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Building A Pregnancy Work Wardrobe - On a Budget!
by Colette Bouchez

For many women the greatest pregnancy fashion challenge comes when choosing a work wardrobe. Depending on what you do, and the confines of any corporate dress policies, finding the right clothes to suit your professional image can drive you to distraction.

But dressing great while you're pregnant doesn't have to be a challenge. With just a little forethought and some extra shopping time, you can quickly and easily pull together a stylish and polished look, without spending a fortune.

It begins by shopping with an open mind, while keeping to the following basic guidelines.
  1. If you stick to solid colors and similar fabrics you can get away with fewer pieces. Choosing darker colors means more wear from each piece, plus it detracts from your growing size. Simple basic pieces in black, navy, brown, camel or grey can be easily changed and accented with scarves, jewelry, hats and shoes in bright colors or prints.

  2. Avoid becoming a fashion tent. While choosing extra large, full cut tops and dresses may seem as if you can more easily hide your size, doing so will actually have the opposite effect. Remember, the larger the tent, the bigger the circus, so shop for clothing that is slim cut with some shape.

  3. Nothing says "this season" like a few well-chosen pieces of trendy fashion jewelry. If pregnancy is keeping you from wearing this season's trendiest outfits, remember, for each new style there's a coordinating accessory, so going for half the look will help keep you looking up-to-date.

  4. Never underestimate the power of a great jacket for a polished corporate edge. Start with any full cut blazer you already own, leaving open the bottom buttons. Later on, invest in one or two full cut maternity jackets in an unconstructed style. Add a long scarf tied loosely in the front, and no one will even notice what you're wearing underneath.

  5. Never underestimate the power of shoulder pads! While the broad-shoulder, power suits of the 1980's may be long gone, neat, well balanced shoulders can do miraculous things for your pregnant figure, and help give balance and proportion to your body.

  6. Choose clothing in substantial fabrics. Whether you are pregnant winter or summer, opt for fabrics with a substantial "hand" and body such as boucle, twill, gabardine or cotton During pregnancy, a crisp, woven cotton shirt, for example, will look infinitely more professional than a flimsy knit top.

  7. To complete your polished, professional look choose a shoe with at least a one and half inch heel. This will not only give your look a more stylish edge, it's actually better for your back than flats.

For more pregnancy fashion and beauty advice visit

About the author: Colette Bouchez is the author of Your Perfectly Pampered Pregnancy - Health, Beauty and Lifestyle Advice for the Modern Mother-To-Be (Broadway Books, NY) and creator of

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