A sustainable maternity style is a lot easier to achieve than you might think. You absolutely do not have to go out and buy a whole new wardrobe for those few months you’ll need them and the few things you do need you can easily find pre-loved.
Here’s everything I learned while trying to stay true to my style during my pregnancy!
As you’re only pregnant for a few months, the cost-per-wear of special maternity items will likely be high.
I know, this one might come a bit late to some of you who are already pregnant. But here’s what I did:
Ever since I knew I wanted to be pregnant someday, I bought styles I knew I could wear with a bigger belly too. For example
- wide, flowy dresses and kaftans that I wore belted at the waist before pregnancy
- babydoll dresses
- oversized shirts and blouses
- skirts with an elastic waist
You’d be surprised how many of the things in your wardrobe you’ll be able to wear during pregnancy! 97% of the things I wore most during my pregnancy weren’t even maternity clothes!
That doesn’t mean you have to go out hunting for maternity-friendly clothes years before planning to get pregnant, but whenever I saw something I liked and it happened to be a belly-friendly cut, that was something I’d consider when deciding whether I’d buy it or not. This is a huge step to assure your maternity outfits are in line with your personal style.
Here are some examples:
- My vintage Burberry trenchcoat
- A vintage pleated skirt with an elastic waist
- Wide, flowy kaftan dresses
- Dresses from Nobody’s Child
- Knit dresses (Second Hand and House of Dagmar)
While you may not fit into your regular shoes, handbags, hats scarves, and many other accessories will fit you throughout your pregnancy and help you communicate your style to the world.
That doesn’t mean you have to do elaborate sewing work, but you can do a lot to extend your wardrobe with a few simple tricks.
- Extend your pants using the hair tie trick or get an extender
- Wear loose shirts and t-shirts knotted above your belly
- Use bra-extenders
BUY SECOND HAND
This one is probably super obvious, but maternity clothing is one of the easiest things to find second-hand, as most pregnant people only need them for a few weeks. Buying second-hand also drastically cuts the cost-per-wear of items making it a super easy way to keep your maternity style sustainable.
I personally buy 90% of my clothes second-hand as I think it’s the most sustainable way to shop.
Places to find second-hand maternity clothes:
- Ebay (International)
- Etsy (International)
- Mädchenflohmarkt (DE)
- Open for Vintage (UK)
- Sellpy (DE)
- Vinted (DE/AT)
- Willhaben (AT)
Brands with Maternity-Friendly Styles I like
Ideas for a Maternity Capsule Wardrobe
Here’s everything I bought and wore during pregnancy.
Keep in mind that I had a summer pregnancy, so your needs might be different
- 3-4 basic leggings (mostly worn at home and for yoga)
- 2 basic biker shorts (to wear under dresses to avoid chafing)
- 3 pairs of pregnancy tights (worn during the colder months in the beginning of my pregnancy)
- 1-2 pencil skirts
- 1 denim overalls
- 1 pair of jeans
- 1 bikini/swimsuit
- 2 new bras
Things you don’t really need
Obviously, this is just my opinion, but I’ve found the following items to be unnecessary.
- Pregnancy T-Shirts
The ones that have shirring on the side seams to accommodate the belly. I had two because I thought you absolutely needed them but instead, I mostly wore my non-maternity crop tops and knotted my regular oversized t-shirts and wore that most of the time.
- Special panties
Before I got pregnant I thought I would need so many new panties, instead, I wore normal panties all the way to the end. Just make sure they’re comfy. I personally loved these from Marks & Spencer.
- Maternity Dresses
I did not buy a single actual maternity dress and instead wore “regular” dresses with a loose fit or stretchy fabric.
Sustainable Maternity Style – Post Partum
Towards the end of your pregnancy, you should start thinking about nursing / pumping-friendly attire, if that’s something you’re planning on doing.
Again, you don’t have to invest in a ton of special breastfeeding attire. Simple buttoned shirts, blouses, cardigans, and dresses as well as wrap dresses may work just as well.
I got a few special breastfeeding tops for lounging at home, but you can actually do without them.
It can be practical to wear a tube top under your regular shirts just so you don’t expose your stomach when you lift your shirt to nurse your baby. Especially in Winter.
I’m mostly wearing Henley shirts and wrap tops.
If you choose to use a baby carrier, you may want to consider getting a special jacket or coat. I bought a huge vintage coat last winter that works just as well.
There are also special inserts that work with your existing jackets! However, one upside of a babywearing jacket or coat is that most of them can also be worn while carrying your child on the back.
When babywearing it’s not really advised to wear big scarves so as to not risk suffocating your baby. I usually wear turtlenecks or neckwarmers.
I hope this post helped you get an idea of how to keep your style and keep it sustainable-ish during pregnancy and post-partum!