My Maternity Wardrobe: What I Needed and Where I Got It

Hello from the land of nausea, lightheadedness, and fatigue that is my pregnancy! Makeup free and messy buns have been most of my days this year; I honestly have not had the interest or energy to care much about my outward appearance. Kudos to all of the moms-to-be who post cute Instagram photos on the daily, you’re faking it a lot better than I am.

Despite my apathy, my changing body has forced me to expand (hah, expand…) my wardrobe a bit. I did this minimally as I did not want to invest a lot of money in clothes I wouldn’t be able to wear for too long.

I found it helpful to read what other women couldn’t live without as they grew a human life, so here’s a bit about where I shopped and what I have found to be necessary maternity clothes.

Please note that the seasons I am pregnant have been spring, summer, and now fall. I am also at the point where I need to repeat the same outfits every week because of my size.


Where I shopped:

  • My closet
    • This being my first pregnancy, I didn’t really start showing to the outside world until almost five months. That left me plenty of time to wear most of the tops in my current wardrobe, especially looser cuts.
    • I did have to extend my non-pregnancy pants or use a belly band pretty early on. A little bit of weight gain in my thighs and mid-section, while invisible to anyone but me, were enough to make my normal pants uncomfortable.
  • Secondhand
    • I am blessed to have received a box of clothes from a colleague that contained many of the items I list below. If I hadn’t, I would have shopped at a consignment store or website for some of these things – it saved me a significant amount of money that they were hand-me-downs.
    • Gap has a good selection of basic items and holds frequent sales, so I found luck on this website. I will mention that their sizing chart wasn’t always accurate for me and I had to exchange more than one item, and their maternity items cannot be returned in store.
    • After I got through 22 weeks of morning sickness I perused here quite a bit. It is clever that they show pregnant and not pregnant women wearing their maternity line, and everything is super cute! The clothes I bought here are high quality.
  • Department stores
    • To my surprise I found that most stores have either pulled their maternity section or limited it greatly. I found only a couple of items in store; in my opinion Target has the broadest selection.


What I bought:

  • Nursing Bras
    • My colleague suggested buying nursing bras since they are comfortable and will be necessary if I decide to nurse the baby. I have purchased three so far on an as needed basis.
  • Maternity Jeans
    • Two pair is sufficient for me, a nice dark wash and a black pair.
  • Maternity Dress Pants
    • Necessary for my business travel.
  • Maternity Dresses
    • Three casual dresses that I can wear to work with a sweater and nice shoes.
    • Two fancier, long sleeved dresses. And yes, as I get bigger I can testify that it does matter that these are cut for someone with a basketball-sized stomach.
  • Maternity or Nursing Tops
    • Four that were true maternity cuts. One professional blouse and the rest basic colors so I could mix and match my current cardigans, scarves, flannel, etc. with them.
  • Maternity Athletic Wear
    • One set of leggings, tank top, and sports bra
  • Maternity Sweater
  • Maternity Shorts
  • Belly band
  • Bra extender


I did not buy (and did not miss):

  • Maternity Swimsuit
    • I only went swimming a few times this summer and I wore my current bikini with a t-shirt over it.
  • Maternity Leggings
    • I am comfortable enough with the ones I have fitting just under my bump, and I use the workout pair if I need a leggings with a panel.
  • Maternity Pajamas
    • My pajama bottoms still fit fine. I also steal my husband’s clothes when I’m staying in my house.
  • Maternity Panties
    • I simply have not needed them. Mine fit fine under my bump, although if they started to slip down at all I’d be all over those full panel babies without a second thought!

Hopefully this is helpful to someone out there. Like I said, I held myself back when it came to buying a lot of new stylish clothes – there’s a lot out there! I’ll have to treat me and baby to a new outfit or two once I am a normal shape again 😉

xoxo, Carly



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