Guest Post by Alina Berdichevsky
The workplace is a space where we should be merited for our intelligence, capabilities and contribution to the organisation. No matter the company culture, we go for outfits that are stylish, professional and understated and let our good work shine.
But what happens when you fall pregnant, and in no time your changing shape becomes the focus of everyone’s attention – or at least that’s how that seems in your mind?
Despite the joy of preparing for a baby at home, pregnancy can also be a delicate time for a working woman. After all, we must stay on top of our responsibilities at work and present our usual front of poise and control to the world – despite aching joints, a poor night’s sleep and fluctuating hormones! While you can’t (nor should you want to) control your body’s changes, you can still easily dress for work in a way that will make you feel confident, professional and assured every time you leave the house.
Here is our guide to the best professional styles for pregnancy, that celebrate both your professionalism and shape – while staying true to your values as a woman.
1.Don’t reinvent the wheel. First up, remember that it’s ok to keep wearing what you normally would wear to work – even before you fell pregnant. Most workplace silhouettes will still accommodate your expanding shape. If you favoured blazers, you can wear them with confidence as before. If you like pencil skirts, these too can be bought with some stretch to the fabric and worn comfortably over your bump with a knit, cardigan or ballet flats. Just mind the length and be sure it’s to your knee or below. It’s important that you still feel like yourself while honouring your workplace dress code. The great news is, you will be able to wear a majority of your current wardrobe, with only a few amendments.
2. Elegantly accentuate in the right places. There is no use hiding that you’re pregnant – not to mention impossible. Rather, cleverly accenting your shape will give it just the right nod without making it the focus. A thin belt that sits right above your bump, clever colour blocking above your waist or even classic horizontal stripes with give you a flattering silhouette without overpowering. The trick is to create an optical illusion above your bump, not halfway down your waistline. If you don’t feel bold enough to create that focal point, then a midi-length knit dress with a blazer or a white shirt with black slim maternity trousers and brogues are smart, understated options.
3. Smarten up your maternity jeans. If you’re like most women, denim is the foundation of your wardrobe – even at work. In more creative workspaces, you can still look professional in feminine silk blouses and soft cashmere knits that go beautifully with your denims. Whether your favour skinny or bootleg jeans, a clever insert in the belt allows them to comfortably stretch around your growing bump. Finish with a blow-dry, gold jewellery and classic kitten heel.
4. Explore the world of flats. Brogues, ballet slippers and loafers add an undeniable sense of comfort to your outfit, while still looking dapper and professional at work. At any stage of your trimester (and beyond!) smart flats that come in a variety of styles will look on-trend with cropped trousers, pencil skirts and elegant wrap around dresses.
5. Keel the colours solid. This is not the time for busy prints or bright colour blocking – even for your smartest blouse. Rather, by keeping your colour palette at work monochromatic, you will always look put together and chic – even on days when you worry you have nothing to wear.Invest in blouses, dresses, blazers and knits in elegant greys, charcoals, creams and navys for easy workplace combinations that look smart every day. Choose cottons, jersey, wool and cashmere for fabrics that move well with your body and subtly flatter.
6. Balance out proportion with a gorgeous scarf. A luxurious knitted or silk scarf in a variety of colours is a style staple for chic celebrities and fashion bloggers. A lush neutral knit looks smart in winter over a dress, with brogues, flat boots and a blazer. Polish off a summer outfit with a striking printed silk scarf that pops against a white shirt or blouse. Keep your bottom part fitted (leggings, pencil skirt or skinny jeans are ideal) and play with wrapping your scarf several layers around or looping it through in different ways for creativity.
7. Mean business with the right accessories. If you would like to divert people’s attention from your bump and back to your work, show them your clout with polished accent pieces. A smart leather tote-bag will add both balance and ‘boss’ factor to your look, while an elegant stationary set will remind everyone the reason for your meeting. A small set of pearl earrings and a polished nude manicure will make you feel put together from top to bottom.
Every woman has the right to feel confident, happy and accomplished during her pregnancy. Your workplace is a place that benefits from your creativity, energy and insight on a daily level. By dressing in outfits that celebrate both your womanhood and achievements, you will feel prepared for anything and reminded that you can do it all.
Author Bio :
Alina Berdichevsky is a fashion and lifestyle writer for Open Colleges Careers site, helping busy professional women achieve their best career and live a balanced and happy life. She is based in Sydney and in her spare time loves to read about psychology, technology and great women in history.