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What are the problems with maternity wear?

(62 Posts)
Sgibb113 Mon 31-Oct-16 10:42:41

I'm Wanting to start a business and was looking at what problems women had when they were pregnant with maternity clothes and what they wanted to be available at the time?

helenatroy Mon 31-Oct-16 11:14:49

For me under the bump stuff rides down over the course of the day. With a lot of the tops the material appears cheap. The t shirts are good but I always felt they just hung over the bottom of the bump. I found a hair tie invaluable for this so they fitted neatly over the bump giving a nicer silhouette. I had my whole NCT group doing this in the end. The pregnant body is a beautiful thing and should be dressed as such. The dresses that hugged the bump and had a more fitted silhouette (think pencil shape) on the bottom and legs always look great on every body shape.
Also more.
Long sleeves please
Longer skirts
More clothes that double as nursing wear afterwards
Longer cardigans with structure please that we can wear over formal clothes or jeans and a plain top
Bras are largely unattractive, thats unnecessary. I bought some in Paris in gallery Lafayette and they are beautiful.
More colour please
Less black for the love of God.
Tights with leg support as thread veins are common and it seems unaddressed in maternity wear
Nicer trousers please. The jeans are fine but in a more formal pant the designs are frumpy. In frustration I wore slim cigarette pants with the trusty hairband and a longer top as did not want to look like I dressed from marks and Spencer's "old woman"range.

Jersey material is great, however choose a heavier weight as it can look tired if not well ironed and scruffy after a few washes

Stretchy lace in formal dresses works really well. Keep the silhouette slim and have a little belt at the slimmest part of the body.

I also think if you sold online you could also encourage your customers to sell on old designs to each other. Creating a brand loyalty. Seraphine sell a capsule bag with basics in. It's a brilliant idea but they are missing a trick re the contents in that bag are on the too basic side and don't seem all that well made.

AntiHop Mon 31-Oct-16 11:28:55

Trousers with pockets. I needed somewhere to keep my mobile phone!

steppemum Mon 31-Oct-16 11:29:05

I found that the extra fabric for the bump was always in the wrong place.

I prefered over the bump trousers and there was always too much fabric in the extra part for months 5, 6, 7, and the only fitted in month 8 and 9. I couldn't afford to keep buying stuff, so I had to buy it bigger and sew a fold in it for 3 months and then undo it again.

They also assume that you have a classic stick out the front football shaped bump, whereas all my bumps were longer and flatter.

Kitch82 Mon 31-Oct-16 12:13:15

Too many stripes!!!!

MissClimpsonsTypingBureau Mon 31-Oct-16 12:17:11

There are almost no skirts! I haven't worn trousers in years and wear a uniform for work that involves a shirt - substituting a maternity top for that is possible but it doesn't work with dresses, and it seems that maternity clothes are either dresses or trousers.

Applesauce29 Mon 31-Oct-16 12:21:35

Free delivery and returns, or stocked in local high street stores so can be tried on - latter preferable.

Cotton breathable fabrics.

OohNoDooEy Mon 31-Oct-16 12:30:28

I would like jeans with braces to go under tops as they always, without fail, fall down.

GinIsIn Mon 31-Oct-16 12:31:48

The fact that because manufacturers know women won't be needing the clothes for longer than 6 months, they use this as an excuse to use cheap, shitty fabrics that bobble/fade/start getting holes after a few washes.....

Cakescakescakes Mon 31-Oct-16 12:33:37

Tops were always really low cut - especially nursing tops.

AnneLovesGilbert Mon 31-Oct-16 12:40:58

Ooh helena, what's the trick with the hairband?!

Have to agree on the cheap fabrics. I usually really like New Look but have gad to return nearly everything as hardly any shops stock their maternity range in store so you have to order online, and the fabrics are horrendous.

I'm warmer than usual now pregnant and the last thing I need is gross sweaty fabrics.

wowwee123 Mon 31-Oct-16 12:43:08

i always felt they were too fuddy duddy and a lot only go to a size 16.

when pregnant i dont suddenly want to start dressing like my dm.

Nikki2ol6 Mon 31-Oct-16 12:52:45

Under bump stuff has nothing to grip onto and rides down constantly. Over the bump stuff is very comfortable, especially leggings.

Applesauce29 Mon 31-Oct-16 12:56:12

Over bump stuff is too hot in summer tho, especially last heat wave - I couldn't bare to wear anything remotely clingy, and noting other than cotton.

