No need to say how over the moon you are as soon as you discover you are expecting. Joy, excitement, fear. But soon, la question se pose. What am I going to wear with all this extra weight?
To your surprise, you’ll quickly discover that there’s not much choice for maternity wear. Plus, you feel sick, sometimes down, tired … So the last thing on earth you want is to look like an elephant. Pas de panique, here are some tips to be stylish while you are preparing to welcome baby. The key is to find some clothes that are at the same time comfortable, elegant, of good quality but also not too expensive.
- Leggings are an essential part of your maternity wardrobe. No need to run to JoJo Maman Bébé and pay something like £20 for such a basic. Head to shops like Primark and buy some pairs a size up (£3 each and you won’t feel guilty to recycle them at the end of your pregnancy). It will do the job with a nice top or a tunic. Dress them up with a pair of boots if you don’t want to look too casual at work or just enjoy with comfy pumps at home (or slippers if you don’t want to bother!).
- Specialised shops such as Mothercare or Jojo Maman Bébé are good for classic pieces such as bras, stripy tops and nice cotton dresses (especially if you want to breastfeed when baby arrives). However, the style can be quickly boring. I like strips, but trop c’est trop!
- Next step for you is then to invest in very good quality pieces that will last you forever and make you feel gorgeous. Isabella Oliver is definitely the best. I know what you’re going to say, ‘a bit expensive for me.’ On average £100 an item, it’s becoming more than an investment. Go on Ebay for some aubaines. I found some brand new dresses up to 70% off full price.
Les bonnes affaires du net: I bought this striped dress for only £35! Stylish, smart and comfortable.
Their rushed dress is a must have as well. I can’t tell you how many compliments I had while wearing it. Choose the colour that best suits you.
The secret to get it as a top price is to check daily new listings on Ebay. And don’t forget charity shops. Some people are not scared to spend a lot of money for something they wear only once or twice. I found a T-shirt from Isabella Oliver that I only paid £6. I was wearing it all the time and it still looks immaculate.
- Mamalicious is also a brand I loved wearing. Not too expensive (but here again, look on Ebay! I bought some brand new dresses for less than £10). They have feminine dresses and nice stuff for special occasions like weddings.
- You may be surprised that I talk a lot about websites. Unfortunately, many shops only offer maternity clothes sur le net! If New Look or Next are amongst your favourite shops, don’t bother heading off to your local branch in hope to find la perle rare. You won’t find anything. Check their website instead. Some other shops like Asos offer you free delivery and return. I personally hate shopping online as I want to see what it looks like on me before taking the plunge, but I had a go at shopping with Asos and I easily returned some dresses.
- And what about your favourite shops that don’t offer maternity clothes? La solution: still check their stock, as some stretch cotton clothes may as well do the job. I bought this floral inspiration dress in the Oasis sales (I love this shop!) for £10 and I was wearing it every single week, literally.
- Accessorize your outfits. Some days, you will feel Bof, so go and treat yourself. A pair of nice earrings or a necklace for £10 and you will feel better. Or get a new bag, preferably of a light colour, as a lot of maternity clothes are often quite plain. It will give an edge to your ensemble. Plus, the good thing about it? It doesn’t make you feel fat. No rush or disappointment at the fitting room either. Always good pour le moral.
- N’oubliez pas les chaussures! A good pair of pumps will be great. Make sure you choose some solid ones with strong soles. TK Maxx is a great place. You have good brands such as Dune, Clarks and others for an affordable price.
- Treat yourself as well with a new body cream. Whatever your budget is, it will make you feel incredible and fresh straight away. And paint your nails. It’s an easy way to feel fabulous. But if you feel a bit naughty, you can even have them done at the salon.
- Pour finir, the top item depending on the season. En hiver, buy a cape, instead of a maternity coat. Some of them are so expensive and you will only wear it for 6 months maximum. En été, get a collection of maxi-dresses. They are still the trend this year and elegant. Wear it with a nice pair of sandals or wedges, depending on your mood or the state of your feet! Go for safe colours like black, dark blue or grey, but buy colourful patterns if you feel more confident.
Psst, look around you. Surely, you have some friends, neighbours, family members or colleagues that have been there before you and would be more than happy to pass on some clothes they don’t use anymore. The same tip works when you have a baby. People gave me so many beautiful clothes for Baba, I could only keep some of it. Seriously, if it continues, he will have more clothes than Maman!
I hope these tips will be useful. Please comment if there is something else that made you feel fabuleuse while you were expecting.