I’m nearly at the end of this pregnancy, and for the most part have loved dressing the bump. I had one meltdown around month 7 where “I had nothing to wear” and literally came to work crying. It can be really hard trying to look and feel good when your belly is growing at an exponential rate.
I figured I’d put together a couple of the things that have kept me sane (and gotten me out the door in the morning at a reasonable time) to hopefully help some other mama-to-be out there:
1. Invest in some great cardigans. And of course, shop your closet for the ones you already have!
First of all, can I ask: what is the deal with maternity cardigans?? Seriously, how are they different than non-maternity cardigans? At the beginning of my pregnancy I bought a couple pull over sweaters a size up, but those quickly became too short. If you’re going to buy any type of sweater, make it a cardigan.
I have been loving throwing a bright cardigan, or this Aztec cardigan over one of my maternity tees. They act as a great accessory to your basics. Which brings me to number two:
2. Buy the basics.
I basically live in these $10 maternity tees from Target. You can dress them up with a great pair of heels, add a cardigan or jacket over them, or lounge around the house in them. Throw on a fun necklace or scarf and you’re good to go. My maternity tees have by far been my most worn item.
3. Get a Belly Band!
I’m sure all of the pregnant ladies have heard of these, but it’s basically a strip of stretchy fabric that you wear over your normal pants, so that you can wear them unbuttoned. I bought this one and really love it.
I should mention that I hated the belly band in the beginning of my pregnancy, but now at the end I wear it quite regularly. You can’t even tell that my pants are unzipped in that photo, can you?
4. Sign up for emails, shop sales/consignment and borrow from friends.
If I’m placing an order at Gap or Old Navy, I wait until a 30% off code comes around. I’ve gotten a ton of name brand maternity wear from Gilt at discount. And I’m willing to bet you also have friends with a bag or two of maternity clothes collecting dust in their basement. Ask them!
5. Buy one or two trendy pieces.
For the most part I wore what I already owned, or bought maternity basics. But I decided to go out on a limb with these floral jeans. Pregnant women should get to have some fun too, right? And I don’t feel bad buying a pair of trendy maternity jeans because trends generally last one season anyways. So why not have fun and indulge in the trends while pregnant?
6. Shop free shipping and free returns.
It’s almost impossible to tell if something is going to look good on your pregnant belly over a computer screen. I bought a couple maternity pieces from one national chain only to receive it and have it all look awful. I didn’t realize that you can only return via the mail (even though they have stores in every mall!) so I had to pay return shipping. That really made me mad, and was the last time I purchased anything from them.
Instead, I’ve bought almost all of my maternity clothes from Gap, Old Navy and Target (Target doesn’t offer free returns, but you can return to any store). They all have $50 free shipping minimums, but that’s easy to reach. Plus you can just return the items that don’t fit for free!
7. Invest in one good pair of maternity jeans.
Seriously, a pair of great fitting jeans will make all the difference in the world. I bought these (from Gilt at about half price) and have seriously lived in them. They fit well, they’re comfortable and they make me feel good. And who doesn’t want to feel great in their jeans?