I don’t know about you but I’m a bit of a skinflint when it comes to purchasing ‘temporary’ items. If I’m looking at something I might get a few years use/wear out of I don’t mind splurging a bit more but when I know that things may only be good for a few months, I’m less keen on parting with my pennies. In order to make sure I don’t go OTT with my summer maternity wear spending I’ve tried to buy things by occasions (and from the general high street) so I know what I’m buying actually works together and that I will get use out of it. I also try to mix maternity and non maternity together to get a bit more use out of these items post baby too. So, here is a round up of some of the bits I’ve bought to get me through the summer.
So you’ll obviously need something to wear when you’re off to make all of your new maternity wear purchases, pushchair purchases and general wanting to spoil your new kid rotten shopping. Shopping centres are strange places. Some shops are freezing, some are boiling hot and you want something comfortable and easy to remove if you’re trying other things on. My staple go to shopping bottoms are my maternity Leigh jeans form Topshop. I tend to team with a tee (as per my usual shopping attire when I’m not pregnant) and Mango have just released their new maternity line! Huzzah. The quality of the t-shirts is really good. They are very soft. The only gripe I have is that they are fairly short at the front. My current 28 week bump is only just covered and so I won’t be able to wear it for much longer so my advice would be to get these in the earlier days to make the most wear out of them. You’ll obviously want some comfortable footwear. I swear by my Adidas Stan Smiths but I also love these little star pumps from Hush. The other thing to consider when out for a significant amount of time is your back and staying hydrated. I opt for a back pack like this one from Next to distribute the weight across the shoulders (instead of ending up with one sore one from a cross body bag or normal handbag). You can easily get a small bottle of water in there and couple of snacks too.
As your bump grows, it gets harder to wash up. I’m being serious. I now have to stand half a foot from my sink to wash up and that’s all unnecessary pressure on my back and a perfect excuse to fit in more lunch time/early evening trips out to the pub. A comfortable waistband is obviously the most important factor here. As is stripes apparently. I never thought I would be a fan of horizontal stripes when pregnant for fear of making my already expanding behind look even bigger but turns out I’m a big fan. This dress from Topshop is lush. It is so comfortable and is also great for when the baby arrives as it’s specifically designed for nursing. Lift the top cami fabric piece and voila! You’re baby can have a good feed whilst you look effortlessly fabulous eating your tuna melt.
And here is our first piece of non maternity wear. This glorious skirt from Mango. So soft, so lightweight, so comfortable. Sits well under the bump even in my normal size, mainly due to the elasticated waist and so can be worn post baby too without looking an odd shape or size. Team with a classic cami shape from Topshop and some pretty jewels and there’s another lunch time outfit sorted. Alternatively these marled t-shirts from H&M are super.
You want to be comfy, you may end up sitting in a camp chair but that doesn’t mean you can’t look totally cool as a cucumber doing so. You may just need a hand to get back out of said camping chair. Anyway, this outfit combo is so straightforward, regular midi skirt, regular t-shirt, sandals. You may even already have these items in your wardrobe. The midi skirt from H&M can pull up over the bump (it needs to go right under your boobs for this look) and still give you plenty of length to be sophisticated. I then take one of my fave H&M t-shirts, bunch it up above of my bump, tie a side knot and you have some sort of skirt/tee combo that looks like a dress. And the fun thing with this is that these items come in so many colours, you can make loads of cool combos. Chuck on some funky flats like these sandals from River Island and you’re done.
The other option for such an occasion involves what is possibly my favourite purchase of all. This black knot dress from Warehouse is perfect. Purchased in my ‘normal’ size, the knot sits just under the bump, it lightweight and super flattering. I’m largely living in it at the moment and it is currently in the sale with stock left at just £20. A must buy for your maternity wardrobe.
A walk in the park
Fresh air is essential, especially in the summer time when you can walk at a very leisurely pace, possibly with a Twister in hand, basking in the glorious British weather. I love a denim short. In fact, I love them come rain or shine, with or without tights, for most occassions. But they are definitely extremely suited to a stroll around the park, good for taking an impromptu seat on a slightly rough bench or the grass. These ASOS ones are really comfortable. I like the ripped style; they make me feel like me before I got a big belly. Who knew a short could make you feel reconnected to your prior pregnant self. Grab yourself a Topshop t-shirt multipack or for a really sunny day when you want to get your shoulders out this soft free flowing cami from Dorothy Perkins is lovely. As are these Sandals, also from Dotty P’s. They come in tan, white and coral and are currently in the sale in most sizes for £9! They obviously aren’t leather but for those of you who are suffering with swollen feet due to excess water may need to buy a bigger size than normal and at that price you could get them in all three colours!
