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Monday, June 6, 2011

Before & After: How the right fit can change everything.

I hope y'all aren't totally sick of all my maternity clothes talk, but it's just sort of what's going on in my life right now. :) All the same, this post could apply to anybody in any situation! So keep readin'.

Sorry, Old Navy, but this post is gonna dog on you a little...

You may remember how excited I was to get my first real round of maternity clothes there. I was just so ecstatic not to have to wear yoga pants or pajama pants every single day. I'm still perfectly happy with the shirts and dress I got there. But the pants, well, I started noticing that I didn't feel my best in them. I felt like they made me look dumpy and frumpy, so that's how I felt when I wore them. They fit around the "waist" (meaning under my preggo belly) but seemed to have too much room everywhere else, so they made me feel bigger than I was, and the denim seemed sooo thick. Also, even though they're supposed to be "under belly" pants - I am learning maternity lingo now - they actually sit slightly on my belly at the bottom of it...and that doesn't make for the smoothest bump silhouette and also doesn't feel that good to me; I just don't like pants sitting on my belly at all. None of those full-panel maternity pants for me, thank you very much. I'm already hot all the time as it is!

Well, I hopped along - waddled? - to the Motherhood store in the mall recently to exchange a gifted shirt for a smaller size (never a bad feeling when you're pregnant, lol), and I thought I'd try on some of their pants and jeans to see how they compared. The answer is, there is no comparison - they're way better than the ones I had!! They truly do fit totally underneath my bump, to the point where I suspect I will be able to wear them long after the baby is here. The cut of the pants is just much more figure-hugging and flattering, and the denim is thinner. And because they were on sale, I paid the same price I paid at Old Navy. Old Navy ones all got returned. My body confidence soars when I wear the new ones...I swear I don't feel as bloated or weighed down because I don't look it in these. I carry myself completely differently in them. Check out my befores and afters. Oh, and I know the shoes don't really go the best with these outfits...Kam and I did three photoshoots in one afternoon, and I forgot to bring a better-suited pair. ;)

Loved by Heidi Klum skinny jeans from Motherhood - LOOOVE 'em!
Old Navy jeans - like, dude, seriously, whah happened here?!?!?!
I'm standing the same way, and I swear even my upper arms are bigger in this one

Motherhood brand denim capris - much more calf-flattering.
Old Navy capris. Okay, the diff between these two isn't as noticeable in pics, more in real life.
But see how the legs on the Motherhood capris are much more fitted?
The fabric is also thinner on the Motherhood ones, which means less visual bulk.
I can only vouch for the Old Navy maternity jeans and pants that I got; they may have others that are more flattering. (And, in general, I have always really liked Old Navy, for the record.) But I thought I'd be brave here and show you how much different you can look if you just have the right fit in your clothes. I'm not talking about obeying tons of fashion rules or consulting a guide book on "how to dress thinner." This isn't about looking thinner; it's about playing up your personal strong points regardless of your body shape. Once you become more aware of your body shape, your own unique curves and lines, and how different pieces bring out different qualities in it more, it will become pretty easy to recognize what is extra flattering on you and what isn't. And I think you can tell a lot just from how you feel in certain items.

I once blogged a post called "Do you wear it even if it's not flattering?" and still maintain that if you just really love something, wear it, for God's sake, whether it falls into the category of flattering or not...when you love something, sometimes that alone is enough to make you feel confident wearing it. But I still thought it might be helpful to show how different cuts/fits can really make a big difference, not only in how you look but how you feel...and that's what's most important, after all. That romper that I was so eagerly awaiting in the mail turned out not to be entirely flattering on me, lol, but I still love it and feel cute wearing it. The crotch is super low, but I think that's to allow my belly to expand and expand; I have a feeling that the bigger I get, the more flattering the romper will fit. After the baby comes, I might have it altered because I like it so much. I'll save the pics of that outfit for later, though. :) you also find yourself relating your mood/the way you feel about your appearance to your clothes? What kinds of clothes make you feel your hottest? 

Also, how do you feel about the term "skinny" jeans - do you equate the fit with the style of the jeans themselves or with what the body that goes in them is "supposed" to be?