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Your Maternity Wardrobe on a Budget!

July 9, 2012

There are times in every woman’s life when we look forward to shopping for clothes. Trying on wedding dresses is exhilarating. Snagging a new sun dress at the first sign of warm weather is a mood booster. And who doesn’t love finding the perfect, comfy-but-cute pair of shoes? Maternity shopping can be fun, too, but also a bit tricky. While it’s possible to build a comfortable, stylish maternity wardrobe, no one wants to spend a lot of money on pieces she’ll only wear for a few months.

The most important rule of maternity shopping is to try not to splurge on two trimesters’ worth of clothes all at once. Many women are able to fit into their regular clothes for the first three or four months of pregnancy, and see a slow, steady increase in their belly size and overall weight from the fifth month through the end of their pregnancy. Others notice that their belly pops a little later, and then grows very quickly. And some women notice marked changes in places they didn’t expect as their ribs and hips expand. There’s no way of knowing where you’ll gain weight, when you’ll gain it, and how much you’ll gain, so don’t try to plan ahead. Buy a few pieces at a time, as you need them.

Even if you’re normally a fan of structured, tailored pieces, pregnancy is not the time to invest in fitted jackets and hip-hugging jeans. Stretch is your friend. Look for viscose, modal, and jersey knits in tops, skirts, and dresses. A stretchy top or dress may fit you for several months, saving you money later on in your pregnancy. And check out skirts and pants with foldover waistbands, in both the maternity section and in regular stores. That extra fabric at the waist will allow you to continue wearing these pieces throughout your pregnancy.

And if some of your mom friends are roughly your size, ask them if they still have any maternity pieces around. If they’re not planning on having more kids, they’ll be thankful for the opportunity to purge their closets! If they are hoping to have more in the future, promise to return their items in good condition, adding a few new maternity items of your own when you do. Clothes swapping with your friends is a great way to save money.

Above all, enjoy your new wardrobe! While it can be challenging to dress your body as it changes, have fun with styles like empire waists and tunics, and remember to accessorize! Spending less on clothing means that you may have more cash left over for jewelry, scarves, and bags that you can wear for years to come.

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