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Post-Pregnancy

spanx#2SPANX released its much-anticipated line of SPANX Denim today and both available styles are available for pre-sale in the Spanx.com online boutique. It is expected that these will sell out entirely. If shopping were fair and just, it would seem that all of us–those who are about to give birth or have given birth–should be the first to own SPANX Denim. But, shopping is not so and thus, I suggest ordering today and returning should they not achieve the desired postpartum effect.

Two different styles of these “structured leggings” are currently available to order–the Denim Legging and the Wax Denim Legging. The Denim Legging comes in five different shades for USD $98 and is already beginning to sell out in different sizes. The Wax Denim Legging, at USD $108, is available in black and pewter.

FREE Shipping on NEW Spanx Denim Leggings with code FREESHIP13 at Spanx.com until 7/31!


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Contrary to what you may conclude after shopping at A Pea In The Pod, California-based separates designer Vince does not make maternity clothing. A Pea In The Pod lists numerous Vince items as “maternity,” though the beloved label never has cut a piece specifically for the pregnant physique. As I’ve said repeatedly, that practice drives me nuts.

Vince does, however, make a good number of very maternity-friendly pieces–not the skintight leather jeans, but the tunics and sweaters are all designed to fit loosely and hang long. Buy up one size and suddenly you have a lovely silk blouse that’s perfect for your second trimester form. And that blouse will look appealing again once you are postpartum and not back into your pre-pregnancy clothing. I even made use of Vince’s fitted Favorite Tanks during most of my pregnancies–they are cut so long, the length rendered them good layering pieces.

Vince updated its End-of-Season Sale today and some of its pieces are discounted as much as 60%. The deep blue Oversized Silk Shirt is cut to USD $119, down from USD $295. This blue Striped Boatneck Sweater, which is featured at A Pea In The Pod as a maternity sweater, is reduced to only USD $99. Several of the silk tunics are smiliarly reduced 60%. If you’re so inclined, the oversized Suede Tunic is another impossibly chic choice, reduced 40% to USD $419. And those trusty Vince Favorite Tanks are reduced down to only USD $29.

And a quick note–Bare Necessities is offering 20% off this weekend and a good number of nursing bras and nightgowns are included in the sale. It’s worth browsing, especially with V-Day coming up. Enjoy 20% Off and Free Shipping at BareNecessities.com with code FEBSAVE. Ends 02.25.13.


 

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Shapewear–it’s just awful, isn’t it? Each morning, I wake up dreading not only having to figure out what kind of shapewear is best suited for my outfit, but also having to put the shapewear on…and then take it off and put it back on again. And off again, on again, off again, on again, again and again as the day progresses. And a few weeks ago, as I was passing through security at Reagan National airport, one of the TSA employees pulled me over after I had walked through the X-ray machine, and asked rather loudly, “What are you wearing underneath your clothing?” I meekishly told him “women’s shapewear,” and then succumbed to a full-body patdown of my cruel, but effective Donna Karan Body Perfect High-waist Embrace Brief

Federal security issues notwithstanding, there can be some serious heroics involved in dressing a postpartum body. Add the need for a supportive nursing bra into the shapewear mix and your undergarment requirements get even more complicated.

Mother Tucker is trying to make things easier for new moms, recognizing that a new mom has a need for both shapewear and nursingwear, usually at the same time. I’ve spent the past few weeks trying out the Mother Tucker Compression Nursing Tank, and I am a convert. Here’s the thing–these tanks are actually comfortable while also doing a decent job in the “compression” department. Mother Tucker uses an especially breathable, thick knit for its undergarments, attaching a thick band to the bottom of the tank to prevent it from rolling up as you move (the band isn’t perfect, but it is certainly better than others I”ve tried).  And the nursing access is quite easy, although note that there is no underwire in these tanks. 

Now, I recognize that “comfortable shapewear” suggests that it doesn’t ”compress” as effectively as other pieces might. And that might be true. But I don’t care. It’s not as if I am squeezing myself into a Herve Leger Bandage Dress these days. Being able to pull on one, comfortable shapewear piece that works hard to smooth out bulges and also provides convenient nursing access is pretty valuable. I am going to buy a few more of these and save my Donna Karan torture device for those days when I plan on standing all day and not having to use the bathroom. Oh and the Mother Tucker Compression Nursing Tank is TSA-friendly, by the way. Another bonus.

