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TummyStyle Maternity & Nursing Clothes

  • Maternity Styling - Rich Colors Rock The Red Carpet In Celebrity Fashion

    As the awards season gets started this year and actors walk the red carpet, fashion blogs and celebrity magazines got their cameras rolling and pens ready. Which designers would the stars turn to? Who would wear a classic dress? Who would step out of the box and wear something totally unexpected? As lights flashed and the actors arrived, one theme became clear: colors. And not just any colors, but bold, beautiful, and deep colors, some almost jewel-like. From ruby reds to jeweled teals to quartz purple, rich and bold colors stood out on the red carpet. Celebrities such as Tina Fey, Cameron Diaz, Lea Michelle and Amy Adams

    Tina Fey

    Tina Fey

    Cameron Diaz

    Cameron Diaz

    (you've got to love an expectant mom rocking the red carpet), all sported vibrant colors in their gown selections, making bold statements.

    The great thing about rich colors is that they are incredibly versatile and look beautiful next to any skin tone or hair color. While nudes or grays can wash out many people, deep colors play up your best features and really make a statement. As super-chic and famed celebrity stylist Rachel Zoe writes in her fun fashion guide, "...rich jewel tones tend to look good on almost everyone... Pale or dark, my clients tend to look best in colors that are rich and bold... These are colors that pop and look striking on just about anyone."

    This example is clear with the dresses seen at the Golden Globes and Screen Actors Guild awards this year. Sandra Bullock

    Sandra Bullock

    Sandra Bullock

    Gabourey Sidebe

    Gabourey Sidebe

    looked gorgeous in a deep quartz purple gown, Gabourey Sidebe

    looked glamorous in a bold blue dress, and Lea Michelle shown in a stunning jeweled teal gown. Whether you are fair skinned or darker, have brown hair or blonde, most deep and bold colors are complimentary to your coloring.

    While these rich tones look gorgeous on a red carpet with the cameras flashing, they look equally as good in day to day life. A deep purple blouse or a cute red cami looks great paired with a pair of dark wash denim jeans. Pair a sapphire blue top with a cute skirt and you have a winning combination. When pregnant, a gorgeous empire waist top in a vibrant color or a cute wrap dress in a rich hue is an excellent addition to your wardrobe.

    Amy Adams

    Amy Adams

    Lea Michelle

    Lea Michelle

    If looking for a maternity top to wear daily, from work to an evening out, a great choice is the Teal D&A Sash Maternity/Nursing Top from Japanese Weekend. This gorgeous teal color will make you feel radiant, and a deep v-neck and empire waist are figure flattering. This look and color is work appropriate yet also perfect for an evening out.

    Another great maternity option is the Knit Flutter Top from Maternal America. A rich fuchsia color combined with a flattering flutter front design looks great with anything from jeans and flats to black pants and heels. Consider some gorgeous color options as you add to your spring wardrobe!

    Ginnifer Goodwin

    Ginnifer Goodwin

    Just as bold colors look good on cute tops, they look also great on dresses. From flowing summer dresses to the classic cocktail dress, a rich color makes a statement. Classic black is always elegant and beautiful, but switching it up with an emerald green or sapphire blue really makes a statement. For an evening out or a special work party, the Embellished Dress from Maternal America is a twist on the standard cocktail dress and is sure to make a splash. Deep plum in color, it has a jeweled neckline and an empire waist which truly make a statement. Classic in shape yet modern in color, it is the perfect dress for that special evening. If looking for something a bit more casual, Maternal America's Front Tie Dress is another fantastic option. Splashes of bright blues really sparkle on this sleeveless dress, perfect for warm weather days.

    From amethyst purple to emerald green, jewel tones are vibrant and beautiful. These highly saturated colors make a statement as a cute top or a stylish dress. Adding these colors to your wardrobe will spice up your day to day wear!

  • Swim During Your Pregnancy!

    If you are looking for a great workout that is safe while you are pregnant, than consider swimming. Swimming is one of the safest forms of exercising, assuming you know how to swim and are not learning for the first time when you are pregnant. Swimming improves circulation, builds endurance, burns calories and exercises both arms and legs. Because of the weightlessness and the low-impact to tendons and ligaments, swimming poses a very low risk of injury although you should check with your doctor or midwife before taking the plunge.

    It is important to stay well hydrated when swimming, and easy to forget as you are surrounded by water. There is no hard and fast guideline for how much to drink, but stayed tuned into your body and try to drink before you swim and every 20-30 minutes when swimming and also when you get out of the pool. If it is hot then you will need to drink more. Also, stay away from hot pools or saunas as they can overheat you and your growing fetus.

