Monday, July 16, 2012

what i've learned:: rocking the bump




Over the past 8.5 months, I've really had a lot of fun with the challenge of styling my Silas bump. But I'm not gonna lie, it can be so frustrating and even tears-inducing to stand in front of the closet and feel like nothing fits your growing body anymore. There were several times I broke down in tears as I got used to my changing body and the way clothes fit me. I have slowly but surely discovered my style as a pregnant woman (which is really not at all different from my non-pregnant style!) and what things did and did not work. 

Before Silas arrives, I wanted to share what I've learned about maternity style. These are some things that worked for me and I hope they help you in rocking your bump! 


-Purchase a Bella Band (or a Be Band, or other knockoff). I personally like the Target brand- Be Band- the best and it's a bit cheaper than the Bella Band. This will help those jeans and shorts continue to fit when you can no longer zip or button them. I used mine up until about 32 weeks, when it became too much to squeeze into pre-pregnancy/non-stretchy bottoms. 

Bra extenders. These things were life-savers for me. Pregnancy does crazy things to your body and some days I could literally feel my ribs expanding to make room for baby. If you're not quite ready to purchase new bras (ie. the cups still fit, but the bra is tight), you can buy some bra extenders for about $8 at places like Target and Walmart. No more back-ache, hallelujah!

Work with what you've got. Especially in the first trimester, and even second trimester, there's no need to go out and purchase armfuls of maternity wear. At 37 weeks, I'm just getting to the point of consistently wearing the few maternity pieces I bought (I literally have one pair of maternity shorts and three shirts), but I'm still working with about 98% non-maternity clothing. Most of these pieces can be used post-partum and I'm looking forward to re-styling them for my non-pregnant bod!

Some ideas for using what you already have::

Maxi dresses that become too tight (or just don't fit right) can potentially become maxi skirts worn under the belly using these tricks. 

Short dresses you wear in the beginning can be worn as tops later--with shorts, leggings, skinny jeans.

Tanks and tops that are a bit too short can be worn under skirts that come up over the belly. 



I'm constantly flipping through my closet thinking "How else can I wear that besides the obvious?" If you do this, I promise you'll find some great "new" outfits. 

- Accessorize and Experiment. As with any outfit--pregnant or not-- a little accessorizing can go a long way in making you feel not so frumpy. A statement necklace, fedora, floral headband or punchy sandals give personality to your look. And don't be afraid to try new fads or trends. I think pregnancy is a great time to go out on a limb with style. People already think you're an adorable pregnant woman-- you might as well rock those colored skinnies or try out a happy color combo you'd never wear otherwise.



- Wear what makes you feel good. Don't try to squeeze into clothes that no longer fit. When I did this- not only was I uncomfortable, but I felt awful about my growing body. Make sure you are wearing clothes that don't pinch or suffocate you. What works in the beginning may not work as you grow, but be flexible.

For example-- I loved wearing belts to accentuate that belly during the first trimester and into the second. But the third trimester-- no way. The belt got lost between my boobs and belly and was too uncomfortable. Most of my belts have been relocated to a dusty shelf for now.

A few trends I noticed in my own maternity wear::

I often cardigans (short ones worked best!) and vests to frame and highlight my baby belly.



I developed an obsession for stripes on a baby bump and love how they accentuate that ever-growing curve.


As my belly got bigger, I became more and more fond of small prints. Florals, herringbone, and yes, stripes! I found that large prints made me feel huge and overwhelmed me, but small prints added the punch I wanted.



And when all else failed, I went to Pinterest and searched some variation of "maternity style" to gather inspiration. So many beautiful and stylish mamas out there!

So, friends, what worked for you in your own maternity style? Let's keep the tips flowing in the comments below!

  lindsay





41 comments:

  1. wow, I can't believe you only have three maternity tops! Right now, I'm 23 weeks and baby girl is small so most people can't really tell, but I can't stand wearing anything tight, including all my non maternity clothes!