The Mother Tucker Compression Nursing Tank is also available in nude on Amazon. By the way, ignore the advertising that suggests you can wear this tank on its own. You can’t. This is an undergarment, not a top.

Have a fabulous Memorial Day weekend and be sure to check the blog over the weekend as I begin to post Memorial Day sales.


     Mother Tucker uses a

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Well, the Met Gala was a serious letdown for PF. Not a single pregnant celebrity or model showed up–or at least an evidently pregnant one. Although, actress Diane Kruger could have been carrying triplets underneath this Prada concotion and we never would have known it.

Still, there were some beautiful dresses and much to my surprise, new mom January Jones’ yellow Versace gowns was one of my favorite. Her recent admission that she is busy eating her own placenta in custom smoothies prepared for her by her doula confirmed to me that she is rather odd, but the woman is gorgeous and she really looked stunning on Monday night.

On to more pressing and relevant concerns for all of us non-celeb, non-placenta-eating pregnant and postpartum women. I am pleased to announce that Slacks & Co., the UK-based maternity designer, has finally, finally opened its online boutique…and 1-2 day shipping to the US is a mere GBP 10. Slacks & Co. specializes in designing high-end trousers for pregnant women, with a focus on taking looks right off the runway and translating them into maternitywear. I simply love this line and there is nothing out there quite like it for pregnant women. I am wearing a pair of the line’s black London Cigarette Pant as I sit here writing this. Slacks & Co. has designed its maternity trousers to look nothing like maternitywear and at 3 months postpartum, I am particularly thankful for that. I wear a pair of these just about every day to work and comfort myself with the knowledge that I and only I know I am still in maternity clothing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The primary and solitary complaint I have with Slacks & Co. is simply that they are so hard to find, with very few US retailers carrying the line and only a select few of the line’s vast array of trouser styles usually available. The new online boutique changes that, offering specialty pieces like the Dallas Faux Leather Tregging or the Buenos Aires Jodhpur. And yes, these trousers are specifically designed and tailored for the pregnant physique–none of the suspect tactic of adding an elastic belly band to regular fitting trousers and marketing them as maternity, one of Pea in the Pod’s most frustrating tactics.

So, happy shopping. Buying a pair of these trousers may truly revamp your maternity wardrobe…and give you the postpartum one you don’t even know you need yet.


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For better or worse, pregnancy often means missing out on the season’s fashion trends and though you may not realize it yet, so does nursing. We’d all love to spend the warm summer months in our pre-pregnancy summer wardrobes, but if that wardrobe doesn’t give you access to your milk supply quickly and somewhat discreetly, it’s best not to even bother.

The pleated maxi skirt is an of-the-moment fashion trend in which all of us can fully partake and I’ve been busy ordering and returning, ordering and returning, in an effort to find the most maternity-friendly and postpartum-friendly option out there. To put it bluntly, I’ve been trying to find the skirt with the most forgiving elastic waistband. While there are an array of brightly colored accordion-pleated skirts to choose from this spring, you don’t want to be buying the Rachel Zoe version (not surprisingly, there is absolutely no elastic in the size zero reality star’s waistbands).

Enza Costa Pleated Maxi SkirtNot so with the red  Enza Costa Pleated Maxi Skirt, which is designed with a strong, thick elastic waistband perfect for clinging tightly to the underside of a large pregnancy bump or for giving you a comfortable waistband into which you may tuck your favorite black nursing top.  And, it’s a beautifully made skirt. It is not lined, but the material is sufficiently opaque that it does not require any type of slip underneath. For those women who have been asking how they are possibly going to make it through the summer months in compression tights, this skirt is a perfect option. Slip a pair of footless compression tights underneath this floor-length choice, add a pair of adorable sandals, and no one will know you are suffering froim varicose veins and sweating profusely underneath your gorgeous, trendy skirt.

Enza Costa’s skirt is available at shopbop.com for USD $198 and is available in additional sizes at Intermix. This is not a narrowly cut maxi skirt, so there is plenty of room through the skirt for your expanding hips. Stick to your pre-pregnancy size to make sure the elastic provides the under-the-bump grip you’ll need later on in your pregnancy.


