So the brilliant and beautiful Louise of Running on Anthro let me know that Boden had finally taken the prenatal plunge. I
Here are a few reasons why (click on the photos themselves to go directly to Boden's website--if you like what you see, click through my sidebar coupon to receive 15% off w/free shipping and handling):
Double Layer Dress: I already own a double layer dress by Boden, and it is super-comfortable, casual but not *too* casual, and polished enough for everything from church to doctor's visits. This dress allows for your baby bump to be shown off, yet still highlighting things like a neckline and gams that are still fairly thin (that was my MO whilst pregnant, highlight the bump, but really highlight the limbs which still had their pre-pregnant shape). This dress also looks to be JUST perfection for postpartum, skimming over a tummy that may be a bit more enlarged than a mommy may choose, and a neckline that appears to be stretchy enough for breastfeeding. Hooray! Comes in four shades (two prints and two solids) and costs $98 (before any coupons).
Printed Gathered Tunic: I am such a big fan of Boden's tunics that I probably buy (on average) two-three a season. The length, shape, and materials used in the tunics makes them contenders for the most worn items in my entire wardrobe (and you all know I have a *cough, cough* larger than normal closet). In fact, I wore a merino tunic from Boden Fall 2009 again yesterday. I never tire of the tunics I own and only re-sell them when I can't fit into them any longer. So to see Boden keeping the tunic trend for our mommies-to-be is brilliant on their part. This tunic seems to be especially lovely because it is made from a viscose/elastane blend which means that it is stretchy and soft. (Who wants yucky fabric against a belly? Not me.) I would go with the "graphite banana leaf" colorway as it seems the most versatile, but it also comes in the blue color you see in the photo and a pinky/red color. Retails for $98 before any coupons.
Essential Maternity Tee: I got away with wearing many of J. Crew's tees for most of my pregnancy (surprising how stretchy their cotton can be), but even I had to finally bite the bullet and wear actual maternity tops by the 7th month. This top comes in four colors (two prints and two solids) and is also made from the viscose/elastane blend. The tee is also great for postpartum wear, when the ruching allows for a new mommy to gather the folds to help cover a bit of a belly (mine took months--!!!--to disappear).
Maternity Leggings: I lived in leggings while pregnant, and until around month 6, I could get away with regular leggings that were hitched below the belly. After that point, I had to encase the belly (my belly gets VERY heavy) with more support, which is why maternity leggings are a great idea. They are like regular leggings but with a bit of extra fabric and a much higher waistline. This is one item that I personally could not wear postpartum. I lost enough of my belly after birth (but not all, darn it--see above description on the tee for more info) that the extra fabric on these would have made the fit all wrong (but having said that, I have friends who *still* wear their maternity pants, and they gave birth more than six months ago). These come in two colors and retail for $28, which makes it a very reasonable price. :)
Maternity Straightleg Jean: I had the HARDEST time finding pregnancy denim. I am not even kidding. All of the pairs I bought were either too loose or too tight or the belly part was too weird shaped or blah, blah, blah. In fact it got to the point where I didn't even bother with jeans. Looking at these, though, I see promise. The belly covering part seems to be made large enough for a full belly, BUT it can be pulled lower for ladies who prefer to have their pregnancy jeans sit below the belly (there is a preference and some women are below the belly and others, like yours truly, want their belly covered). I also like that the jeans come in three colors in stretchy denim in a always classic straight leg. These retail for $88 before coupons.
Ruffle Front Dress: I saved my favorite for last. I would seriously think about buying this in all three colors if I was pregnant. I wish they had this in non-maternity! :) The ruffle detail is so pretty and feminine, and although you are supposed to feel at your most "feminine" while having a bun in the oven, any lady who has had bloated ankles, morning sickness, or varicose veins can tell you, it often feels like you are at the very OPPOSITE end of dainty and girly when pregnant. This dress would help (at some level) ameliorate the feelings of "blegh" that all mommies-to-be suffer from! Retails for $128, which is a bit high, but may be worth it for your self esteem. LOL.
I enjoyed looking at all the offerings that Boden Maternity has this season. I cannot offer real life experience with these, so I am calling on you beautiful pregnant ladies to help me out...if you wouldn't mind, I would very much appreciate any IRL photos or reviews you could send my way (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Also, Mommy Style Monday has looked at pregnant fashion and postpartum fashion before...click away for more ideas on how to feel your best from the outside!
And I leave you with an image of me VERY pregnant with Rex. I loved this outfit and felt good, but I have a feeling that the Ruffle Front Dress and a cute cardigan would have been a tad more comfy! LOL. :)