Pregnant in the winter- wardrobe questions - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 27 Old 11-21-2010, 08:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Last pregnancy I didn't really start getting big until late March so I was able to fit into my winter clothes the whole time (except jeans) and bust out the maternity wardrobe when spring hit.  So this time around I am armed with spring/summer mat clothes, a baby due in May, and a belly getting bigger earlier.  I don't want to buy a whole winter wardrobe since this may be my last pg.  I have checked local second-hand stores, scrounged from friends, and checked ebay but I haven't succeeded.  I do have jeans and pants but very little otherwise.


What do you really need for a mat wardrobe in the winter?  Do you need a mat coat?  Things you couldn't live without?  I really don't want to buy clothes to wear for a few months, so any crafty ideas to stay warm in winter without the waste (i.e. able to wear not pg)?  I am outdoors a lot in the cold, frequently traveling in inclement weather and am generally a "cold" person even while pregnant.

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#2 of 27 Old 11-21-2010, 10:14 PM
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Well I'm not sure of the weather where you're at but I'd definitely get at least 2-4 long sleeve shirts.  I'm currently in Texas but I'm learning hooded sweatshirts can only get you so far...  Some long sleeve shirts *can* also pass for 'regular clothes' too.


Depending on how cold it is and how often you'll wear it a maternity coat might be worth it (check consignment stores first) but I would at least have a coat on hand that would be big enough to fit around a medium sized bump, even if it is a regular coat one size up.  Its not always a requirement that it be zipped so if it only fits zipped up until you're 6-7 months then it will probably be warm enough to unzip or not wear by the time you get too big for it.

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#3 of 27 Old 11-22-2010, 04:05 AM
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I thought I would need a maternity coat, but luckily I have been able to squeeze into my regular winter coat, despite my VERY large belly.  You might be surprised to....check out your current winter coat to see how roomy it is!


I have invested in a few long-sleeve t-shirts from both Kohls and H&M that seem to be doing the trick.  I can dress them up a bit with a necklace or add a cardigan sweater for warmth if need be.  This has been my basic wardrobe since outgrowing most everything else!


Good luck!


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#4 of 27 Old 11-22-2010, 06:43 AM
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I am still squeezing into my regular coat and I am due in January. If I outgrow that, I am wearing my DH ugly winter army like coat. I am not buying a winter coat for only a month or two. My last pregnancy, I was due in April and wore his coat for a few weeks when it got really really cold. I live in the Midatlantic, so sometimes it can be terribly cold and sometimes we can have a very mild winter.

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#5 of 27 Old 11-22-2010, 06:51 AM
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Maybe instead of getting maternity shirts you could just buy some larger sized regular long sleeved shirts.  I don't know about you, but I can only wear "maternity" shirts for so long after my pregnancy before I feel weird about it. 


Or, you could buy a couple long sleeve nursing shirts.  They usually can be worn while pregnant too, and depending on how long you plan on nursing, you could get much more use out of them than maternity shirts.

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#6 of 27 Old 11-22-2010, 07:41 AM
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I wore DH's coat through 2 pgs, but last time I got too big for it and end up having to buy a larger, cheap jacket. I usually just head to Target and buy a few long sleeved shirts to get me through. I am always cold but in pg, I run warmer so I don't have to wear all the sweaters like I normally do. 

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#7 of 27 Old 11-22-2010, 07:52 AM
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I didn't want to buy maternity clothes for the same reason, but I did cave in and buy a few.  I ended up getting 4 long sleeve shirts and a cardigan from Old Navy for $50 (from a gift card I had!) and another cardigan from Target for about $20.  I also borrowed a lot from friends, and hit the thrift stores around town.


Some ideas (not sure how cold it gets where you live):

Layers: If you can buy some maternity tights or leggings and a couple of cardis you might be able to stretch your summer maternity wardrobe through the winter.

Outlets/Ebay/Used clothing stores or online used clothing (people often sell maternity clothes on Diaperswappers)

Ask friends/family for gift cards for the holidays.  If you get $100 at the right kind of store, it can go a long way!

Yoga pants from pre-pregnancy are still working for me now, but it might be the way I'm carrying, so maybe try some stretchy soft stuff that you can low-rise?


I still have a coat I kept from my last pregnancy, but I don't generally need to wear it yet.  I do live in a place where it doesn't get that cold, it never snows.

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#8 of 27 Old 11-22-2010, 10:59 AM
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I'd hold off on a maternity coat. With a May baby there's a good chance you won't be that big before the weather starts warming up, unless you live somewhere with long and brutal winters. I never even bought a maternity coat with my Dec and Jan due babies. I just wore my regular coat and let it gape open and added a warm scarf. It was enough for me, but I'm one who tends to get hot natured and don't like wearing coats in general. I'm usually more comfy in a cardigan.

