Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Belt It, Baby: How to Make a Belly Belt

I wrote this post wayyyyyy back at 8 weeks pregnant, but never did post it.  Not sure why.  But it's a good and useful one!  Behold:

So my body just loooooooves being pregnant.  By week 8, the bump is out and proud.  I've actually not gained any weight yet {shocking...I have yet to gain less than 100 pounds per pregnancy}, but my body has re-arranged every little cell to produce a lovely little lady lump.  With this being #3, and pregnancy #5, my body was on it.  There's no hiding this one.

I really can't complain, though.  I guess I'd rather look preggo in the first trimester than look awkwardly chubby for awhile.  Don't worry....I cover awkwardly chubby later on in the pregnancy.

But I hate maternity pants.  H.  A.  T.  E.  I love the comfort factor, but hate the way they make me look.  They just make my thighs look terrible.  I mean, there's no way my thighs could be the problem.  It must be the pants.  Ya.  The pants.

So in looking for a reasonable solution {tried the 'Be Band' with Henry's pregnancy...um no}, I came across the 'Belly Belt'.  Love the concept.  I was one click away from ordering, when I got real with myself.  $20?  I bet I can make this thing with the junk I have hoarded in my craft closet.

You'll just need 3 buttons, some knit fabric, and a small bit of wide elastic.  I used navy blue knit since I had it on hand and I thought it would best 'match' my jeans.  Blue or black elastic would obviously have been better, but I had white on hand.

So first you need to cut the fabric and elastic to the length you need.  I cut mine way too long at first, but it was really easy to cut it down later.

The knit should be pretty close to a square shape, since it will eventually be used to cover the zipper area.  Next, just make a casing for the elastic.  I have a knit stitch on my machine, but didn't even use it.  A regular straight stitch worked just fine for this.

Set the knit aside; we'll work on the piece of elastic.  Make a buttonhole close to one end.  My machine has an automatic buttonholer, but it didn't like the elastic much.  I just did this manually, and it worked great.  You'll also want to do a quick zig-zag on the edge, too.

Now you'll need to add three buttons.  I used my machine to put them on, which was super fast.  Use this tutorial.  Also finish off the end of the elastic with a zig-zag stitch, which isn't shown here.

And that's pretty much it!  Just slip the elastic into the casing and you're all set!  I made my elastic a little long, so I just snipped off the last button, and moved it to the other side.

Here's the size of mine when I finished.

To use the belly belt, just put the button of your pants through the buttonhole, and then loop the buttonhole of the pants through one of the buttons on the elastic.  Then as your belly grows, you can move on to the other buttons.  The knit drapes down {tuck it into your pants} to cover the area that would normally be zipped.

Here's an awkward selfie of my crotch to illustrate:

White elastic was clearly not the best option, but my shirts cover it up, anyway.  I'm just happy that my thighs and rear-end still look normal and I get to enjoy all of the benefits of elastic-waist pants.

I'm happy to report that I'm still using this at 30 weeks.  I definitely am wearing some maternity pants, too, but I have a few pair of non-maternity pants that I'm still rocking with this contraption.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013


This poor blog.  I haven't felt much like blogging, but I'm sick of looking at my pregnant self in a swimming suit right up top there.  So here's a photo dump of some of our summer.

Miss Ella had her first dance recital.  She did great.  And will not take off the costume.

Nothing like an appropriately-sized pool for two kids.

When it rains, we terrorize the library.

When it doesn't rain, we head to the lake!

We were the awesome parents that busted out sparklers at 7pm on the 4th of July.

Henry's first s'more.  He was a fan.  And a mess.

We celebrated our 8th wedding anniversary.  Doesn't seem possible!

More time at the lake.

And our first tubing adventure!  At 9am, no less.

A quick zoo trip this morning.  Too bad we couldn't actually hang with the friends we went with...crabby toddlers are the best.

Hope you're enjoying your summer, too!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

What I Wore Wednesday

Oh, these dumb posts.  I'm a sucker for them.  My maternity fashion is, um, severely lacking, but you get what you get.

Beachy chic July 4th at 26 weeks.

Suit:  Shade {not maternity}
Swim Skirt:  Shade {also not maternity.  also?  not buttoned.}

shirt:  kohl's maternity
cami:  shade maternity
belt:  gap
skinnies:  old navy turned maternity by yours truly

sweater:  thrifted {originally from gap, not maternity}
scarf:  gift from my mom, maybe?
skirt:  thrifted {originally from express, not maternity}
shoes:  target, total toe-pinchers

had to share this blurry bonus shot.  i bought this skirt the year we got married.  one of my favorites.  i wore the heck out of it, and then dropped 30 pounds.  i personally love that when i'm late into the second trimester, i can once again properly wear it.

Linking up with the Pleated Poppy.  I want her clothes.

Monday, July 1, 2013