My thoughts on clothes these days

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Why not start with something simple?

This is what I'm looking like these days (last night, actually):

24 weeks

24 weeks

As you can see, I've "popped." My belly feels enormous, though it's actually not all that big yet. Watching the near-daily changes in my body has been a really interesting process, and one I wasn't quite prepared for. I knew things would change, of course, but I wasn't clear on how much, or how fast, or how all-encompassing the changes would be. It's not just the belly; every part of me has changed--hair, skin, etc. It really does feel more like puberty than anything else I've ever experienced. And I know some of the changes will be permanent, or will be precursors to other, permanent changes, which makes it all the more frightening and exciting.

Clothes, as you can imagine, have become a bit of an issue. I haven't purchased a ton of maternity clothes--a few, and I got some hand-me-downs from a friend, but not as many as I'd have expected. For one thing, I've been unable to find a single thing at the thrift store. For another, things that are not meant for maternity have, so far, worked in a lot of cases. For example, in the photos above, I'm wearing a non-maternity maxi skirt I bought at Nordstrom Rack last summer with an Old Navy maternity tunic. Non-maternity pants have been out of the question for a while, but elastic waist skirts are still working fine, as are maxi dresses and longer-length tops. I'm also stretching tops by layering them over long-length tank tops, which looks better than I would have expected (or perhaps my standards have dropped...).

The maternity clothes I have purchased have been almost exclusively from Gap and Old Navy. I tried Motherhood, but was very disappointed with the quality of almost everything I ordered. Gap has been the best, but I'm too cheap to buy too much there. The most recent thing I'm focusing on is shoes and bras. I've gone up two bra sizes already, and too-small bras are a world more uncomfortable when you're pregnant. Shoes are harder--anything with a heel is out at this point, because my balance is severely compromised by this growing belly thing, and my feet are swelling every day, so my regular arsenal of flats are beginning to be too small. With size 12 feet to begin with, I hate to think what size I'll end up in. Boxes without topsies, indeed.

Though I know getting dressed is only going to get harder as I get bigger over the next few months, I am looking forward to the increased clothing options of warmer weather. Right now, I don't have any cardigans that still button, but it feels like a waste to buy bigger/maternity ones with warm weather right around the corner. I envision a spring/summer of maxi dresses and skirts and tank tops, which will hopefully be a bit more fun than wearing the same pair of black maternity pants twice a week.

Ooh, this blogging thing is coming back to me, now...

4 Comments

You look absolutely amazing. And I'm so glad you're blogging again, I've missed you.

I agree with Jes on all points!

First, I am THRILLED that you are feeling better and are back to blogging. I missed reading here. Second, you look really great. Honestly, pregnancy certainly looks good on you.

Welcome back! You're looking great!

I just had a baby in December, so here's some unsolicited maternity clothing advice. (Hopefully it will be more helpful than most unsolicited advice.)

Motherhood Maternity is god-awful. Cheap, unflattering clothes, and they sell your name like crazy. They're essentially the equivalent of a David's Bridal, only for maternity clothes instead of bridesmaid dresses. I bought three t-shirts there and rarely wore them. They looked like tents, and they are the only maternity items in the donation bin.

I bought most of my maternity clothes from the Gap and Target. Check the sales/coupons on the Gap web site regularly--I bought quite a few items there for cheap by combining sales with 15% or 20% off coupons. I loved my Gap pajama pants, which cost me $5 per pair and were awesome loose-waisted postpartum pants, too. Their maternity dress pants and jeans never go on sale, though, so I had to pay full price for them, but since I am lazy and wear black pants or jeans almost every day, it was worth it.

Target's Liz Lange Maternity line has some nice pieces, and they carry lots of inexpensive basics like tanks and t-shirts. The quality is not always the greatest, but you're only going to be wearing this stuff for four or five months, so it will last long enough.

Bra-wise, you'll probably change sizes even more as you progress. My favorite maternity/nursing bras are by Bravado (non-underwire) and Anita (underwire). Breakout Bras has good deals on bras, if you prefer buying online.

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