 

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I have fielded numerous emails this fall from pregnant women looking for the perfect maternity trench coat. For some reason, it doesn’t seem to exist this season, which I do find strange. I am actually in possession of one myself, but I purchased it in 2005 at the Liz Lange store on Madison Avenue and as we know, Liz isn’t doing high-end maternity fashion anymore. Every woman, including every pregnant woman, needs a great trench coat. And the trench is very maternity-friendly, as long as you recognize the fact that those buttons are for show only and you’ll need a sturdy sash to actually keep the thing closed.

I’ve been forced to come up with an alternative, but I do think this is a good idea for all of you out there desperate for a trench this winter.  Look at this gorgeous red velvet trench, it’s ideal for the holidays. You can wear this coat on its own with your skinnies and just about nothing else and you’ll be the most festive, stylish person at the holiday party. And both this Calvin Klein knee-length trench and this Michael Kors short trench are instant classics. Obviously, these are non-maternity pieces, but both of these trenches happen to be available in “Women’s Apparel” sizes, i.e. plus sizes larger than size 14. The cut of Women’s sizing is conveniently wider from top to bottom, and even without extra length in the front for your bump, your shoulders, arms, and bustline will have extra breathing room. Use the sash across the top of your bump for a maternity-friendly coat at least into the start of the third trimester. And, of course, both of these coats will also be extraordinarily useful during those postpartum weeks. Hey, if maternity designers aren’t going to respond to all of our needs for a chic trench coat, then go ahead and create your own.

All of these coats are sold exclusively in online department stores, so you can’t go wrong with trying this red velvet number on for size (i.e., you can easily return it). The red velvet trench is available here at Neiman Marcus for USD $525, the Michael Kors trench is on sale at Saks for a very reasonable $146.99 here, and the Calvin Klein trench is on sale for USD $119.25 at Bloomingdales here.

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I am sorry I have been such a terrible blogger this past week, but my husband was back in Jerusalem last week and he took his laptop with him and left me only with the iPad. Wow, I hate that damned thing. I fought with it for the better part of the week before I just gave up and put it away and used my blackberry for everything. I readily admit I am not at all tech-savvy, but I am not a complete idiot and that iPad just drove me absolutely nuts. There–that is the first and last time I will offer my opinion regarding anything pertaining to technology.

Anyway, Angelina Jolie popularized the maternity maxi dress back during her first pregnancy and since then, just about every maternity designer has released its own version. In fact, many non-maternity designers advertise their empire-waisted maxi dresses as maternity-friendly and as long as you are all willing to go and have the dresses properly hemmed so they don’t ride up in the front (I absolutely hate that look), I fully support donning a Splendid or Ella Moss or Rachel Pally maxi dress during your pregnancies.

One of my favorite maternity maxi dresses is currently on sale at More of Me maternity, discounted 30% when you use the promotional code “HOT” at checkout. Every woman to whom I have suggested this dress subsequently informs me that she loves it. At USD $180, the price is a bit hard to swallow compared to other maternity maxi dresses out there, but this dress is a keeper and will be a perpetual part of your maternity wardrobe from pregnancy to pregnancy. Click here to buy the dress in navy–it is still available in all sizes, but does run slightly big.

Pregnant British women are raving about Oscar London, a new UK-based designer that specializes in flowing maxi dresses. They are not specifically designed for maternity, but are being carried in all the the top maternity boutiques over the pond. My pregnant friend just purchased the “Venus,” a V-necked maxi dress with an empire waist that is available in black, purple and this unusual floral print. The Venus is currently available here directly from the Oscar London site for GBP 89 (USD $135). After she bought her dress, they offered her 25% off her next purchase–a clear incentive to buy the Sophia dress as well. The Sophia is also pregnancy-friendly, i.e., you can wear a bra with it, which is always a bonus. I love this mauve color.

And I also really love this long-sleeved maternity maxi dress from NOM. It’s clearly not for this insanely humid weather we have on the East Coast right now, but it is perfect for fall. Bellydance still has it available in a size Small on sale here for USD $94. You’ll need a camisole underneath this dress…

And a quick congrats to my friend Reena, who just announced she is expecting her first baby. Reena is gorgeous, stylish and is most definitely muse-worthy material for Pregnant Fashionista, despite currently living in fashion-starved Jerusalem. Best of luck, Reena!

