Fashion Friday (3/12/21)

It’s Fashion Friday, y’all!

We all know that I love me some mom clothes. I am completely unashamed at the fact that my fashion revolves around easy-to-wear, easy-to-clean, easy-to-chase-my-toddler-in outfits.

Today’s the day to talk about the pre-mom fashion, though. Dressin’ that baby bump in maternity style!

Let me get this out of the way right here, right now. Every bump is beautiful, and no two tummies are going to look alike. What works for ME may not work for you, and that’s ok.

But now that I’ve said that? Y’all. My bump with EV was p-r-o-b-l-e-m-a-t-i-c. I have a naturally small waist that took forever to ‘pop’. I carried EV low, so it looked like I had a growth. It was frustrating and hard to dress, because as an expecting mama, you want to dress that bump!

Here’s some of the things that are pregnancy essentials for me:

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Shapewear, y’all. I wore an off-brand with my first pregnancy. The tags are long gone, and I bought them at Ross Dress For Less, so it’s safe to say they were never a ‘known’ brand to begin with.

I LIVED by those suckers. Longline boyshorts with support all the way up my ribcage, they’re a beast to put on. But they supported my back and somehow shaped my awkward bump into a normal preggo belly, so I didn’t even care.

Nowadays, there’s such a thing as maternity shapewear, and while people can say all they want about ‘every body is beautiful’ and ‘no one should pressure expectant mamas to look a certain way’, that doesn’t change how pregnant mamas FEEL about the way they look. Trust me on that. I believe all those body positive things, too, but when my pregnant self looked at my not-so-shapely baby bump through a haze of hormones and years of self-esteem battles, none of that mattered.

I’m here for the shapewear, y’all.

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Ok, leggings aren’t a stunning new discovery, but don’t shoot me yet.

Everybody wants a pair of the PERFECT leggings, and most of my friends spend small fortunes on just that. I’m looking at YOU, Lululemon. Darn you and your perfect butt-sculpting leggings.

I was NOT willing to spend small fortunes on leggings. All I knew is that I wanted a waistband that I could hike up to my neckline. These babies from Walmart are super cheap (less than $7), super soft (think Lularoe soft, without the MLM drama), and last forever.

I’m still wearing them, and my kid is three.

They’re my actual favorite, y’all. And for someone who becomes about three billion degrees warmer than normal as a pregnant person, wearing something soft, comfy, and cheap instead of ACTUAL PANTS becomes supremely important.

Oh, and also? I love me some super stretch.

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I wear these tank tops from JCPenney pretty much every single day, and I have for YEARS. I’m naturally curvy, so if something fits me in the waist, it’s going to be indecent at the top. I got fed up with that ish and started wearing stretchy tank tops underneath all my shirts, and the habit caught on.

Now, this does NOTHING to help the fact that I’m a thousand degrees as a pregnant person. More layers are kind of the anti-remedy for that. But it covers the girls and keeps me from breaking laws of indecency in at least 17 states, so there’s that.

On the plus side, I can work with non-maternity shirts and tops a lot longer by using these. I can wear a button-up open or knotted above my bump, or just stretch a couple more wears out of a suddenly-too-small t-shirt.

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I found the BEST lightly padded, super-supportive sports bras from Victoria’s Secret while pregnant with EV. And like every good and perfect clothing item, they were mysteriously discontinued.

OF COURSE.

The bra pictured above is the next generation of those bras, from what I can gather. I’m not sure. I haven’t tried them, and the internets give them mixed reviews, so I’m not going to say that these are it. I AM going to say that you need to get yourself a good sports bra. It’s not a want, honey, it’s a need. You’re probably going to hate underwire, but still desperately need support for your giant pregnancy boobs. And if you’re like me and most other pregnant people, you’re also going to be super sensitive and need something padded.

Just, you know, keep all that in mind. And if you find the perfect, unicorn bra, please report back.

Because wearing non-maternity clothes as much as possible so that I can spend way too much on cute little newborn outfits is kind of my thing, I stretch my options out by choosing pieces I can adapt to post-pregnancy wear.

And who am I kidding? I’m still wearing most of my pregnancy kimonos.

Anyway, these are the BEST for pregnancy-to-mommy wear. In my head, they look totally put together (instead of a stained mama tee). I can also attest to how nursing-friendly they are, because I sure did tuck my kid under my kimono to feed her in public.

I had close to zero nip slips, but that could also be because my kid was a champion (read – GREEDY AND NEEDY) nursling and never let my nip far from her sight.

Anyway.

I know that there are a thousand different opinions about maternity clothes, and a thousand different reasons to make the choices you make in buying for yourself. And let’s be honest – pregnancy is an exciting time and a reason to celebrate! Those ‘baby on board’ t-shirts are fun to wear and share. But as a gentle reminder, a t-shirt with another mama-slogan can be just as fun – and it’s wearable after baby is born.

For me, the biggest takeaways in dressing my bump were simple:

  • Invest in good foundation-wear (shapewear and bras).
  • Focus on pieces you can transition to non-maternity wear (or use pieces that you already have. You might be surprised at what you have in your closet that works well for the bump!)
  • Don’t spend a lot on maternity-specific clothes. Truly, the timeframe you’ll need them is SO limited.

Happy Friday, friends!

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