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    Clothes & Pregnancy: What You Need To Know

    By <a href="http://princessperky.savingadvice.com/" rel="nofollow">princessperky</a>

    So your pregnant, your broke, and you really don't want to spend a lot for 9 months before the real costs of parenting get started.

    Never fear, no cost of pregnancy has to be that high. Buying a whole new wardrobe might seem like a daunting task but you don’t have to do it all at once, you have 9 months! Whatever you do, though, keep in mind you will not be able to wear the same clothing for those 9 months, so there is no need for top quality brand new clothing, you just need something serviceable presentable, and most importantly comfortable.

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    First stop, your own closet, pull out those pants you save for ‘bloated days’ or when you don’t want to be noticed, bring out any large shirts and large skirts, anything with elastic will work for several months. I have one of the ‘crinkle’ skirts that has a rope waistband and in the style of the time about 10 yards of fabric around; I could wear it all 9 months if I needed!

    Next stop by all other reports is your husbands closet, sprucing them up with accessories can supposedly turn his pants and shirt into a runway worthy outfit. I on the other hand always hated that advice, I am not a small nor short woman, and my husband wears the same size I do! (Non-pregnant that is) Not to mention I am accessory challenged. However, I could move out to extended male family for some things, and men are never insulted by being a larger size than a woman. For female friends and relatives try phrasing your request as a love of a particular shirt or pants rather than need for size. (As a courtesy though, refrain from exclaiming in public how you avoided maternity wear by using the friends larger size). If you happen to be reading this in the process of losing weight, save two or three pairs of pants for the future.

    For the later months ask any friends with children for loaners, most of us would gladly get our maternity stack out of the house for a few months. However never feel obligated to wear what you are given/loaned, every woman carries differently, and every woman has their own sensitivities when pregnant, wear what you like, hand back the rest (at the end of the 9 months). Also keep in mind for the future if you know a pregnant woman and you trust her to return the items (or don’t care) offer, many are afraid to ask a not so best friend for loaners.

    For things you can’t beg or borrow, scour your local goodwill, garage sales, consignment shops and clearance racks for a few pieces from the minute you get your positive test. While looking keep in mind a few things.

    Look for lightweight fabrics, the whole 'bun in the oven' is referring to how overheated pregnant women can get! We often hear how black is wonderfully slimming and many use it liberally when pregnant, but keep in mind black is heat absorbent, the last thing you need is more heat!

    Also consider your own personal feelings toward style, Day one you may be all gung ho on changing from ‘grunge’ to a new ‘little woman’ style pregnancy, but buying all out may leave you feeling stuck in a role for 9 long months (and they are long enough without the added trouble!). With few exceptions, how you dress non-pregnant should be how you dress pregnant. Though where possible look for timeless classics in your range so for your next pregnancy you wont feel locked in a time warp (or for your friends next pregnancy)

    Whatever you buy, consider you will be in and out of it 10-20 times a day to use a potty. Make sure it is easy on and off, keep all the things you learn in mind for next year when you potty train your new one! (Though a full-grown pregnant woman can get in and out of overalls much faster and easier than a toddler)

    <b>Pants</b>: Do not buy maternity pants! Sorry, but I have to say it, if you are less than 6 months along for your first you will not fit them at all and you will be left grabbing them as they drift down in the middle of meetings, dinners, paying bills, and worst of all when your hands are full of other kids! (Ok that would only be for your second and later)

    Do not believe the pants that say they grow with you, they don't, what they mean is kinda-sorta-don't-really-fit-now and kinda-sorta-won't-really-fit-then either. But then in all truth Maternity pants come in one of two styles, doesn't-fit-at-all, and kinda-sorta-but-not-really-fits.

    Maternity pants that button or tie is VERY hard to get out of when you are desperate to find a clean restroom on an 8-hour car trip. They are also difficult to get into when you have a kid in your arms because the kid took their shoes off in the car, and you don’t want your little princesses bare feet on the not so clean restroom floor that you finally found. (Yes this happened to me)

    And my number one reason for avoiding the whole maternity pant experience, you will not want to wear them after delivery, even though no amount of pregnancy exercise will allow you back into less than 6 month size within 48 hours. You will still want real clothes. You may drop as much as 25lbs during delivery, but your stomach will still be stretched to 9-month capacity. One or two days after delivery you will want to wear some ‘real’ pants and you will grab those ‘early days pants’ and they will still be much to small, you will try anyway, or else suffer the maternity pair with a sad look on your face. (As a medical warning it is unsafe to shove yourself into a top small pair of pants for vanity, yeah I did it). Even if you find and love a pair of maternity pants, I recommend buying a pair of large jeans for the week after, nothing makes a new mom look more radiant than the self-satisfied smile of ‘I fit in real pants’!

