Wednesday, March 5, 2014

The New Mom Swim Suit

I remember it like it was yesterday (only it was 8 years ago), that moment I went swim suit shopping after gracing this planet with my adorable son.

I sat and cried, staring in the mirror, pinching my stomach and crying some more. As all my friends were gearing up for lake trips and vacay's with their girlfriends, I was crying in a dressing room at how my body had changed.

Whether you've had 3 kids (like me) or have had your first, I'm sure there are things that have forever changed since you shared your body with your own life changing (in a good way!) sweet heart. And if you're like me, the shock might have been a little difficult at first, but you wouldn't trade a flat/blemish free tummy for anything in the world.

However, that doesn't solve the problem that you'd rather not show off your "mommy tummy" to the less understanding gaze of vacationers.

So! As we have been preparing plans for our family vacation this year, I was feeling rather blasé at the idea of swim suit shopping. I've been caught between the feeling of needing an appropriate swim suit (no triangle tops, I've got kids to chase, I can't risk something popping out), and loathing trying on one piece swimsuits (I've never really had one I liked, I always felt like I should be headed to a silver-swimmers geriatric class in them.) What does one do if they are fully aware of their position as example to their daughters and wanting to feel just the tinsiest bit trendy and youthful?

There's always the monokini:

But who can seriously find one that covers everything up? Even if it does hide the badges of honor stretch marks, it doesn't usually cover much of my back side or keep the girls from popping out when I bend over to pick up the baby's sippy cup for the 1000th time.

Or the tankini:

Is it me, or do they NEVER make these long enough? Maybe I'm longer waisted than the usual clientele, but every time I wore one I constantly felt like I was nervously pulling the top down. If I wanted to wear a bikini, I'd freaking wear one, mmmkay, swim suit designers?! And what's worse than way-too-much fabric that still manages to not be enough? WET way-too-much-fabric. Saggy, wet and even less comfortable. Lovely.

Speaking of Bikini's:

If you can wear these still, and are one of the few women that don't scar from pregnancy, first of all, congratulations! That is so wonderful! Second of all, I hate you. (JK, rock it mama!!!)

OR! Thank our lucky stars! The 50's are back IN! High waists all around!

On pinterest I saw the high-waist swim bottoms of our grandma's days coming back into the bathing suit world. I perused online for about a half an hour before I realized, A. They are hard to find online. B. They are expensive. C. I can't even try them on if I buy online, and I'm sure El Paso stores will be getting these in stores in a couple years when yet again this trend will most likely be on it's way out the door. (Not exactly the most fashion-forward place to live.)

So, being the adventurous bargain gal I am, I decided to try my hand at altering one of my old swimsuits to see if I could get the look I wanted, on the cheap. (Well free since my sister gave me this swim suit, thanks DeAnna!) Oh, and my top is from this season @ Target! Love it, and even more, loved the price!!

As that was a clear knock-out-of-the-park, I was feeling even more comfortable buying a swim skirt big and altering it to fit, so I'd have more than one option while we are out of town.

I bought this Tommy Hilfiger XL skirt at Marshall's for $4.99, then took the side in evenly, and bam! Second high waist skirt. For seriously $5.

So now all I have to find is a swim top to match, and I wear bikini bottoms I already own underneath.

I am so pleased with how this turned out. The one downside is that I will likely have some AWESOME tan lines, but I can deal with that. At least I get to wear a two-piece comfortably and feel cute but covered up.

If you have even the slightest sewing ability and are in the hunt for the perfect swim suit this year, I urge you to try this out. You can use a large swim bottom, or the polka-dot one above is just a long tankini tube swim top, taken in and hemmed at the waistline to remove the elastic.

If you're not super into sewing, and all of that sounds like gibberish to you, check out these few suits I was tempted to buy:

This one is a little spendier, but, I figured the cut out is probably a VERY flattering section of the body for most women, so if you're going to splurge, this one is adorable: