If you’re invited to a wedding while you’re expecting, you’re probably wondering what on Earth you should wear. In addition to finding the right pregnant wedding guest attire to accommodate your growing bump, you’re also looking for something that’s appropriate for the type of dress required, be it black tie or cocktail attire, and something that’s true to your personal style—and if you're a bridesmaid, you'll have to find attire to match the other members of the wedding party. Thankfully, there is a plethora of maternity options available to moms-to-be today. The key is knowing the dos and don’ts and ins and outs of pregnant guest attire.
To help, we asked top stylists to break the basics of pregnant wedding guest attire down for us so you can feel confident and beautiful at the next wedding you attend.
Do: Look for a dress you can wear after the wedding
We all want to get the most bang for our wardrobe buck, but Melissa Birge, founder of Mia Tango, points out that this is especially true for pregnant women, who often feel guilty buying something for a short term need. “When shopping for pregnant wedding guest attire, think about how that dress could be worn in a more casual setting with a change of accessories and by layering on a jacket or sweater,” she says. “For that lace dress that looks so pretty with strappy sandals, clutch and drop earrings, could you swap out the sandals for booties, throw on a leather jacket and scarf and hobo bag and look oh-so-incredible for dinner out with friends? You’ve got a winner.” Designers and retailers with particularly versatile pregnant wedding guest attire include Seraphine, ASOS, A Pea in the Pod, and PinkBlush.
Don’t: Feel constrained to black only
Just because you’re pregnant doesn’t mean you can’t have fun with a little color, especially during spring and summer when color palates reign supreme. “Solid colors look great on pregnant wedding guests—try blush or rose as your first choice, since both compliment most pregnant women very well,” suggests Beth Shankle Anderson, stylist at The Style Bouquet. “Florals are also a great choice, just be sure that the print isn’t too large so as to cause the dress to become misshapen.” Just be mindful of the colors you shouldn't wear to a wedding as you select your outfit.
Do: Opt for stretchy fabrics
Fabrics like jersey or blended spandex/polyester/cotton tend to be forgiving. These fabrics have a slight stretch and will likely be more comfortable for the pregnant guest. Also, these fabrics fit nicely on a variety of silhouettes because of their stretch. Choosing pregnant wedding guest attire made from a fabric that moves with the your body will make your time at the wedding much more enjoyable!
Don’t: Constrain yourself to heels
Weddings typically involve long days, much of which you’re on your feet. Especially if you’re in your third trimester, your feet might be extra swollen. It’s important to prepare for this in advance by selecting comfortable footwear for the wedding you’re attending. If you can still rock heels, then by all means, go for it, but, if you aren’t feeling so steady on your feet or your legs are just hurting, Birge recommends opting for elegant flats, a bootie, a low heel, or a round toe and chunky heel.
Do: Think about your accessories—including your diaper bag
“Nothing spoils a gorgeous dress like an ugly bag,” says Birge. “If you happen to be pregnant and have a toddler in tow at the wedding as well, think about upgrading your diaper bag to one you’d be proud to carry anywhere.” There are plenty of gorgeous bags out there that no one would ever guess were diaper bags. “You will use this bag well beyond the wedding, so you can feel good about investing in a chic bag you love,” she adds.