    For some women, swimming first thing in the morning can counteract morning sickness and energize them for their day. If you swam regularly before you were pregnant, there is no reason why you can't continue during pregnancy, just pace yourself and do not overexert yourself. The water does help keep you from in the hot sun, which is one of the great benefits of swimming versus other forms of exercise in the warm summer months. It also supports your ligaments and joints that tend to be a little looser during pregnancy and more prone to injury during high impact workouts.

    By your second semester you will probably need to invest in a maternity swimsuit to fit your changing body more comfortably. It is important that you do not constrict your belly or bust with minimizing non-pregnancy styles that may cut down circulation to your growing tummy and compress changing breasts. Maternity swimwear is made with more stretch in styles that are designed for women's ever changing pregnant body which is important to the health of you and your baby.

    If you are looking for a classic lap maternity swimsuit, then check out Prego Maternity's Empire Tank.

    Prego Maternity Empire Tank

    Prego Maternity Empire Tank

     This suit provides superior bust support with adjustable straps, molded cups and a bra hook in the back for maximum performance. This suit comes in both navy and black and has plenty of stretch in the tummy for all trimesters of your pregnancy.

    If you opt for a little more style in your suit for a water aeobics class or just playing in the pool, then Maternal America has a number of cute new tankini styles this season to check out. My favorite is the Jenni Tribal Tankini that has adjustable hip sash ties and a halter tie on the top that can also be worn as a mini with the ties bowed in front. The tribal pattern is super cute with an O-ring accent in front and black bikini bottoms.

    The blue colors are especially in vogue this spring and summer. Maternal America's Diamond Josie Halter Tankini

    Maternal America Diamond Tank

    Maternal America Diamond Tank

    showcases a sporty blue diamond pattern with adjustable halter ties and bottom sash ties. If you opt for solids, then check out their Carrie Tankini which comes in a memorizing royal blue shade. This strong blue looks great on all skin tones and blondes and brunettes alike. The stylish sweetheart cut with padded bra and ruching is super flattering across the chest. The sash tie bikini bottoms are adjustable for your changing size.

    In a softer blue/aqua shade, Maternal America has a new color take on their classic Flutter Halterkini. This style can be worn as a string halter or mini if you bow the halter strings in front. The lightweight mesh fabric across the belly is a great alternative to a bikini if you don't really want to bare all, but show only hint of skin. It is also a great style for growing bellies as you can comfortably wear this style through your third trimester with no constriction on your belly. Side ties on the bikini bottom can be adjusted to fit comfortably.

    If you like a cute mini style suit, then take a look at Prego Maternity's South Seas Strapless Mini. This suit is absolutely adorable with big aqua flowers and foliage set against a chocolate backdrop with solid chocolate bottoms. There is also a detachable halter string that comes with the suit for a halter style.

    Swimming can help you and your baby's health during all stages of your pregnancy. So consult with your doctor or midwife before embarking on a serious swimming exercise regime and use your own good judgment.

  • Kourtney Kardashian Doctored Pregnancy Photo!

    Kourtney Kardashian, primarily known for being one third of the always entertaining trio of sisters on Keeping Up With the Kardashians and co-owner of fashion boutique Dash, has recently caught my attention for two reasons: her impeccable pregnancy style and her insistence on standing up to the tabloid magazines when they airbrushed out her post-pregnancy weight. Kourtney gave birth to beautiful baby boy Mason Dash in mid-December (with long term boyfriend Scott Disick), and this month, when a tabloid magazine airbrushed out her post-pregnancy belly and claimed she had lost all her pregnancy weight, she issued a statement calling them out on it. In an interview with Women’s Wear Daily she stated, “They doctored and photoshopped my body to make it look like I have already lost all the weight, which I have not.” Good job Kourtney! Seeing a celebrity more concerned with enjoying her child than losing weight is wonderful.

    Throughout her pregnancy, whether she was running errands around town or walking the red carpet, Kourtney’s style was impeccable. In November, Kourtney was seen on a lunch date wearing a super cute flowy top, a boyfriend blazer, and leggings.Kourtney Kardashian-casual-people For an expectant mom so close to her due date, this outfit is a great option. The leggings are stretchy and comfortable, ensuring you will not feel restricted throughout your busy day. A cute flowy top draws the attention upward and also balances out the tightness of the leggings. A good rule of thumb: if you are wearing something tighter on the bottom go looser on the top, or vice versa! This breaks up one’s look, ensuring that the overall appearance is not too tight or too loose. A blazer adds structure and shape to the outfit, and truly pulls the look together. (From leggings to jeans, from casual to sophisticated, a fitted blazer adds structure to any outfit and is one of my favorite ways to pull an outfit together). For a finishing touch she adds a gorgeous statement necklace and some cute boots, and the look is complete! This is a great look for the day when paired with ballet flats, or can easily be dressed up for evening with more jewelry and different shoes!

