11 Jun DRESSING FOR 2: MY GUIDE TO MATERNITY WEAR
Baby on board? CONGRATULATIONS! I remember how excited I was when I finally saw that second little line on my pregnancy test. The pure joy at realising my husband and I were going to start a family together, coupled with the fact I had no idea how hard the next 9 months would be, meant I was completely and totally overwhelmed with happiness. A million and one things running through my head, so much to organise, so much to learn, and so much to look forward to.
I’m now 34 weeks pregnant, so with 6 weeks to go, I thought I’d put together a few blog posts on some of the things I learnt throughout my pregnancy. Throughout the past 34 weeks I’ve trawled through numerous other blogs on pregnancy, and found most of it super helpful, the more you know, right? I’ve also had a lot of questions asked on Instagram, emails and in DM’s so hopefully this series will answer some of those questions for you, and will only add to the mountain of helpful info already out there. One of the most frequent questions I’ve been getting is around maternity dressing, and where I got my most useful fashion items from, so this post will go through my approach to dressing for two, and how I made the most out of my wardrobe.
Organise your current wardrobe
My first step was to reassess my current wardrobe. I was lucky that generally my wardrobe already consisted of lots of oversized shapes, and so in the first couple of trimesters I didn’t need to go out and buy a whole new wardrobe. When I started to get bigger, and I noticed some of my clothes were starting to not fit, I decided to go through my entire wardrobe, trying everything on in the process, and was really realistic about what was going to be comfortable and what I thought might fit me throughout and beyond my pregnancy. Anything that was either too fitted, already too uncomfortable, or unlikely to fit long term either got packed away, or donated to our local op-shop. I was savage in this process and ended up culling about 2/3 of my wardrobe, only packing away items that I absolutely loved, or knew I’d go back to.
wearing: H&M knit dress, Chloe ‘Nile’ Handbag, Karen Walker ‘Harvest’ Sunglasses, Adidas Campus sneakers
Work Wear That Works
On first learning I was with bebe, I made a quick visit to COS, to buy a few extra pieces that I knew would work throughout my pregnancy, would be comfortable through both summer and winter, and would be able to hide my growing bump for a little while – especially at work. It was also a nice excuse to buy some new things, so I wasn’t complaining! COS is my go-to generally for work wear that works beyond the office – I’ve been a fan of their timeless, oversized silhouettes for a while – I even have some items that I wore pre-pregnancy that I still wear now at 8 months pregnant, so I knew I’d be able to find a few key pieces that would work during, and post pregnancy. It also meant that I knew I wouldn’t be stuck with lots of classic ‘maternity wear’ that I’d likely never wear again.
The Magic Pants
Early on, I also bought myself a pair of THESE Sportsgirl crinkle crop pants. With their elastic waist, and wide leg these have been a staple throughout my pregnancy – I’ve even re-bought them so I have a back up pair in case anything happens to them! Of all my maternity items, I’d say I’ve gotten the most wear out of these, even though they’re not even technically mat-wear!
Go up a size
Generally I’ve avoided buying a lot of proper ‘maternity wear’, in favour of just going up a size in the brands I know I love and will wear a lot of. There are some items you can’t avoid buying (which I’ll detail below…) but otherwise, I’ve found buying things a size or two bigger has done the job for me, and has meant that I don’t actually view those items as strictly ‘maternity’, so I know I’ll wear them post bebe as well.
wearing: H&M knit jumper, Zara knit skirt, Oscar & Frank glasses, Puma sneakers
As someone who lives in jeans all year round, these were at the top of my ‘must have’ list. I’d heard mixed reports on maternity jeans in general, lots of people said they were gross, uncomfortable, and they hated wearing them, whilst others said they loved theirs and still wear them post-pregnancy. So finding jeans that I loved was a high priority for me, because I wanted to be able to wear them throughout my entire pregnancy, and possibly afterwards too. I bought a few different brands and styles to test them out, and ultimately have landed firmly in the ‘love’ camp. Here are my top 4 styles…
- The boyfriend jean: These relaxed boyfriend style jeans from Soon Maternity are perfect for off-duty casual, or dressed up with a blazer & boots. I went up a size because I wanted to make sure they were baggy enough around my legs, but this has meant they tend to fall down a lot and I spend a lot of time pulling them up. Still, I love having a baggy jean option, and these ticked that box for me. Plus, I’m only getting bigger, so there’s room for me to grow! Shop them here.
