Hair tip: DIY easy updos

You can have an easy hair updo in less than 5 minutes

We just came across the best way to style your hair for all your upcoming Christmas parties.  Easy. Simple. Do-it-yourself.

All you need is a friendly little ‘helper’:

  1. Metal Mania Ponytail Holder – $8

screenshot-2016-12-09-15-45-29

Give your hair a quick tease and do an easy low ponytail.  It’s even got an elastic hair tie to make it nice & tight so everything stays put.

2.  Rose bun cuff – $20

screenshot-2016-12-13-11-48-11

Go for a soft & romantic look.  Leave a few pieces near your face for that effortless look.  Give them something to look at as you walk away.

3.  Sparrow Duo Bobby Pin Set – $10

Screenshot 2016-12-09 15.55.00.png

Here’s an understated way to style your hair. A guaranteed conversation starter for your next house party.

Now try timing yourself – you can have an easy hair updo in less than 5 minutes! Now go & have as much fun decorating your hair as you would with your Christmas tree 🙂

What to wear before you announce

Strategically buy to wear now, and wear it again during mat leave.

In our last post we gave you some serious tips on how to stay in your regular clothes as long as you can.  Now inevitably you will need bottoms.  Especially now that it’s the dead of winter and maxi dresses aren’t really an option.  The thing is, in that early stage of pregnancy, only you know you’re pregnant.  Everyone else is probably wondering… “Hmmm is it possible she’s…?  Or maybe she’s just put on a bit of weight over Thanksgiving?” Ackward. Tactful co-workers or not, let’s have you looking fabulous until you’re ready to flaunt that baby bump.

Most moms-to-be will just go to the regular mall stores and get loose larger fitting tops until they can no longer get away with it.  The mindset is this:  The clothes are cuter, cheaper and because it’s not maternity I will wear them again after.  Wrong.

Why?

Ask any mom who has had the baby, goes on mat leave and then revisits the closet.  What happens?  Maternity clothes are too big, pre-pregnancy clothes aren’t practical (can’t nurse or you’re on the floor at the time!) and work clothes don’t fit the same!

So the key here is to strategically buy to wear now, and wear it again during mat leave.  We’re talking a 6-9 month window.  Lots of changes can happen after that time.  If you’re back at work right after a 3 month break than focus more on business casual pieces.  Here are our 3 big hitters to wear now and works post-baby:

  1. Red floral print zip front blouse – $29.90 Limited Time Only!

screen-shot-2016-12-02-at-11-33-30-am

Layer this gorgeous number with a cozy cardigan for the office.  Distracting florals will keep the baby questions at bay.  But before long, you’ll be wearing this at a special get-together easily zipping through feeding session without thinking twice.

2. Ahh-mazingly Soft Pintucked Shirt – $59.85

screenshot-2016-12-02-11-38-58

Loose fitting to accommodate a growing bump now, you’ll wish you bought 5 of these plaid shirts.  One for every day of the week as you visit baby storytime, toddler drop-in gym and mommy playground dates.

3. Monk & Lou shell top – $79.00

screen-shot-2016-12-02-at-11-32-48-am

The perfect lightweight top that doesn’t snug up at the stomach.  Wear it under a blazer for a super smart business casual look.  Works post-baby as a great family brunch top with button up nursing assess too.  You’ll want to feel “dressed-up”and get out of those cotton Ts!

Love these suggestions?  Spread the love to your newly pregnant friends.  They’ll thank you & so will we 🙂

 

 

Dressing tips for the first trimester

Save the major shop for the 2nd trimester and stay in your regular clothes as long as you can.

I couldn’t leave my condo without having plastic bags stashed everywhere.  I was so sick with nausea it would come on any where.  Thankfully, I lived in downtown Vancouver so it wasn’t uncommon that odd things (like vomiting) would happen on the streets. The smells were the worst.  I was like a German Shepherd on a hunt.  These were on my blacklist:

  • Garlic
  • Scented lotions/handwash
  • Husband (he smelled!)

