Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Mama style: Maternity

 A reader is approaching the last trimester of her pregnancy and wrote to me looking for ideas for stylish outfits with a large baby bump. She has pretty conservative taste but would like some ideas for interesting outfits that won't break the bank.

I can't really say I was that stylish during my pregnancies, I tended to wear the same thing over and over; leggings, a mini skirt or dress, and long shirt or cardigan over a vest to hide my basketball bum, with converse, boots or flipflops.

I found my last month or two of pregnancy pretty tough, summer babies meant sweaty sticky heat, toes like cocktail sausages in flip-flops, and my arms way too fat to fit anything that wasn't stretchy or belonging to my husband. I bought very few actual maternity items, just one pair of jeans, two pairs of black leggings and some long vests. I bought my clothes in bigger sizes than normal in high street stores and still wear some of them even when not pregnant. One of my favourite items was a cheap black long tank top from H&M with Debbie Harry on the front, it made the most boring basics seem rock-chic.

But anyway, I shall google my favourite style icon, Gwen Stefani, mother of three, aged 44, and probably the most fantastically dressed pregnant woman in the world. Though I don't know how she wears heels while pregnant, I can barely wear them at all these days.

Let's pick three scenarios you might like to dress up for; a day in a park, a lunch out, an evening occasion. I'm not advocating going out and buying the exact outfits, but you might get some inspiration to wear your existing wardrobe in new ways.


I love this outfit, a huge jumper or sweatshirt, ripped jeans and high tops. It's easy, warm, and will accommodate any size bump. Borrow the jumper off the partner, or buy one in a men's section, or a few sizes bigger than your normal size rather than going for crazy-priced maternity ones. This could look really sloppy and unkempt, but the clashing/coordinating prints on the top and shoes plus the hair, make-up and sunglasses keep Gwen looking polished. At the very least slap on some foundation and lipstick and you'll look "done". 

The middle photo above shows the same sweater more dressed up. No matter what the print or colour,  this is one item you can get years of wear out of, not just for the last few months of pregnancy.

If you're not into such a sloppy look, then this might be more up your street:

I'm not advocating the heels at ALL, but a pair of biker boots or smart ankle boots would also look great with this outfit. The colourful shoes are the focal point, so keep the other pieces neutral. Gwen's long line tee skims her bump neatly, and the leather jacket sleeves add interest. 

Now on to the lunch date:

I love this outfit, it's still casual and comfortable, but looks neat enough for a lunch date. The maternity skirt is by Seraphine, and I love the clashing prints of the top and jacket. I bought cotton-lycra tube skirts in H&M which were so versatile in pregnancy and afterwards, but I can see how splashing out on a better quality skirt could really make an outfit.

This shirt-dress looks great over her skinny jeans and ankle boots, and the bag and lipstick make it a dressy outfit, perfect for a lunch date.

This is the kind of outfit which looks stunning, but I could never get away with in pregnancy. I think my problem was when I covered up my chubby arms I just looked really "mumsy". Gwen keeps it sexy with lots of skin on show, hair up to keep her head looking slim, and a platform heel to elongate her legs.

I would feel more comfortable in this kind of outfit, all black, with an open coat (because by this stage you probably can't close them) and a bit of leg on show. Statement bag and lipstick - done.

Evening occasion (for those lucky enough to get out after 7pm):

What a poser, but if I look this good at 44 and pregnant I'd probably do the same. I love the clean lines, the leather-look leggings, the slim fit dress and the hair and makeup. I couldn't wear the shoes at that stage of pregnancy, but might wear a lower heel and sit down all night. 

I love this outfit, it looks really stylish and comfortable. The black base is really slimming, even though the trousers have a lot of volume, and her white jacket is so chic.

A statement jacket and heels is a beautiful evening outfit over black basics. 

Or if you can't contain your swollen feet in anything more than open sandals, the classic maxi dress is perfect, dressed up here with a neat jacket or cardi.

I hope you have had lots of ideas, my pregnant reader, and that you enjoy dressing your bump in the coming months. Did I miss any essentials? Please let me know below, and keep the style requests coming!
Nee x


  1. Great outfit you looks awesome in all the style of maternity wear. I loved all.

  2. Hey, you are looking beautiful on this outfit. I think your baby is now four. Hope, so both of you are well. Currently, I am pregnant with my first baby, and I am looking for some maternity clothes for me. One of my aunts suggests me to visit this site and told me that I could found lots of maternity clothes. What do you think do you have any ideas about this best maternity jeggings?


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