At a time when we are redoing the whole house and having a baby, I’m having to think creatively about how the hell to dress myself. It’s getting to be a bit of chore and can result in tantrums and tears. Most recently I had a party to go to and it was sunny so I didn’t want to wear tights…The dress I had chosen to wear was met with undisguised horror from Mike (“Why on earth did you buy that?”).

Despite having nothing to wear, we can’t afford to be spending loads on buying things that’ll only last me a few more months (I’m assured the weight will “just fall off” so I’m going with that) so I’m on the hunt for cheap maternity clothes and what’s cheaper than the clothes you already have? Here I am today, looking tired and wearing a hounds tooth stretchy pencil skirt pulled up over my bump (I’ll probably not be able to wear it after I’m pregnant but I was desperate for a worky look today for an important meeting).

I was recently on Cotton and Curls site, which is all about refashioning old clothes and handily the lady (I know from her blog that she’s a Mormon from Utah but I can’t work out what her name is!) who writes it is also pregnant. Despite the fact that I can’t sew, and don’t really intend to (although the ‘maybe I will?’ lurks at the back of my mind), I love looking at this site and seeing what would be possible if I could/did sew.

I went on a particular post about a maternity shirt recently and noticed that she was wearing her old jeans and I couldn’t get my head around the logistics of it – mine all stopped doing up ages ago even beyond my little button extension trick. So I asked the question and her response was this blog post…basically, wear your jeans totally unbuttoned and just cover it up with either a belly band, a long vest or make your own belly band out of a long/old vest. I guess if I was thinking logically I could have got to this point on my own.

I got myself straight on ebay and bought  a couple of belly bands from Mothercare for £7 (including postage) and I was terribly excited for their arrival, expecting a world of my old clothes to open up before me. I’m not going to lie, they are pretty shit – originally costing £10, I barely got a bargin on my secondhand goods – because they are cotton rather than something a bit thicker and stretchier.

I persevered nonetheless and here I am in my old (size 10 but they are incredibly stretchy) topshop Jamie jeans.

refashion, cheap maternity clothes

The reason I’m smiling like that is not because I’m so pleased with my jeans but because in the picture before I had accidentally captured Mike’s bare bum in the picture – heh heh.

The positives of the belly band are:

  • I can wear my denim mini skirt again (great now the weather has started to pick up)
  • my belly is insanely itchy now so because you can fold it down below the bump my belly can breath. *sigh*

Low points:

  • the material is too thin so you can still see that my jeans are wide open, therefore, you need to layer with additional clothes (therefore belly can’t breath) and/or do elaborate folding of the belly band that shifts around as you move and needs constant adjusting
  • wearing your old jeans just ain’t comfy – I spent the day pulling them up and adjusting the band, and sitting with the zip digging into your belly sucks
So that is the crux of it all!
Belly bands are great if they are thick and stretchy enough but if your jeans are too tight, they’ll hurt when you sit down and if they’re too loose, they’ll fall down. My advice is either get a better belly band or save yourself pennies in the long run and get some decent maternity jeans!
Any thoughts? If you’ve found a good, cheap maternity/pregnancy band please do share!