After I did my very first Mommy Style Monday last week, I heard from mrsanketell over at Polyvore about how she has a particular dilemma, what to wear when you are 29 weeks preggo. Since I heard from her a week ago and I assume her pregnancy is progressing like mine did, she would now be 30 weeks pregnant. For those of you unaware of where 30 weeks puts you...this is the 3/4 mark, or 75% done with your pregnancy. This is also the point where most women have to just give up on regular clothing (like those highlighted in last week's post) and go to Pea in the Pod, or Motherhood Maternity, or Old Navy's Maternity Section, etc. You are definitely no longer looked at as "hmm, is she gaining weight," and instead it moves to, "wow, you must be ready to deliver soon!" (Unfortunately, as all of us previously pregnant women can tell you, this last statement is usually delivered when you are still 10 weeks from delivery, and when you tell the person that, they get really silent and look like they are really, really worried about how big your kid actually will be.)
Since I know that mrsanketell is 30 weeks pregnant (7.5 months is yet another way of looking at it), I called my polyvore set "30 Weeks Pregnant: Non-Maternity Options." I will be doing a post on really cool maternity wear soon, but since mrsanketell is still pretty early in the "showing" phase, I thought she may appreciate one post on what options are out there that are not from the traditional maternity stores. I had a few reasons for doing this: 1) Maternity is ridiculously expensive and if you are only wearing it for a few months (including the postpartum period), it can be a bit prohibitive; 2) I like the idea of taking these items in your normal (or maybe one size larger than normal) size and wearing them as a showing yet not quite full-bellied enough to fit into real maternity wear; 3) If you do buy these kind of tops/dresses in your traditional size (or one size up), these tops/dresses WILL work for much longer than your pregnancy and postpartum period last (for more on that--I STILL wear the tee shown in this photo).
The tops are a mix of Boden and J. Crew AND mini-Boden and crewcuts.
The Boden and J. Crew tops were chosen because of their "easy" nature. If you buy them in your normal/one size up size, then you should be able to make them work for you up until you are around 35 or 36 weeks, plus postpartum, and later. I say 35 or 36 weeks because for most women, those last 3 to 4 weeks are the point when your belly gets SO big that most "normal" shirts become far too short to be worn decently. Yep, that is when maternity tops are your best option...also because (if you are like me anyhow) you feel ginormous and want to be done with it all, you could potentially get into the whole "tearing clothes off your body because you are so frustrated with how everything fits, you could hurt clothing that is pretty"...and who wants to do that to a lovely embroidered top from J. Crew? :)
The J. Crew dress option was chosen because the March catalog had a lovely pregnant woman wearing this dress (the Double-V dress) and she looks serene. I can tell you from experience that J. Crew jersey dresses are ideal for most of pregnancy. I wore many of them when I was pregnant with both kids. I also took them in my normal size of small (now rapidly moving to extra-small because of vanity sizing) and they fit up until about 35 or 36 weeks (see reason above on why I stopped wearing them). Note that I have a review of this dress below...I am not pregnant but this shows the versatility of this dress.
The mini-Boden tops were chosen because they are cut in such a way that they are ONLY flattering for little girls or really pregnant ladies. I know this because I bought a mini-Boden top to match CW (I bought a 14, but could have bought the 12 size...they run large), and it looked silly on my non-pregnant body, but I remember looking in the mirror thinking, "this would look great if I were to be pregnant again." It wasn't enough incentive for me to keep it, but I know that this style would work well for those with child.
The mini-Boden and crewcuts dresses were chosen because these are in essence, tunic tops for pregnant ladies. The great thing about the crewcuts options are that they have a neckline that reminds me of a halterneck and would do a great job of showing off shoulders, which for many in the maternity set, is the ONLY part of their body they don't mind baring. LOL.
I hope these options have opened your eyes to the potential that is out there for all the lovely ladies who are carrying precious cargo.
Next up is the review of the Double-V dress. I bet that after this post hits the blog-world, J. Crew will have a run on this dress...it is that good.
I bought this dress in a size small. If this dress were a tad more roomy in the hips, I would have returned this for an extra-small. I bought the slate color as black makes me look like death and the light purple (berry) color they have is very bad with my skin tone.
The dress does indeed have a double-v, one in the back, one in the front. The waist is actually an empire waist, but is a wider empire waist, so it doesn't become a babydoll dress. The waist is ruched elastic, so it E-X-P-A-N-D-S, which in pregnancy speak equals A-W-E-S-O-M-E. :) From the waist the skirt billows out, just so, but not enough to be unflattering (you know how if an A-line gets too full it just makes you look too full).
Because the dress is super-simple, the potential for accessorizing is HUGE, and I took it and ran with it (this was from when I went to Vegas), pairing the dress with the beautiful Aqua multi-chain gold necklace and a pair of silver sandals from J. Crew (2009).
I am standing here with my own product of pregnancy, CW, and my very pregnant (at this point she was 33 weeks pregnant) friend. She agreed that the double-v dress would be a very good option for her, although I have to say her faux-wrap dress does the trick nicely, too.
BTW, although I look "slightly" with child in this photo (showing its ability to look good on a pregnant body), I am not. This is what happens when you take a very heavy child and place her on your hip, you end up bowing your back (bad, bad for your posture) and looking pregnant. And for this post, that is just fine.
:) You all have a fantastic Monday. I have been on vacation, and still will be when this post publishes. I apologize if I cannot comment back quickly, but will do so when I return from my vacation.
As per last week, if you have a request for a Mommy Style Monday, let me know...either comment here or at polyvore, or go ahead and e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.