Being pregnant has definitely pushed my fashion and creative juices over the limited. The reality is that as a plus size woman, maternity options are very, VERY limited. Plus as a freelancer and future mom, budget is always a concern. Come on, who wants to spend a truck load of money on clothing you will only wear for only a few months. Well honestly I sure didn't so I decided to put my thinking cap on and get to work on some maternity hacks that so far have helped me stay fashionable and pulled together during this pregnancy.
FIRST – Shop your closet
One of the first things I did once my belly started growing was to shop and sort out my closet. I went through and pulled out all of the items I knew I wouldn't wear over the next 9-12 months and packed them up into storage. Yes, that silver metallic club dress with the cutouts was definitely one of them. lol! I also put away items that I knew would not stretch or expand. By cleaning out the closet I was able to see what I had and what I could make work. What I also loved about this process was that I was able to see what items I would need to buy in the near future. I had a few dresses and tops that would hold me over for several months but jeans were going to be a problem so I quickly added that to may shopping list.
Make it work until you can't anymore
Oh my goodness, pregnant women are so ingenious. I've met a few that have gone their whole pregnancy without investing in maternity clothing. In my best "Tim Gunn" voice, pregnancy is truly a make it work moment. Now ladies, if you can sew then amen to you because there are so many things you can do to expand your wardrobe. Now I can't sew but I did find these items to be a life saver and helped extend the life of some of my essential items.
OMG bra extenders saved my life! Very early into my pregnancy my regular bras started to suck the life out of me. My cup size wasn't so much the problem as was my band size. I wasn't at that point ready to spend a ton of money on new bras so thankfully I found these beauties. I purchased some on Amazon and then a few additional ones from Lane Bryant. The quality on both of them are amazing and they have really helped give my girls some breathing room.
Unfortunately for me my hips spread very early on in my pregnancy so that made my favorite jeans impossible to keep closed. These little bad boys definitely saved the day. Now I know that some people use a hair tie to achieve a similar effect but for a few dollars I was able to get something a little more professional looking. For some women this is a long term fix but for me it only lasted the first few months before I need to invest in regular maternity jeans.
Looking to hide that waist extender, those unbutton jeans or just looking to smooth out that not so round bump, well a belly band is the key. I got my band early on in my pregnancy and I will say I love it. I particularly love the Belevations brand since it goes up to size 22. I purchased an XL and I will say I am sure it will last through my entire pregnancy.
Shop the sales!
Ladies, while it might seem wasteful to invest in clothing you will use for only a few months when you are getting them at a bargain it is almost seems silly not to. Plus maternity clothing is so comfy! Here are a few of my favorite places to shop and some of the deals I've picked up so far.
Ok so Motherhood Maternity is my go to for staple items but in particular jeans. You are not going to find fabulous trends here but if you shop the sales you can get great jeans for under $20. They are even running an amazing sale today with items starting off at $5. Can't really beat that can you?
Target and Old Navy have a very limited plus size maternity section, however, their regular size department does go up to a size 20-22 and includes so many cute items that are currently on sale. I spent $50 last week on three dress and 2 tops. Not a bad deal if I say so myself.
Last but not least, don't give up on regular clothing!
Yup, I said it. While the temptation of buying cute maternity clothing is real there are still so many amazing and beautiful plus size options that will work for you now and after baby. Before you drop all of your dollars in the maternity section definitely check out some of your favorite plus size brands to see what they have that will work. You will be surprise with what you find outside of the traditional maternity section. Here are a few of my top favorites at the moment.
So there you have it ladies, my top picks for looking fashionable and pulled together without breaking the bank. What are some of your hacks?