Deciding what to wear during your pregnancy can seem to be especially daunting. During pregnancy, your body will go through more change than it has seen since childhood and it can be hard for some women to accept their new figures. Finding clothes that suit you can be more challenging because over the years you have got used to matching your own shape to your personal style and now you may suddenly feel like you are buying clothes for someone else.
Fortunately, maternity fashion has flourished over the past decade and now days it is possible to find a range of clothes that make you look and feel great throughout your pregnancy. Clothes that celebrate all that is beautiful about your new pregnant body whilst still showing that you have a head for business.
Aside from the glaringly obvious physical changes your body is, it is natural and healthy for you to gain a few extra pounds in body fat to support your growing baby`s needs. You absolutely need to embrace this, as dieting now is not a good option, so finding clothes that make you look and feel fabulous is more important than ever.
Investing in flattering clothes, that make you feel great is not just an indulgence here, it is an investment in yourself and your well-being and a happy mum makes a happy baby. Besides ladies and this is the hard part, you are simply going to have face the fact that your favourite pair of skinny jeans is just is not going to fit for a while. But enough doom and gloom, how many excuses do you need to go shopping?
In your first trimester your waist rather than your uterus and hips are what starts to expand. Furthermore, during this period, you may not wish to alert colleagues and bosses to your pregnancy. The good news is that you will most likely be able to continue to wear non-maternity clothes, look for empire line and simple flowing or a-line dresses, tunic style tops, loose shirts, low line tops and jackets and low rise trousers. `Boyfriend` style trousers and tops are also particularly handy now. Knitted material and fabrics such as cotton are all quite flattering. Also remember to raid your own wardrobe with fresh eyes to find any pieces that might work.
You can extend your use of trousers and skirts with nifty little waistband extenders available from most good maternity shops and websites. These usually comprise of clever little strips of elastic material with fastenings on either side that match up with the waist fastenings on your trousers and skirts and discreetly give you that few extra inches.
At this point it will also be worth investing in a `bump band`, this is an invaluable and ingenious wardrobe item that will become a staple of your maternity wardrobe. Essentially this is just a broad band of stretchy material, which you can pull over your middle. It`s great for extending the useful life of your favourite trousers or skirt and most importantly for covering your midriff when your growing bump means that you tops are not quite long enough. The great thing about these bands is that because they are stretchy you can start using them early and keep wearing them throughout your pregnancy. In fact in those early post-natal days they come in handy when you don`t want the world to see your post baby tummy and for extra discretion whilst breastfeeding.
You can buy these ingenious little items in a range of colours to match your wardrobe and if someone sees them they simple look like a vest or camisole. You will definitely want at least two of these.
Although you might not look very pregnant at this stage your hormones certainly do. With all this raging hormonal activity, most pregnant women report hot flushes, even in quite cold weather. Counteract the sweaty meeting look by wearing layers, so that you can peel back to a smart cool top if the temperature inside you suddenly starts to soar.
From the end of the first trimester your shape will really start to change and will continue to grow for a full seven months - which in fashion can feel like an eternity. The end of the first trimester and beginning of the second can also be a self-conscious time for the body image of most mum`s-to-be body, when to the untrained eye you don`t exactly look pregnant, but you do look like you`ve gained a fair bit of weight. Now is the time to invest in a capsule wardrobe of maternity work clothes. Go for at least four or five pieces in co-ordinating colours that you can mix in with your existing clothes.
Start with that old business staple; the suit. Good suits can be expensive but they are extremely flattering, whatever your figure and a two-piece is an extremely versatile item. With some clever accessorising, as well as splitting the two pieces to wear with other skirts, dresses, trousers and tops you can may find that you can wear your suit two or three times in a week without anyone noticing how much you a recycling it. A fitted skirt will do you the most favours here. You can opt for a low waist that sits below your bump, or one with an elastic waistband to grow with you.
Black is definitely a safe option here and you will be especially happy to make use of its slimming effect at this point. Make sure you add a splash of colour in your accessories so you make the most of your radiant glow and don`t end up looking dowdy.
Black, especially when worn close to the face, can be draining to some complexions and if this is the case for you opt for a subtle brown, or grey. Alternatively, nothing says business like a good pinstripe and the lengthening optical illusion pinstripe can lend will surely be appreciated. Whatever you choose, wearing the same colour from head to toe will lengthen your shape and have the same slimming effect.
Finding the perfect black trousers will boost your capsule wardrobe no end. Think low rise, avoiding wide trousers which give the effect of adding more weight, narrow legs are much more flattering.
A belt with some stretchy sections is an essential accessory to buy now, you may be able to find something in the non-maternity collections, but there are plenty of maternity options out there. If you`re feeling really sassy, forget the belt and invest in some braces instead.
Smart tailored shirts that cling to the contours of you bump are in fact much more flattering than loose baggy ones at this point. You will find a range of sharp, snappy and beautifully tailored business like maternity shirts are available, thank goodness the days when all maternity shirts requiring a big feminine bow are now long gone.
A wrap dress is a great maternity buy as you can buy it before your bump gets too big and it will expand along with you. The beauty of this is that as you get slimmer after the birth, so will your trusty wrap dress. Some wrap dresses are also great for breast-feeding.
Once you have your capsule wardrobe, you will be sorted for work and free to peruse the many maternity clothes on offer and add some more pretty pieces here or there. You will probably find that some going out or even holiday clothes will mix well into your office wardrobe.
No matter how much of an office go-getter you are, in the third trimester comfort will be your key word. Your second trimester purchases should see you through and your bump band will really come into its own. With anything you do buy at this point, think about how useful it will be after your little one has arrived. Lots of great nursing tops also double up as maternity shirts and you will be glad that you thought about this wardrobe essential when you are finally at home with your baby.
On the subject of nursing, by now you should have finally achieved the cleavage of your dreams and without surgery! Enjoy it because it won`t last forever and buy some tasteful tops that make the most of your new assets.
By the third trimester, most pregnant women suddenly find that they have gone up a shoe size and almost everyone needs a wider fit. This is one part of your changing body that may never change back. However, at least this gives you carte blanche to spend on shoes, oh yes, you have permission, just make sure that the first on your list is a good pair of flats.
It can actually be enjoyable planning your maternity wardrobe and your work wear need not be dowdy or dull. Do some web research and have fun with it, pregnancy should be about looking and feeling good. There are plenty of great maternity specialist shops and websites out there Start your search at http://www.yummymummyfashion.com/Maternity-Workwear/ and you will find that you are spoilt for choice.