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#1 of 28 Old 09-07-2014, 06:13 AM - Thread Starter
 
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maternity clothes

It's time. Whether it's bloat or baby! I figure this can just be a general thread about good finds, sizing, best places to find used clothes, etc.

I'm starting with a question: my understanding is that maternity sizes are the same as pre-pregnancy sizes. But I've gained 7 lbs and my boobs are way bigger, so if I weren't pregnant I think I'd be wearing a size larger at this point. Or at least it would be more comfortable.

Do maternity sizes assume you'll gain weight and boobs and accommodate for that, or should I go up a size?

I'll have to drive an hour to go try stuff on, so I'm asking here to avoid buying a bunch of stuff online that I'll only have to return.
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#2 of 28 Old 09-07-2014, 06:36 AM
 
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IME yes, they do account for that. Now that said, there are definitely things that are only good for two trimesters, such as non-stretchy tops. A lot depends on how you carry as well--taller people (like you?) might be able to go longer, but my torso is so short that I stick out very far at the end. THAT SAID I have learned that a few pieces that fit well in the second but not third trimester are GREAT for postpartum, especially tops that have easy nursing access. I like (actually I love) this top that I have and I know it will work for that: http://www.gap.com/browse/product.do...&pid=926403002
Actually, any of the Gap "boyfriend" half button tops will be great for this.

Length is really crucial at the end. You may try on something now and think it's a dress but by the end of pregnancy it will be the right length and you'll be happy you have it. Nothing like the bottom of your hanging down stomach peeking out under a shirt in winter.

For very inexpensive, cute basics I like H&M mama. I do size up there, though. They ship and it's cheap shipping as well. Old Navy hasn't been great for me. I would not buy pants there. Shirts, meh, if you like it then do it. Returns are easy. Gap is overpriced and the fit can vary, but if you want to wear things that don't scream "pregnant lady clothes" it's a good store. But I normally wear my pre-preg size there. They have amazing sales (especially in store) every 3 months (early August I found some stuff for almost no money, and looking forward to early November). They always have something on sale, too.

Style: for me, I don't like the tie under the boobs look. It just doesn't do much for my short torso, and the empire waist top makes me unsure of what to do on the bottom. So I avoid it. I like ruched sides. Allows for a good fit that a little more sophisticated, if that matters.

Jeans, I think you get what you pay for. I avoid Motherhood stuff whenever possible because I don't like how it stretches and washes. I think Gap jeans are fine and I also like my designer jeans that I bought used from Ebay for less than the cost of Gap. Cheaper brands like Old Navy definitely bag out in the butt and behind the knees in an hour, so buy tight if you buy there. I LOVE full panel because I think the demi panel digs in during the third trimester, but I know that people hate them and feel like they're so ugly. But nobody sees it, and I feel like it gives me a smoother line under shirts, too.

You may consider some support garments as well if your back starts giving you trouble.

I know I have written too much and could write more.
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#3 of 28 Old 09-07-2014, 09:51 AM
 
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Used clothes: I have done well on eBay when I know what I want and am familiar with sizing. By this point (3rd baby) I do feel I know what works on me. We also have a maternity consignment shop fairly locally (within 25 minutes.) It's nice but I do think I can do just as well financially on sale racks. It's only really good for higher-end finds and I don't need too much of that. A lot of kids consignment stores locally do have small maternity racks where I have occasionally found things.

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#4 of 28 Old 09-07-2014, 08:32 PM
 
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Thredup.com also has a great selection of second hand very nice maternity clothes. Returns are free and the prices are great. I am having less luck with finding jeans there as each thing is a different brand and I'm struggling with fit, but I have already purchased a few dresses, tops, and sweaters that are name brand like gap, for a steal. I also have to drive more than an hour to get to a store with maternity clothes. I just want some decent jeans and only now am I remembering how much I always struggle with maternity jeans. This time I think I am going to pay more for a few nice pairs rather than trying to get a good deal.

