We love being able to introduce you to new small business breastfeeding clothing brands, and we are thrilled to have an interview with Amy the owner of brand new “Frances Rose” for you! Frances Rose has designs to fit and flatter a breastfeeding body, that are timeless but with a twist and that you can add your own individual styling to!
*Just in time for Mother’s Day they have 20% off until Monday 15th March*
Describe Frances Rose in 5 words?!
Classic style with a twist
What sets you apart from other breastfeeding clothing brands?
Our clothes are designed for one purpose. To fit and flatter a postnatal, breastfeeding body. They work from maternity sizing so you don’t have to worry about figuring out what size you are now, and they’re designed in a way that will accommodate and flatter both smaller and larger breasts. The fabric is chosen because it’s soft and comfortable for you and your baby and can endure frequent trips through the washing machine and require little to no ironing (because who has the time for that?!)
Do you design your clothing? Love that you include pockets!
I design the clothing with the help and advice of our manufacturer. They’re a specialist in maternity and baby clothing and have in-house designers who help make my rough sketches a reality!
Tell us more about your timeless striped designs?
I think these are the staple pieces that you can add your own style around – whether that’s a comfy pair of trainers and a denim jacket or chunky boots and a colourful scarf. They’re something that’s not going to feel quickly dated if you’re still feeding a year or two down the line, and they’re versatile enough to work for baby groups, coffee catch-ups and work.
It is great to see new breastfeeding clothing brands, how did Frances Rose come about?
After the birth of my second child, I’d already been breastfeeding for two years. I’ve got quite large boobs, so I always felt a bit too exposed with a wrap top without muslin or cover, and the one-up, one-down method felt a bit faffy with a lot of fabric to pull up. While searching for clothes, the things I came across at the time were either dual-purpose maternity and nursing, were too small for my boobs or weren’t my style. After months in maternity wear, I also felt too restricted wearing something that wasn’t made from stretch cotton. I wanted it to be easy, I wanted to be comfortable, but I also wanted to still feel like me. So, that’s why I created Frances Rose.
Where did the name come from?
It’s a mixture of our children’s names – Francis and Isla Rose. We didn’t find out the gender when I was pregnant with Francis, so we picked the name Francis/Frances because we loved it for either. Frances Rose is the exact name Francis would’ve had if he had been born a girl.
Tell us a bit about you and your background?
I live in Lincolnshire with my husband and our two children. I’ve always been interested in clothing and worked in retail while I was at college and university, which was great because I always had a uniform of beautiful clothes! I love crafting, reading and writing – I have a master’s degree in Creative Writing, and I work in Marketing as a Copywriter. I love that I’m now getting to introduce my children to books and I don’t mind being asked to read Elmer or The Dinosaur Department Store ten times in a row!
Describe your own personal style?
Day-to-day, I usually opt for jeans and a t-shirt because it’s the easiest for me to chuck on and the most practical. If I want to feel a bit dressier, I throw on a pair of heels and a blazer or I wear a comfortable dress. But, if I’m at home, I usually spend the day in jogging bottoms and a hoody.
What is your favourite piece in your collection?
Oooh, I’d say my most worn item is the navy and white stripe top. I think the pop of colour on the collar just adds a bit of something different. But my favourite outfit is the black and white stripe top with a pair of leather-look jeggings, a denim jacket and a leopard print scarf.
What do you think breastfeeding mums are looking for?
I think a lot of breastfeeding mums just want to feel like themselves again. After pregnancy and having a baby, it can sometimes feel like you’re looking at a stranger in the mirror. You’ve got this whole new body to dress – and, if they feel anything like I did – you’re figuring out what clothes feel the most comfortable, what fits your new lifestyle and how you can showcase your personality within all that.
Whose style and which brands do you look to for inspiration?
I’ve always been drawn to the classic, timeless style of Audrey Hepburn and the ‘Parisian girl style’ pulled off by Emmanuelle Alt. I like the idea of an outfit formulated from quality basics with a touch of personality. If I was looking at brands, I love how brands such as Boden and Ted Baker take classic silhouettes and add in a quirky pattern or element to make it a little bit different.
Do you have new designs in the pipeline we can look forward to?!
I’m currently finalising our latest samples – we’ve got hoodies, twinning sets and dresses on the horizon!
What are your aspirations for France Rose?
We’re obviously only at the very start of our journey, so I’m grateful for any recognition and feedback. Eventually, I’d love for us to become a one-stop-shop. A place for mums to know that if they need a new outfit – whether that’s for wearing to baby groups, to work or to a wedding, they’ve got somewhere to go to find clothing that makes them feel more confident and makes feeding their child that little bit more straightforward.
Any advice would you like to offer breastfeeding mums?
It really does get easier – but if you feel like you’re struggling, seek out help. My little boy had a tongue tie so the first few weeks were really difficult. My nipples were cracked and bleeding and I ended up with two bouts of mastitis. I sought out help from friends and professionals and it made a massive difference. I’m now still continuing to breastfeed him at almost three and feeding his little sister too, and it feels totally second nature.