Being a pregnant sewist is kind of amazing. Not only are you busy making a human, you’ve got so many options to make a wardrobe that will fit and flatter and give you an extra boost of confidence as your belly beings to grow…er, takeover.
If you’re looking for maternity sewing patterns, I’ve assembled my list of faves for you below.
I had a very particular approach to maternity makes: everything I made had to work post-pregnancy. As in now, 9 months after delivery and immediately after birth because the body will definitely take it’s time shrinking back down to size. And that’s a period of time when it’s just as important that you feel comfortable and stylish and lovely…anything to counteract extreme lack of sleep! So here goes!
I made three Grainline Studio Penny Raglan (top right above) while pregnant and those tops are still getting lots of use. The cut is kind of ballet style, so I often wore them with a cami underneath – pretty much the perfect scenario for breastfeeding later, if you choose to go that route.
Sew DIY’s Lou Box Top (lower right) is designed for knits and wovens and with it’s boxy
shape, it’s perfect for pregnancy and later, especially if you like that boxy styling. Lots of ease in this pattern, though you’ll likely need to add a little length as your belly starts to kick out the shirt front more. Or extend it into a boxy dress – lots of amazing versions out there!
I made three of Whitney Deal’s Ryan Top (top middle) when I was pregnant. I extending the length a little bit for added coverage and the tops worked until the day I delivered. And I wear them all the time now, mostly with slim-cut jeans. The Mercer Tunic by Whitney is also a great pick for maternity but transitions perfectly later.
Made by Rae’s Luna Pants (bottom left) are a tried and true here, folks! First trimester through thirds, these pants were comfortable and stylish standby. Maybe try them in a knit for added comfort! The crotch actually seems quite long (at least on my short self!), so I had no issues placing the waistband up over my belly, even in later months. I also used the patterns to make some easy shorts since I had the supreme good fortune to be super pregnant in July (again!). Made by Rae’s Isla Dress (top left) is also super with bump.
True Bias Hudson Pants are elastic-waist joggers designed for knit fabrics….and they are divine! Keep in the mind that the crotch is a bit on the short side, perfect in a non-pregnant scenario, so unless you make an alteration, they’d be best for riding under the belly, especially late in the game.
Here are a few patterns I’ve scouted but haven’t made:
I know Megan Nielsen Patterns for her super stylish, on-trend patterns, but she actually got her start with maternity patterns and has a whole section of stylish maternity pattern offerings. And, bonus points, they’ll totally work for after too.
The Hey June Santa Fe Top looks like it would be perfect over a bump – and definitely beyond. It’s super swingy, kind of trapeze style, and that will be easy wearing over a big pregnant belly. My only recommendation would be to add to the length a bit, especially for those later months.
And if you need a cooler weather layer, Hey June’s Tallinn Sweater seems pretty dreamy. It has a layered that can flex out over a big bump and the flap also makes for easy breastfeeding.
And consider wrap dresses, especially if you already have a favorite. This style is perfect for an expanding belly and post-pregnancy.
Design Ideas for Non-Pregnancy Patterns
If you have a favorite pattern that wasn’t designed for pregnancy, consider a few hacks for added comfort.
- Add ruching.
- Leave off the french seams at the side seam and go in later to add shaping.
- Leave easy access to elastic waistbands so you can make them loose and tighten them up later if needed.
- Consider altering a favorite pant pattern to include an elastic waist or elastic back waist.
- Add swing to non-swingy designs by kicking out the side seams, especially at the hemlines.
- If your pattern can be made in wovens and knits, consider all the knits – they are probably most friendly to a growing belly.