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#5 of 28 Old 09-08-2014, 04:12 AM
 
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gabeyho, that's exactly what I told myself after my first pregnancy (about jeans)--I had these horrible Motherhood jeans that were simultaneously baggy around the bum and legs but digging into my stomach around the end. The consolation for spending a bit more is that I know if I take care of them I can just resell them for a decent price.

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#6 of 28 Old 09-08-2014, 08:58 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you so much for these fantastic helpful posts! I love this thread already.

I just ordered a few things from ThredUp. I liked the website a lot...hopefully I like the clothes! Haven't been brave enough to buy any pants yet. I think I really will need to take a road trip to the mall to see what works best before I buy used. But I still have a feeling I'll hate all pants. I'm thinking it will be dresses and jersey skirts for me. Which sounds cold for fall and winter, but I do have that little internal heater now...

I'm trying to level up my sewing skills and make some things. Right now I'm working on a dress (never made one before, maternity or not), but I think the jersey fabric I bought is too thin. Among various other mistakes. We'll see. I'd love to have a few things that I made myself.
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#7 of 28 Old 09-08-2014, 09:56 AM
 
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Great thread! And terrific insight, Rosemarino!

I hope to get most of my maternity things back, and I had a variety, many of which were given to me by a friend who was done with pregnancy, and the rest acquired by me from various places during each of my pregnancies. I found that the local upscale consignment shops carry some maternity stuff, though the prices are not always better than a good department store sale. The only thing I've ever found that I liked from Motherhood was a super-cute Easter dress I bought with my last DS. I hope I get that back from my friend, because it was bright pink flowers trimmed with black, and it made me feel adorable! I hate their nursing tops, though. And their bras aren't anything special, either. If you have to buy a new bra, I highly recommend buying nursing bras, since that's what you'll be wearing for the next year or two (if you're like me). I need to see if I can find any of my old nursing bras and see what I need to buy. I don't think I gave those away, but may have donated them to Good Will or something.

As for sizing, I usually find sizing to be pretty true, but sometimes I go up a size, depending on the cut. I hate full-panel maternity pants in the 3rd trimester, when my belly sticks out so far that the elastic pulls on the top of my belly. But by that time, the demi/low-rise ones are crunched down so much that their elastic folds over. So, I think it is just personal preference. I like to have a mix, so I can switch it up as needed. I'm short-waisted, too, so that makes things fit differently. I second most of what Rosemarino said- by the end, even my bigger maternity shirts are showing the bottom of my belly. That is a big part of why I hate being pregnant in the winter. I like a summer baby- sundresses, bathing suits, and tank tops! Oh well. At least I won't have to work full-time through this one.

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#8 of 28 Old 09-08-2014, 02:55 PM
 
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I just bought a bathing suit today! And a denim jacket. I do want to swim this pregnancy so I'm glad I got the suit--and it was used from a kid's store! It's not very beautiful though. The denim jacket is not maternity but I like how it looks normal and it doesn't matter if it buttons.

Yes to Yaliina about the nursing bras now!

I've never bought from ThedUp but I look forward to hearing about your experience!

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#9 of 28 Old 09-08-2014, 04:34 PM
 
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I meant to ask what stuff you are trying from ThredUp, @indiana ! Shirts or something?

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#10 of 28 Old 09-08-2014, 06:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I ordered three dresses, which I know was risky since it's hard enough to find a dress that fits all the curves when you're in a dressing room. But I think dresses are going to be what I have to wear, so I might as well start trying. I also found a cardigan and a hoodie. This morning it was chilly enough that I had to throw on a sweatshirt and all of a sudden I panicked. I love snuggling into a sweatshirt on fall mornings and evenings and I don't want to have to do without it.

I'm going to have to figure out how to deal with my legs and feet in the winter. If I could keep a few knee-length maternity dresses through the winter with leggings and boots, that would be nice, so I wouldn't have to buy all new stuff for the season. I could DIY a better waistband for tights, but shoes are the thing. I wear minimalist shoes (the kind where you're basically barefoot), but they don't make many boots like that. And the ones they do make look goofy. And they're made of leather (I'm vegan). How else do you make a knee-length skirt warm and cute in the winter? I'm not a skirt/dress wearer, so I really don't know how to do this and look good.

