Aw, so sweet!

By Blake Bakkila
February 28, 2018

Breastfeeding is becoming more and more visible—and now Gap has embraced it as well. The retailer's latest ad campaign features a mom in a Gap T-shirt nursing her toddler son.

As inspiring as the image is, the ad was totally unplanned. It only came about when model Adaora Akubilo asked to take a break from the shoot to nurse her 20-month-old son, Arinze.

RELATED: This Mom Breastfeeds While Doing a Yoga Handstand—and Her Photos Have Sparked Controversy Online

In an interview with the Chicago Tribune, Akubilo shared that she and Arinze were both booked for the shoot with photographer Cass Bird. At one point, Akubilo informed the crew that her son needed to be fed. “I let them know,” she told the Tribune. “They’re like, ‘Oh, my God, of course it’s okay, go ahead.’ And they said, ‘You can do it right here.’”

Cass was inspired by the sweet candid moment between mother and baby, and asked if the crew could capture the scene. On February 22, Gap unveiled images of Akubilo breastfeeding in a cotton tee.

Akubilo said she was thrilled to see the campaign. “I was so happy,” she said in the interview. “I felt it was affirming … I’m so comfortable just nursing my son anywhere. If my son needs to nurse, I’m going to nurse him.”

She also expressed her gratitude to Cass in an Instagram photo with her little one, writing, “@cassblackbird thank-you for going with the flow and boldly capturing this real moment for @gap. Nothing but love.”

Thank-you @byalisonbowen for featuring my son and I in your @chicagotribune article (click in bio link to read) to offer insight into an important issue. I had the desire and determination to breastfeed for as long as possible but the reality is if I weren’t in the industry that I’m in, I believe that fulfilling this goal would’ve been challenging or near impossible. For instance, I had the unique opportunity to work with my son for @gap so I didn’t have to worry about expressing. When I needed to nurse him photographer @cassblackbird went with the flow capturing the beautiful moment, which made me feel empowered and loved. Friends of mine who are working moms and other working moms in various industries find that they have to fall short of their goals because they don’t have a private area to pump in order to maintain their milk supply. Not only that they aren’t given adequate number of breaks in order to pump. These mothers who need to work and nurse need all the support and love they can get. When my son was born the hospital staff provided me with information about my rights as a mom in the workplace. Please learn about the workplace laws in your state and pass the information along to your friends, your sisters, co-workers, bosses, and moms who you love as a show of support. (Click on About on my Facebook page @adaoraakubilo to learn about the law for nursing moms in Connecticut where I’m from). #normalizebreastfeeding #freedomtoexpress #knowyourworkplacerights #lovebygapbody #gap #love

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Besides being a model, Akubilo has used her platform to advocate for better job conditions for new working moms who choose to breastfeed.

“These mothers who need to work and nurse need all the support and love they can get,” she captioned a photo from the campaign. “When my son was born the hospital staff provided me with information about my rights as a mom in the workplace. Please learn about the workplace laws in your state and pass the information along to your friends, your sisters, co-workers, bosses, and moms who you love as a show of support.”