For clothing, I couldn't not wear maternity, personally. I get a huge basketball belly but am fairly petite elsewhere, so simply sizing up in regular clothing doesn't cut it for me. It's totally worth it to me to get real maternity stuff. Old Navy has long sleeve basic Ts for not too much, and they regularly put them on sale. They're $10/each right now, but I got several a few weeks ago for $8/each. Can you maybe resell whatever maternity stuff you buy now after the baby comes, either to a local consignment shop/sale or on ebay? In a couple of my past pregnancies I was able to find some good deals on ebay of maternity lots, but I admit there doesn't seem to be as much available as there used to be. Seems a lot of people have good luck with Craigslist, though I've personally never tried it.

Good luck!

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#9 of 27 Old 11-22-2010, 11:16 AM
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If you decide to go for a winter coat, watch the sales at Old Navy and you can get one pretty cheap.  I am due in April and live in the Northeast, so I really need a warm coat.  I got a coat that seems to be quite warm for $29 a few weeks ago.

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#10 of 27 Old 11-22-2010, 11:43 AM
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I got a maternity jacket at Target last week, it's really cute, one of those Liz Lange ones.  For bottoms it sounds like you're pretty much set though I like the idea of yoga pants - I have a low-rise pair that works well with long maternity tops and a pair with the fold over waist (not maternity, a bunch of yoga pants are made like this).  For tops I have to say I'm not getting a lot of warm, long sleeve tops as I've found I'm already starting to run hot.  I'm preferring short sleeve maternity tops with a cardigan layered over (I need the extra length of maternity tops to cover my belly already, I'm tall).  And of course most non-maternity cardigans are pretty flexible - you can wear regular ones unbuttoned and those "cascading" styles have extra material on the sides, I have one where I just wrap the sides around me (for now anyway, lol).

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#11 of 27 Old 11-22-2010, 11:56 AM
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I saw the winter coats at Target, they are surprisingly cute and comfy.  I am waiting a few weeks to see if they go on sale - most seasonal stuff at Target gets marked down pretty quickly.  I also bought a few pairs of thick tights that I plan on wearing under my pants or skirts when it gets colder out.  I also wear knee-length wool socks.  I really just layer up as much as possible.  At home I put on 2 long sleeved shirts from Old Navy and a big sweatshirt and if I leave the house I usually switch to just one long sleeved shirt with a big cardigan.  I am ALWAYS cold unless its in the upper 80's or 90's so I am used to wearing tons of layers all the time!

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#12 of 27 Old 11-22-2010, 12:13 PM
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I bought 2 pairs of maternity jeans.  I also have one dressy long skirt leftover from last pregnancy that I can use if I need something nicer.


I mostly have been wearing maternity t-shirts with my one loosest pre-preg cardigan.  And I have a used coat that someone gave me last pregnancy that is a few sizes too big.  (And worked well to wear over both of us when I would wear DS.)

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#13 of 27 Old 11-22-2010, 12:51 PM
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I was due mid-May last pregnancy.  We have long, hard winters here, and I was able to wear my normal coat all through.  It was a little snug at the end, but not bad.  This time, with twins, I already outgrew my coat, so I bought a 2x at Goodwill.  I may have to move up to 3x before we're done, but we'll see.  I have several long sleeve tops and a few sweaters.  I'm running warmer this time around, with two little buns in the oven, so I find the sweaters too hot for now.  We'll see how it goes when winter really hits.  We've been blessed with beautiful weather so far. 

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#14 of 27 Old 11-22-2010, 01:12 PM
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I bought a cheapo hoodie from Old Navy in a size up from what I normally wear, and so far it has been awesome for the colder weather. I don't see mine on the website anymore, but it is is fleece lined with some kind of really fuzzy fleece—very similar to this: 



I'm due in about seven weeks, and so far there is enough stretch left in it that I think I'll have no problem using this 'til the baby comes. It's incredibly warm (it holds in body heat well because this cheap fleece is essentially like wearing a plastic bag, lol). If you order online you could even get it in a tall size, which I bet would be really great at covering your belly! 


I agree with the others that t-shirts in a larger size (or even better, nursing tops) might be a better investment than actual maternity shirts. I ended up getting a handful of regular shirts a size larger and a couple of short-sleved maternity shirts, and I just invested in two nice-ish cardigan sweaters in my normal size—I'm just wearing them open all the time until the baby vacates my torso area :P


Other than that I have a par of maternity capris that un-roll into regular pants, and a pair of maternity jeans. I also got a pair of regular jeans that are pretty low-rize and a couple sizes larger than my norm, and they are also working out really well.


