Pregnancy Style! 5 Women Share Their Secrets

There's no question being four, five, seven months-and-counting pregnant poses a slew of daily challenges—but, you know, dressing well should never be one of them. We are so not a tribe of ladies who will settle for a tent-dress and elastic-waist jeans when pregnancy takes over. Why then do maternity lines and labels continue to make these two sad little pieces the centerpiece of their mom-to-be offerings? No pregnant women should ever have to surrender her stylish ways as her waistline expands—and these four women are evidence! Read on to see how a few fashion-forward pregnant women got creative with their outfits to not only celebrate their growing bumps but their allegiance to looking amazing, before, during, and after baby.
Advertisement
1 of 10
Noria Morales, Senior Style Editor, Fab Sugar

Tell us about what you're wearing.
"This is a Suno spring dress I had my eye on before I got pregnant. It’s a cool, subtle print, it’s empire waist, which is key, and the asymmetric hem makes the dress feel special, plus it lets me show off my legs, which blessedly have not changed with pregnancy. You need to work what you’ve got! Come Fall, when my belly is even bigger and the front gets too short, I’ll wear these over my Momma Js or leggings (yes, leggings). I’m wearing the dress with my Alexander Wang patent leather wedges that I just bought at the sample sale in a “to Noria, love Noria” moment. I don’t care if I can only wear them for an hour a day, and have to take a cab to go three blocks, they make me feel amazing. For accessories I’m wearing my usual set of bangles—the thin ones are made by my friend in Hawaii and the thicker ones are Chanel."

Are there any pieces pre-pregnancy that you've made work for now?
"Most of my current preggo wardrobe consists of pre-pregnancy pieces: Mostly jersey dresses that I can belt to make empire waist if they’re loose and flowy, as well as some knits that used to be loose and are now um, a much sexier fit!"

What's your sneakiest styling trick? "I don’t know if it’s sneaky, but I belt everything to create more fitted silhouettes. The biggest mistake a pregnant woman can make is to wear tenty stuff—you’re carrying enough volume as it is so why make yourself look like a building block? A pregnant belly has beautiful curves (especially under your Playboy-worthy chest), so I do my best to highlight it."

Have you been shopping for your new clothes in maternity sections?
"I inherited a friend’s Momma J Brand jeans and those are great, if you can’t live without a pair of jeans during your pregnancy, try the Momma J skinnies in a dark wash. I’ve been buying simple, stretch jersey dresses from H&M; they’re a classic silhouette with a pretty scoopneck, they’re subtly sexy, and they’re $13. I also love these tissue-thin crewneck sweaters from Gap in jewel tones; they’re fitted and beautiful now, and I’ll wear them slouchy after the baby comes. My shopping secret: ASOS has good maternity offerings, and it’s not that expensive."
2 of 10
How have you been pampering yourself? Any beauty products you can't live without?
"Massage is key, even if it’s just my boyfriend rubbing this Weleda oil on my belly at night to keep away stretch marks (it doesn’t even matter if it works because it feels so good). My nails and hair grow at an insanely fast pace thanks to the pregnancy, so I treat myself to mani/pedis and blowouts whenever I get the urge."

What's one thing that you can't wait to wear again?
"Silk button-downs tucked into high-waist jeans. Now that’s one look that just doesn’t fly when you’ve packed on twenty pounds of belly."

What's been your biggest challenge so far, and how have you overcome it?
"Feeling sexy and not matronly. For the most part, I love being pregnant, but the truth is you’re bigger, slower, and sometimes your body feels like it’s been abducted by a small alien. I overcome it by getting dressed up: a flattering dress that shows some leg, and I don heels. Heels have an enormously transformative effect on me—for now my feet haven’t changed size and my balance hasn’t been affected—so it feels really good to wear them."

