Maternity Me-Mades (from patterns that aren’t maternity)

Hello, everyone! Sorry it’s been awhile since I’ve posted! Our summers tend to be more relaxed (read: less structured), so I have a more difficult time getting things done. No regrets about that (we’re happy to have Ben’s schedule ease up during the summer), but I hadn’t been planning on there being such a big break between posts here!

First, some excited news: we had our gender ultrasound and found out that we are having a BOY! After two girls, the news of a boy is very exciting and also a bit daunting BUT in any case we are happy to be adding to our family and that the baby seems healthy and is growing steadily. Wendy was a bit disappointed because she’d been really hoping for a sister, but I think she’s come around and is getting excited about a baby brother. And Greta is happy because she wanted the baby to be a boy all along. As far as names go, the girls are really rooting for either Spot, or Turtle Baby, so we’ll keep you posted 😉

Anyhow, that’s a bit of what’s going on here! In sewing news: Me Made May came and went with me giving it just barely an eyelash width of attention. I love Me-Made May (for any non-sewists out there it’s a month where people who sew clothes make their own challenge which is typically to wear me-mades a certain number of times during the month {i.e. every day}, but can really be anything sewing related {like trying to sew every day or finishing up unfinished projects}) but I think this was a good year to sit it out since my maternity wardrobe is mostly RTW and I really don’t want to spend much of my time/money/energy making clothes that have a limited shelf life.

BUT May did get me thinking about clothes in my wardrobe that are already pretty maternity friendly as well as other patterns I own that could easily become maternity friendly. I’ve never sewn a maternity specific pattern, but I think if you’re willing to do a little legwork, there are a ton of patterns that can easily be morphed into something you can wear during pregnancy.

So, first I’ll share the clothes I’ve previously made that I’ve been wearing throughout this pregnancy. And then I’ll share a list of patterns I think would be easy to hack into maternity wear. For reference, I’m 24 weeks along, but this is my 3rd pregnancy and I’ve gotten bigger much faster this time around.

Sew Liberated Hinterland Dress (and Hinterland Dress hack): I think my hacked Hinterland dress (the grey one) has been one of my favorite dresses to wear during this pregnancy, probably just because of the silhouette. When I made my first Hinterland (the pink one) I felt like it would be a great maternity dress and it is! If I were making this specifically for pregnancy, I would probably take off an inch or so of the bodice so that the skirt would start right below my bust. And since my bust has grown, I’ve noticed more gaping with the buttons. But honestly I think this fit is pretty good and more importantly (to me) both of these dresses are very comfortable to wear. They’re lightweight and cool. I think the grey dress is pretty flattering (being flattering when you’re pregnant is a bit relative, yes?) and the pink one is cute as well (although the fit seems to be a bit more off). My torso is short enough that the baby tends to take up all that space, but women who find they carry their babies lower might find the fit of these from regular-wear to maternity-wear to be spot on.

Chalk and Notch Orchid Midi Dress: Another great dress has been my Orchid Midi dress. For this one, the fit is a bit less forgiving (it could really benefit by being remade to adjust the waistline to be higher), but it’s worked well and, being one of my very favorite makes, always makes me feel good when I wear it, pregnant or not. I will say that I probably won’t be wearing this one for much longer and it was more flattering when my stomach wasn’t quite so big. But for all intents and purposes, this dress has been a good go-to for the first half of my pregnancy. If maternity sewing is your flavor, I think tweaking the pattern to make it more maternity friendly would result in a beautiful dress that could work for the whole 9 months. So if you want an extra special maternity make, I honestly think this would be a great option (should I make one???).

Wiksten Shift Dress: I’ve never blogged about this dress and the sole reason is that every time I’ve tried to take photos of it, the pictures turn out terrible! Taking these particular pictures was obviously no different but I’m putting the pictures up regardless, darn it!! This is seriously one of the most maternity friendly patterns you could make without the pattern actually being a maternity pattern. It’s just a straight silhouette with plenty of ease and the waist tie is totally unattached (there aren’t even loops to thread it through) so you can just tie it wherever your current waist happens to be. In fact, considering the ease, I even sized down when I made it over a year ago, but the fit is still plenty generous. I think the dress is very chic and it’s especially comfortable. I usually wear it with the waist tie when I go out and then without the tie for around the house. Yes, the untied version may just be resorting to the muumuus of maternity-wear back when my mom was having children but it’s comfortable, by golly, and Imma wear it!