    Do look for several sizes of pants, I am most comfortable with 3 pregnancy sizes, One to wear early on, when I actually don’t want to give away the secret yet, one to wear in the ‘cute’ phase and one to wear when I am as large as a barn, and about as flexible to. (The cute and early pants I also wear on the way back down to non-pregnant size)

    <b>Shirts</b>: This is where you will want to buy something nice, look hard for a top that you feel good in (or 6 if you can). You can get away with wearing one or two pairs of the same jeans (or skirts) all the time if you add some variety to your tops, I recommend the tops that tie in the back, they really do ‘grow with you’ you can tie them up all snug in the first month and pretend to have a bump (ok for your second kid you probably do have one) and tie it a bit looser as you go on, for most of the pregnancy you will look adorable. The only caution is you may look a bit odd with the front of the shirt way lower than the back for a few months till your belly holds the shirt out enough, and conversely if you are tall like me, you will have the bottom of your belly showing in the 9th month no matter what you wear.

    Form-fitting shirts are often flattering, they give an adorable profile, accenting a cute bump and the growing chest, but they also tend to turn from form-fitting to restricting in less than a month. Aim for stretchy soft fabrics to keep the form, not the restrictions.

    If you currently wear cool t-shirts out and about, you can continue wearing them and possibly not even need a larger size, depending on how you wear a t-shirt. On the other hand if you never wear them except to sleep, don’t try to turn into a woman that does. You will regret it by month 9. While some maternity companies make adorable t-shirts with cute signs (‘baby on board’, or ‘bun in the oven’) you will not ever wear them after delivery so buy cautiously.

    <b>skirts</b>: I found a great skirt with my first pregnancy, it had a big old bulging space for a big belly but the elastic top kept the skirt up no matter what month I was in, I simply needed to wear a shirts long enough to cover up the loose fabric till I grew, and oddly the fabric didn’t bother me. I thought all maternity skirts were made that way, and boy was I wrong! Test out any skirt before you buy.

    Skirts are where the ‘grow with you’ may work, I say may because there are many manufacturers of maternity wear, and many styles of skirts, generally form fitting skirts will be risky, while lose and flowing styles more flexible (and more likely to last more than a month!)

    <b>Dresses</b>: I do not like to buy Dresses because they offer no flexibility; you cannot trade tops to fake a larger wardrobe. But if you are used to them, look for the same tie contraptions as in shirts to help make the fit last longer.

    <b>Other</b>:

    <ul><li> Coats: If you live in a mild climate you can honestly skip the coat, and have more fun with a pretty shawl or sweater, because you will be, in general, hotter than the locals. If you live in a colder area, you may want to get one, anything roomy will service fine. Borrow or buy cheap.

    <li> Stockings: They vary so greatly from maker to maker, that you may want to skip it and just paint the legs, or assume anyone looking at a pregnant woman’s legs wont be expecting much and enjoy the excuse to do what you want.

    <li> Shoes: Well they don’t make maternity shoes, but you will find your feet swell, you may consider buying a new pair, if you have to go ahead, they may still fit after delivery, many woman’s feet expand and stay that way. Mine on the other hand shrank. You just can’t be sure! But whatever you tend to wear, realize that by month 9 reaching your foot to tie a shoe will require some interesting contortions! Slip-ons are your friend.

    <li> Swimsuits: They are not a must, but if you plan on swimming during the last half of your pregnancy you will most likely find the fit of a maternity suit or a large sized one piece more comfortable and flattering than a two piece. Not many are built like models and enjoy the whole 9-month belly hanging out while waddling down the beach.

    <li> Underwear: You probably wont like maternity underwear as it is granny fanny to the extreme, unless you normally wear that style buy your own in a larger size.

    <li> Bras: You will be a size or two larger for later 9 months and shortly after delivery, so for comfort and support you need something that fits. I recommend a nursing bra, you do want to go the cheap breastfed route right? Buy one that fits and has room to expand. You may need two sizes one for now and one for the later months. Get help fitting, and buy the best, this is where your saved cash will need to go, your skin will be stretched enough from the extra milk, don’t risk them any further on a lousy bra!