Man, everything is so complicated!! But it's kind of fun to be buying new stuff, too, especially if this website works out. I bought five things for $65 and free shipping.
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#11 of 28 Old 09-08-2014, 09:17 PM
 
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Where'd you buy, Indiana?

After I finished my quiz (and while the stupid UF elearning site was glitching, so I couldn't work on my next assignment), I was killing time/downloading brain by browsing & I realized that I'm going to have to find a cute/comfy and appropriate maternity outfit to wear under my cap/gown in December in Florida! I have no idea what to wear. It's Florida, so it probably won't be freezing, but it's still December, and it DOES get cold- so maybe 3/4 length sleeves, or just a little sweater over short sleeves, but pockets are almost mandatory to carry a cell phone at least (?). I'm going to have to go shopping for something at some point. I have a while, I know, but I was surprised at how little I could find online today. I thought there'd be more. Also, I'm going to have to figure out shoes. I have a pair of slingback leather pumps I love, but the heels need repair, and I'm not sure they're what I'll want to wear. I want to be cute & reasonably fashionable while staying comfortable. I'll be 27 weeks, so I think that's good- definitely pregnant-looking (as opposed to just questionably fat), but not insanely, uncomfortably pregnant.

OK. Just wanted to vent that. Now I'll ignore the problem for a few more weeks & then panic again, lol.

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#12 of 28 Old 09-10-2014, 05:11 PM
 
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@Yaliina I am going to 2 weddings in a couple weeks and spent an completely ridiculous amount of time online looking at dresses. I was sort of leaning toward picking something maternity to emphasize the bump and help me feel more cute pregnant and less super fat haha. Anyway asos.com had a lot of cute dresses not outrageously expensive.

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#13 of 28 Old 09-11-2014, 11:12 AM
 
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I got some jeans today. Gap "Real Straight"--I think I like them. About to try on at home.

Let me know what you think of asos when you get it, @LexiDrewMama . I've spent too much time on that website, too!

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#14 of 28 Old 09-11-2014, 06:00 PM
 
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@Rosemarino I ended up not getting anything from asos....everything I loved they were out of my size. I ended up just getting a dress with an empire waist from david's bridal. Another website for clothes and stuff (though there's not a ton of maternity) is poshmark.com. IMHO it's a better version of thredup.
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#15 of 28 Old 09-15-2014, 07:05 PM
 
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It's not a big purchase (lol), but I bought a cute maternity top at Kohl's today for $3, and some new undies with the stretchy lace waist, which I hope will be comfy as my belly grows (I've never gotten "maternity" undies). The undies were way more expensive per than was the top. They did actually have a decent sale (50%) on some tops and a few pants, but I don't really feel I can spend a lot on clothes until I know what I'm getting back from my friend (hopefully Thursday). I did wear my regular bluejeans today, and decided that until I get the Belly Band I ordered (Amazon), I will probably not be wearing them again. They're the kind with some stretch, so they are usually very forgiving, but...

And, not clothes related, but shopping related: I've decided I need a stroller, mostly for football/soccer/basketball games, and to carry stuff for me. I found a couple of Uppababy Vistas, and a Bugaboo Cameleon on Craigslist in my area for a good price & I'm trying to decide on one. They each have their +/-, but I'm leaning towards the Uppababy, mostly because it sits up higher & has that really nice sun canopy, plus the bassinet is separate. Anybody else obsessing over stuff recetly? Also, I looked at some other car seats, and am still thinking I'll go with the Maxi Cosi Pria with tiny fit. Can anyone tell I've been procrastinating doing my readings for this week? I'm so burned out! At least I got 3 papers written this weekend, and just have 1 more paper, 2 presentations, and a case history form to do this week- oh, and a quiz. Just a little less than 3 weeks left!
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#16 of 28 Old 09-16-2014, 04:36 AM
 
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I saw an Uppa Baby bucket at a consignment store. It was new but so cheap. However, I need the Diono so it can fit in my car. Stroller wise, I went through three other strollers before I found our Phil & Ted's (and don't hate me, but it was $3 at a thrift store!) It's awesome, and has that great back seat, which I need.