    When walking the red carpet during her pregnancy, Kourtney looked equally as stunning and fashionable. One of my favorite red-carpet looks of hers is the gorgeous Grecian inspired maxi dress she wore to the Emmys. Just three months before her due date, she looked radiant posing sideways in her gorgeous empire waisted dress. Kourtney KardashianAn empire waist dress is always a great choice for expectant mothers, particularly as they get farther along in their pregnancy. It creates a gorgeous shape, emphasizing the smallest part of your body yet celebrating your baby bump. The sweetheart neckline and intricate twisted cinching under the bust add a special look to her dress. Although with her hair worn down the dress looks strapless, there are actually thin straps to ensure comfort. The extra support of the straps is a great idea so that you will not be concerned about your dress moving around. The final aspect of Kourtney’s dress which I love is the length. The maxi dress, with a high empire waist, elongates the line of the body, creating a more streamlined looked. It also skims the body, creating a feminine flowing look, and will provide endless comfort.

    Whether she was walking the red carpet or relaxing around town, Kourtney Kardashian’s pregnancy style was stylish yet comfortable and her insistence on being truthful about her post-baby shape is admirable. From comfy leggings paired with a fun, flowing top to gorgeous dresses, she rocked fashionable and flattering clothing perfectly. I am looking forward to seeing what her nursing and post-baby style will be!

  • What to Wear In the Hospital When You Have Your Baby

    Whether you have a planned C-Section or are planning for a natural delivery, be prepared with your hospital bag packed well ahead of time. Here are some essentials to help personalize your hospital stay and make the job of having a baby away from home more comfortable:

    Pack Granny Panties

    If you are having a C-Section, your incision will be right at the bikini line, which is precisely where most low cut panties elastic bands will hit. You don't want to irritate a scar with rubbing at this incision point or cause you any pain. High rise panties totally miss this point and will not irritate your bandaged incision. Even with a vaginal delivery, you will have much more comfort in a high rise roomy panty that can hold big pads, which btw, is what you will be living in for at least the first few days as your uterus contracts and you heal from birth.

    Bring Your Own Hospital Gown

     

    1 in the Oven Hospital Gown1 in the Oven has some wonderful cotton Hospital Gowns in both short and long sleeve. These gowns are far more flattering than the ones you get at the hospital and have built in slits in the front pleats for nursing access. They come in some beautiful pastel shades and now in organic cotton as well.

     

    If you want a more classic Delivery Gown, but not with the boring washed out pattern you get at the hospital, take a look at the Dear Johnnies collection. Their Delivery gowns are all made of 100% cotton and come in an array of beautiful patterns which differ by name. Dear Johnnie LucyThey are also sized as S/M and L/XL which helps in attaining a better fit than the one size fits all you get at the hospital. These gowns are designed to be worn during surgery, labor delivery and outpatient treatment. They also have snaps along the shoulders which make for easy nursing access without opening in the pleats which is nice when you are not nursing and don't wont to worry about "popping out" which is often a problem with the typical hospital gown.

    Bring a Wrap Robe

    Whether it is summer or winter, hospitals can be chilly. If you are planning on staying a few days, as most of us are required to do following birthing a child, you may want to bring a robe to knock the chill off. Robes are great to throw on over your hospital gown if want to pace the hallways or greet visitors in your room. You will feel far better and more in control in your own robe then huddling in hospital blankets. You will also look 100% better for your first photos with your newborn. Wrap robes work the best, particularly maternity wrap robes, as you can adjust the size to what fits the best and is most comfortable. Also, wrap robes are perfect for discreetly and comfortably nursing your baby. Check out Bellabumbum's selection of 100% cotton maternity robes.

    Bring Some Music

    Unfortunately the business of having babies is not a quick event for most of us, particularly if it is your first child. Make your stay more enjoyable and help pass the time (and the pain) with your personal selection of music. Chances are your mood may shift dramatically throughout the hours that you labor, so pack a variety of DVDs that vary from slow to faster beat. You will not be in the mood to wear a headset or ear phones, so make sure you bring a regular DVD player. Also pack music that you may enjoy postpartum as you will probably be at the hospital for a few days and will most likely quickly bore of the limited channels available on hospital room TVs. You may want to pack some soothing music that your baby will enjoy as well and even to help him (and you) sleep.

    Bring Your Own Pillow and Boppy

    Hospitals are not in short supply of pillows but no pillow is quite as good as your own pillow and it is the surest way for you to get quality rest. Also bring a couple of pillow cases as the hospital's will probably not fit right and you may need to change your pillow case while you are there as postpartum women are prone to night sweats during the early weeks. If you plan to nurse your baby, remember to bring a boppy as this rounded nursing aid can greatly help your baby's nursing positioning and your personal comfort when you are trying to establish a latch in those first days of nursing.

