i have been thinking a lot about what to include in this post. this is a fairly serious topic. men may scoff at that statement, but you ladies who have been pregnant know exactly what i'm talking about! there are stages to this thing called motherhood. i know that i'm still going to get bigger. i'm only almost to the half-way point. my baby is tiny in comparison to what it will be... so i will most likely do a follow-up post on this topic.
but here's what i've experienced thus far: first trimester is full of minimal weight gain, but an increase of inches in weird places. this results in an over-all feeling of being fat, without even looking it. clothes start to fit weird and if you're like me... you're waiting to tell most everyone so there's no way to share your joy and pain and growth until that 12th week. 5 lbs may not seem like much... but when you wear skinny jeans and pencil skirts-it seems like nothing in your closet fits right anymore. it can be quite frustraiting.
2nd trimester happens (mine is still happening) and you finally have a little bit of a bump worth noticing. it's exciting cause now everyone knows you're expecting and you can prove it with a little bump in your belly. your old clothes are really not working out anymore and you're contemplating buying maternity wear. but you might not feel big enough even for that, but you're going to do it cause well... you will be big enough soon.
so here's a list of must-haves (in my opinion). the nice thing about this list, is that you probably already have most of it in your closet! honestly, it shouldn't cost too much to acquire the few things that you don't have and you'll be so surprised at what you can create from the clothes you thought were history for the next several months.
1. a Button-down shirt
as you get bigger the buttons might be harder to button, so try to find one that fits a bit looser. this is a great thing to have though. you can wear it with a belt tied around your waist, tucked into a skirt, over leggings, loose and open over a tank, etc--there are so many options with this staple.
2. an Empire-waist dress
you don't have to be pregnant to wear an empire waist dress and have it be cute so this is something that will work before and after baby arrives. chances are, you might already have one of these lovelies in your closet. pair it with a cute sweater or boots and your set. while it's still cold out you can even throw leggings on underneath.
3. Hue Jeggings
my life changed when these jeggings were introduced into it. i actually bought my pair BEFORE i was even pregnant. you can find them at Nordstroms in the hosiery department. and they're only $30-$40 bucks! what a steal! the best compliment i received when wearing my Hue Jeggings: "I see you decided to go ahead and get the J Brand Jeans. They look great!" yeah, what! they're a fraction of the cost of J Brand and they come equipped with a stretchy waist band. talk about ideal.
4. a skinny Macrame belt
this type of belt is super ideal. it's cute, comes in a variety of colors and best part is that it's flexible. if it's too tight, just loosen it up. since there's no specific string of holes no one will ever know that you're wearing it bigger than you've ever worn it before. i actually didn't own one prior to this pregnancy, but found a steal of a deal (on sale) at urban outfitters for only $13! as your bump grows you can place the belt at the small of your waist (above your bump). this is a super cute way of allowing your growing belly to have its space, while still adding a feminine touch to your look.
5. Maternity Yoga Pants
best thing ever to wear when kickin it at home, or working out at the gym. definitely worth the $20.
6. a Thick Belt
i have several thicker belts that i wore pre-pregnancy. i'm at the very last hole on most of them, but they're still super cute to wear overtop of a skirt or dress. you can find good options online or second hand.
7. a Jersey-knit dress
these types of dresses are so super comfy. plus, they stretch. so you don't have to worry about not fitting into it.
8. Maternity leggings
this was another pregnancy-specific item that i've purchased. my other leggings were starting to cut into my belly weird and by the end of the day i was always super uncomfortable. so i went down to motherhood maternity and bought me a pair. they're only $20 and they're awesome. the stretch is perfect and there is enough support that i will easily be able to wear these leggings till the very end!
9. a loose Cardigan
i'm positive that this won't be a favored option in the heat of the summer, but for now i love my cardigans. i already had plenty so buying new ones wasn't a necessity for me. they're cute paired over any old t-shirt, blouse, button up... you name it. to complete the ensemble just add a belt and voila! you're looking good and super comfy.
10. a High-waisted and flowy/pleated skirt
i'm a tad obsessed with dresses and skirts and have a lot in my closet. i've been pleasantly surprised by how i can wear things that i love in a different sort of way and have it still work. i honestly thought that every one of the things in my closet wouldn't work while pregnant... but then i started trying them on, just to see and boy was i surprised! skirts are still super cute even when pulled up a tad higher than normal! and when they're pleated, they give you plenty of extra room for that cute little bump of yours.
bottom line: don't rule anything out till you've tried it a few different ways. there's no need to get a whole new wardrobe when you can be creative with the one you've got!