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I’ll be the first to admit: The thought of dressing up for holiday parties sort of sends me into a tailspin. I’m seven months pregnant and just finding a top in the morning that covers my basketball-sized bump is enough of a challenge, much less throwing together an outfit that looks festive, chic and (oh yeah) flattering.
But my friends are party kind of people, and my pregnancy is not enough of a reason for them to throw dress codes out the window. So I turned to Amy Tara Koch, maternity style maven and author of Bump It Up, for her New Year’s Eve dress-up tips. Here’s her advice for looking glam when you’re expecting.
Super-size your accessories. Now's not the time for a dainty pair of stud earrings or a delicate necklace. Instead, stick with big, bold accessories: Throw on a pair of neck-grazing earrings that elongate your body. Toss a faux fur boa or scarf over one shoulder like your fave Hollywood icon. Grab a brightly colored bag to add a punch of color to a dark dress. Slip on an oversized cocktail ring. Or try Koch’s latest obsession -- wearing enamel stacked bangles on one wrist and a wide bracelet on the other.
Think texture. Fishnets are an easy way to feel sexy on those days you'd rather put on a pair of stretchy-waist pants. For a fresh twist, layer them over a pair of comfy maternity tights and slip on a gorgeous heel or wedge boot. “When you’re pregnant, it’s all about adding little accents to the basics,” Koch explains.
Choose solids. No surprise here -- black is a great go-to color for mamas-to-be because it goes with everything and makes you look slimmer, Koch says. But if you’re up for some holiday color, try red or silver. Her faves: Isabella Oliver’s ruched Kiss dress ($195, isabellaoliver.com), Moody Mamas Elle dress ($189, moodymamas.com) and Pouch Mom’s versatile pouch dress ($150, pouchmom.com).
Show some skin. Don't be shy about showing off your assets -- you've got it, so flaunt it! Instead of a basic turtleneck, opt for a v-neck top or ruched dress that shows off your décolletage.
Pay attention to the silhouette. Once your baby bump starts making an appearance, stick with empire waist tops and dresses. They’re flowy, flattering and offer coverage while also exposing skin. And keep hemlines either above the knee or to the ground -- calf-length is nearly always a no-no for pregnant women.
Avoid sheen. Yes, satin and sateen are festive, but remember that shiny fabrics attract light -- right to those parts you'd rather camoflauge. Solution: Wear a stretch jersey dress. It's super comfortable and soft but also still glam.
If you’re like me, you’re probably keeping a close eye on your budget -- especially after buying all those holiday gifts. But the good news is that great looks can come cheap right after Christmas, when stores have major markdowns, Koch says. “You don’t need to invest a ton of money in a brand-new outfit. Think about bumping up what you already have,” she explains. “Invest in great, flattering, multitasking dresses, leggings and outfits that have some fashion longevity. Think about how to use accessories to elevate your look into something special for New Year’s Eve.”
What are your tips for dressing up while pregnant? Chime in below!