    Coming prepared to the hospital with your own things makes delivery and recovery that much easier and your whole birthing experience all the more personal. Not everyone can have a home birth, but you may as well allow yourself the comforts of home during your stay in the hospital.

  • Why Buy Formula When You Can Nurse For Cheap!

     The next time you think twice about investing in a quality nursing bra or indulging in a fashionable nursing top, hestitate no further. The yearly cost of breastfeeding is in the range of $3,000, that’s about $50 a week! It will take you a lot of nursing bras to surpass that cost, plus it is better for your baby’s health, as well as your own. Not to mention, the added side benefits of weight loss as breastfeeding burns around 500 calories a day, that’s 20 calories for the production of just 1 ounce of milk, without even setting foot on a treadmill! Add exercise and healthy eatting to the equation and your back in your pre-pregnancy body in no time!

    A recent style conducted by the Schneider Children’s Hospital revealed that unfrozen refrigerated breastmilk retains its benefits for at least 4 days. This is longer than the common notion promoted by doctors who recommended 48-72 hours. This study which involved 36 new mothers whose premature babies were being treated in the neonatal intensive care unit, found that there was vitually no change in the nutional integrity or bacterial presence of their breastmilk for up to 96 hours. Dr. Richard Schanler, chief of neonatal medicine at Schneider Children’s Hospital, hopes that study will shift the paradigm for hospitals everywhere by allowing women to store their unfrozen milk up to 4 days for the neonatal care which has even stricter rules due to the immunity of premature infants.[1]

    The Human Milk Banking Association of North American has suggested that human milk remains viable refrigerated for up to eight days. Dr. Schanlar and his colleagues recommend storing milk in glass containers or plastics BPA ones and refrigerate at a temperature of 39 degrees Fahrenheit or cooler. They also recommend placing milk in the rear of the refrigerator.

    This study gives working women and moms on the go one more reason to breastfeed. Pumping and feeding can be more challenging to plan out and nobody wants to “pump and dump” milk that their baby can’t drink in time, especially moms that have to travel away from their babies several days at a time. Now moms can be assured that pumped refrigerated milk, even up to 8 days old, contains all the necessary nutritional ingrediants and far more than frozen breastmilk thawed out and certainly more than fresh formula.

    Although freezing breastmilk is an alternative storing method and certainly effective for longer time periods, there is also a destruction to the infection-fighting cells and nutrional losses.

    “Certain immune components, proteins and enzymes are decreased in frozen milk” Dr. Schanler states.

    Most babies prefer the taste of fresher milk, but even thawed out breastmilk is nutrionally superior to manufactured cow milk formula and much cheaper. If you have a caretaker, make sure you instruct them with the proper guidelines for gently thawing out milk that has been frozen. Here is the recommended procedure and Storage Times for Human Milk from the AskDrSears.com site. [2]

    • Defrost milk by holding it under warm running water.
    • Or, place the container of milk in a bowl of warm water on the kitchen counter. As the water cools, replace it with more warm water until the milk is thawed and warmed to body temperature.
    • Do not heat expressed human milk on top of the stove. It's too easy to overheat it this way. Do not boil!
    • Do not heat expressed human milk in a microwave oven. Even if the overall temperature of the milk stays below body temperature, there may be "hot spots" where the milk is overheated and some of its beneficial properties are destroyed. The uneven heating can also be dangerous when the bottle is given to baby.
    • Human milk, like any milk that is not processed or homogenized, tends to separate when stored. The cream rises to the top. Swirl the bottle gently to mix the layers.
    • Human milk has a thin, bluish look to it, quite different from either homogenized cow's milk or the grayish color of infant formula. Your baby's caregiver may need reassurance that this is normal.

    STORAGE GUIDELINES FOR HUMAN MILK

    These guidelines are for mothers who are expressing milk for a full-term healthy baby. Use clean containers, and wash your hands with soap and water before expressing. or pumping. When providing milk for a baby who is seriously ill and/or hospitalized, check with healthcare providers for instructions.

    Where stored

    Storage temperature
    (degrees Fahrenheit)

    Storage temperature
    (degrees Centigrade)

    How long

    At room temperature 60 degrees F 15 degrees C 24 hours
    At room temperature 66-72 degrees F 19-22 degrees C 10 hours
    At room temperature 79 degrees F 25 degrees C 4-6 hours
    In a refrigerator 32-39 degrees F 0-4 degrees C 8 days
    In a freezer compartment inside a refrigerator     2 weeks
    In a self-contained freezer unit of a refrigerator     3-4 months
    In a separate deep freeze with a constant temperature 0 degrees F -19 degrees C 6 months or longer

    SAVE? OR DUMP?

    Type of Milk

    Save or Dump?