Most of these made it back by the time I hit 12 weeks (my husband barely made the cut but he was willing to give up his Old Spice).  So what should you have on hand besides plastic bags, lemons, ketchup chips and Premium Plus crackers?  You had a plan, remember?

The key to looking great in the early days is to be yourself.  Save the major shop for the 2nd trimester and stay in your regular clothes as long as you can.  Having said that – I’m not a “DIY” kinda mom.  I can’t rough it out by wearing elastic bands around my belt loops so I can stay in my jeans longer.  I would be too worried they would snap and take someone’s eye out.

Instead, here are my 3 absolute musts:

1. Ingrid & Isabel Everyday BellaBand

belly-band

These things are brilliant because it’s like letting out your button right after a huge Thanksgiving dinner. Instant relief. Except this time, no one has to know (see how-to video).  Some have told me they’ve use it while nursing so they don’t bare all when they lift their shirts.  So investment well worth it.

2. Bra extenders

bra-extenders

Now bra extenders is that obvious answer after the fact.  But you’re ahead of the game. If you’re a pregnant mom who’s rib cage (bra band) just got wider and cups stay the same – you can stop holding your breath.  Spend less than you would on a new bra and wear all your own bras comfortably.  They come in 2 hook/3 hooks too.

3. Leggings

babe-maternity-leggings

And finally at this stage of the game – get a good quality pair of leggings.  You’ll be in them the moment you get home from work.  You’ll live in them the entire weekend.  So maximize them by raiding your closet and sorting the stuff you can pair it with for the next few weeks.  These ones are local and meticulously designed to not-fall-off-your-butt.

What other strategies did you use in the first trimester? Share any tips you have here in the comments below!

What to wear for 9 months

Don’t get suckered into buying most of your maternity clothes all at once.

You’re soooo excited. You want to tell everyone you’re PREGNANT!!  But you know you shouldn’t.  The confirmation at the doctor’s office only makes it a bit less surreal.  Still. There’s worry.  The last thing you want is to “explain” to people if things…you know.  So you follow the standard practice of making it through the first 12 weeks.  Let’s not jump the gun. Although I have to tell you…the worry doesn’t end.  It’s almost like it builds you up for all the future anxieties you’ll have for the rest of the kid’s life.  Preparation for motherhood – I call it. From the genetic testing to the size of the baby’s head (how is it going to come out??!!) to eating/sleeping enough to private/public school debate…there will be much on your mind.  But let’s tackle one thing at a time. What are you going to wear for the next 9 months??

The key is to do 2 core maternity shopping sessions and sprinkle in fun pieces

The truth is, everyone is different.  So don’t get suckered into buying most of your maternity clothes all at once.  You can gain hardly any weight until the very end.  Or you can be visibly pregnant right from the start.  I’ve worked with moms who’ve gain anywhere from 30-70lbs.  These numbers can make shopping for clothing & sizing somewhat challenging.  The key is to do 2 core maternity shopping sessions and sprinkle in fun pieces that’ll make you look and feel great throughout your pregnancy.  Plus – you’ll want to look amazing at all the get-togethers.  The last thing you want is to see yourself wear the same thing in every single Facebook picture!

So here’s how to look stylish while pregnant and still be smart with your money.  It’s all about having a plan; anticipating the changes and being prepared for any upcoming social events.   Here’s what we suggest:

1st Trimester Goals:

  • Stay in your regular clothes as long as you can
  • Camouflage your midsection until you’re ready to announce
  • Get through the nasty nauseating stage

2nd Trimester Goals:

  • Stop suffering and get the basics
  • Evaluate upcoming events and mix & match like a pro
  • Update your panties please

 3rd Trimester Goals:

  • Get comfy for maximum growth
  • Know your nursing options
  • Plan hospital bag & own post-baby survival kit

6-12 week post-baby plans:     

  • Plan your laundry situation
  • Feel great while slowly bouncing back
  • Reconnect with yourself & prep for first date night

Beyond the belly plans:

  • Being okay with things not fitting the same
  • Functional kid-friendly-machine washable clothes
  • Transitioning back to work

We’ll be elaborating on each of these topics over the next few weeks.  Let us know in the comments below if there’s something you REALLY want to know about!