What do you wish a designer would invent for a stylish pregnant woman?
"Hmmm, I’m not sure about inventing anything new, but I do wish there was some designer collective where all my favorite designers made one cool maternity piece just for pregnant ladies. Are you listening Derek Lam, Thakoon, Isabel Marant, and Jason Wu?"
Advertisement
3 of 10
Danika Underhill, Art Director

Tell us about what you're wearing.
"American Apparel dress, a vintage bed jacket, and vintage motorcycle boots. Earrings from Bimba & Lola."

Are there any pieces pre-pregnancy that you've made work for you?
"There were actually a lot of pre-pregnancy clothes that fit me, up until the last 6-8 weeks or so...a lot of loose dresses that I used to belt, flowy tops, blazers, and my leather jacket when the weather was a bit cooler."

What's your sneakiest styling trick?
"Putting a rubber band around the button of my jeans. It gives you a few extra inches."

Have you been shopping for your new clothes in maternity sections?
"I found maternity clothes to be too tent-like, boring, and expensive. My best advice would be to avoid maternity clothes and just be a bit creative when shopping at normal stores. Forever 21, Zara, and H&M all have maternity sections, but you can find fun trendy things inexpensively if you get a size up. I found a lot of maxi-dresses, loose tunics, drapey cardigans and pants with elastic waist-bands that gave me some good options, especially when I'm feeling a bit dowdy and ho-hum with my new shape. Embrace the drawstring pant!"
4 of 10
How have you been pampering yourself? Any beauty products you can't live without?
"I would get a facial once a month, until it got too uncomfortable to lay on my back for too long. I also had my hairstylist make a few house calls. That was amazing! I didn't color my hair, so I embraced the new ombre color that a few days at the beach gave me. I also went to Angel Feet for reflexology. A must!"

What's one thing that you can't wait to wear again?
"My jeans! I didn't buy maternity jeans since I am most pregnant in the hottest summer months, but now I can't wait to drop the weight and get back into some high-waisted jeans for fall."

What do you wish a designer would invent for a stylish pregnant woman?
"I think that there is a lot out there that pregnant women can make work...T by Alexander Wang is great, so is American Apparel and James Perse for more casual pieces. Really comfortable and versatile clothes that you can wear if you're pregnant or not, that would be ideal. If Diane Von Furstenberg did a maternity collection, that would be amazing!"

Do you have a pregnancy dressing philosophy?
"Keep your clothes simple and comfortable and have fun with accessories—they fit no matter how your body changes. Shoes can get tricky if you're having leg cramps, so wedges or a chunky boot are great options."
5 of 10
Jena Neumann, Chef and Mom

Tell us about what you're wearing.
"Sigerson Morrison flats. H&M maternity pants  (I wear these everyday since they're so comfy and they keep me cool), and an Old Navy maternity top. Also, vintage Navajo bracelets and rings. The bag is from Meche Correa"

Are there any pieces pre-pregnancy that you've made work for now?
  "Yes! Most of my clothes worked until around my sixth month of pregnancy."

What's your sneakiest styling trick?
"I make safety pin darts on my long dresses or shirts just under my belly. When you're towards the end of your pregnancy, you want to wear fitted clothes. Loose and flowing sounds nice, but actually makes you look bigger than you are."

Have you been shopping for your new clothes in maternity sections? Any other shopping secrets?
"I started shopping maternity in my 7th month of pregnancy. Maternity clothes in general are not cool, but I was surprised by what I found in the maternity section at Old Navy! You want to shop cheap, because you're barely going to wear these clothes, and they probably wont fit after the baby arrives. H&M maternity is good for bottoms, not tops. Old Navy is great for comfy T-shirts and they have a variety of colors and styles that are actually pretty flattering, but the bottoms do not fit petite women. Gap maternity had some great non-cutesy dresses this summer."
6 of 10
How have you been pampering yourself? Any beauty products you can't live without?
"I go to my massage therapist and acupuncturist once a week. I use Weleda everything, and skin oils from Pratima."

What's one thing that you can't wait to wear again?
"My shoes! I'm tired of wearing flats."

