I had big goals coming into my pregnancy that I would make a lot of my maternity clothes. It kind of happened? I’m definitely still wearing handmade clothes, just not as many as I’d planned for!
My projects got waylaid recently due to a necessary serger repair that took my machine out of commission for 3 weeks, but I’ve also been incredibly busy. We had guests, two baby showers, classes, house and baby room preparations, and appointments filling most of my sewing hours anyway, so it wasn’t the worst time to put sewing on hold.
Still, Halloween is coming up, as is my anniversary and a wedding, so it’s time to get back on track.
I’d just like to say: Shopping for maternity clothing is the worst. Like most mass produced clothing, the quality isn’t that great and clothing starts to shrink or look faded before it should. There are Very Few options for nice clothing or special occasions unless you’re able to shop online, and I fall into a size range that is difficult to shop for, so I’m really grateful I sew!
I’ll give an update on my dress clothes and Halloween outfit once they’re done, but here are some of the patterns that seemed to work the best for me:
I made this in view A and graded from a Medium at the shoulders to a Large at the waist. I also raised the neckline by a few inches for better coverage (recommended if you’ve got boobs to cover). The fabric has some stretch to it and I’ve been able to wear it comfortably throughout my pregnancy. 5 stars!
I’ve made this dress before and noted it had a high waist, so I just remade it with a few adjustments. I graded the center bodice piece to get a little larger at the tummy (maybe an inch?), and I added two inches of fabric to the center seam of the front skirt piece, which just made deeper pleats and allowed more room for baby.
I made this dress before I got pregnant and made some of my usual adjustments, including raising the waist. Well, I raised it so high I always kind of thought it looked maternity anyway, and it works! The pleating in front is definitely enough for your bump and raising the waist (I think I went an inch?) means you can wear this when your belly is high, too.
I’m 33 weeks pregnant now, and I think I have enough everyday clothing to last me through the end.
Here are some special things I still plan to make:
- Halloween costume, self-drafted and based on Simplicity 1105
- Wedding dress based on McCall’s 6398
- Coat (BIG MAYBE) using Butterick 6244
- Anniversary dress using McCall’s 6465 (MAYBE)
Here are some things I made but don’t necessarily recommend:
- I actually made a dress I love using Simplicity 2365 but it required some pattern hacking that I’m not sure I got right (and wouldn’t know how to explain) plus that pattern is out of print so it seems rude to recommend it
- I made a coat that is just fine using McCall’s 6255. The shoulders are pretty narrow so I should have made a size up (made a Medium should have gone Large?), but the arms are also kind of short, even though I lengthened them, and the sleeves are quite narrow so layering is a challenge, not great for a transitional fall coat! So, with some edits, it’s serviceable, but not ideal
- I made a shift dress using Simplicity 1609 that I get compliments on all the time, but I still feel like kind of a boat in it. I removed the center seam and just graded out from the center, I also cut the back to fit more closely to my shoulders/waist so it still has *some* shape
Things I would still recommend buying:
- Maternity leggings
- I wear these a lot now that it’s fall! I have 4 pairs and wish I had more but I’m getting by
- Maternity jeans
- I’m not much of a jeans person, but I bought one pair that I wear occasionally
- Maternity athletic pants
- Going to prenatal yoga class has been really great!
- Maternity tank top and t-shirt
- I got one of each for yoga, sleep, whatever. But I’m not much of a t-shirt person at all so I didn’t need much
- I got some bigger cardigans that would transition back to “normal bod” with me
If you’re someone who wears a lot of t-shirts and casual clothing, buying for maternity is going to be easy. I just really struggled with work and special occasion clothing, which I end up wearing most of the time. Also, workout clothing if you’re planning to stay somewhat active.