September 10, 2007

Are any of you fans of LinkedIn? I’ve been trying to add more contacts there, and the other day I went through and revamped my resume information, which was woefully tainted with embarrassing terms like “leveraged” and “extensible” and “orchestrated user-centric business development wins” (what?). I still need to work on making some sense out of the last few jobs I’ve had, but the jargon had to go— I figure any company who gets a boner from reading crap like that is a company I no longer want to work for. Anyway, I’m not yet sure what the value of LinkedIn really is, other than nosy resume-snooping, but if you want to add me to your contacts shoot me an email with your profile link.

Social networking sites are funny, aren’t they? Eighty million ways to meet and learn about people, custom-designed for those of us who are typically too damn shy to say hello in person. Truly, the idea of networking in the traditional mingling-during-an-industry-event sense makes me want to claw my face-meat off in giant bloody chunks, just like that memorable scene in Poltergeist. Then again, I may be a defective human being. I mean, did you see what I just wrote about tearing off my own face? Jesus, that’s disgusting.

In utterly unrelated news, I’m finding that I am far more picky about maternity wear this time around. Granted, it’s early enough in this pregnancy that I haven’t quite reached the I Am a Massive, Exhausted Whale, Please Drape Me In Whatever Covers My Unfurling Akiralike Flesh phase, but my belly has definitely achieved a certain state of rotundity, and I am feeling a vain desire to clothe myself in the most flattering tent-fabrics possible.

Having tried a variety of styles from Gap Maternity, Motherhood/Mimi Maternity, eBay, and a stupidly expensive maternity shop near my office, I have come to the following conclusions:

THE GOOD

• Wrap necklines are the most flattering. In fact, wrap/kimono styles in general are the best, as long as they make allowances for the Giant Blue-Veined Monstrosities, if you know what I mean and I think some of you do.

• Ruched (am I spelling that right? TextEdit says NO), slightly clingy shirts are the bomb. I LOVE that style right now, which is all about showing rather than hiding. Although I’m not sure it will continue to be charming when you can see every cavernous detail of my strained belly button.

• Two words: demi panel. All the other belly panel styles make me crazy, especially the kind that stretch from the top of your ribcage to your pelvic region. I have been living in these Gap jeans (note that the name is highly misleading, for hello, I am neither long NOR lean at the moment), and they are as comfortable as a stretchy-waisted, no-fly pair of jeans can be.

THE BAD

• Designer maternity jeans. Maybe I just haven’t tried the right style, but I wedged myself into several pairs of premium denim brands recently and they all blew. They all had this huge spandex-like band at the top (a “roll panel”, I think this is called) which was uncomfortable, unflattering (it must be called a roll because that’s exactly what it creates: a giant belly roll), and did nothing whatsoever to keep the pants—designed from the panel down as low-rise—from being dragging halfway down my ass. HATE.

• Babydoll tops. Oh god no. Just . . . no. Not a good idea if your breasts are larger than a B cup, unless you want to look like some of the more unfortunate photos of Salma Hayek surfacing in recent copies of Us Weekly.

• Giant bows. What’s up with all the goddamned bows?

• Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha NO.

I know it’s kind of silly to spend much effort on a wardrobe that has such a short lifespan, but what the hell, if a reasonably-priced outfit makes me feel good about myself and I get a decent amount of wear out of it, I say money well spent. Besides, soon enough I’ll be living in baggy yoga pants and spitup-stained t-shirts, so I might as well enjoy the novelty of being at least marginally pulled together—that is, until I take a time out from feeling all fashionably fancy to discover a dried post-tantrum Toddler Snail Trail across the front of my shirt. Which happens, oh, about every single day.

Which reminds me: never buy maternity wear that has to be dry-cleaned, because even if you don’t have a mucusy child to contend with, the combination of pregnancy clumsiness, nonstop snacking, and a growing belly tends to result in a troublesome amount of staining. In fact, you may just want to consider a bib, or possibly a feed bag. Filled with candy corn, if your name is Linda.

Comments

45 Responses to “More of my scintillating opinions”

  1. warcrygirl on September 10th, 2007 2:16 pm

    When I was pregnant it was all about ridiculously huge flowers. Honestly, no amout of giant flower was going to hide my massive belly.

  2. Pete on September 10th, 2007 2:18 pm

    LinkedIn is an interesting way to see who knows who but I wouldn’t trust its Recommendations at all. Most of the ones I have read look like a mutual reach around. You know, X says Y is better than oral sex and Y says X is the best boss since Jesus. The part I like is reading the resumes from people you know. Creative writing at its best.

  3. hello insomnia on September 10th, 2007 2:18 pm

    Wrap dresses were my favorite because they felt like *real* clothing! And in those final weeks, when I was so pregnant the only clothes I could fit were in the Target bedding section, my dry-clean-only beaded number from Motherhood Maternity made me feel good.

  4. Liz on September 10th, 2007 2:31 pm

    That sweater thing just accentuates the armpit-high waistband of the jeans. No.

  5. kalisah on September 10th, 2007 2:35 pm

    I had my child 14 years ago, but it seems the more fitted look for maternity has really blossomed since then. I wish I hadn’t hid under a tent all those months. I say show off the bump!