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#15 of 27 Old 11-22-2010, 10:31 PM
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I'm finding I'm in the same boat. My maternity shirts are all warm weather and my sweaters are risking permanent stretching if I wear them much longer. I don't really want to buy a new wardrobe nor do I want to ruin what I have now. Money's so tight, too. I guess I'll hit up thrift shops and get a few warm shirts and try to layer others here to save.


I'm one inch from not being able to zip my winter coat. Months ago when I found out I was expecting I bought one at a thrift shop for $4. It'll get me through the whole pregnancy but then again the winters here start about now and run til April easily.

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#16 of 27 Old 11-23-2010, 02:25 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the great suggestions!  I think I will have to cave and buy at least a few sweaters/warmer shirts and I like the idea of finding used stuff one size up or even cheap Target/ON stuff that I could wear postpartum.  Maybe I will wait until after the holidays when everything winter is on clearance and just let my pre-pg clothes stretch until then... I am thinking cardigans will work when not pg too and same with any kind of wrap sweater.  DH is a lot taller and longer than I am- the arms of his coats are dangling off of me by whole feet, so this may only be a last resort!

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#17 of 27 Old 11-23-2010, 03:21 PM
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I live in the frigid Upper Midwest and am due in early March, so I knew I was gonna need a warm coat of some sort. Fortunately, I just found a non-maternity wool coat on sale at ON for $40. It has an empire waist and only has buttons on the upper half which leaves tons of room on the bottom for my belly to grow.  And because it's not a maternity coat, I might be able to wear it again.


As for the rest of my paltry maternity wardrobe, I'm getting by with a couple of cardigans that I can wear over the maternity tees I have from my first pregnancy. On the bottom, I'm wearing black yoga pants or my one and only pair of maternity jeans.  I'm sure I'll be bored of all of it by March, but I really don't want to invest a bunch of money in stuff I won't wear again.  Right now, I'm most worried about what I'm gonna do if my feet swell up like they did with my first pregnancy.  Last time around, it was summer and I could cram my giant edema feet into flip flops. But that won't work very well in February.

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#18 of 27 Old 12-02-2010, 03:23 AM
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I live in Alberta so winter hits early, stays late and rears it's ugly head on a constant basis.  Last week we were -40 degrees C and it was brutal!  I knew that I wasn't going to get away without a winter mat coat as I'm due in march, however, I'm also 6' tall and plus size so ANY coat I find that fits is amazing for me.  What we did was convert my current parka with the help of a seamstress.  You've probably seen those 'transitional' mat coats with the triangle-like panel that can be zipped in and out?  We got the seamstress to make an insulated panel that just zips into my parka, cinches at the bottom for warmth and can be zipped right out again.  It's been amazing!!!!  My other winter coat is still fitting but not for long and I'm sure glad that I've got backup!


Other than that, it's the usual winter wardrobe up here: jeans, long sleeved shirts and sweaters.  I'm finding wicked deals at Motherhood lately (spent $150 yesterday for a ton of stuff!  Hubby almost laid an egg, but I figure if I'm giving birth and carrying this child, he can deal with the expense of clothing!!!) so prices haven't been too bad yet.  Old Navy has a really limited selection of stuff up here, and trying to fit into anything at Thyme just isn't working.  Yippee for bella-bands by the way!!!!  Those things are saving my bacon right now!

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#19 of 27 Old 12-02-2010, 01:08 PM
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I'm in texas and due in jan. I've been getting by wearing my husbands extra thick sweatshirt, and I got a regular cheapy long sleeve white tee to wear under my short sleeved mat clothes.

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#20 of 27 Old 12-02-2010, 02:29 PM
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With the warm weather maternity shirts that I assume you still have, you can buy regular zip sweaters and hoodies to wear over or use ones you already have. If you want them to actually zip you may have to buy a size up.


I like my roll down yoga pants I got from old navy for pants. They fit better than my two pairs of maternity jeans. Maternity jeans annoy me since I buy them and they always loosen up right away and start falling down but I still got some since they are warmer than the yoga pants and I live in Montana.


I really wouldn't bother with a maternity winter coat unless you find one super cheap somewhere. 

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#21 of 27 Old 12-02-2010, 02:34 PM
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I'm kind of experiencing the same thing. Getting bigger and bigger (also due in May), but not too keen on spending a lot of money on maternity clothes.


I splurged for a couple pairs of good fitting maternity jeans. Other than that, I wear long sleeve shirts from my pre-pregnancy wardrobe. When I worry they won't cover my whole belly, I layer with one of those hip-length long layering tanks or a bella band. You can wear those tanks during your non-pregnancy days too, of course. :) And the final piece of the wardrobe, IMO, is a few of these really awesome sweater coats that are in style these days. You know, the long sweaters that belt and go down past your hips. They go great over a pregnant belly, they're super warm, and if you are worried about unbuttoned pre-pregancy jeans slipping a bit too low, the sweater coats cover all that up.

