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The later stages of a pregnancy can make even the most simple of daily tasks something of a chore. Whether you are negotiating traffic for one of your private pregnancy scans or simply making your way around a supermarket, heat, immobility and swollen joints can make life very uncomfortable. But you can make life a little easier on yourself by wearing clothes that are conducive to free and easy movement, and these 7 items of clothing prove that you can stay comfortable without sacrificing your sense of style.
1. A few simple accessories
If you're wearing clothes that you wouldn't normally wear, you can make yourself feel more like your old self by adding a few carefully chosen accessories to your ensembles. The addition of a beautiful scarf can bring a simple T-shirt to life, and a pair of sunglasses in the summer can give you a whole new look. Even the addition of a brightly coloured bag or a quirky pair of trainers can add a different dimension to classic maternity wear. Remember, accessorising doesn't have to mean chunky necklaces and dangling earrings.
2. A wraparound dress
A wraparound dress is both low maintenance and the height of fashion. Stretchable fabric means you can make it fit your particular body shape with ease. Lightweight and exceptionally versatile, a brightly coloured wraparound can be worn with a patterned scarf, wedge sandals and a range of accessories for a contemporary look you'd be proud to wear long after your pregnancy.
3. A kaftan
Being pregnant during hot spells can be a very unpleasant experience at the best of times, so it is important to wear clothes that keep you mobile and cool. A linen kaftan can sit loosely on your shoulders, giving your baby bump room to breathe. Pair it with some flannel trousers or chinos for a classic look that never goes out of fashion.
4. Fashion trainers
Nothing is kinder on the feet during a pregnancy than a soft, bouncy pair of trainers, and there are some fantastic fashion brands on the market today. Buy the right pair - a brand such as Converse or Kickers - and they'll pretty much go with anything. Wear them with a pair of stretchable jeans or a jumper dress, and glide across the ground with ease.
5. Comfortable underwear
Don't underestimate the importance of underwear during your pregnancy. A quality bra or a snugly fitting pair of maternity briefs can provide you with support and mobility in equal measures, and they will often be the key to feeling comfortable in the rest of your clothes. It is a good idea to go bra shopping once a month during your pregnancy, as there's a chance your breasts will change shape and get bigger over time.
6. A jumper dress
If the later stages of your pregnancy are during the winter, staying warm, comfortable and fashionable all at the same time can be a challenge. A jumper dress is a loose-fitting garment that allows you to keep warm and stay mobile. It can be easily accessorised, and it's versatile enough to be worn with jeans, leggings, boots and chinos. Having a jumper dress in your wardrobe means you will always have something you can simply throw on in the morning that looks fantastic.
7. Support leggings
A quality pair of leggings can go with just about anything. Stretchable, supportive and highly versatile, they can keep you mobile and stylish at the same time. Wear them with a loose-fitting jumper during the winter months or with a baggy T-shirt and scarf during the summer. They will also look great with a dress or tunic, and they're just as suited to lounging around the home as they are to dressing for a day out with friends.
Being pregnant doesn't have to affect your ability to be comfortable and feel good about yourself. By making a few subtle additions to your wardrobe, you can look forward to a stylish image throughout your pregnancy.