What's been your biggest challenge so far, and how have you overcome it?
"The summer heat! Most pregnancy clothes that are actually cute aren't made from natural fibers. Wearing them is not an option when you live in NYC humidity and are in your third trimester. I wear 100% natural fibers, 100% of the time."

What do you wish a designer would invent for a stylish pregnant woman?
"Clothes!"
7 of 10
Jade Sarita Arnott, Designer, Arnsdorf

Tell us about what you're wearing.
"Arnsdorf silk kaftan , vintage scarf, straw hat from a market stall, A.P.C. sandals, Vanessa Bruno bag."

Are there any pieces pre-pregnancy that you've made work for now?
"Almost all of the pieces I'm wearing now are from my pre-pregnancy wardrobe. I've found I'm wearing pieces I owned pre-pregnancy but never really wore. Obviously there are pieces I can no longer wear but other things have come out from the back of the closet and are working for the first time. It's a fun time to experiment with new silhouettes and styles and be forced out of your usual dressing habits. It's probably also a lot easier in summer to make your pre-pregnancy dresses and lightweight loose blouses work."

What's your sneakiest styling trick?
"Wearing layers and wearing fitted jackets and shirts open."

Have you been shopping for your new clothes in maternity sections? Any other shopping secrets?
"I went to a maternity section once but never bought anything there. My sister passed me on her J Brand maternity jeans which are great but apart from that I haven't got anything else that is 'maternity'. I liked a wrap dress I saw online from Isabella Oliver but then couldn't justify buying something I would only wear for the next 3 months."
Advertisement
8 of 10
How have you been pampering yourself? Any beauty products you can't live without?
"I've been using coconut oil on my belly and body, it's all natural so safe to use and great for keeping skin elastic as it stretches as far as its ever stretched!"

What's one thing that you can't wait to wear again?
"Anything high waisted—shorts, trousers, skirts..."

What's been your biggest challenge so far, and how have you overcome it?
"The early stages can be difficult when you're only just starting to show and finding it hard to fit into your clothes, but don't look pregnant enough to embrace your new shape. I have found dresses to be the easiest thing to throw on through all the stages of pregnancy."

What do you wish a designer would invent for a stylish pregnant woman?
"An all-in-one jumpsuit."

Do you have a pregnancy dressing philosophy?
"Go for comfortable loose or tight stretchy styles. I'm enjoying wearing long sleeved short dresses at the moment, longer lengths can look a little too 'motherly' especially if you aren't super tall."
9 of 10
Helena Fredriksson, Designer

Tell us about what you're wearing.
"An H Fredriksson Monk dress in cobalt blue, H Fredriksson draped vest in black, a Collina Strada bag, denim sandals from Bluefish and my Rebecka Froberg wedding ring."

Are there any pieces pre-pregnancy that you've made work for now?
"Yes, the majority of pieces I'm wearing is non-pregnancy clothes. Jersey tank dresses, draped or wider style silk and cotton dresses. A lot of my usual wardrobe as well as several pieces from the H Fredriksson collection works really well while pregnant."

What's your sneakiest styling trick?
"Fitted shapes that shows of bump and curves."

Have you been shopping for your new clothes in maternity sections? Any other shopping secrets?
"Not really, the only thing I bought proper maternity was a pair of leggings that fitted over the belly and was great for chilly evenings while I was in Sweden this summer."
10 of 10
How have you been pampering yourself? Any beauty products you can't live without?
"This great natural body oil, and a special belly oil has been in everyday use. Acupuncture and weekly massages during the last few months have been a total treat."

What's one thing that you can't wait to wear again?
"My favorite high waisted jeans and anything with a shaped waist."

What's been your biggest challenge so far, and how have you overcome it?
"I was incredibly sick during my first four months being pregnant, which was awful and a huge challenge. One day I was plugged into an IV and too weak to stand up, and the next I had to manage and take care of my business."

What do you wish a designer would invent for a stylish pregnant woman?
"I guess it's my job as a designer to come up with an invention."

Do you have a pregnancy dressing philosophy?
"Summertime pregnancy is all about dresses and sandals."
Advertisement