When MJ had her first baby, she really struggled with breastfeeding in the early days of motherhood. After experiencing a traumatic labour and birth, she faced a long road to recovery, and establishing breastfeeding was difficult for a number of reasons.
One of the things MJ wishes she had experienced is the precious golden hour with her baby after birth. She and her baby missed out on skin-to-skin time due to them both needing immediate care after the birth. The result was that she faced pressure from the midwives to bottle feed with formula straight away – before she had even had a chance to recover.
The struggles she went through during the 4th trimester and in those early days of motherhood ultimately led to postpartum depression and seeking help through therapy. As time went on and MJ began to recover both mentally and physically, the urge to find a way to help other new mamas – like her – took over.
“Three months after my breastfeeding journey ended, instead of crying over the experience I missed, I got out a notepad and started dreaming up what I could do to help new mamas like me. What would have helped me in those months, whether that be breastfeeding information, products to help make the 4th trimester easier, funny quotes, tips… anything that would help at least one mama!”
It wasn’t long before MJ had designed and developed a breastfeeding cover and stretchy baby wrap. She wanted to create products that were stylish to wear, promoted bonding, and which would make breastfeeding easier when out and about.
Creating a breastfeeding cover that supported Mamas was important to MJ, as she felt that if she’d had the right product in her 4th trimester she would have felt more at ease feeding in public. A cover that would allow for discreet breastfeeding, smaller than the typical-apron style which she felt drew attention, but also something she felt added to her own style and was modern.
The idea behind the baby wrap stemmed from MJs own experience with babywearing and the need to have her baby close. Having tried lots of different babywearing wraps and slings, nothing ticked all the boxes. Her own baby suffered from GORD and Colic and couldn’t be put down to sleep, so MJ wanted a wrap she could comfortably wear throughout the day and which would promote skin-to-skin contact to help with boosting milk supply.
“I knew I wanted the design to feel modern, easy to use, soft and free of harmful chemicals. But also, not detract from my own identity and make me feel more ‘me’ – cue the leopard print and our core products of the Maine Baby Sling and Chicago Loop Breastfeeding Cover.”
Since then MJ has welcomed her second child and breastfeeding second-time-around has proved a lot more enjoyable and stress-free. Her confidence to breastfeed in public has grown thanks to the use of her discreet breastfeeding cover. She continues to love babywearing and reaps the benefits of precious skin-to-skin time with her baby, whilst also being hands-free and able to keep up with her active toddler!
MJ’s aim with Bon + Bear continues to be to make the journey of new motherhood that bit easier to navigate. Her designs are not only practical but they help mamas feel stylish and supported during the postpartum period for breastfeeding and babywearing.
“My start to motherhood was anything but easy, but there was light at the end of the tunnel. The struggles I went through led me to creating Bon + Bear and helping other new mamas find themselves again after having a baby. Our mission has always been to help at least one mama, and doing that daily will always make me so proud.”
Discover the Maine baby wrap
Bon + Bear’s stylish baby slings are a newborn staple, giving much-needed hands-free time to cook, coffee or claim back some you time. In a breathable cotton and fully safety tested for peace of mind, plus certified hip healthy by International Hip Dysplasia Institute.
Available in a variety of different leopard print colours. All wraps are reversible so can be used as a solid colour too.
Discover The Chicago Loop breastfeeding cover
Bon + Bear’s stylish breastfeeding covers are perfect for the early days when learning to nurse, latch, pump and everything in between. Easy to pop on with no ties and in a breathable cotton.
Available in a variety of different leopard print colours.
Discover stylish breastfeeding accessories
Essentials for everyday motherhood to elevate your style. From essential scrunchies, muslins and nappy bag organisers featuring playful slogans to remind you that ‘You’ve got this!’.