Maternity Wear, pregnancy

Autumn Maternity Wear Update

I’ve written before about how I’m handling maternity wear as my pregnant progresses, and I thought I’d share some of my thoughts about transitioning from summer to autumn weather with my maternity wardrobe. Because I’m going to go from autumn maternity wear into winter postpartum wear, I’ve chosen to create somewhat of a capsule wardrobe of clothing that will work for my largely-casual winter postpartum wardrobe, and transition my autumn professional maternity wear as easily as I can, using layers.

For casual wear, my wardrobe is transitioning from largely based around maxi skirts and dresses to being based around the standard formula of leggings paired with an oversized sweater. I love the H&M Mama leggings. The regular leggings are a bit thin, and occasionally get a tiny bit sheer, but not badly (and I think I’m the only one who notices). But they’re soft and stretchy. And for a thicker pair of leggings, I like H&M’s fleece maternity leggings. I also have a pair of cozy leggings from the Target brand A New Day that are stretchy enough to fit over my bump, but will transition seamlessly to postpartum as my bump goes away. My favorite oversized sweaters are these tunics from Amazon. They’re long enough to cover my butt and not make me feel like I’m not wearing trousers, and large enough to go over my belly without being sloppy. And because they’re not specifically maternity sweaters, they’ll also work postpartum. I have them in four different colors and wear them almost every day I don’t go into the office.

For the office, I mostly dress the way I have through most of my pregnancy, with the exception of keeping my cardigan on when it’s chilly outside, and adding tights. I love the H&M Mama tights, particularly the 200 denier ones. They’re nice and stretchy and a nice texture that doesn’t feel binding as the day goes on. And they go over the bump, which is my preferred maternity style. But on very chilly days, my other go-to outfit is a sweater dress and tights (it’s basically the office-appropriate version of an oversized sweater and leggings). I’ve found that the Uniqlo sweater dresses, which were already in my wardrobe from a couple years ago, are forgiving enough to fit over my 34-week bump, and are very cozy and comfy.

The one thing I haven’t sprung for is a maternity-specific coat or jacket. I’ve mostly been using shawls as a forgivingly-sized warm layer, over a sweater, but I have determined that my winter coat from last year will fit over my belly, at least mostly. It was a little unpleasant to have to walk to work in the rain two days this week without a rain jacket that closed, but it wasn’t horrible. I’m waiting until after I have the baby to get a new coat so I can look at coats that pair well with baby carriers.

So that’s how I’ve made a few adjustments to my wardrobe as I roll into the home stretch of my pregnancy during cooler weather, without needing to buy too many more maternity-specific pieces. At some point, I’ll go through and figure out exactly how much actual maternity clothing I bought and go over what was necessary vs. extraneous for me.

Photo courtesy of Patti Barker 

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Maternity Wear, pregnancy

Maternity Wear: Definitively Bumpin’

Well, my bump has definitively popped (for a couple months now) and I’m at the point where most of my non-maternity clothes really don’t fit. So I thought it was time for a maternity wear update! First of all, I was very lucky to have friends who had lots of maternity wear to share. One friend even gave me the traveling box of maternity wear that is shared among her coworkers, so I have a big stash of things to try. Unfortunately, most of it seemed geared towards cooler weather, so I hadn’t really broken into the box much, especially while regular t-shirts and tank tops would stretch to accommodate me. But since I started feeling uncomfortable in regular shirts, I’ve been really happy to find some maternity tanks and tees. And another friend gifted me some nursing bras and maternity tank tops.

So I think first of all, I should bring up my personal maternity style, as it’s evolved. Because I’ve had body-image issues in the past, I was really unsure how I would react to my growing body and belly. I assumed that I would want figure-hiding, flowing styles, like the tunics I talked about last time, or the empire-waist maxi dresses I bought in the second trimester. Surprisingly enough, I found that I started gravitating towards clinger styles, like bodycon dresses and ruched t-shirts. It turns out, I really like the way my body looks now that I’m obviously pregnant, so I like showing off my belly.

To that end, I’ve been loving the maternity t-shirts and tank tops from Old Navy and Liz Lange Maternity for Target that I got from friends. I wear one of my black maxi skirts with a maternity tank top or t-shirt and I feel like a pregnant goddess. I’ve also found two dress styles from Daily Ritual on Amazon that are very flattering. This one has sleeves and this one is sleeveless (although, heads-up, it is not really a bra-top dress and just has an extra panel of fabric in the top). They’re a slightly thinner material, but they’re not see-thru, miraculously don’t seem to show pantie lines, and are really comfortable during the late-summer-early-fall weather we’ve been having. I’ll probably add a heavier cardigan or pullover for later in fall, and maybe some leggings.