    #2
    Re: Clothes &amp; Pregnancy: What You Need To Know

    ooh, thank you princess perky, very timely advice. I am now 3 months along, normal clothes fit but getting a little snug. I am hoping to avoid those horrible bow necked pregnancy shirts/dresses, etc. I figured if I raid DH closet, borrow from friends, and get some stretchy things from the larger ladies department I should be fine. My only concern is a blazer, as I have to be in court and they are not flexible on this point. I think I will try my local thrift store and look on ebay as well. Thank you again for all the great tips!

    Comment


      #3
      Re: Clothes &amp; Pregnancy: What You Need To Know

      For outside work, or "jean days", I wore a pair of larger mens bib overalls....I could wear them like jeans in cooler weather by topping them off with an overshirt. I also invested in a 3 pack of large men/tall mens tshirts. I think I got 3 shirts for around $12.

      Comment


        #4
        Re: Clothes &amp; Pregnancy: What You Need To Know

        I wore lots of mens clothes too! Hanes was great and comfortable!

        Comment


          #5
          Re: Clothes &amp; Pregnancy: What You Need To Know

          I never saw the point of maternity underwear - LOL. I just wore a lot of my regular clothes. Believe me I Was huge - I might of stretched out some shirts.

          I actually liked maternity pants though - I had some good comfy ones but definitely regular pants in larger sizes the first 3 months, the 2nd tri maternity pants, and the 3rd tri maternity pants as I kept expanding EVERYWHERE. But then again I was HUGE, some women don't get that big and can wear one pair all the way.

          I can't say I wore stockings while pregnant - I drew the line there - LOL. I remember I broke the stocking rule at work, was walking around in flip-flops. As expected, no one cared - hehe.

          I Actually have some really nice comfy maternity pants I still wear today. But that is a good point. I wore the first tri pants for a long time after. IT would have been depressing to wear real maternity clothes for so long - hehe.

          Comment


            #6
            A few more pointers on maternity clothes:

            1. Avoid the stores that sell maternity clothes exclusively (like Motherhood, etc). The clothes may look cute at first, but they're often very poorly made (seams that come loose, poor draping that make you look even frumpier than you feel already). They're never 'on sale' enough, and they usually don't last past a single pregnancy.

            JC Penney's and Sears have good sales, the clothes are made fairly well, and they have a liberal return policy if you find that an item just won't work (you probably will have to try a few different styles before finding one that works). I especially recommend the 'maternity duo' brand that they sell - my girlfriends and I have been passing along a few pairs of their pants for years now.

            Consignment stores and thrift shops are great for pregnancy clothes if they have a decent selection. But unfortunately, these can be pretty picked over (especially in my neck of the woods). I found I wasted more time, energy, and gas than the trips were worth.....

            2. Consider buying corduroy maternity pants, rather than the jeans or dress pants. They fit much better than jeans, look reasonably dressy for the office, and will stretch with you throughout the pregnancy (unlike the dress pants). Maternity jeans have a bad habit of being too tight for half the day, then way to loose for the rest of the day....

            3. Remember that your tummy will eventually take up a lot of square mileage in your T-shirts. And you'll find that shirts may just no longer cover enough once the baby drops in the last month. Buy them LONG. Old Navy has great pregnancy T-shirts (cute, lightweight but not too cheaply made), and they're easy to find in the clearance rack.

            4. Sketcher's shoes! The newer slip on styles will work instead of dress shoes, they are very forgiving on swelling feet (and can be worn without stockings or socks), most are closed-toe (a must at my job), there is no heel (a big deal if you plan to spend alot of time on your feet while pregnant), and they are well made enough to last even after the pregnancy despite some abuse. Flip flops are great, too....if you can get away with them at work.

            5. Try on clothes before you buy. I had to try on 4-5 items before one that actually fit well (it's amazing how differently women can 'carry' their babies!). This meant my Ebay purchases didn't pan out well......most of them were relegated to the back of the closet because I was uncomfortable in them.

            6. Yoga pants! Frankly, most pregnancy clothes aren't that comfortable. Yoga pants (especially the type you can get at Target for $15 a pair) fit snugly below the belly so you have no fabric over the belly (I'm definately a fan of 'under belly' rather than 'mid' or 'over belly' pregnancy styles), but fairly loosely through the thigh. They were my clothing mainstay during the evening and weekends!

