It seems to me that I had pretty amazing style when I was twenty-eight. The kind of style that was always well put together, unique, and comfortable. The kind of style that got a lot of positive attention from friends and strangers alike - my style was admired. When I became pregnant with Marley, hormones, shifting attitudes, and shifting waistlines conspired to knock me off my stylish pedestal. I remember when I started putting on weight in the middle of my fourth month: pants would no longer zip and a muffin-top was beginning to form on my once svelt waist. I doubt I'll forget the first time I stepped into GapMaternity: it was at once a haven of swinging tunics and secretive elastic-waisted pants; and simultaneously a sad demise to my own sense of personal style. Prior to that day, never once did I long to look like a humpty-dumpty version of a sailor, or a mass of pink ruffled jersey. But compared to the fit of my twentysomething wardrobe and the other budget-friendly options out there - these looks were a godsend. And so, in a misguided attempt to look halfway decent on a budget during my pregnancy, I lost all traces of my style. My post-natal looks were even worse: deprived of sleep and constantly nursing, it's been said and it's fair to say that when Marley was a newborn - there was something tragically reminiscent of National Geographic about my look. And that's okay. In the first month or so of life with your first baby, all bets and bras are off.
Last night I watched the Sam Mendes film, "Away We Go"; and found myself wishing I had a pregnancy fashion do-over. Wearing a few basic indulgences in the lines of maternity wear, Maya Rudolph's character is incredibly stylish in a predominantly vintage wardrobe. I have to say I think that is the answer to looking good and keeping your own sense of style as your belly inflates and your ego deflates during pregnancy. Professionally altered vintage clothing, great basics - like perfect jeans, belly bands, and t-shirts, and knock-out accessories. And don't forget a couple of pairs of chic flats when your feet get bigger (if you're like me, they don't get smaller again, sigh).
Maya Rudolph in "Away We Go"
Lucy Ox on Flickr
Although I lost my sense of style during my pregnancy, as my clock ticks and I go green with envy for every beautifully rounded belly and teensy weensy newborn, I finding hints of my style, like bread crumbs on a trail back home. If you're pregnant and looking for some style inspiration, take a look at this Flickr Pool: Pregnancy Style.