Monday, March 29, 2010

Too Big for My Britches

I am nearing the five month mark in my pregnancy, and it's official... I need to switch over to maternity clothes. Blurgh.  The Belly Band (a pregnant woman's miracle) I bought at Target has been working until now, allowing me to wear my normal jeans, however, this baby is growing... so it's time to pull out the heavy artillery.

It's been about three years since my last baby, and while many of the maternity clothes styles have improved, the locations where you can buy them have dwindled.  Wal-Mart and Old Navy have pulled maternity wear out of their stores and moved everything online, and even Bon-Ton (usualy a last resort) has decided to leave pregnant ladies in the lurch.

While online shopping is convenient, maternity clothes, I find, are often ill-fitting and need a good trying-on before buying. I hate paying for shipping (I usually look for free coupon codes) and REALLY hate paying for shipping returns.  Some stores offer in-store returns, however, a salesperson at Old Navy said they don't accept maternity clothes any longer.

In my desperation, I have traveled the Capital Region looking for places for a 'woman with child' to get some duds.

Target:  Liz Lange has had a line there for a while, but this time around the selection is pretty sparse.  I remember the selection being more varied, but there are some basic t-shirts, leggings, etc. you can start with.

H&M (Crossgates Mall):  Nice selection, very trendy, and reasonably priced. Keep checking back and you can find some good sales.

JC Penney:  They had a pretty decent selection, more for the working mom than the sweatpants/jeans mom I am.  There were some good sales, but overall, not really my style.  I have a weird thing with jeans.. if they are not the EXACT wash I like, I won't wear them.  Even if they are mega discounted for 14.99. I tried explaining that to my husband, but it's lost on him.

Destination Maternity (Colonie Center):  Finally, a whole store dedicated the process of populating. The front of the store boasts their boutique line (Pea in a Pod) where everything is pretty, but EXTREMELY overpriced (the sale prices made we weep).  The back of the store has the Motherhood Maternity section, which was more in my price range.  The salesperson was very helpful and friendly and the big bonus here is that there is a big gated off area in the middle of the store complete with a TV, lego table, and other diversions for the kids.  I actually got to try some stuff on knowing my kids were comatose in front of Nick Jr.

*Motherhood Matenity apparently also rents out spaces in Sears, Boscov's, Macy's (all in Colonie Center) as well as Babies R Us, so you can find similar items in all of these places, however they do not offer the in-store discounts that Destination Maternity has.

The Gap (Crossgates only):  So, of course you can look super cute and put together with anything the Gap sells in their maternity section, but if I'm going to pay full price for a pair of jeans... you are darn tootin' that I'm going to be able to wear them for more than three months. That being said, I always check out their sale section.  I am so over being that shopper that pretends to browse the front of the store mulling over a $68 t-shirt, only to casually make my way to the sale rack. I only ever buy 'on sale' at the Gap and always make a bee-line to the back of the store.

I have yet to check out any consignment shops and would take any suggestions. I'm pretty sure PolkaDots on Western Ave. has some stuff, so I'm going to check that out tomorrow, but I usually save consignment shopping for when I don't have the kids... there's something about that combination that kinda leaves me frazzled. And to find other used clothing, there is always eBay, Craigslist, and eMommie.


  1. Back when I was shopping for such things I got some good stuff on sale at Boscovs.

  2. I didn't even know you were w/ child! Congrats :0)

  3. I am always a big online shopper, and no longer in need of maternity clothes - yay! but I did notice that Clothes Mentor (next to Plato's Closet) on Central has a small maternity section. Good luck!

  4. Just popped over from AllOverAlbany. I found some Targets to be better than others. The E. Greenbush on usually had a nice selection, Latham too (better sales racks).

    I had frustrations with Motherhood and their pricing/return policy (store credit only, within 10 days), but their staff are pretty wonderful, so I splurged on a few pairs of jeans/pants I needed.

    Good luck!

  5. Great info - I'm 14 weeks along - still rocking the balla band but know it won't last..I didn't know the Gap in Crossgates has maternity clothes - think I'll check it out. Also - there is a new consignment store next to Platos Closest on Central Ave in Albany, I think it is called Clothes Mentor (or something like that) they have a small but decent maternity section..
    Good luck with the baby. :)

  6. Thanks, everyone! I just got off the phone with a friend who also suggested Clothes Mentor. I'm probably going to check it out tonight.

    I did not know that about the Motherhood return policy, so thanks for the tip. Just bought some pants there that I was not 100% sure about.

    Went to PolkaDots today, but it was closed..wah wah wah! Should have checked the info on the link when I was linking it ;-)

  7. Love the posts! I bet you are looking great! There is a store in Saratoga, I think it's called Haute Mama. Haven't been in it since I'm not shopping this section any more. But I'm going to bet that it's a bit pricey. Also, the Katrina Trask consignment sale coming up in Saratoga. April 16 and 1/2 price on 17th. Go to for more info.

  8. I bought a button band pair of jeans at Target. Loved the wash, but they are uncomfortable after sitting for a while!! I'm 7 months along and found that the best fitting pants were drawstring yoga pants I found in the workout section of Target. I can still wear them, and they continue to look nice.

  9. Ooh.. thanks for all the tips! I will have to try the yoga pants at target. I am embarrassed to say it, but as soon as I get home I change into my sweatpants...nothin' says lovin' like elastic and drawstring. Which leaves me to point out that every woman should own a belly band regardless if they are pregnant or not. Allows you that extra inch of room so you can indulge at the Indian buffet without having to excuse yourself to undo your top button.

    Jody, thank you! I am going to put that consignment sale on my calendar. I'm kind of out of touch with the Saratoga area so if you find anything else interesting, please let me know!

    PS. Went to Clothes Mentor.. very impressive. Good selection of maternity clothes...didn't get anything but will keep checking back.

  10. Being 10 days overdue at this point, I was shocked to realize the other day that the spree for clothing I went on about month 5-6, all still fit. I did a massive shopping trip (think trying on absolutely everything in the store) at Destination Maternity and I have only had to suplement with a couple of shirts since that trip. I agree they are overpriced but for the help you get and the fact that the majority of the clothes can be worn all term it was worth it in my mind.

  11. I think Gap Maternity is worth every penny. It's nice to feel beautiful when you're as big as a house, and the earlier you buy, the better the deal. My favorite pair of maternity jeans were liz lange target, however.


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