My Non-Maternity Maternity Capsule Wardrobe

Wednesday March 15, 2017

When 12 weeks hit this pregnancy and I started shopping for maternity clothes, all that original frustration with maternity clothes came rushing back to me. All the polyester. All the poor quality yet somehow also expensive tops and jeans. All that ruching and bows. All the wasted money on a wardrobe that wasn’t particularly my style, that I would toss in the Goodwill bag in a few months.

This time around, I decided to try and avoid all that wasted money as much as I could. I was hanging out with my cousin a few years back and she said the singularly most surprising thing I’d ever heard about maternity wardrobes: “Huh, you wore maternity clothes? I figured you were one of those people that didn’t.”

Whah? Huh? What? Who doesn’t wear maternity clothes? How is that even possible?

Then I remembered towards the end of my pregnancy with Bean, in that last ninth month where even the maternity clothes no longer fit, my favorite outfit was a mod t-shirt dress and leggings that weren’t maternity. It was just a regular dress I’d owned for years, stretched out to capacity and turned into a tunic. Well, maybe I could recreate that look a few times over, and call it a maternity wardrobe?

I came across Gap’s softspun fabric — dreamily drapey, soft, and stretchier than you could ever imagine — and it all clicked together. It was perfect for a non-maternity maternity wardrobe.

At nearly 7 months, everything is still fitting just fine, and everything is so comfortable, as well as comfortably me. And I know I’ll be wearing it for years to come.


Here’s the capsule wardrobe (most of this stuff I owned before getting pregnant):




My navy anorak has seen me through the rainy season and will still look perfectly chic (while also insanely practical) into the foggy season. Mine is the Woolrich Prescott Parka (seemingly no longer sold) but this Autograph Pure Cotton Anorak Plus Stormwear is perhaps even nicer. The key is to get a skirt length jacket to tie in with all those dresses.

A chunky sweater coat is cozy perfection on a slightly chilly day. Again, look for something knee length to elongate everything. Christin Michaels Zienna Collared Cable Knit Long Cardigan

My go-to Madewell denim jacket.


Tops and dresses:

This tee is an example of Gap’s softspun series. Right now, I knot it under my stomach and make it stretch over everything. I can’t wait to wear it drapily like the model all fall and summer.

Also Gap’s softspun, this time in a black sweater hoody. It’s easy to pull over anything and still has tons of stretch left to go for the next few months. And ditto what I just said about post partum style.

H&M’s maternity clothes is cheap, if you can find it in stores. This is my only maternity top or dress, because obviously I needed some stripes in my life.

This short black dress is Gap but not softspun, just regular stretch jersey. The stretchy jersey fabric makes for a bodycon maternity style.

Another Gap softspun piece, this time as a navy dress. This dress is fitted in the shoulders and a swingy a-line down, so absolutely perfect for gripping your shoulders and smoothly running over a pregnant stomach.

The Gap scoopback striped shift dress is also a jersey knit, which I see stretching out into the months ahead. I love it combined with the chunky sweater coat and boots.

BB Dakota Ruger Plaid Tencel Dress. Ok, so this dress isn’t stretchy at all and runs VERY SMALL. Order at least 2 sizes up for pregnancy wear. This dress is also fitted in the arms and sleeves with a wide, floaty bodice, again perfect for maternity wear. I’m still wearing this at almost 7 months, although now it’s more of a tunic.


Jeans and tights:

Articles of Society Sarah Maternity Jeans — I tried to live without a pair of maternity jeans, but I’m a jeans and tee kind of person, and I couldn’t stand not having the option in my wardrobe. These are fine — soft if a little droopy — but the price is right if you get them on sale.

Luxe Essentials Denim Maternity Jeggings in Black — Again, I tried to live without a pair of black skinny jeans and it just wasn’t happening. Size down for these, they run (frustratingly) big.

Black tights, navy tights, grey tights — Leggings kept on looking a little messy to me — and I hate looking messy AND enormously pregnant, so I opted for tights this time instead. They make any outfit instantly dressier, and I love how put-together they look with clogs and boots.



This is still my Jolly Jumper Pashmama nursing scarf from 4 years ago. No seriously. I still wear it, and I haven’t nursed a baby in 3 years. Accessories are forever.

To add a spring touch to the wardrobe, I love this Anthropologie Gardenia Square Scarf. Square scarves are the new infinity scarf — easy to put on and style, without having any French lineage in sight.

And Vince Camuto’s Maze Square Scarf — again, very easy to drape and style, adds some interest to all that plain Gap clothes, and I love the subtle watercolor effect.



I opted for the MIA Alma Clog in Luggage before heading down the custom clog route. I LOVE THEM SO MUCH. Pregnancy is all about flat footwear. Heels are not cutting it for me AT ALL. Clogs are so fun! And still give you the slight lift of heels. I now want them in black and suede too.

My darling Frye Shirley Riding Plate boots, with their blessedly rubber soles. I can walk in them all day, and they’re just as comfortable as pull-on sneakers. The stovepipe shape is everything.

And of course, my classic New Balance 620’s. They still read so Euro-preppy, and look brand new after a year.



OK, so let’s talk about how I’ve been styling all of this. It’s pretty easy to mix and match everything. Like so:



I love the monochromatic dress and tights. The clogs are seriously getting worn with everything.



For when you want to stroll up to a casual brunch feeling all cozy, and ready to hit the playground after.



I love black and navy together, the hints of pink keep it from looking too weighed down.



This dress only gets more inappropriate as this pregnancy progresses. Perfect for date night.



Pregnancy, Style, You

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