    Why

         
    Milk remaining in the bottle that has been offered to baby Use for next feeding, otherwise discard. Bacteria from the baby's mouth may have entered the milk during the feeding. This may lead to bacterial contamination if it sets too long (though as yet there is no research available).
    Milk that has been thawed Save in the refrigerator for 24 hours after thawing, then discard. Do not refreeze. Milk that has been frozen has lost some of the immune properties that inhibit bacterial growth in fresh refrigerated milk.
    Milk that has been kept in the refrigerator for eight days Transfer to storage in the freezer, or discard. Bacterial growth is not a problem, but milk sometimes picks up odors or flavors from the refrigerator or the container.

     The bottom line is it is worth your time to breastfeed or pump and feed your baby for at least their first year. You can be assured your refrigerated breast milk is not only safe for your baby but far superior than any store bought representation. You can also feel good about saving money on formula in allowing your baby to reap the health benefits of your 100% natural and organic breast milk.

    References:

    1. Ricks, Delthia. "Study finds breast milk has longer shelf life than previously thought" Physorg.com. January 2, 2010, Accessed January 24, 2010.
    2. AskDrSears.com, “Storage Guidelines for Human Milk”

     


    [1]Ricks, Delthia. "Study finds breast milk has longer shelf life than previously thought" Physorg.com. January 2, 2010, Accessed January 24, 2010.

    [2] AskDrSears.com, “Storage Guidelines for Human Milk”

  • Take Control of Your Birth

    As you due date approaches you may gaze longingly at the calendar hoping to fast-forward time to that magical date that your doctor and every online due date calendar has bestowed upon you for the “big day.” Although only about 5% of babies are actually born on their due date, it’s nice to have a target in mind so you can at least organize your life and feel some control over your body and your future. As you get increasing closer to your due date in the last trimester, oftentimes the due date anticipation can become overshadowed by due date anxiety, particularly for first time moms. We all hear the birth horror stories of long hours of pushing, last minute c-sections and the overall agonizing pain of labor which can hit anytime in those final weeks and days. We hope and pray we will have some control of the details surrounding our babies introduction to the world and that it can be as pleasant of an experience as possible if not a joyful one.

    Well, it turns out we do have more control than we think. Women’s bodies are actually designed for childbirth and for having a child naturally, should we choose to do so. If we opt in advance, or even last minute, for some additional medical assistance in the way of labor induction or painkillers, that’s ok too.  The nice thing is that we do have options; we can plan a homebirth, a birthing center birth or a hospital birth. We can opt for a midwife, a doula, and/or a doctor and whatever company we want in the room. Our husbands can be trained as a birth partner to share in the experience and help us through our hardest moments as well as share in the triumph of our baby’s birth. We can train in Lamaze, yoga, hypnotism and any number or breathing, self-visualizing and relaxation techniques. Gyms have countless classes for expecting women, salons have special prenatal massages and yoga classes have created an industry around expecting and postpartum mothers and their newborns.

    The biggest obstacle for most expecting women is themselves and not trusting in their bodies for labor and delivery. Doctors are there to help and monitor us through labor if we go with a hospital birth, but they cannot birth our baby. It is our bodies that nourish and birth our baby and perform the contractions necessary to carry out this process. It is easy to feel that once we put that hospital gown on and get hooked up to monitors that we no longer own our bodies or our birthing process, but we do.

     The best way to seek control over the birthing experience is to create a Birthing Plan. Know and map out in advance what your ideal birthing scenario would be. Decide who you would like present at your birth, obviously where you would like to give birth. Should you opt for a home birth you will need to make those preparations with a midwife well in advance. You should know exactly what essentials are needed for that for a home birth down to the details of bedding and clean-up and a back-up hospital plan should you need more help as our labor progresses and in case any emergency that should arise.

    Many women planning hospital births are further helped by a Birth Plan that they can review in advance with their doctor and loved ones who will support them during labor. Your husband or birthing support members may need to help communicate their needs during the labor process, so having your “team” on board with your exact wishes will provide your with further assurance and emotional support. It will also help you relax as you approach your due date and enable you to visualize and anticipate your labor in a positive way.

    The next important step is to pack your hospital bag well in advance. Pack all the props your need for labor support including your favorite CDS and music mix, tennis balls for back message, change of clothes for during and after labor, a camera for those first newborn photos, nursing bras and possibly nursing pajamas or nighties to wear at the hospital for after you have or baby.  Also pack for your baby including the baby sleepers, socks and blankets (as well as your carseat!) so your can feel your baby is your own and not the hospital’s and also to make those first pictures all the more personable and memorable.

    Overall, the more action you take in advance to plan your birth and your early postpartum days from readying your baby’s nursery to “coaching” your doctor, midwife and loved ones on your preferred birth plan, the more in control and relaxed you can be for your big day. Remember, your body is your best friend, so set the stage for it to do what it is designed for in the most relaxing, personal and friendly setting possible and you will be rewarded.

