I’ve come to realize that for many people, keeping up with today’s fashions standard or standard for beauty/body is almost impossible!!  You must be deathly skinny or tall…. or long-haired, or whatever.  Unfortunately, I’m just barely make the “cut”, only because my hair is long.  Yet, because its natural and hardly ever straight, I am usually lumped back at square one!  I’m short (5’2.5″, and you will give me my 1/2 inch lol) and I am considered plus-sized/thick/curvy (my personal preference). And to add to my lovely list,  I got pregnant in 2015, which I was more than happy about.  I’ll put my stats at the bottom to give you an idea of my shape and size. Be nice…I don’t share this info with anyone, and it took 12 years to share it with my husband, and we’ve been married for 8!

So, pre-pregnancy, I can honestly say I had body image issues.  I thought I was too big, in the butt and thighs mostly.  When I got pregnant, my biggest fear is that I would look big and pregnant.  This is a really thought that some plus-sized women have!  But with pregnancy, I learned to let those thoughts die, slowly, nonetheless. My body was carrying life, and it was imperative that I remember this fact! Not only that, my husband MORE THAN loves all of me.  He told  me everyday how beautiful I was even with my every-growing belly, new stretch marks, hormonal imbalances, and a strong desire for orange soda! All of this brings me to the point and title of this post: Pretty, Plus, Pregnant!

I’m a big shopper who loves a bargain/steal!  And I can find one almost anywhere! Being pregnant has not changed this fact. It has only enhanced my shopping expertise! I have also been fortunate enough to not have gained any weight during my pregnancy, so I could wear many of the same clothes and heels I would wear had I not been pregnant. I’m not the most fashionable person in the world, but working in retail at Banana Republic has given me the edge on how to dress.  Though we don’t cater to the plus-sized world,  I can wear plenty of their clothes and I’m not squeezing into them! Still, being pregnant and plus-sized was still tricky, so today I’m sharing my top maternity must haves in terms of both stores and the items they carry! These store also carry the usual sizes as well. So to the 4 women in my life who are currently pregnant, this list is for you too!  The only thing that didn’t make this list was a maternity coat and that is because I made one! I refused to buy a coat that I could only wear once!!

PRE-PREGO STATS: Height – 5’2.5″  Hips – about 55”  Waist 36”  Bust 40”

#1 – Old Navy (Maternity and Plus Maternity):  I purchased 2 dresses (one long-sleeved and one short), a pair of joggers, a pair of jersey cuff pants, and sleep pants/Pj bottoms. I can’t live without them!! The comfort and stretch that they gave me was just wonderful. I purchased these items at about 4 months but wasn’t really showing. They were just cute!

#2 – H&M (Maternity and General Plus):  How come no one told me that they carry maternity clothes and baby clothes??!!  I purchased one maternity shirt with a lace yolk, a pair of dark grey skinny joggers with a full panel, and faux leather-front pants, similar to the Sloan Pant at Banana Republic. Full panel in the front with like a half panel in the back! They made me feel sexy!! I love them to death.  The only con is that due to my lovely derriere, it’s a little low in the back and I had to readjust and pull them up ever so often. I got these items at about 4 months as well.

Faux Leather Panel Leggings (H&M) Cheetah and Strip Sweater (Banana Republic)

#3 – Banana Republic (Regular):  I could still wear almost all my clothes from BR because I mostly have dresses and shirts. The only exceptions were these dope grey joggers!  Joggers are life during pregnancy!  I recently purchased a faux wrap dress in my regular size of XL. It has stretch, so it hugs my belly quite nicely!!  I also purchased an a-line black party dress in a size 12, which was down from the normal 14 or 16 I get from them. It’s short, cute, and belly friendly as well. As spring approached, I purchase a cute heather grey halter maxi! I adore maxi dresses!

#4 – Pink Blush (Maternity and Plus Maternity):  My husband bought me clothes for the first time!!! He purchased and open cardigan, a maternity shirt, and one striped long-sleeved maternity maxi dress (I have a BIG thing for maxi dresses). I love every single piece and I wear them all the time, especially post pregnancy.

#5 – Soma (Regular):  Oh Soma!  Yes, we know boobs grow, but what I didn’t know was that underwire would hurt.  I even used bra extenders for a while, but that underwire had to go.  So I purchase 2 UBER comfy Embraceable WIRELESS bras and they made my chest and back feel wonderful. I still have not gone back to wire bras!!  I still use the back extender, but mostly for comfort! They also make nursing bras!

Happy Shopping Folks!

Peace P.

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