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I actually don’t think I need to. Is there a woman among us who doesn’t own a pair of Spanx? If there is, then she probably hasn’t ever been pregnant. As of this week, you can pre-order the new tops exclusively at Spanx.com. The tops line is cleverly called “On Top and In Control.” There are 9 different styles and they range in price from USD $68 for the basic tank to USD $118 for the long-sleeved V-Neck and turtleneck. Colors range from nude to navy to black, with the idea that you can wear them as regular tops with nothing over them. Those of us who have carried multiple babies will likely choose not to wear our heavy- duty shapewear out in public, but kudos to women who are able to do that. Click here to shop all 9 styles. Spanx is promising that pre-orders will ship by mid-June. If you’re due in the next month or so, think how happy your postpartum self will be when one of these arrives in the mailbox. Now we just have to hope they come up with a nursing version very, very soon.

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Shopbop released its Spring Friends & Family code today and it is unfortunately only a paltry 15% (it was 25% last year). It almost makes you sort of miss the depths of the recession, doesn’t it? Use promotional code “INTHEFAMILY15″ at checkout for 15% off sitewide today and tomorrow (Tuesday and Wednesday).

You may not have noticed, but Shopbop recently created a “What to Wear When You Are Expecting” section here. None of the recommended clothing is actually designed specifically for maternity, except for the jeans. But they do carry unique dresses and tops from Rachel Pally, Velvet, So Low, and Splendid, all of which are designers you usually also find at Pea in the Pod and at Bellydance Maternity. I would so rather buy from Shopbop than Pea in the Pod, even if their F&F sale is rather unimpressive this year. If you aren’t familiar with the designer Sunner, I do highly recommend using the F&F discount to purchase one of their empire-waisted tunics for the summer, like this one at left. They are ideal for both the newly pregnant and the recently postpartum. They run a bit small, so buy one size up and you’ll have something to carry you through the awkward first few weeks of pregnancy and those equally awkward first few weeks after the baby is born. All of their clothing is just so pretty and feminine, it is nice to be able to reach for one of their maternity-friendly tops when you are feeling exactly the opposite of pretty and feminine.

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Last night was one of those rare, perfect evenings when I was home alone with a bottle of nice red wine, a full bag of red Twizzlers, all four boys soundly asleep by 8pm, and because my husband was working quite late, a computer all to myself so I could shop online uninterrupted (we share a computer, so I sometimes have to abandon online shopping and sacrifice my computer time in order to further the Middle East peace process).  While I was checking all of my favorite sites and eating an entire bag of Twizzlers paired with cabernet, I discovered that Saks currently has the classic matte jersey Diane von Furstenberg Julian Wrap Dress on sale here in black for USD $298 and the classic Jeanne wrap dress on sale here in black for USD $298 (the Julian is a collarless V-neck style, the Jeanne has a collar).  And most sizes are still available!  The DVF website also has the Julian Wrap Dress selling in chocolate here, also still available in all sizes.

diane-von-furstenberg-black-dresses-julian-wrap-dress-in-blackdiane-von-furstenberg-day-dresses-julian-wrap-dress-in-chocolateThis isn’t a maternity dress, but this is the ideal dress for a woman who is just barely pregnant and still trying to hide it.  I was interviewing for jobs when I was first pregnant with James and I bought this dress in both black and chocolate and it managed to get me through several weeks of interviews (with a pair of Spanx underneath, of course).  The dress continued to fit as I grew in unfamiliar ways during those early weeks and it did a nice job of making my belly look less obvious than it was, due to the color and the very loose, forgiving jersey fabric (I did need to start wearing a camisole underneath the dress as I grew bigger). You should definitely go up one size from your pre-pregnancy size and even if you aren’t quite up to the next size yet, the self-tie belt will permit you to adjust the dress appropriately. I also wore this dress very often after the baby was born.  I went looking for it when I found out my sister was pregnant and it was sold out everywhere, so this is a good opportunity to snag one for yourself.  And obviously, pregnant or not, you don’t need justification for buying yourself a DVF wrap dress.  Every woman should have one in her closet.

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