Monday, May 12, 2014

Skirting the Issue (aka: How to Get Through 1 Last Pregnancy without Buying More Maternity Clothes)

***NOTE: this was written last year - I just never got around to posting it because, well, babies keep you busy.***

This is the last pregnancy I'm going to have and I don't want to buy any more maternity clothing. At the same time, I don't really have a ton of summertime maternity clothing and this baby isn't due until the end of August and I can't spend summer in jeans and corduroy pants, of which I have quite a bit. I seem to have enough shirts to get me through summer without getting new ones, although I have replaced one or two of the older ones - most of my maternity clothing dates back to 2005, so it's roughly 8 years old and some items are a bit, well, worn out. I ended up buying 2 tank tops and a striped t-shirt at Old Navy, simply because I had some 'bonus bucks' I had to use before they expired, and because I could get 30% off my purchase, which made it more than reasonable. I'll sell them after this pregnancy, along with the rest of my maternity wardrobe that isn't too worn or old to be given away.

Anyway, it's the bottoms I'm in need of and I'm trying to get away from shorts. I ended up buying a pair of tan poplin cropped pants just because it suddenly got warmer than usual, but I'd rather have some skirts or something. It can get humid here and we don't have air conditioning - I want something easy and breezy for the last trimester of this pregnancy. Ottobre to the rescue! In the Spring/Summer 2008 issue of Ottobre Woman, there were a couple of maternity items and one was a cute two-layer skirt with a knit waistband. I had some linen that I bought a while back which I'd decided against using for the project I'd had in mind but which was kind of perfect for this pattern - a sort of khaki ground with navy blue flowers in a very large print. I decided against making this a 2-layer skirt because I liked the print and I only cut the longer, bottom layer. Add a waistband in navy ribbing and it was a quick and easy skirt to make. It's very cute with a navy tank top but will also look cute with white or red on top, and it's not too dressy so I can wear it with flats or Birkenstocks but I can also dress it up a little with my espadrilles. I cut this in a size 46 but I think a 48 might have fit better, since the linen has no stretch. I plan to make this from a knit, too but I think I'll keep the size 46 for the knit.

The other skirt I made is the Megan Nielsen pencil skirt pattern, which is super fast and easy to put together. You could totally do this in an hour if no one was there to bother you. The shape is really simple and, honestly, I'm embarrassed to have spent $18 on a pattern with 2 pieces when it's something that I probably could have drafted for myself. I didn't want to waste the time doing it, though, so I can't complain and I'll probably sell it later on if I don't know anyone who wants it.

 I'm not really one for the super skin-tight maternity clothes; I do prefer a more fitted knit top when I'm pregnant, simply because I'm short and if I don't try to define my figure in some way I end up looking kind of dumpy and lord knows nobody wants to look dumpy when they're pregnant. Also, I'm not usually fond of fitted clothing that emphasizes my derrière. But I have these excellent shoes that I bought for my birthday and their shape and style deserved something a little bit sexier than the average maternity outfit in my wardrobe. I made this from a bamboo stretch French terry in black, which is thinner than cotton French terry but not so thin that I'd be afraid of having a panty line or any unsightly (ahem) lumps. The whole point of this skirt is to show off the bump, so the waistband sits directly under the bra band. This gives you a smoother look under your outfit, I think, but then it makes it harder to wear a thinner, lighter-colored shirt if it comes down over your belly if the skirt is a dark color. Anyway, I decided to wear a red button-down maternity shirt with it, but since it's an older shirt (from my first baby, 13 years ago!) it doesn't have a very modern shape and is more tent-like. Because of the high waist on the skirt, I was able to tie the shirttails in a knot above the bump, which was kind of cute. In all, it was a pretty successful garment and I had a nice date with the husband at a local Mexican restaurant.

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