- The skinny black jean: I’ve long been a fan of Mavi Jeans, so I was really excited to see they have a maternity range. These were the first pair of jeans I bought, because I actually can’t live without black skinny jeans. I wear them everywhere, dressed up or down, and I’m pretty particular about my skinny jean fit. I’ve found these to be great – the perfect ‘skinny’ for my shape, although perhaps slightly long on me, I’ve considered getting them taken up because I tend to like my jeans as ankle grazers, but otherwise I love them. Shop them here.
- The cropped skinny jean: Another one from Mavi, these jeans are my go-to’s (as pictured in my leading blog image). I found a lot of skinny cropped maternity jeans were too wide in the leg for me, and just made me feel bigger. Then I found these. They fit perfectly, have allowed for my bump to grow, are the perfect length and fit for me, and don’t look at all like ‘maternity jeans’. The vintage blue wash with slight distress makes them perfect for casual weekend wear. Shop them here.
- The dark blue skinny jean: These Just Jeans jeans tick so many boxes. Comfortable. Budget friendly. Great length and shape. Plus they have an adjustable waist, so you can choose how tight you want the fit to be around your bump. Will be wearing these post pregnancy for sure! Just Jeans also often has some great sales, which is helpful when you’re on a baby budget! Shop them here.
wearing: COS oversized coat, Mavi Reina Ankle Maternity jeans, Love Stories Jumper, Karen Walker ‘Lunar Flowerpatch’ Sunglasses, Lacoste sneakers
People often say ‘tights are not pants’. But those people have probably never been pregnant. In my current wardrobe, tights are not only most definitely pants, they’re also the most comfortable form of pants I own. If we’re going out for the day, or night, I will try to step it up slightly from my leggings. But as soon as I get home, i’m in my maternity tights. If we’re walking the saus, i’m in my maternity tights. If i’m popping out for coffee, I’m in my maternity tights. If i’m working from home, I’m in my maternity tights. If we’re travelling, I’m in my maternity tights. You get the point – If we’re doing anything that doesn’t involve me trying to look like I have my life together, I am IN MY MATERNITY TIGHTS, and I am loving myself sick in those things.
There are a lot of brands and styles out there, and a lot of varied price points. I’ve heard people rave about certain more pricey brands, and I’ve been tempted to splurge myself. But after trying to justify spending over $100 on leggings just because Zoe Foster-Blake has them (Facebook ads were targeting me HARD at one point), I ended up buying THESE and I haven’t looked back. They fit over my bump, they are comfortable to throw on, and I got them when ASOS had a sale on, so that was a win. I wear them everywhere – and was even wearing them to bed for a little while, but more on PJs in a minute…
Basically, your life will change for the better when you embrace maternity leggings or tights. It doesn’t matter where they’re from. Comfort is key here.
I didn’t even think this would be a thing early on. I always wear big baggy PJs in winter anyway so surely they’d just fit the whole time, right? No. No they did not. In my early pregnancy it was summer, so wearing just a t-shirt to bed was great. Then it got colder, and in Melbourne, we don’t just ease into cold weather. One day it’s warm. The next it’s WINTER. So I was caught by surprise, and ended up wearing my maternity tights to bed for a few weeks before biting the bullet and investing in some Maternity Pyjamas. It was life changing.
My favourite pair of PJs have been from Peter Alexander, unsurprising if you’ve ever bought PA PJs before, because that man knows his sleepwear. We also share a fondness for sausage dogs, which may also inspire my love for the brand… I wanted to link to the PJs I bought (pictured below), but they look to have sold out sadly! I’m sure they’ll re-stock or bring out a new maternity range soon, or check in store if you’re near one. They’re slightly more expensive, but let me tell you – they’re worth it.
I also bought a few cheaper pairs from ASOS, because after wearing my PA ones for over a week straight I realised I was going to need a few back ups! ASOS have a good range, and I’ve found the tighter pant versions with wide waist bands are most comfortable to sleep in. I bought THESE and THESE, both pictured below, and they’re both super comfortable – I went up a size in both, because I wanted to make sure the bump fitted, and they’re both great (and currently on sale!)
Otherwise, my wardrobe has remained relatively the same as pre-pregnancy – as I said, it helps that I was a big fan of oversized items to begin with! And by topping up on a few key items, I feel like I’ve managed to keep my wardrobe up to date and comfortable, without going overboard. So with only 6 weeks until my little beb is due, I feel like I have plenty of every day items to take me from bump to baby and beyond.