            7. Bella bands. They look just like the belts from 'UNITS' 20 years ago. Very nice for trying to stretch the time you can wear certain pieces. But by all means just sew your own!! They run over $20 new......

            Comment


              #7
              When I found out I was pregnant I went to every thrift store in town and tried on and bought everything that was desent. No funky mumus with collars that could double as a bib. I then hit every thrift store in the town that I drove to for my Doctors appointment. (some stores had alot others not so much depending on the day, but I would regularly check back as they got more stock)

              I only had one new item for my entire pregnancy, that was shirt from Kmart that my husband bought me for our Anniversary. That shirt was what I wore to my Baby shower. I wore it with my Motherhood shorts that I loved that I got for $2.50.

              I worked and was a full time student while I was pregnant so I wanted more than one or two items. I had to have sleeves for work (short sleeves or long no flutter sleeves or tank tops). If I wore a dress I wore a pair of nylon short ($1 each) under it so that I did not have to worry about anyone seeing anything when I bent over, which I did alot for my job.

              My pregnancy clothing cost max $50 for everything and I often got comments on how nice I looked. When I was done I washed them well and packed them away, once I desided we were done with having babies I sold them all to consignment shops and at a rummage sale and so all my pregnancy clothes ended up cost maybe $25.

              I started to show really early 6weeks, so I when I shopped I would not pass up something that was big (think for later). Walmart has some great pregnancy clothing on their clearance racks, they are timed like their regular clothing so if you start shopping when you first find out you can sometimes get great deals for when you will need them later on.

              Underware, I hate maternaty underware, I bought one pair and tossed them out. I found that buying a larger sizes of the underwear I was already wearing worked alot better for me.

              Please realize with some planning, you can look really nice during your pregnancy without breaking the bank, even if you do not want to barrow clothing.

              Comment


                #8
                for pants,I just wore a lot of hip hugger jeans and pants. I wore them through 8 months when I got too big to zip them. The key was just finding shirts long enough to keep the belly covered, so I bought a bunch of extra long tank tops and t-shirts to wear under other shirts. It worked for me.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Yes you are right samson , during pregnancy lots of things are important and the maternity clothes are one from them . Really this post is very useful.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Trade! Seriously I got tons of free clothes this second pregnancy and am using the Belly Band right now on a trip. I am almost 6 months and my jeans are just not fitting finally. The belly band worked for 7 months last time until the end when I got huge.

                    I could last with jeans and regular clothes until almost the end last time, but what I found I gained weight was BRAS. Sigh. I have so many different sizes and types of bras. I couldn't use underwire last pregnancy. Then I got huge after giving birth I needed other sizes and then bigger while breastfeeding but not back to old size and bigger cup size. I breastfeed for 18 months so maybe that's part of the problem.

                    Also my post-pregnancy clothes still fit this time because I never lost my "20" I should have before getting pregnant.

                    This time my kids are exactly 30 months apart (2.5 years) so exactly opposite seasons winter and summer. My maternity clothes would never work. However being in the "know" now I got tons of free clothes from friends that I will return afterwards or hand off to other moms.

                    Start asking to borrow or get maternity clothes. Women who are done are HAPPY to give it away.
                    LivingAlmostLarge Blog

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by LivingAlmostLarge View Post
                      Trade! Seriously I got tons of free clothes this second pregnancy and am using the Belly Band right now on a trip. I am almost 6 months and my jeans are just not fitting finally. The belly band worked for 7 months last time until the end when I got huge.

                      I could last with jeans and regular clothes until almost the end last time, but what I found I gained weight was BRAS. Sigh. I have so many different sizes and types of bras. I couldn't use underwire last pregnancy. Then I got huge after giving birth I needed other sizes and then bigger while breastfeeding but not back to old size and bigger cup size. I breastfeed for 18 months so maybe that's part of the problem.

                      Also my post-pregnancy clothes still fit this time because I never lost my "20" I should have before getting pregnant.

                      This time my kids are exactly 30 months apart (2.5 years) so exactly opposite seasons winter and summer. My maternity clothes would never work. However being in the "know" now I got tons of free clothes from friends that I will return afterwards or hand off to other moms.

                      Start asking to borrow or get maternity clothes. Women who are done are HAPPY to give it away.
                      I got dear that what you want to say after pregnancy period the maternity clothes are useless , because there is no need of so much loose clothes of big size , you can offer them to some of your known like your friends of sister who is pregnant this will be a nice idea and after pregnancy you can regain your old shape by some exercise and changing your eating habits.

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