I do like maternity underwear. My mom bought me 6 pairs, and they're from H&M so they were reasonable. I think $30 for all six. I had some from my last pregnancy in 2010-2011 that I still wear (ahem.) They're just so comfortable! She also bought me 3 nursing bras from there and I like them so much, and the cheapest I have ever seen.

Yay for a new top. Still no word on the other clothes?! There's a consignment event this weekend for kids/maternity--it's huge and happens twice a year. I'm going! It's pretty crazy over there but I really just need some stuff for my kids and I'll check out what they have for me. I know my friend is giving me all her baby clothes (awesome gender-neutral stuff) and gear. I have never lucked out this way before, so I am really happy.

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#17 of 28 Old 09-18-2014, 03:23 PM
 
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I'll be interested to hear how you make out at the big event, Rosemarino.

Actually, I just got a big garbage bag full of maternity clothes back from my friend today! Some stuff had been mine, and other stuff not, but all in all, it was a decent haul. Quite a few pairs of pants, including a nice NWT Kohl's yoga pants (which I am wearing now, because they are just comfy, lol). Unfortunately, my friend is smaller, especially in the top, than I, so I think she passed on a lot of the tops and some of the pants, so who knows if/what more I might get back. I really don't mind- I told her to get rid of whatever she didn't need, because I thought I was done. She said she gave most to her SIL, who will see what she kept & will hopefully pass them back- then she's trying to get pregnant (the SIL), so I said I'll pass everything back to her when I'm done, lol. A nice cicrcle of sharing. So, now I have enough things to get me by for a while, and I can start filling in some with trips to thrifts and decent sales. I actually discovered that I can wear t-shirts on top of a couple of maxi dresses I have, with the t-shirt folded up underneath (difficult to describe), or tied in the front, so it looks like a different dress. I'm pretty sure it wouldn't work when not pregnant, but I find that pregnant women get away with all kinds of fashions others couldn't.
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#18 of 28 Old 09-18-2014, 03:48 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh! Your post reminded me to tell you all how my ThredUp order went. I can't figure out what size I am now, so almost nothing I ordered fit, but it was all in fabulous condition. It took a long time for the order to come in (just got it yesterday) with free shipping, but I'll do it again. I've noticed that they have almost no fall/winter selection right now, though. I don't know if it's because they're based in California and haven't thought of it, or if it's just a mystery phenomenon happening with my size, but I can't even find many maxi skirts in the non-maternity section.

All in all, I'd recommend it. I'm going to do another order and try something different with sizing, because the clothes were in such good shape that they didn't even smell used. I hope that's not because they spray it with some weird chemical that kills the odor. I think they just only accept barely-used clothes.

I still have no idea what I'm going to wear. I tried on a pair of maternity tights that had a super, mega flexible full belly and I had to take them off within a couple minutes, in a pure rage. I have two pairs of stretchy lounge pants with nice under-belly bands and I hate those, too. I'm not a dress or skirt person, so it's really hard for me to find anything I like, but I'm going to have to search in earnest. And learn how to sew better, I think.
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#19 of 28 Old 09-18-2014, 04:09 PM
 
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Well if you are sewing jersey, just bear in mind that you need a special needle and there are definite techniques such as how to stretch the fabric while sewing. Maybe you know that already, but if not, look into it!
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#20 of 28 Old 09-18-2014, 04:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ugh, I am using jersey and learning way more at every sit-down than I really want to. It's the first time I've ever sewn with it. The only way to learn is to do it, but man...I wish I could just DO it!
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#21 of 28 Old 09-18-2014, 06:08 PM
 
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I learned the hard way, too. I've never been that successful with it, but I am also very basic in my sewing and tend to hate measuring and such things so...
I like the Built By Wendy guide to sewing your own clothes. Oh, and I have this amazing Japanese pattern book for maternity clothes. IT's all in Japanese but once you know how those books work it is pretty straightforward. Here's the link, if you're interested! https://www.etsy.com/listing/4539935...japanese-craft

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#22 of 28 Old 09-18-2014, 06:09 PM
 
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Just remembered you said you don't do dresses. Well, anyway, it's a really interesting book and I did make a dress out of it in '11 that turned out great.