Best shoe picks for rain or snow

Be prepared for the puddles, dirty pumpkin patches and everything in between.

I was fortunate enough to be really pregnant in the summer. So I got away with flip flops almost all the time.  When you can’t see your toes at some point, shoelaces and zippers is like tempting not to topple over a game of Jenga.

So what’s an expectant mama to do in this rainy Vancouver weather?

Waterproof shoes!

You might need to sit down for this one (like literally to put them on I mean).  I’m planning ahead for you but during mat leave, you’re gonna be trekking outside regardless of the weather.  So you need to be prepared for the puddles, dirty pumpkin patches and everything in between.  Thankfully, if you get them now while your feet are a bit swollen (get them a ½ size bigger since rubber doesn’t stretch), it’ll still fit afterwards.

Check out my Top 3 picks:

  1. Sperry Top-sider Walker Spray

WALKER SPRAY

I just bought these and ADORE THEM.  Even when it’s not raining I still wear them (don’t judge me!).  They are so comfy 🙂 And as much as I like the ‘every celebrity wears the competing brand’ – I prefer looking a bit different.  It’s even got a thin fleece lining for extra warmth. Love the lace design on these!

2. Ugg Haylie

UGG Haylie

If your feet are super uncomfortable and just the thought of forcing them into anything makes you cringe…then this is your answer!  Freedom for your ankles, cute as pie – slip these loafers on/off very easily.  Walk your doggy in them.  And later, stroller your baby in style.

Cougar Women's Vienna-S

This is for my East Coast mamas who have to deal with snow too (well, Whistler for us anyway!)  The fluffy insides cushion those cankles and I can’t help but rave about the versatility of it.  Wear it rugged if you want.  But with leggings and a slouchy sweater?  Perfect dose of dressiness in a colour that goes with everything.

So what do you think? Love ’em or hate ’em?  Comment below.

Avoid this maternity shopping mistake

I’m gonna help you save money.  And major frustration.  Not to mention prime real estate in your closet.  And it’s this. Avoid the biggest mistake first time moms make when they’re buying maternity clothes.

“I will just buy extra large non-maternity clothes. That way, I can wear it again after I have the baby.” 

Wrong.

Why?

3 reasons:

  • Baggy saggy pits
  • Impractical post baby plans
  • Unpredictable sizing

Let me explain.

Baggy saggy pits

Regular size clothing isn’t meant to accommodate a growing belly.  It can conceal but the proportions/cutting if you go up a size, will just end up having excess fabric everywhere. So if it can fit your belly, it’ll be saggy in your pits.  I don’t know about you – but if you’re already feeling kinda gross, I wouldn’t want to look gross too.

Impractical post baby plans

I am a big believer in maximizing your wardrobe. But to buy clothes that you plan to wear after a major life changing event doesn’t make any sense.  Hate to break it to you…but those things you use to do?  Yah.  You’ll likely not going to be doing them anymore.  Occasionally yes.  But that also means that you’ll only be wearing those clothes occasionally too.  Not to mention breastfeeding.  Those girls need to be accessed.  On demand. All the time. So anything that barricades them is a no go.

Unpredictable sizing

After you have your little one, some women just bounce right back.  Some women never do.  I personally gained the most weight post baby (I was freaking starving ALL THE TIME from breastfeeding).  So to buy clothes that you think you’ll fit after the baby is unrealistic.  There are some tricks to this though.  We’ll be showing you how, as we talk what to shop in the next few posts! Got questions? Comment below 🙂