What to wear becomes an issue for many women almost right away. You may find that many of your closer-fitting clothes don’t work anymore or are just plain uncomfortable. Most maternity clothes are created for women who are in their second trimester, at the earliest. This leaves some women in a real “I’ve got nothing to wear!” bind.
In the past, maternity clothes tended to be quite expensive and often were not very fashionable. In recent years, this has changed. Many of the bigger name stores now offer maternity lines, and most of these offer online shopping. Most give free returns so that you can try the clothes on at home and send them back if you don’t like them.
Fabric content is one thing to notice when choosing maternity clothes. Beware of scratchy fabrics. Many pregnant women complain about itchy skin to begin with, and an uncomfortable fabric can make it worse. Also note whether or not the garment indicates dry clean only. This will add expense, inconvenience, and toxicity at a time when you need simplicity and safety in your life.
If you’d like to spend less on maternity clothes, or if the idea of being creative seems fun to you, try these tips. Many of these will also help to ease the transition between regular clothing and maternity clothing in these early months:
- In the early weeks you may be able to get by with loose-fitting clothing that you already own.Yoga clothes and other garments with elastic or drawstring waists that can be worn under the belly are great.
- Look through thrift stores and tag sales. Check out the men’s section in addition to the women’s. In the later months you may find good deals on maternity clothes at thrift stores as well.
- Invest in overalls, either short or long. Overalls are a good buy because they can be worn very loosely at first and then with the sides unbuttoned, as you grow larger. You can wear a variety of shirts under them.
- You may find more clothing variety in plus-sized shops. Some of these clothes are very stylish, yet are less expensive than maternity clothes. Not all large styles work, however. Check the hems of shirts and dresses to make sure they are even.
- If you sew, try this trick: buy large T-shirts or sweatshirts, cut them along the side seams, and insert contrasting fabric cut like very tall, thin isosceles triangles. This will widen the bottom to make room for your wonderful belly.
- Seek hand-me-downs from previously pregnant friends. In the early months you might also borrow from friends who are larger than you are, or have clothes that are now too large for them. This might tide you over until you reach maternity clothing size.