When I found out I was pregnant first of all momentarily freaked out and immediately after I thought: "OMG what am I going to wear????" The good news is, for the first five months you don't really need to worry about it, I mean you could get all technical about it, but I was determined A) not to spend a fortune on maternity wear B) invest in only a few key items at the right time. So with the exception of a couple of new non-wire bras (we'll talk about those in a moment) for the first 20 weeks or so, you can comfortably wear your own clothes. After that it gets a bit tricky and I can only suspect trick-er as weeks add up!
So if like me you get a little stuck for ideas on how to look chic and pulled together throughout your pregnancy (like Claudia and Stella above), WIT comes to the rescue with a weekly post on all things spring/summer pregnancy-style related. Sorry non pregnant WIT readers, you can ignore us on a Friday or save for a later date!
Just one note before we start: I knew nothing about maternity stuff, pregnancy weeks and elasticated waistbands, I still know nothing about babies, but I know fashion, shopping and for the past five months I've been reading websites, checking out blogs, trying on jeans, testing creams, speaking to mum-friends and have built a wealth of maternity-style knowledge. So don't email me if you want to know how to settle a crying baby (I've just learnt that word ;-) do email me if you want to know the best maternity underwear!
To sum up so far (but to be continued..)
Week 4/8 - You will need a new bra. My breast grew overnight. Don't do what I did and go to get measured at your local M&S... it's the most depressing experience, and I know it's not just me... my sister had the same one. My lady said something like: "You could get a DD cup but I would get ahead of yourself and get and F or a G because you will get much bigger". At that time I was 4 weeks pregnant and I really didn't want to know- thankyouverymuch. If you have large boobs there is no bra that will hold the fort, I've tried. It's easier, cheaper and makes you look much smaller if you opt for sports bras. Yes they are not pretty, but they hold everything into place and you will look better/smaller in clothes (which is the end to our mean). They say non wired bras are better for you (something about milk gland being squashed), I chose to believe and not to question and just went with that. I do however believe in natural fabrics, so if you can go for 100% cotton or breathable fabrics.
I prefer racer backs styles with large shoulder straps and no cups like this one and found that John Lewis has a great selection
Week 8 onwards - I was determined not to run the risk of getting stretch marks so I would suggest to start slathering you torso from an early stage (neck-to-bum including back area) with a lovely cream or body oil. I tried most "pregnancy" brands and although I'm sure they are all great, most smells made me really nauseous. For me the scent-free formula's worked best.
I absolutely love the Burt's Bees range and especially the Mama Bee Belly Butter. I use it in the morning because it absorbs quickly and I can get dresses straight away. It has a subtle smell and lasts about 2 months so it goes a long way.
Burt's Bees Mama Bee Belly Butter £13.95
At night I prefer a body oil, its a pampering and relaxing night time routine. I love ESPA Nourishing Body Oil, because it doesn't have a strong smell and it's not too sticky.
(but check with your GP before using any essential oil based products)
The skin on my face suddenly got very dry and my moisturiser was just not cutting it, so I got a little extra help with the aid of REN's serum to be applied under your regular moisturiser. It's worked a treat and again, the smell is subtle and delicious.
N.B I didn't know this, but you must check that your current face creams, detergents and especially essential bath and body oils etc.. are not containing harmful ingredients for your baby. I found the whole thing very alarming but you can find some useful info here Safe skin care during pregnancy. I found that Weleda and Ren all have selected products that are safe to use during pregnancy. In doubt always check with your GP or with the cosmetic company you are using.
Week 17/20 - You will need to up a size or two in new undies. You could wear the ones you already own, but they will start to dent into your sides, also my thinking is that I will want to burn the lot when I'm over the 9th months... and my own ones are so pretty. So I am not ashamed to say I went to Primark and I bought a pack of 6 100% cotton simple black briefs for £3.00. I will up a size every time I need to and won't think about it twice to throw away the old ones. (Save the dosh for that ANYA HINDMARCH Oakley nylon baby bag £450).
Week 20+ - I had planned on an all-dresses pregnancy, but I now realise that living in London that was a little too optimistic. By your 5th month you will need a couple of new pairs of trousers- I tried doing the home-made elastic band thing on my own jeans, but if you are sitting at the computer most of the day they're just uncomfortable. After careful consideration I opted for 2 pairs that I can adapt transform with different shoes, layered t-shirts and over sized knitwear.
1 x Chinos
1 x Leggings
TOP SHOP MATERNITY BRUSHED CHINOS £28.00
TOP SHOP MATERNITY BRUSHED CHINOS £28.00
I am going to wear with my grey t-shirts dressed up bright necklaces and fab sandals or heels. I can't wait to wear with my Stella neon Sandals! (remember those? Bought them when I had just found out I was pregnant and knew that shoes was the only thing I could still go a little wild with)
If it's going to be a legging, make it a cool one! This pair looks great on, it's very slimming and so comfy. I'm going to wear with over sized fine knitwear (tip is: make sure it covers your bum!) and my selection of ballerinas.
** A note about maternity jeans **
I am going to do a separate "tried and tested" post about maternity jeans- they cost a small fortune and I think unless you have a winter pregnancy, you can survive wearing your own for the first five or six months and then live without for the next three or four.
And finally... here's a little something I bought because it was pretty and I can see myself wearing it with a bump as soon as the weather gets better and hoping to look a little like this ;-)
Grey jersey HM dress in store now £18 approx
See you next week with my next WIT's Baby Fridays post!