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  2. how have i not known about bra extenders? omg...i'm going out to buy one today!

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    1. I didn't know about them either until I absolutely needed them and thought I was inventing this new thing in my head! :) A little Googling led me to Target and Walmart-- I got a 6 pack (I think) for about 8 bucks from Tarjay! :)

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  3. This is such a cool post, Lindsey! I'll admit, even though I am nowhere near the time to be having kids yet, I loved reading all the weekly bump posts because you've got such cute clothes! You really did rock the bump!

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  4. Great job at rocking that bump! I'm in my second pregnancy now, and I too bought very little maternity clothing and just used a lot of what I already had till it didn't fit. I also loved shopping consignment & clearance racks to find maternity stuff. it can be so expensive and I didn't want to spend a lot.

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    1. YES-- totally all about the clearance/consignment racks route! Good point, Andrea!

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  5. This is such a great post! I love your maternity style!

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    1. Thank you Ana! Glad you enjoyed the post!

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  6. you are such a cute pregnant lady and these are such good tips!

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  7. Thanks for sharing! I love the idea of small prints and stripes =) You look so beautiful and happy in all your photos Lindsay!

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  8. This is the cutest post ever with the cutest prego mama ever. Super helpful too. Saving it for the future! :)

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  9. Seriously cute bump pictures! :)

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  10. I think it helps that you have what I'd call a comfy, casual, chic style. Meaning that everything you wear (at least to my eye) is comfy yet chic looking. So even as Silas grows (oh my gosh, soon!) you can still rock the clothes you've got.

    I really think you look gorgeous, you've done a great job of rocking that bump!

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    1. I'd agree-- that's a pretty good description of my style. Definitely love being comfy/casual! :) Thanks Krysten! :)

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  11. Love all your tips & tricks Lindsay! This is my second pregnancy and with my first I used the Be Band all the way until the end and only ended up purchasing 1 pair of maternity jeans and 2 shirts, but it's just not working for me this time. I would have never thought to use a dress as just a skirt and use a tank top and belt to style it a different way. You have & continue to rock your bump beautifully and I love all your inspiration :)

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    1. You go girl! Hope your pregnancy is going well! :)

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  12. You are adorable and this is an AWESOME blog post about maternity style! I wish I'd had these tips when I was pregnant with my daughter two years ago. ;)

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  13. I'm super impressed that you made it that long in your regular pants and shorts! My bottom half expanded pretty quickly, so I actually didn't get much use out of my bella band. :( Plus, I've been unable to stand any sort of tightness anywhere since about week 12! If it's not cotton and stretchy, I'm not wearing it. Ha!

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  14. You are still absolutely ADORABLE! I love that bump! My best friend carried just like you, she stayed thin but had a big ol' watermelon belly. I get really wide and carry weird so while I don't show for awhile, it just look like I've been eating!

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  15. I LOVE your maternity style, well done :)

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  16. Linds- this is so great! Sending this to a few of my clients with new baby bumps :)

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  17. You always amaze me. You are so stylish preggo and not and come up with the cutest outfits. I on the other hand pregnant or not tend to look like the video people take to send in and win their friends/relatives a free make over. :) wanna come help me fix my wardrobe??

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  18. Wow, I will have to bookmark this for when I need it! Not yet though ;-)

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  19. you are the most syled prego mama ever!!!

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  20. You're adorable! I'm 12 weeks and look about 20 weeks along already. After your first baby you begin showing sooner and sooner. I'm not a stylish dresser especially while pregnant. I'm a yoga pants and Tshirt kind of gal when I'm not pregnant which hasn't changed now that I am pregnant. LOL! I prefer being comfortable rather than stylish and I've found that's just who I've always been. Jeans and tshirts or yoga pants and tshirts unless I'm going somewhere nice. I do plan to sew some maxi skirts for myself pretty soon, though. You're getting close to the end!! Went by so fast!