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#23 of 28 Old 09-18-2014, 06:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I DIDN'T do dresses, but I think that's my only option along with light maxi skirts for my pregnant self! I just have no idea how to style them. Thanks for the recommendation!
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#24 of 28 Old 09-20-2014, 12:49 PM
 
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Ugh! I hate sewing jersey! I've not ever been brave enough to try to sew it into clothing aside from Halloween costumes, but I've used it for some other projects, though. Sometimes your local fabric store will offer classes, and if you ask them, they might even set one up for you, or at least offer some good pointers. After I'm through with school, I might start sewing again. I think I have some patterns somewhere.

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#25 of 28 Old 09-20-2014, 02:42 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, the jersey officially got the best of me on the dress armholes. I gave up. I'll be able to do it someday, but I'm not quite good enough at sewing yet. I'll practice more with woven fabric for now. Not that I seem to want anything on my body these days that isn't made out of stretchy fabric. Guess this is what consignment is for.

I do intend to try again with a maxi skirt, though. It's curves that mess me up.

I'm really picky with clothes, in terms of labor practices, sustainability of materials, etc. I don't like the textile industry. I'll do used clothes of any variety, but when buying new I'm picky. Which means new clothes cost a lot of money for me (which means I don't have many clothes). I'm thinking about buying some organic cotton maxi skirts on Etsy that will still be wearable after pregnancy. Maybe that's a cost-effective way to buy new and fit my values without going broke for a few months worth of clothes. I've seen some dresses with pleated skirts or wraps that look like they could be good post-pregnancy, too. But the pricetags are all scaring me off, so I keep not buying.

The thing is...this belly is going to keep growing! I can't just wait and see if suddenly I'll be able to fit into normal clothes again!
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#26 of 28 Old Yesterday, 05:31 AM
 
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Thanks for the reminder about the textile industry. I normally only buy used for the same reason. I can't see buying used undergarments and I definitely don't have the capital for organics. But it's a good reminder. I hope so much that you find a good solution.

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#27 of 28 Old Yesterday, 06:35 AM - Thread Starter
 
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It's almost impossible to avoid! I think that's why I hate it so much. I don't think there's much we can do to avoid the creepiness altogether. It's everywhere, and sometimes it's the only option (like where do you find a car seat with fair-trade upholstery? Nowhere.). And I really, really hate when "ethical" buying is only available to people with tons of money. We can get around that to some degree by buying less and prioritizing our budgets, etc., but in the end, ethical clothes and food shouldn't have to be novelty-priced. But they are, and it makes it really hard for the average family to purchase based on their values. It bugs me.

For now, what can we do but what we can?

ETA: Geez, sorry for the rant. I'm gumpy today, and I spent all day yesterday all over the internet looking for stuff I could afford. Let's get back to happy stuff now. (Oh, and please keep giving references for brand names, etc. I buy it all used anyway, and I still want to know what's good.)
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#28 of 28 Old Yesterday, 11:51 AM
 
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Another post eaten by expiration

I was saying there are some car seats like the Orbit Baby that have organic textiles: http://www.orbitbaby.com/why-orbit-baby/orbitgreen

The Clek Foonf is 100% recyclable but I'm not sure about toxicity specifically.

I remembered that my bras and underwear ARE organic (95% my guess being that the other 5% might be the elastic part). So are the shirts I have from H&M--it's the conscious collection. So if you're looking for used and want a bonus, maybe do check out H&M conscious collection stuff.

I really respect this and it doesn't sound rant-y.

Making a March 9th sandwich with a Halloween filling.
Rosemarino is online now  
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