FWIW I'm slim and have always complained about being cold generally, except when pregnant!

minijoeyjojo Mon 31-Oct-16 13:06:32

A bloody shop to try any of it on!!!

celeryisnotasuperfood Mon 31-Oct-16 13:12:55

Want to say same as minijoeyjojo. Hate hate hate the fact that you have to buy online.
All bumps are different - some sit high and some sit low so it's always going to be pot luck if it's a nice fit. I hate over ordering to them send back the stuff that is unsuitable. Between 5 and 10 shops covering the major areas of the country should do it!
Don't even manufacture or design yourself - just bring together high street stock plus some of the maternity specific brands and I reckon you would have plenty of customers. (Good changing rooms - bigger and plenty of them essential)

XinnaJane Mon 31-Oct-16 13:19:46

Cheap fabric, poor quality, not enough choice

RaeSkywalker Mon 31-Oct-16 13:30:19

Having to buy online. Lots of it is very frumpy- I'm 29, I want to look my age! Would be lovely to have some more choice in clothes for work. I agree with others- fabric quality is often poor. I don't want to wear a see-through dress at any time, especially pregnancy!

BagelDog Mon 31-Oct-16 13:52:45

Decent fabric with enough weight and stretch to look good, but that isn't madly sweaty. All my smart work trousers especially are unbearable unless it is chilly. And some tops that cope with the major boob growth of pregnancy without looking a bit indecent or stretched out of shape. I have neat bumps but huge boobs when pregnant and find sizing tricky. Have a few wrap dresses but again when boobs grow they get a bit indecent, and if I have to put another top on underneath then I boil. Patterns that are not Breton stripes would be pleasant too...

KatharinaRosalie Mon 31-Oct-16 13:55:25

There's barely any choice if you need work clothes, suits and similar business wear. It seems that according to maternity wear manufacturers, all women quit work the minute the bump appears and spend the rest of the time in leggings and tunics.

Nikki2ol6 Mon 31-Oct-16 14:01:16

Oh! I was still in my normal clothes back then lol I forgot about that.

newroundhere Mon 31-Oct-16 14:09:51


By the end of my pregnancy my calves, ankles and feet had swollen up.so much that I couldn't even wear DH's socks, everything cut in far too much. This also gave me a problem with trousers - anything skinny stood no chance of fitting over my legs. And I agree, it was difficult to find smart skirts for work. And don't get me started on shoes...

Maternity tights are pretty poor, either much too big and falling down at the top, or much too short with the crotch coming down between your legs.

I agree that materials tend to be cheap and don't wear well - that's a tough one though as I didn't want to spend a fortune on clothes that I wasn't going to use for very long. I had a couple of lovely Isabella Oliver things that I got in the dale but I couldn't justify buying them full price.

Tops being too low cut (esp. Nursing tops) so that they show your unattractive maternity / nursing bras.

Not having stock in store to try on. With Mothercare and H&M as notable exceptions, I spent a lot of time waddling to the post office to send stuff back.

Other than that, maternity wear is great! wink

Oh, one thing that was good - I had a pair of jersey trousers / yoga pants that had adjustable elastic in the top so they could grow and shrink with me before and after birth.

divadee Mon 31-Oct-16 14:33:04

Stripes- why for the love of God do they think 'you're pregnant you must want to dress like a sailor'. No I don't want to wear stripes or swallows. I just want a normal maternity top in plain colours or a nice pattern. Not bloody stripes!

Maternity wear for tall people. I'm 5"11 and struggled with long length jeans and trousers.

Cloeycat Mon 31-Oct-16 14:38:52

I hate paying over the odds for cheaply made clothes. You can safely assume you will be paying about £10 (minimum) more on a maternity top then a regular fit one however the quality is so much worse?

AcademicNerd Mon 31-Oct-16 14:41:12

Another voice wanting actual clothes in physical stores to try on. My body is changing, I don't know what fits anymore. Even the big versions of high street stores at Westfield Stratford often didn't have anything, never mind my local high street.

I want jeans that aren't skinny. I HATE skinny jeans, I've always looked terrible in them, and I don't want to wear them now I'm pregnant. A pair of smart plain black trousers suitable for office work or smart but not formal evening occasions would be nice too.

More choice of jackets and coats would be great for being pregnant over winter.

Easy to clean fabrics are good, in case we get sick/milk/baby mess/etc on them.

If you're going to have an online component for your business, could you do a thing where you pick an item and it gets sent in two different sizes, so there's less of a faff with returning and reordering?

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