While the swelter of summer might not be the most comfortable time of year to be pregnant, it certainly can be the most fun fashionwise if you take a cue from classic Palm Beach chic in bright colors and splashy prints. We love this Maternal America ikat tie-front frock, Jackie O-worthy crisp white slacks from Olian (with handy rolldown waistband), and flattering graphic print tunic top (also Olian) with a sweet bow - all from Belly Dance Maternity, which specializes in plus-size maternity clothes and generally smart & stylish staples from Paige Premium Denim, Juicy Maternity, and Liz Lange; maternity go-to pieces by Japanese Weekend, Olian, and Maternal America; and edgier styles by Jules and Jim, Ripe, and Momzee.
When it opened in 2002 in Chicago's fashionable Bucktown nabe, Belly Dance was a pioneer in the newly-chic maternity market of moms-to-be who expected to stay looking cute while they were expecting. And owner Jennifer Strom Simonte still does extensive research and partners with designers on a range of fashion, accessories, and gifts at a range of pricepoints, and even a few exclusive pieces. Other fun indulgences and groovy mom-to-be gifts we found at Belly Dance include a cheery stack of gold bangles, a vibrant Petunia Pickle Bottom vintage-inspired diaper bag & carryall crafted from red floral European-cut velvet, Birth Month soy candles by Pour Deux, Mama Mio Goodbye Stretchmarks (applied 3x/day for 12 weeks, it is clinically proven to reduce the appearance of stretch marks by over 70%), and the clever Patemm Pad all-in-one bag for quick diaper changes that accommodates a squirmy baby - plus diapers, wipes, and even a change of clothes.
However, our hands-down fave has to be the Rockabye Baby Lullaby Renditions of Led Zeppelin. Good for infants and parental sanity, both.
- Lesley Scott