Let’s set the record straight – I’m not pregnant again. But I do have a number of friends who ARE for the first time (yay!), and one in particular who has appealed to me for help with dressing her growing bump and changing frame. Specifically she’s asked for one really comfy, really chic, really wearable dress option.
Pregnancy is bizarre. One of my main challenges was being able to dress and look like ‘myself.’ I wanted to feel stylish, and not be stuck in weird stretch fabrics and cuts that I never ever would have worn otherwise. In other words, I didn’t really want to wear maternity clothes.
So… I didn’t. I decided early on that the whole maternity pants/belly band thing wasn’t for me, and just stopped wearing pants altogether and went with dresses around the clock. I bought a few inexpensive pieces from some of the chain stores, looking for empire waist silhouettes or straight cuts that I could belt or tie above the belly. I just bought the next size or few up (depending on the dress) in regular clothing sizes.
I rounded up some not-actually-maternity options above and tried to keep them all relatively affordable. Know that whatever you end up wearing, you’ll probably want to burn most of your ‘maternity’ wardrobe post-gestation, so check yourself before you wreck yourself, you know what I mean? (If you do have extra money that you haven’t already spent on newborn sailor suits, you can go directly to the Hatch Collection website)
Note that I haven’t personally test-driven any of these dresses but they should all be relatively safe bets, and will at least give you an idea of what to look for.
1. Printed v-neck dress, Gap. Seriously, check out the striped version in side-view and tell me this dress wasn’t built for pregnant women.
2. V-neck dress, H&M. Rowr.
3. Heritage animal-print dress, Banana Republic. Not totally my cup of tea but style it right and it gets a pass.
4. Silk waterfall dress, Madewell. Chic, really versatile (get those shoes, too).
5. Printed dress, Zara. The hemline is a little short but let’s face facts, you’re probably not an Amazonian model so it could work on you.
6. Solid wrap dress, Gap. I admit, the wrap dress is a bit of a snoozer for me but it’s definitely office-appropriate, the v-neck will highlight your burgeoning assets, etc.
7. Eagle print dress, Zara. Maybe?
8. Frances watercolour floral dress, J. Crew. This one is a total dream but WHOA sorry I just noticed the price tag. Still love it, though.
9. Wilfred Bisous dress, Aritzia. Zou bisou bisou, baby.
Go forth, shop, and most of all, be kind to yourself. I’ll put together another post next week that features my one truly favourite dress for pregnancy (and beyond) if you’re looking to rock a slightly edgier style.