It was only about 20 years ago that fashion started celebrating, rather than hiding, a pregnancy bump. The smocks so favoured by Princess Diana in the 1980s (that style had been around since the 50s) gave way in the 1990s to clothing that highlighted the burgeoning belly.
Google maternity fashion today and you will be spoilt for choice, as well as inspiration as celebrities such as Chrissy Teigen and Eva Longoria appear to redefine pregnancy wear daily.
While you may not have the budget or the stylist of a Middleton or a Kardashian, there is no reason you too can’t look great, even on those days when you feel like you’re a watermelon.
Kristen Owens, owner of maternity stores AngelBub and Merry Go Round, said that maternity wear is all about embracing the bump.
“Gone are the days of hiding behind shapeless formless sacks. These days maternity style is focused on comfort and femininity.
“There is room for the growing belly and no need to hide, because pregnant mothers are beautiful! There is also now a lot of versatility with many styles suitable for nursing or after-pregnancy in general.”
Ms Owens said that maternity wear tends to mirror fashion trends to some extent, though with a definite leaning towards classic styles.
“There are a lot of options for personal preference – tight fit, loose fit, over the belly under the belly, casual, corporate even active wear and formal wear. Designers aim to cater for every type of Mum.”
Ms Owens bought the online AngelBub store when she was a stay-at-home Mum of four.
“It was a great way for me to help provide for my family while being home with the children, and maternity clothing was something that I was interested in and passionate about due to experience and difficulty in finding clothing for myself.
“We also saw that there was a big gap in the market for quality maternity, particularly options for working mothers needing corporate wear.”
The business has now grown to include two physical stores: AngelBub in Tamworth and Merry Go Round Maternity in Merewether.
“Our stores are known for their variety, particularly in designers. We stock local brands (such as Ripe, Angel and Maeve and Bo) but also international designer brands such as Olian and Peek-a-boo which sets us apart from other maternity wear stores,” Ms Owen said.
“We are known for catering to all sorts of demographics and sourcing unique and innovative styles and accessories. Our online stores show our full range across both stores, and we have the benefit to our customers of being able to get in sizes between the stores for their convenience.”
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