  • 8 Essential Maternity Clothes Items

    When you think about all the clothing you need when you are pregnant, it can be overwhelming. What fits one day may not fit the next. Seasons change, your belly changes daily, but your life continues on and you need clothes to wear. Well you don't have to dress frumpy just because you are pregnant and you don't need to break the bank in stocking your wardrobe for the year. Here are 8 essentials for every pregnant woman's wardrobe to get you started:

     

    1. A great pair of jeans. The most important factor in maternity jeans is that they are comfortable with plenty of stretch. If you wore jeans frequently before you were pregnant, chances are you will want to wear them while you are pregnant. You don't have to sacrifice comfort for style and settle for "mom jeans" just because you are expecting. There are some very fashionable maternity jeans on the market today which not only look great; they don't look like maternity jeans or "mom jeans." Personal favorites include Maternal America's Megan Jean. This jean was voted by Fit Pregnancy as the Best All Around Style Jean on the market out of 280 jeans they tested.
    2.  

    3. Maternity Leggings. Yes, leggings really are back. Many of us who grew up in the 80s didn't trust this trend last year, or even the year before that. Well, leggings are here to stay for a while anyway and frankly they are great for maternity and are super comfortable to wear. Bella Band makes some of the best fitting and durable leggings around with a stretch panel front. These leggings go great with a tunic, skirt, dress or extra long maternity top. They are very comfortable and warm in cool weather. Leggings come in a wide variety of styles including side ruching, lace, and cropped varieties along with an array of colors. I suggest buying at least one pair of black maternity leggings. If you find you are grabbing them every week, then branch out with a few more styles and colors.
    4.  

    5. A short black dress. Everyone needs a versatile black dress in their wardrobe, pregnant or not because there are always events that come up which call for one. Pick an easy jersey or rayon/spandex blend fabric that does not need ironing and can easily stretch to fit your ever changing figure. Dress it up with a jacket or dress it down with leggings. Jazz it up with some necklaces and heels or wear it casual with boots. A versatile black short black dress is more wearable than a maxi and it is easier to move and work in as well.
    6.  

    7. Extra long short sleeve tops. Shade makes a great fitting maternity Baby Tee. This top is extra long, hugs your curves and stretches where it needs to. You will want one of these great pieces in every color. Wear it alone in warm weather with shorts, capris or jeans. Layer it in colder weather under a cardigan. Wear it to work with a blazer. You will even want to wear this top postpartum as the extra long length hides your postpartum belly.
    8.  

    9. A Stylish Henley is another must-have. This is a great casual everyday go-to item. One in the oven makes a comfortable extra long maternity Henley in long sleeves. They also have a 3/4 sleeve waffle weave nursing Henley that is long enough to be worn for maternity as well.
    10.  

    11. A lightweight scarf is a must for your winter maternity wardrobe. A scarf can add both warmth and style to your ensemble. Check out Maternal America's Nursing Scarf. There is a multitude of different ways to wear this scarf which works as a nursing cover as well.
    12.  

    13. A Wrap Top. The Wrap Top style has been around for years, springing from the Wrap Dress. This style works so easily with a blossoming belly while still offering an attractive neckline and overall style. Japanese Weekend's Stripe Wrap Maternity/Nursing Top is an urban chick 3/4 sleeve charcoal wrap maternity and nursing top with an accent stripe along the neckline and sleeves. You can wear this top to the office with black trousers or casual with jeans.
    14.  

    15. A Maternity Hoodie. Both 1 in the Oven and Japanese Weekend have adorable maternity hoodies which double as nursing hoodies with easy and discreet nursing access. This is a great top to grab on colder days when you just need an extra layer. Most pregnant women find sweaters too contricting, unflattering and hot. Hoodies are a great way to get some added warmth without putting on a heavy sweater. They also give an effortless trendy casual look for any day of the week.

    So get yourself some wearable and fashionable maternity essentials to get yourself through the next 9 months with ease and style.

