Stress-free options to help flaunt your bump in comfort and style.
When it comes to pregnancy, everyone talks about what to do, what not to do and what to expect. But no one really mentions what to do when you realise that your jeans or trousers no longer zip up. Maternity wear is the most obvious option for pregnancy style, but it doesn’t always fit until you’re much further along (depending on how quickly you grow), and it’s hard to justify spending money on clothing you know you might not need for long.
To alleviate this styling stress, here are five ideas for how to style your bump, by combining both maternity and non-maternity wear, that will help you feel as good as you look. Each of these options will help you maximise the use of your existing wardrobe by adding components that you can use now and later, and/or minimise the number of maternity clothes that you buy. Unlike the depreciating excitement of a new haircut, your bump will only get more amazing with time. So you might as well show it off while you can!
If you don’t have a shirt dress, now is a great time to add one to your wardrobe because they’re perfect for pregnancy and everything thereafter. You can style it with a jacket in the cooler months and pair it with any type of shoe — boots, flats, heels, or all of the above. Shirt dresses don’t restrict your tummy or movement, making them comfortable and versatile, so they’ll quickly become one of most worn pieces in your closet.
Get the look: With a wealth of options, simply pick a colour and price tag that works best for you. Try this jersey dress from H&M, a loose-fitting button-down from Zara, or check out Cotton:on for this T-shirt dress that comes in 14 different colours and prints (currently on sale for $60).
For the jacket, go for a bold colour like this pink blazer (bubblegum pink is having its moment right now), or for something a little more understated, opt for a houndstooth blazer. A trench coat also works, just tie the belt behind your back. Topshop has a fab rust coloured trench, or try this checked mac version. Grab your flats for extra comfort — striped espadrille sandals will do the trick.
Regardless of what your thoughts towards fitted dresses might have been pre-pregnancy, now is a great time to embrace them. Knee-length, midi, and maxi lengths are the best types to look for, and the stretchier the better. They can be worn alone or layered under different items such as dusters, long cardigans, leather jackets, or even a knotted t-shirt or a loose crop top. And when it comes to shoes, you really don’t have to say goodbye to heels! Flatforms (flats with a high sole) are a perfect replacement and they’re just as comfortable during pregnancy, as they are after.
If you’re still unsure about fitted dresses, just throw an A-line midi skirt over the bottom half and turn the fitted dress into a top. There are so many ways to wear them that they’ll easily take you from day to night.
Get the look: For a feminine touch this powder pink ribbed dress is ideal and the knit material will stretch with your growing bump. If a sporty style is more your thing, try a racerback version. For something that can go from day to night, you can’t go wrong with an LBD (little black dress). This square neck pencil dress works well with a T-shirt over the top for a casual look, before transforming into a chic evening outfit for dinner with the hubby.
We can’t get enough of flatforms during pregnancy. These espadrilles make for a comfortable but classy look, while ankle wrap and sporty flatforms are good for everyday wear in the warmer months. Funk up your dress with a graphic T-shirt, like this Levis tee, or this statement The Future Is Female one. Tip: if you go for several sizes bigger, you can gather and tie them at the front, back, or side for an even more funky look.
An A-line dress is the easiest option for dresses that can be worn during and after pregnancy. The silhouette is generally great for most body types and as long as the length comes down to your knee, is midi, or maxi, they’ll perfectly cover your bump without inching too far up your legs.
As for shoe options, another heel that is great during and after pregnancy (and is perfectly on trend right now) is the ever-flirty kitten heel. Kitten heels go with everything, including super versatile A-line dresses, and can be the effortless lift you need in your day.
Get the look: This navy polka dot maxi is great for mamas whose boobs may not have blossomed too much, as well as this floral pleated dress. If you’ve been blessed with a handful up top (and then some!), go for something slightly looser fitting like this yellow polka dot tiered dress, or a tiered maxi dress with puff sleeve from ASOS (which has free delivery to Hong Kong and free returns if it’s not quite right).
Kitten heels are pretty versatile. Go bold and adventurous with these geometric heels from Mango, or try a faux-crocodile mule in an on-trend pastel. These classic powder blue slip-on heels are the perfect dinner date go-to.
When it comes to bottoms there is no question that leggings are the most comfortable items of clothing, especially for pregnancy. However, that doesn’t mean they have to be basic! Nor do you have to get that many. Most regular high-waisted leggings actually work quite well into your second trimester (depending on their stretchiness and how quickly you grow). But beyond that, simply secure three-ish pairs that you can interchange (they even work as office-wear with an appropriate top), and let that bump do its thing while you stylishly do yours!
Get the look: For the cooler months, bust out your grey chunky knits and pair them with these zip detail leggings, or opt for classic black bottoms. For the warmer months, try some leggings with lace hem detail, or even maternity biker shorts (because pregnant mamas can rock these too!) and team with a bohemian blouse, a smocked blouse, and a classic loose white button-down.
Lace-up leather boots are a match made in heaven for your leggings/jumper combo. You can even go bold with these silver vegan lace-up boots (each of these can also be worn with dresses when the weather starts to heat up).
One type of dress that may actually look better during your pregnancy is the ever-sultry wrap dress. Whether you’re the type of Mama-to-be who is conscious of your changing curves or you’re really good about embracing them, wrap dresses are a super comfortable and super easy way to remind your inner self about how good you really look.
That said, maternity wrap dresses are one of the items worth investing in to ensure that the wrap portion fits above your bump instead of just around your waist. It’s also one of the only types of dresses that will always look great no matter what month you’re in, making it a perfect option for date nights.
Get the look: This floral print wrap-dress from H&M is ideal for every day, or even dressy occasions (with a black option available), as well as this rose print wrap dress from ASOS. Try out some fun patterns with this mixed print wrap dress, or this polka dot option that also doubles up as a great nursing dress. Classy and practical! Pair with a simple two-strap sandal to finish the look.
All images courtesy of Manisha Nair via Instagram.