The Evolution of Maternity Fashion

By Posted in - Fashion & Oh Momma Monday on March 23rd, 2015

Clairemont team member Tracy Lathan 38 weeks pregnant with her first child – and looking as fashionable as ever!


 

There have been more than 31 million births this year and we are only three months into 2015. That’s a lot of pregnant women; however all eyes seem to be on Kate Middleton. As the Duchess of Cambridge is weeks away from giving birth to her second child, people around the globe are monitoring her every move eagerly awaiting the arrival of the next royal baby. Many people, especially women, are curious to see what outfits Kate will wear as she fulfills her royal duties as a pregnant woman. She always manages to step out donned in a chic, classic and sophisticated outfit that is appropriate for her role as duchess and very fashionable.

I have to admit, I am fascinated to see how women approach maternity fashion. Do they work to conceal it or do they flaunt it? Looking back at maternity fashion during the past 100 years, it’s interesting to see how things have evolved.

Constriction

At the turn of the 20th century, all women wore corsets and pregnant women worked to constrain their growing bumps by wearing “maternity corsets” designed to contain their expanding waistlines. By the 1920s maternity corsets were replaced by girdles that confined the hips more than the waist. It wasn’t until the 1970s that the focus shifted from constriction to support.

Keep it Loose

Throughout the years, no matter the style, women found ways to conceal their baby bumps with loose clothing. Even flappers who were know to cut loose and wear fun flirty dresses, opted to hide their bump!

Shifting Perspective

Lucille Ball made a bold move in the 1950s when she publicly showed off her pregnant belly on-screen during filming of “I Love Lucy.”  However, it was Demi Moore’s decision to pose nude at seven months pregnant on the cover of Vanity Fair that really help shift the view of pregnancy and pregnant women from embarrassing to empowering.

Current Trends

These days just about anything goes when it comes to maternity fashion. On again given day, it’s not uncommon to see a pregnant woman wearing form-fitting shirts and another wearing very loose clothing. Fortunately, many of today’s popular styles are over-sized which allows women to forgo “maternity” clothing all together – and spend that money on baby clothes instead.

What is your preference for maternity style? Do you prefer to cover up and conceal or flaunt it?

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