True Bias Hudson Pants: Sorry, that’s all I’ve got for photos but I’ve also been wearing Hudson pants all the time. Two of my previously made Hudsons have waistbands that are too tight for my current condition…but one pair (these ones made from performance/swim knit) have been amazing. The waistband is looser and the fabric has plenty of give. They are so comfortable I’ve been wearing them to bed pretty much every night. My last post was on a Hudson skirt hack and I recently made another pair of Hudsons-unblogged- (I think making it my most made pattern), this time the calf-length version, but again fitting the waistband to my pregnant belly so that it’s extremely comfortable and even has room to grow. One great thing about using this pattern for maternity, is that it’s already drafted for a low rise, which I think is typically what pregnant ladies need, unless they’re going for the full belly band. Anyway, great choice to make for maternity because it’s one you will use a lot (if you’re anything like me and enjoy comfort above all else).

Hey June Union St. Tee: One of the first times I made the Union St. Tee, I didn’t alter the length at all which ended with a perfectly wearable shirt but one that always seemed too long (I’ve since learned that taking two inches off the bodice of this pattern is best for me). I would wear it tucked in but not much otherwise. So I’ve actually been wearing it quite a lot with this pregnancy. It’s not exactly the most flattering so I mostly wear it as a PJ shirt, but that extra length has been just what I need and it’s been a good me-made go to.

Chalk and Notch Waterfall Raglan: This is a great pattern that requires no alterations to make it maternity friendly because it’s drafted with gobs of ease. Plus it’s in knit so it really is a dream to wear. You can read more about my version of it here.

Well, here I was going to make a huge list of all the patterns I’ve made that could be made maternity and I realized it’s actually pretty simple. Anything made out of knit or having an elastic waistband would probably be a safe bet to try out in maternity. Any t-shirt pattern ever could simply be sized up or made with a bit of extra length and some elastic at the side seams for the ruching that’s so prevalent in maternity wear. Cardigans and/or open jackets are another great option. I’ve made and loved my Grainline Driftless Cardigan and the Alina Design Co. Fulton Sweater Blazer might be a great option for a more professional look. Any pattern with an elastic waist shouldn’t be too difficult to alter. You may have to adjust the rise, but otherwise simply sizing up (or only sizing your elastic up, as I did with my two most recent Hudsons) might be all you need to do to achieve a good enough (and more comfortable) fit. Obviously I’ve talked a ton about the True Bias Hudson pants, but I’ve also thought that the Sew House Seven Free Range Slacks could make some great maternity pants (I think I’d adjust the rise on that one, though). And I’ve been tempted to make myself another pair of Sew Liberated’s Arenite Pants, especially since they recently updated the pattern and now you can make it in knit! As I’m sure I’ve made pretty clear, dresses can be another great source for making me-mades work with your growing belly. I’d just look for looser silhouettes. Waist lines can easily be altered, just make sure there’s enough ease around the tummy to be comfortable. I’ve never made the pattern but I think a Friday Pattern Co. Wilder Gown would make a gorgeous maternity dress.

So anyhow, I hope this helps anyone who is pregnant or hopes to be pregnant and who wants to continue making clothes through pregnancy. You certainly don’t have to make all your maternity clothes, but it can be rewarding to have some nice, specially made items. I’ve only made two articles of clothing specifically for this pregnancy, but they are the things I wear most often.

Oh, I almost forgot! Totally random but I take photos for this blog out on our porch by setting my camera on the railing and using the delayed capture function. My girls are always around while I take these photos and often they want to be a part of them. I try to have the stand just out of frame, but Wendy is getting too smart and knows she has to stand by me to be in the picture. No big deal, I usually just edit them out as best I can (which, admittedly, isn’t always very well). But while editing this round of pictures I stumbled on this gem:

Yeah, pretty much this girl is a thousand times better than I am at what I do! Haha! Nailed it, girlfriend!

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