Sunday, October 28, 2012

Publishing on Monday, October 29, 2012

Publishing on Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Publishing on Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Disclosure: Our reviewer received a sample product
for review purposes.
Some links are affiliate links.
We try to seek out only products we think you would find
relevant and useful to your life as a natural parent.
If we don't like a product, we won't be recommending it to you.
See our full disclosure policy here.


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