So. Maternity shapewear sounds like an oxymoron or at least very absurd, but it's all about the support of the lower back and belly, the firming up of the jiggling legs and behind and smooth lines under clingy clothes is just a bonus! I posted a while back about my love for maternity Spanx (which many of you concurred with) but unfortunately I wore and washed those so frequently that they got a big run in the front over the belly panel. Still wearable but a tad bit annoying.
I was about to buy another pair when I decided to see what else is available because there were a few annoying things about the Spanx - namely that they are made of sturdy pantyhose like material which means they grab onto knit fabrics and even some loose fitting cotton dresses so that the fabric bunches up between my legs in a most unladylike manner. They are also quite loose across my upper back so that there was a ridge line across my back under my bra - again not flattering.
Surprisingly there's not much else out there in this style, so I decided to try a DIY version when I saw that Big W had the traditional high waisted, bicycle short style made with a satiny finish on sale. And it worked so double yay. Here's how I did it:
1. purchase shapewear in a size larger than you normally wear. I did this mainly because I am a size larger (or two) than I am normally but also because I wanted this fitted but not super sucking in a drop a dress size kind of way.
2. cut out a 'u' shape where your pregnant belly sits. I made these back at the end of November last year so I managed to just get them on and trace around the edge of my belly before quickly taking them off - that much pressure on the belly was an awful feeling!
3. from some stretchy fabric in a similar colour (I used some swimsuit lining) cut out a 'u' shape that is a bit wider than the 'u' shape cut out from the shapewear - stretch it out over your belly to see how wide you need it.
4. sew on the stretchy fabric 'u' shaped panel to your shapewear - I just overlocked mine on but you could also use a stretch stitch.
And you're done in about 30 minutes and have probably saved about $20 or $30 too!
I'll spare you all a photo of me modelling it though - that is a sight that no one deserves to see! I will however answer the questions posted in the comments to the post before the last one:
Uta - I agree that the styles in Burda are getting better lately - I thought they were cruelly taunting me because it seemed that the bigger my waistline got the more fitted their dresses became! I can't wait to regain my figure sometime in the (fingers crossed) near future so I can make some of their more lovely styles of late.
Jean - you're right, the roundness of my bump is mostly the baby's bum is sticking out! Anna is so excited, telling everyone that her mummy has a baby in her tummy and kissing my bump frequently but I also made the mistake of telling her accurately how the baby comes out so she is now going around telling everyone that the baby will come out of my vagina! Yes it's correct but it is still disconcerting hearing that word come out of three year old's mouth....
Mysummertouch - I probably won't sew anything for the new baby (except for some more cloth nappies, thanks to Bettina for reminding me!) because I don't know what the sex is but also because I have plenty of newborn sized clothes in neutral colours leftover from Anna. And I found that in the first few months Anna was always wrapped and mostly asleep so her outfits were never really seen anyway, so I'll make some 3 month + sized clothes after the baby arrives and I know what colour to sew.
And to anonymous who lamented that me still wearing high heels is doing his/her head in and asked why, I guess the answer is that I still can and I still have somewhere to wear them! Pretty poor answer I know, but I have always worn a suit and heels to work even though there is no official dress code and some people dress very casually, but I never feel in a work frame of mind unless I'm dressed professionally. Plus I don't own many flat shoes and the ones I do have are pretty casual slip ons, so I feel like I'm shuffling around wearing slippers when I've got them on. But to put your mind at rest I do wear flats when I walking to and from the office, and I certainly don't go out on my days off with Anna to the playground or the museum or the library etc wearing heels - I am so not a yummy mummy!