On the beach
Maternity swim wear is something I have really struggled with. I am off to Barcelona in two weeks with a group of girls who are all utterly fabulous in their own rights as will their swimwear be. I have seen them sharing photos of neon, geometric patterns, fun frolicy beach wear. All the maternity specific swimwear I have come across seems so dowdy in comparison. I still consider myself young, fun and frolicy… Big belly or no big belly. I am also aware that the skin on my tummy will be very sensitive due to the amount it is currently stretched and so I am mixing up my swim wear options to make sure that I have days where I feel more connected to my style and also days where I can be more covered and protect the bump if needs be. I have found the fit of the Next maternity range very comfortable and this black and grey number is very simple and comfortable.
When it came to finding more of a bikini I’ve had to go ‘normal’ wear. H&M has been quite the saviour as all of their tops and bottoms are sold as separates meaning I can get a much bigger top than I would normally have and a size up in the bottoms to accommodate the tush. They are all very reasonably priced too which is always a bonus. Out of all the tops I tried on the high street this bandeux top was by far the most flattering, comfortable (as theres no wire and so was super soft around the top of my bump) and it looks cool with the little cut outs. It comes in three different patterns too, black, black and white striped and floral. The bikini briefs come in a range of colours too so I’m thinking of sticking to the black top and switching up the pants. Another way to save a bit of money.
This maxi cover up from ASOS is great to just throw on to grab a spot of lunch or pop to the loo… or walk up the beach for more ice cream and this hat from Zara will keep you nice and cool and make you look super chic.
Now just to find my inner confidence and get this bump out in the sunshine!
Girls night out
Just because you’re carrying another human around (you clever sausage you!) doesn’t mean you cannot go out and enjoy a good dance with your besties. The key here is to make sure you are able to stay cool and don’t overheat too much. This selection of dresses will allow you to do just that. This asymmetric slip dress from River Island is lush. The fabric feels lovely and hangs really well. It has a waist tie and so you can either tie it above the bump or round the back to get some more shape. It also comes in four different colours. Then it’s off to Topshop again. The floral wrap number is really flattering and I love the unusual pattern. The blue number is a maternity adaptation of my favourite all time slip dress from Topshop and so naturally I am really drawn to it. Loose, cool and in a variety of colours you can’t go wrong.
So that’s a few occasions covered and then in general there are a few things that I think it’s important you have in your wardrobe for lolling about the house, a quick trip to the petrol station to fulfil your unexpected craving for marshmallows or being able to play comfortably in the garden with your littles.
The long line t-shirt is a must, as well are vests. They look great with shorts or over leggings if it’s a slightly cooler day. Do invest in a couple of pairs of shorts that are softer than denim. Sometimes a skirt or dress isn’t practical but you still want to try and achieve the same level of comfort and no restrictions. These scalloped hem shorts from ASOS provide that exact in between. It’s also handy to have some loose summer dresses to throw on. When it’s been hot I have found the last thing I want is to be restricted by something whilst pottering around the garden or going for a short walk. The tie die dress from ASOS and a-line dress from H&M are both non maternity so ace for post baby too. I have found lots of non maternity jersey style maxi dresses fit wonderfully too. And ladies, lets not forget that we live in the UK and it rains, all the time. This mac from Next is non maternity but they have been very clever and created a maternity panel for it. This is essentially an additional piece of mac that you zip into the coat for when you bump grows. And it’s a fiver. A fab idea in my eyes! It would fold up nicely into that back pack I mentioned earlier too!
So there you have it, my best finds form the highstreet in the last week or so. ASOS counts as high street in my eyes. I am aware that I haven’t covered any work wear. Let us know if that’s something you’d like us to cover, I figured it was probably a post in itself.
As always, please share any of your recent finds that I may need to pack in my weekend bag for my trip to Barcelona in a couple of weeks!
Happy shopping lovelies!