  • Maternity Clothes For Your Body Type

    When you are pregnant, suddenly your shape and size are changing daily. What looks used to work well and flatter your figure may suddenly look ridiculous or unflattering on your evolving frame. This can be particularly challenging around the Holiday Season or for more dress-up occasions when you really want to look your best and not let pregnancy get in the way. Here are some general guidelines to dressing when pregnant according to you shape:

    Generally When Pregnant
    When you are pregnant don't be afraid to show some skin. A pregnant body can be very sensual and you still have great assets. So don't be shy about showing off great legs or pretty arms, shoulders or going strapless. Be sure to define your shape the way your like it. You want some definition to you pregnant belly without going uncomfortably skin tight. Grecian can be flattering as it can drape over your curves to show off the gist of your belly without showing your belly button in detail. However, too big equates to baggy which only makes you look bigger. An empire waist looks that are more contained look great on almost any pregnant body type. Belting dresses beneath the bust can create this look. Deep shades like teal and plum that are popular this season are flattering on pregnant shapes, particularly if you are further along than busy patterns or metallics

    Busty
    If you are the busty type you are probably three times more busty when you are expecting. Your body has taken on new dimensions and everything you try on seems to be accentuated by your pronounced cleavage. A good look to try to de-emphasize the chest is a flirty dress in one shade. By sticking to one shade of color your figure becomes elongated and you look much leaner and slimmer.

    Also going with a more tailored or structured dress that gives you a clear silhouette, you better define your shape. For example, instead of going hippie chic, go with better bust support and strong vertical pleats. A hemmed and pleated knee length flirty dress with a structured chest and wide straps will do wonders for your figure. Finally, always look to support and lift. Forget strapless or backless dresses as you will never find the level of support you need. Always look for a dress or top with wide enough shoulder straps for a supportive bra.

    Hippy
    A skirt or dress with inverted pleats keeps hips looking narrower. An A-line skirt is also a good choice for camouflaging hips. Even just a flared hem de-emphasizes the hips. Again choose structure in defining your silhouette so you show off a small empire waist and don't get swallowed in something loose and baggy. Remember to show off your best assets, so if you have pretty shoulders, flaunt them with a sleeveless bodice dress, strapless or one shoulder style. Draw attention to your best body parts up high - look for a jeweled neckline or brighter colors around the face or neck. Even wearing some bling jewelry will keep the gaze upwards.

    Petite
    If you are petite and you don't want to tower in platform shoes or stilettos when you are pregnant, there are some other tricks to add some length to your frame. If you have great legs, then show them off. Go for shorter hems and sheerer hose to elongate your shape. Show off some skin somewhere- arms and necklines are a great place to start. Pleats and bubble hem can work well if its not overdone - you want to add some volume without looking like a powder puff. Accessorize smartly. A few well chosen pieces that don't weigh you down is all you need to add some height.

    Tall
    If you are tall, then you have a lot of choices. Tall frames can get away with prints and patterns, horizontal stripes and all the usual hazards most women need to avoid can actually be more flattering when tall. Do make sure your clothing fits you well. Beware of cuts that tent out and make you appear bigger than you are or that miss your curves. Sleek and fitted always looks better no matter how far along you are in your pregnancy. Do be careful with super short hemlines and minis as they can make you look like a giant whose clothes got shrunk in the dryer. Otherwise, have fun with accessories as you can get away with more to wear as you have more space to fill!

    So whatever your shape, find some maternity clothes that fit and flatter your figure and make you feel as beautiful and sexy and as you truly are. Bottom line, if you feel great in the clothes you are in, then you will project that to those around you.

  • BelaBumBum Nursing Pajamas and Sleepwear

    Finding the perfect pair of maternity or nursing pajamas, or discovering the loungewear that will keep you comfortable throughout the day, is a very important task. First of all, with any pajamas, pregnant or not, you want to feel comfy and at ease so that you can sleep through the night. Once you are pregnant or nursing, any bit of sleep becomes more precious and vital, making your choice of pajamas even more important. Secondly, you want to find a pair that looks great so that you feel great. Luckily, Belabumbum Maternity has discovered the perfect way to combine comfort and style in maternity and nursing sleepwear, as well as in daily loungewear. As a busy expectant or nursing mom, you can feel relaxed while still feel cute and sexy!

    For sleepwear, one of my favorite designs from Belabumbum is the Maternity/Nursing Chemise. With these gorgeous nighties, comfort and style are the main focus. 100% cotton gives them a great feel. For easy and discreet nursing access, clips and a double layer of fabric are provided. This makes midnight nursing sessions easy. Another great feature is the adjustable straps, which allow you to fit the chemise specifically to your body, elevating the level of comfort and practicality. Aside from being comfortable and practical, they have made these chemises incredibly stylish. Cut with the always flattering empire waist, the smallest part of the body is accented as the rest of the chemise flows gently away from the body. The Cotton Dot Lotus Nursing Chemise is accented with a lace ribbon and dainty polka dots, creating a fun and fresh look. The Flower Maternity/Nursing Chemise comes in a beautiful olive floral design, giving a sophisticated yet relaxed appearance. Overall, if you want to be practical yet feel wonderful, the Maternity/Nursing Chemise is the way to go.

