Sooo… that emotional hair drama all makes sense now! I’m pregnant! OK this photo is from 2009 when I had my first pregnancy test, but this year’s test is just as positive 🙂 We’re expecting in mid-August.
It’s 12 weeks now so time to spill the beans. My husband and I wanted #2 to be close in age, so we are truly blessed that our wish is coming true.
I didn’t know at the time of my last post, but counting everything when I got my hair cut the hormones had already gone into full tilt.
Now, I’ve been armchair sewing all afternoon, cruising for the unlikely: a maternity pattern that actually looks good. After basically a year of not sewing, what would be more discouraging than taking time away from my daughter to sew up a disaster? Look at Assorted Notions’ Jalie shirred crossover top: is that gorgeous or what? Then, if you crane your neck at car wrecks, look at what she saved me from sewing: Burda 8/2005’s faux wrap top vs Jalie in a same fabric, side-by-side comparison. I seriously have this Burda pattern on my dining room table now, but obviously it is off the list of possibilities.
Jalie? Oh, Jalie. Out of running due to shipping charges here in Europe. Too bad, because their crossover nursing top is wonderful.
I made Burda’s 8/2006 maternity tee, which is shaped by swinging out and straightening the front seams, then adding LOTS of length to be gathered into the side seam. The model looks pretty good in the picture, but to be certain I used a €3/m stretch cotton. DISASTER. I should have taken a picture now that I know the benefits of showing others your wadders. I kept it for posterity to try on at 40 weeks, which I did. Even then, it was a vast, sagging display that looked like a deflated airbag in front of me. Horrid. The ‘bright side’ is that this is the second pregnancy and I’ll get bigger, so less chance of that. But I’m not cutting that thing out unless I get really big.
Which leads me to another wrinkle. At least for the present, I don’t need just plain maternity clothes, I need those that permit breastfeeding. Even if DD weans during pregnancy, everyone who has been pregnant knows there is a ‘fourth trimester’ in the postpartum period where you slowly shed the belly weight from a wobbly postpartum tummy. I’ll certainly be breastfeeding postpartum, so these will come in handy then too. Butterick 4201: not breastfeeding-friendly. American patterns are marked up here, and expensive to order directly, so I’m not going to order unless it’s perfect.
Although I already have the OOP Butterick 4247 which Ann sewed, and I was vaguely planning to use the giant floaty shift top in linen since it’s easy to sew and I won’t need all-day fast food access, certainly not at work when I’m teaching. I found it last year, while pregnant, in the € 2 bin as it went out of print: ‘alas, so cute and irresistible to my maternal hormones! But I won’t be able to use it, I’ll never be pregnant over summer’. LOL. Linen comes at great prices here, in wonderful colours. It’s a winner. I know it’s not bfing-friendly, but it’s in the stash and easy to sew so on the list 🙂 I think the summer dress could be quite cute with a shirred back, if I’m still up to converting something like that. Ann noted it doesn’t have enough ease for the third tri, and I’ll certainly be bigger this time than last year. Noted! Thanks, Ann. Has anyone tried the top, View A?
Butterick 5196 twist tunic and dress the twist may be out of style, but twists look good on me and on pregnant women. It’ll probably sell for €10 here but I’m buying. It has the benefit of being a flattering silhouette on pregnant bodies, but not a wrap dress, which is rather impractical here in the windy Low Countries. I am a teacher and a bike commuter. Wraps are totally impractical. Yes, I could try to alter my previous Simplicity twist top, but I know my time and frustration are worth €10. Besides, stashing feels SO GOOD to a pregnant sewist! Oh hey–I see a downloadable option, for $8. Then I wouldn’t have to cross town, perhaps fruitlessly, for the pattern either. Okay! Sold.
Every pregnant woman knows that covering the waist down is the priority for maternity wear. Many stretchy tunics can crossover to maternity, but a maternity panel is really and necessary. Last time I sewed 8–eight!–pairs of unpretty Burda one-dot trousers: 4 in linen, 4 for cold weather. They fit horribly in the front crotch. They looked like ill-fitted gym pants with several Vs in front. But no matter, the maternity panel was bliss, and my shirts were long. I don’t like under-belly maternity wear, it feels like too much hanging out. One false move–writing too high on the whiteboard!–and the belly is public. Nah.
Has anyone else noticed that for maternity panels, either there is a gaping low cutout or a regular one, with panel in the back waist? It’s much more discreet. Burda offers a stretch woven seamed trouser without paneling, which Assorted Notions toyed with the idea Burda 7526. A commentor said it depends on how you carry, she carried high throughout and her trousers of that type looked like ‘clown pants’. Oh! Sounds like sewing disaster zone.
Half cut out since I began this post is Burda mag 8/2006 A-line skirt, cut on the bias. A-line isn’t ideal on short and pregnant, but it is ideal to avoid sewing a walking vent 🙂 It’s bias, so I tell myself it won’t stand out like a Christmas tree. Super easy, no pockets–oh, it’s on the list. Stash? A dusty olive twill, in not exactly the right colours for me so it’s been relegated to perma-stash. Matching maternity panelling also currently in stash. Of course, because I used the same twill for my dreadful Burda trousers last year, so ugly (although in perfectly good shape) I donated them. I started cutting and presto, realized I was cutting out with CB seam, so repositioned and cut again. That’s how much fabric I have. But it’s just sitting there, gathering dust, it might as well have a chance at serving with honour. The other stash options are WOOL, which I just can’t bring myself to cut out. We might have snow predicted for Monday and Tuesday, but wool–for a trial run? No, I respect the sheep too much!
My faith in Burda maternity is shaky after my own and others’ bad experiences. But what else is there for a sewist in Europe? An A-line skirt should be one of the easiest things to fit and sew. It’s already traced. I see it has the ‘right’ details: normal panel with back waist panel, and darts sewn to make it fit smoothly over the lower back. Compare that to the sloppy back gathers of Butterick 4201.
I have the 10/2009 issue of Burda with the most recent maternity patterns, as you see for download on the German site. They’re the ones with the long, odd pattern numbers. The trousers look just perfect, but I’m going not ready to leap yet. Skirt first. The side shirring detail makes me nervous.