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#22 of 27 Old 12-02-2010, 03:09 PM
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I'll echo what many have already said - layers, layers, layers.  I already tend to wear lots of camis/tees with cardigan type sweaters or hoodies in the winter so I just got 2 pr of mat jeans (mine from my older 2 are old and nasty looking, so I splurged!), some cheap mat camis (and reg extra long camis from ON that are super stretchy and under $10 each) and may add a few l/s tees but otherwise I'm trying to limit it to that and make due as much as I can.  I did also purchase come leggings that I can wear post pg, too, and some regular womens tunic style dresses SUPER cheap at ON (under $20 for sure) and I'll be able to wear them most of this pg till I get really big at the very end (due April) and then wear again next fall.  It gets really cold here but I'm not getting a mat coat.  Not planning on any long outdoor activities anyway but if mine starts not wanting to zip at the end ;) I'll just layer one of DH's fleece vests under it and leave the front unzipped.  This is what I did with my others.

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#23 of 27 Old 12-03-2010, 07:51 AM
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Penstamom, how cold does your fourth dimension get?


It gets around -30 C here (at least, did when I was pg). I bought one turtleneck knit, two full sleeve cotton tops, and got a couple of larger full sleeve shirts as gifts. I also bought a few summer tops on sale. One pair of jeans and one corduroy pants. One long sweater. I used a coat that my husband had and was too big for him. Layered all the way. Initially, just used my pre-pg long sleeved shirts and wore tees above them. Later, same, but with maternity clothes. I got some hand-me-downs as well, but only some fit my body type. I had just moved here and hardly knew anyone at the time.


If you plan on doing any baby-wearing, it may be worth investing in a Kinder Coat or an M-coat. I just bought a Deluxe Kinder Coat and so far, loving it, to go over my baby in Beco. Both of these coats can be used as baby-wearing and pregnancy coats. Kinder Coat can be used in front and back carry positions, as also pregnant while back carrying positions (although I doubt that I'd like to do much of that).

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#24 of 27 Old 12-03-2010, 09:07 AM
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I'm layering with short sleeves a wool sweater, and I did buy a maternity coat. My belly gets huge and my old coat doesn't fit and I'm petite in general and I get lost if I just "buy up" a couple of sizes. That and we figured that with this being our second February baby we're just going to plan on the third being a winter baby also. :)

It was definitely a purchase that I didn't want to make (for budgeting purposes), but it gets cold here and it's so nice to be warm again.

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#25 of 27 Old 12-05-2010, 06:48 PM
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Empire waist regular coats are great .  I was pregnant during the winter and was able to use my regular coat because it was empire waist.  I also met another mom recently doing this and she looked lovely.


I also second the idea of making a zip-in panel for a coat, if you are able to sew.  Either take your coat and find a matching zipper, or just buy three matching zippers and replace the zippers on your coat.


I also see swing coats, like the vintage kind from the 60s, in the goodwill sometimes.  Or a nice drapey poncho.  They have those at Old Navy right now, I think.

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#26 of 27 Old 12-06-2010, 06:55 PM
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My last pregnancy I was due in March, and I live in Colorado. I never bought a maternity coat-- just layered and borrowed a coat in a size up to fit my belly.


I also found that I could wear stretchy long-sleeved T-shirts that I already had from Target. In fact, I still wear those shirts. The only down side is that I am heartily sick of them! I layered under cardigans or maternity dresses, and wore leggings under pants when necessary (for some reason my maternity pants all seem to be thin in the butt and let the cold in!)


Other budget-friendly ideas:

*Check thrift stores for regular clothes in bigger sizes, and especially look for some of the empire-waist styles that were popular several years ago for regular clothes (which you still see in maternity clothes)

*If you can sew at all, you can get larger clothes from thrift stores and follow one of the many web tutorials to make them fit better with ruching, etc.

*If you can't borrow actual maternity clothes from friends and family, can you borrow a bigger coat, stretchy shirts that they don't really wear, etc?

*Try to budget a bit of money to buy yourself something different in your last month or two. You will be so sick of what you've been wearing that you will really want it! You might not have this problem, though, since you should be able to switch to your warm-weather clothes for your last couple of months. Clothes you haven't worn in a while are almost as good as new ones! :)

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#27 of 27 Old 12-07-2010, 09:10 AM
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I didn't think I would need to participate in this conversation...yet.  HOWEVER, my jeans...that I just now fit back into...are uncomfortable around the waist when I'm sitting down.  Not TIGHT...just uncomfortable.'s 17 degrees F here today...and I think, "No problem...I have those yoga-style pants from Target...should be good."




I only bought them a month ago, and they are a little tight around the waist (but do make my tukas look good!) and were COLD!!!  Man, my legs are FREEZING!!!


I'm really short, and finding REGULAR clothes to fit is a NIGHTMARE!



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