With my first pregnancy, my wardrobe was all over the place: I had big sweaters and boho-y dresses as well as pussy-bow blouses and blazers. When I reopened the box with all those clothes, I felt that none of them really reflected who I am or how I’ve changed over the last three years. I didn’t want to spend a ton of money on clothes I would only (hopefully) wear for less than a year. I didn’t want to feel uncomfortable or self-conscious in what I was wearing either. I told myself that instead of trying to buy things piecemeal as the belly grew, I wanted to be more intentional in my approach.
As a pop culture junkie, I immediately looked to celebrities for some maternity style inspiration. Of all the celebrities who were pregnant last summer, none was more talked about or photographed than Kim Kardashian West. It was interesting to see how her pregnancy clothing, rather than diverting from pre-pregnancy style, seemed to be an extension of it. Also around this time, I noticed a lot of conversation and articles popping up about capsule wardrobes. A capsule wardrobe is the idea of paring your closet down to around 30+ items (excluding accessories, lingerie and special occasion clothing) to make dressing in the morning easier. You can read more about capsule wardrobes and how to get them in these inspiring articles by Unfancy and The Everygirl. Some, like New Yorker Matilda Kahl, went even more extreme and wore the same outfit to work every day.
The idea of a pregnancy capsule wardrobe appealed to me, and would keep me from overspending. But it was the themes I saw running through Kim Kardashian’s clothing that helped me put together pieces that have made me feel confident, sexy, and comfortable these past 7 months.
Keep it in the family
The same color family, that is. Most of KKW’s outfits are monochrome, which makes mixing and matching much easier. If they’re not all strictly the same color, they’re in neutrals that complement each other. While I love the camel and beige outfits she has, a lot of those colors tend to make me look wan and washed out. So, unsurprisingly, most of my capsule wardrobe is black. But it makes it oh-so-easy to decide what to wear in the morning.
Mix your textures
While you may not wear a latex dress or a see-through ensemble, it’s great to have things that delight you and surprise others. Combining different textures—lacy top and fuzzy sweater, silky dress and leather or suede item—makes each piece of a neutral or monochrome outfit sing.
Play with proportion
Kim pairs long trenches, jackets, and sweaters with dresses or skirts that range from knee- to maxi lengths. This makes her appear taller than her 5-foot 3-inch frame, and balances out her curves. Because I’m both curvy and have a short torso, I like playing with a cropped jacket over a long dress. This calls attention to my waist without having to actually cinch my middle (which would be a little tough, lemme tell ya).
For her everyday looks, Kim wears diamond studs and a delicate necklace with her daughter’s name. My day-to-day jewelry for some time has been a pair of earrings my mother-in-law gave me the first Christmas after Mr. D and I got married, my wedding rings, and my watch. It turns that part of dressing up into ritual: after I shower, I put them on without thinking before heading out the door. For special occasions, like Mr. D’s company holiday party or a friend’s wedding, I chose to wear large drop earrings or a vintage gold tassel necklace. Keeping the big bling to one area drew attention away from my all-black outfit, which allowed me to use it on both occasions without people noticing. Win!
Own your curves
Kim Kardashian is the queen of confidently flaunting her curves. Love her or hate her, you have to give the woman props for using what the good Lord gave her. Because of my aforementioned curves (a LOT more pronounced with pregnancy) and short-waisted frame, it’s always a struggle for me to find things that either fit right or are comfortable for me. This time around, I’ve tried not to be too critical about every bump, lump, and roll I think I see in the mirror. So instead of wearing flowy blouses and maxi dresses like before, I’ve opted for more form-fitting clothing. Not only has it made me more aware of how my body has changed, but it’s also helped me stay conscious about my health and my diet. Having had pre-eclampsia with my daughter, my doctor wanted to keep my weight gain with this pregnancy to about 20lbs and make sure that my blood pressure didn’t go up as I progressed. Staying hydrated and taking care to eat more balanced meals have gone a long way in ensuring my and the baby’s healthy growth. So far, so good!
Here are the workhorses of my pregnancy capsule wardrobe. I was able to fill in some of the holes with some sweaters and shirts I already had, though many of those won’t accommodate my third-trimester belly.
From L to R, top to bottom: Midi ribbed sweater dresses in black and olive, Gap; Boatneck maxi dress, Gap; Boatneck hi-lo hem dress, Gap (old); Maternity pencil skirt, Asos (similar here); Full panel skinny jeans, Gap; Sweater joggers, Gap; Maternity leggings, Target; Patterned cardigan, Gap (old); Long sweater, Aritzia; Faux leather crop jacket, Warehouse (similar here); Moto jacket, Aritzia (old); Maternity tank, Target; Shirred long sleeve shirt, Old Navy.
How do you feel about having a capsule wardrobe—maternity or otherwise? If you have made a capsule wardrobe, share your experience in the comments; we’re curious to see how it works!