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  21. You're adorable! I'm 12 weeks and look about 20 weeks along already. After your first baby you begin showing sooner and sooner. I'm not a stylish dresser especially while pregnant. I'm a yoga pants and Tshirt kind of gal when I'm not pregnant which hasn't changed now that I am pregnant. LOL! I prefer being comfortable rather than stylish and I've found that's just who I've always been. Jeans and tshirts or yoga pants and tshirts unless I'm going somewhere nice. I do plan to sew some maxi skirts for myself pretty soon, though. You're getting close to the end!! Went by so fast!

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    1. Not always. I'm pregnant with my 3rd and didn't have any bump until week 24.

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  22. Not pregnant, but SO useful for when I get there someday. LOVE this post!!!

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  23. Great post, Linds! You are beautiful! I love you

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  24. you are still beautiful - before, during, and after pregnancy! I can't wait for you to hold that baby! Much love and prayers comin' your way!

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  25. What a great post!

    I won't be a Momma any time soon, but I've been storing away nuggets of information for the future. And, it sounds like you have some great advice in this!

    You look gorgeous. There is something so special and beautiful about getting to watch a belly grow as the little life inside you grows. =)

    So happy for you and your husband!

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  26. I pinned this for future reference! Do you have any tips on where to shop for cute cardigans, and bump flattering skirts and dresses (ie, long enough)?

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    1. Hi Trina! I shop at Target, Forever21, Old Navy, online shops like Ruche-- you can pretty much find cardigans that will work with the bump anywhere. I didn't buy any cardigans especially for the bump. Skirts with elastic waistbands are perfect since they can fit over top the belly as well as under the belly once they get too short. :)

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  27. great post. i had this awesome idea that i would be able to wear so much of my non maternity clothes while pregnant ... not so much. unfortunately, my chest has grown so much that even things that would easily fit my belly have zero extra room for my ever growing boobs :( im looking forward to nursing so i can be reminded of their purpose. it was very disappointing to me because i have always worn/bought very stretchy/flowy/roomie things and they just arent working. but leggings have been my #1 life saver. i purchase 1 good pare of maternity leggings and now i get a lot more use out of my closet. i am just hoping no one catches on to the fact that i wear the same pants 3 times a week :)

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  28. I've been with you all along and at 34 weeks so I've been following you on my maternity style! They are very similar :) I have a wider belly vs the all front belly so belts above the belly are still in my style. My husband was laughing at me this morning for complaining my maxi dresses shrunk because they are shorter (surely can't be the growing belly pulling it up....). I have only purchased one maternity shorts and one shirt the whole time because I learned from you and others how to use my current clothes. Those maternity clothes are SOO expensive and can make you look like a balloon now and balloon on you later. I loved learning how to style my ready made closet with this pregnancy (last pregnancy I bought into all the maternity clothes, lost 80 lbs after birth, so it wasn't even useable again). I do love layers and small prints too. I agree, I have a herringbone tunic that is not flattering anymore!

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  29. Such a beautiful preggo! :) Loved all your tips- now I need to know where you get tops long enough to cover that belly! I'm about 23 weeks along, and my tshirts/tanks that I thought were long aren't working so much. I'm with you on minimum maternity wear. I love wearing dresses as tops and leggings are stretchy and comfortable! Great post :)

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    1. Hey Sonja! I've bought most of my long tanks at Target (both maternity and non-- their regular tanks are pretty long and I still fit in them, somewhat. ;) Also, Forever21 is another place I've bought long tanks/tops.

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  30. Wow, I'm jealous! Everyone carries their babies so differently- It was full blown maternity clothes from 10 weeks on for me. My kiddo was very much titled forward!

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  31. I know this post is old, but GOODNESS you are the CUTEST pregnant gal EVAAAAAAA. I cannot WAIT to see your style with this pregnancy!!!

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