    If you are looking for something that can be worn day or night, try one of Belabumbum's robes. They are amazing! A huge favorite is the Maternity/Nursing Cotton Lace Robe. This one comes in the cute dotted pattern, just like the chemise, and looks fun and fresh. With super soft and lightweight fabric, this robe is great for layering. One of my personal favorites is the Maternity/Nursing Kimono Lace Robe. The fabric is so soft that you will never want to slip out of it. I love the lace trim around the neckline and hemline. It adds a hint of sophistication and sexiness that so often sleepwear is missing. Hitting at the knee, this kimono style robe is incredibly practical and versatile. It has easy and discreet nursing access which makes it great for late night nursing or early mornings as you get the day started. If you are not pregnant and know someone who is, I would highly recommend the robes from Belabumbum as a gift that any expectant or nursing mother would love.

    A final popular product is the BelaBumBum Maternity/Nursing Cami. This camisole is great for so many reasons. First of all, it is comfortable and practical. The soft fabric feels great against your skin while the easy nursing access (by pulling aside the fabric) and built in shelf bra provide practicality. Secondly, this camisole has a very flattering cut. The babydoll style emphasizes the narrowness underneath the chest, and the cute tie at the front adds a unique touch. Finally, I love this top because it looks great paired with anything from sweatpants to your favorite pair of jeans. It can be dressed up by throwing a cute blazer over the top!

    Overall, Belabumbum Maternity designs many great staples for the mother's wardrobe. Whether you are pregnant or nursing, you can be sure to find something that works for you!

  • Find Maternity Swimwear For Your Body Type

    There are many cuts and styles in maternity swimsuits today which can be overwhelming to a first time maternity clothes shopper. Fortunately with the range of styles today, you can find the ideal suit for your pregnancy body. As with any swimsuit, the most important factor is fit. The following is a basic guide for some suits to consider if you are looking for specific features:

    Exercise Swimsuit

    If you are looking for a maternity swimsuit to swim laps in the pool and to function like a sports swimsuit, one pieces are always your best bet. The Prego Maternity Empire Tank is a great choice for maternity sport swimsuit. This suit has all the features you need for serious lap swimming in addition to excellent bust support. If you are looking for more of a fashion suit that you can also wear for swimming, the Maternal America 1 Piece Keyhole swimsuit is a good choice. This suit comes in a black and brown solids as well as season colors.

    Hip Coverage

    If hip coverage is a top priority for you in a swimsuit, there are a number of styles to consider. The BabyDoll style gives maximum hip and bottom coverage while also allowing plenty of room for an expanding tummy. Prego Maternity has both the Tank and Halter BabyDoll styles to choose from which come with over the belly bottoms so there is no chance of a tummy peeking through on land or sea. The Strapless Mini is another good choice for hip and tummy coverage while providing a more form fitting body and allowing a little more skin exposure across the shoulders. Prego's Strapless Mini comes with under the belly bottoms and a detachable halter string for swimming.

    Bust Support with Style

    Bust support is often an important feature in a swimsuit for expecting women who have found they are suddenly much larger on top. Generally, a tank style strap will give better support than most halter styles. The Prego Ring-Kini style is perfect for accommodating larger busted women and providing more support with wide adjustable straps. If you have a preference for Halter Styles, look for one that has a higher back as well as higher coverage across the bust. The deep cleavage halter styles provides less support. Prego's Sweet Heart Halter style suit has cinching across the bust and fits higher in the back to provide maximum bust support for a halter.

    Show a Little Belly

    If you are not quite ready to bare all in bikini but would like to show a little belly, the Tankini and Halterkini styles are a good choice. Maternal America has a 2 Piece Flutter Halterkini that is slightly see through with mesh material across the belly along with a side tie bikini bottom. This flirty style also has a convertible halter tie if you want to go strapless as well. Prego's Dot Tie Halter, Halterkini and Tankini styles all have bellow the belly bottoms which allow a little belly to peek out, depending on how far along you are in your pregnancy. Also very popular is the Maternal America Jenni Tankini.

    Show a lot of Belly

    The good old fashion bikini is your best choice for maximum skin exposure. Today's maternity bikini by top maternity brands is expertly engineered to fit your pregnant body with comfort and style. BellaBumBum makes a fabulous maternity bikini with vibrant patterned stripes and superior fit. Prego Maternity also makes a beautiful classic maternity bikini with a oval cinch design in the halter top and under the belly bottoms. Maternity bikinis are usually made with more stretch to hug your curves and stretch where you need it.

    Cover up

    While any swimsuit is going to show a bit of skin, if you don't want to draw attention to your growing belly at the pool or beach then invest in a light tunic cover-up. Maternal America has several styles in beautiful swimsuit cover-ups that come in white or black. These cover-ups can also be worn casually with jeans, capris or shorts.

    So don't let pregnancy keep you away from the pool or beach this summer. Find the perfect maternity swimwear that compliments your body type and have fun in the sun!

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