So those are my main updates to my maternity wardrobe. It’s not much, because I bought plenty of versatile pieces earlier on, but it’s been nice to get a few more things as I learn my personal pregnancy style.

Maternity Wear, Second Trimester

Maternity Wear: The Transitional Phase

At 16 weeks pregnant, I’m not really big enough to look pregnant, but I don’t really fit into most of my pants and skirts. At about 10 weeks, I realized that my normal work skirts and my jeans were both uncomfortable by the end of the day, so I started looking at maternity wear. Right now, I’m wearing a mix of maternity wear and regular clothing that fits my body right now. Here are some of my favorite pieces:

  1. Bras: The first thing I noticed when I got pregnant is that, almost immediately, my boobs got bigger. I went from a scant 34C to either a generous C or maybe D. At the same time, in the first trimester, they were sore pretty much all the time, and I knew they were not going to tolerate being squished into my normal bras. Luckily, my mother-in-law has always gotten me something called a Coobie Bra for Christmas each year. It’s a cute, soft bralette-style bra, but with cup inserts so it gives a little more shape. I looked at the Coobie website and found out that they have a wider-strapped version, called the Coobie Comfort Bra, that comes in S-M-L sizing, instead of traditional band-cup sizing, so it’s a bit more forgiving. I could wear the same size for my original breast size as my new, larger size. So I got two of those and have pretty much been wearing them exclusively.
  2. Roll-waist black maxi skirt: I seriously live in this thing on the weekend. It has so much cat hair on it that I tend not to wear it when I’m going out with people unless it’s freshly washed. I’ve actually had this skirt for years and it’s getting a bit threadbare. I got it from Target, but it doesn’t look like they have anything similar right now, so I’ll probably get something like this to replace it.
  3. Yoga pants: When I think of yoga pants, I don’t think of leggings. I think of flare-leg black pants with a waistband that can be rolled down or worn high. The pants I have now are the Athleta High Rise Chaturanga Pant and I’m pretty much wearing them if I’ve been in the house for more than five minutes, unless I’m already wearing the skirt I mentioned before. I change into them every evening after work and tend to wear them on lounge-around-the-house days.
  4. Maternity jeans: I’ve always kind of hated jeans. I’m just not a fan of the feeling of the waistband, plus the style for jeans these days is tighter than I like. I started wearing maternity jeans practically as soon as I got them at 10 weeks and haven’t looked back. I have the Motherhood Maternity Secret Fit Straight Leg Jeans and they’re pretty comfortable, for jeans. As the weather warms up, I’ll probably switch to skirts, dresses, and linen pants, though, as I generally boycott jeans in the summer.
  5. Dresses: While a lot of my dresses have defined waists and/or are made of materials without a lot of give, I do have two styles that I’ve been loving. The first is an A-line dress style from Land’s End that I’m pretty sure has been discontinued, but is great for work. For weekends, I like Uniqlo Bra-Top dresses.
  6. Maternity pencil skirt: I got a black maternity pencil skirt from Motherhood when I was around 10 weeks and it was probably my smartest purchase yet. It’s professional, but it doesn’t get pinchy after a day of sitting. I wear it at least half the time at work, paired with a flowy tunic blouse and an open-front cardigan.
  7. Flowy tunic blouses and open-front cardigans: The blouses mentioned above are ones I got off Amazon, here, and because my office is perpetually freezing, year-round, I bring one of these to work to keep warm.
  8. Workout gear: I’m lucky in that I’m not big enough to need new workout clothes yet, but I have to make a special shout-out to the Athleta Salutation Tights, as they’re my favorite bottoms for barre and yoga.

These are the pieces I’ve been relying on to get me through this phase. I can still wear most of my t-shirts and blouses right now, though I’m sure that will start changing quickly soon. I’m definitely wearing more maternity clothing that many people at this point, but I work in an office and can’t just rely on my lounge clothes all the time, and I find that when I try to stretch a lot of my non-maternity clothing, I end up uncomfortable by the end of the day. In the end, I’ve decided it was worth it to pay for a few early maternity items for the sake of comfort, but I’m still pleasantly surprised by how much of my regular wardrobe is flexible, given my love of fit-and-flare silhouettes.

NB: Links are provided for reference. I don’t use affiliate links on this blog, nor is this post sponsored or influenced in any way by any relationship with any of the companies mentioned. All thoughts are my own.