  6. TB on September 10th, 2007 2:51 pm

    Also, why do the maternity retailers think that all pregnant women love polka dots? WTF?

    AND I would add, any maternity wear that needs to be ironed after washing is out.

  7. Magpie on September 10th, 2007 3:03 pm

    I love LinkedIn — it’s been a great way to keep track of people I used to work with, especially business contacts (vendors, etc) whose social circles don’t overlap with mine. I’ve gotten a few job nibbles off of it, too, though not recently, because my profile is overdue for an update. (Any Sundry readers hiring sysadmins in SF? E-mail me some love.)

  8. Mary O on September 10th, 2007 3:25 pm

    I agree on all of your good and bad maternity choices. I made the mistake of paying too much for Citizen of Humanity premium maternity jeans during my first pregnancy, and those are just the worst jeans ever. I think whoever designed them must have wanted to torture all of us poor mothers-to-be.

    PS- Cute belly!

  9. ShannonJ on September 10th, 2007 4:15 pm

    During my second pregnancy, I pretty much lived in Gap v-neck maternity T-shirts. I think I had maybe 5 pairs of pants (one for each day of the work week). I hated trying to find good-fitting pants. I loved my Gap cords, but they did have that slightly annoying roll panel thingy.

  10. Tammy on September 10th, 2007 4:36 pm

    orrrrrrrrr you could get one of those ‘tide to go’ pens and just let the food drop. I had to buy one today because Starbucks have not invented a cup lid that allows you to drink without dribbling…while..umm driving.
    So anyway, three coffee drops on my nice new pale sweater and 30 minutes before my next meeting…I ran into the store purchased said ‘miracle pen’ and bingo bango..not a trace.

    Seriously, I don’t work for them, I’m just very easily impressed.

    Don’t even get me started on the ‘Magic Eraser’…

  11. rebecca on September 10th, 2007 4:56 pm

    I totally agree with you! I’m having the same experience. I’ve put on some of my maternity clothes from last time and refused to wear them because they just don’t look right this time around. I think it’s because I got so much bigger so much faster (ahem!) this time that I definitely think if I’m going to become giant, I damn well at least want to have flattering clothes to show off my giant-ness. I also seem to have gotten fussier about makeup, which I attribute to the same basic phenomenon. Huge at 18 weeks? Let’s draw the eye upward with a flattering lipstick! Probably not successful, but it makes me feel better anyway.

    I also scored a pair of designer jeans (with a demi panel, not a roll panel!) as a hand-me down from a friend. I wear them to work at least three times a week. Good thing I have a casual office. God bless the software industry.

  12. Naomi on September 10th, 2007 5:01 pm

    I know that you won’t be breastfeeding, but I still thought that you’d like these for the maternity stuff:

    http://www.hotmilklingerie.co.nz/index.html

  13. willikat on September 10th, 2007 5:26 pm

    hey. i figure that it’s ok to buy cute maternity clothes. not that i’ve ever been pregnant, but it’s important to feel good about your body and it might be hard during that time, plus–hey–i know for my regular seasonal shopping there’s plenty of stuff that gets forgotten about after nine months anyway. so whereas women feel that because it’s “temporary” they shouldn’t buy clothes, so are a lot of clothes out there that aren’t maternity! i’m not being very articulate but i think you get my point.

  14. Jess on September 10th, 2007 5:45 pm

    TextEdit might say NO but it is wrong and you are right. I checked.

    Also, I do not have a personal account on LinkedIn, but the marketing department I now work in uses it to create profiles for some of its campaign and do some viral marketing. It’s worked reasonably well–we’ve connected with a few interesting people and campaigns that way. Not a ton, but enough to make it worth creating and maintaining a profile.

  15. Swistle on September 10th, 2007 5:55 pm

    The paragraph about ripping off your own face was so funny. It was one of those piggybacked laughs, where I was already laughing when you made me laugh again.

    I always feel like maternity clothes are a waste of money, but by the time I’ve worn them a couple dozen times each I’m wishing I’d bought more.

  16. Sarah on September 10th, 2007 6:02 pm

    All maternity clothes look obscene on the monstrosities. I’ve tried every style (with the exception of the turtleneck, because it’s still 90 degrees in the south), and I always look like a porn star. A maternity porn star, but a porn star nonetheless.

    Thanks for the tips on the jeans. Thus far (month seven), I’ve found ONE PAIR that I like (i.e. looks good, feels great) that I like.. at Ross Dress for Less. I’m all about TJ MAXX, Marshall’s, and other closeouts.. you get GREAT deals there if you don’t mind scouring the racks.

  17. victoria on September 10th, 2007 6:20 pm

    Positive things I have inspired Sundry to do: Embrace the wrap top. See my 11,975th comment on this blog.

    Positive things that Sundry has inspired me to do: quit drinking, exercise daily, watch Meerkat Manor.

    That’s the beauty of the internet right there, amigos.

  18. gabby on September 10th, 2007 6:24 pm

    My favorite was shirts from downeastbasics.com. Cheap, stretchy and nice in the heat of summer. I LIVED in them the last few months.

  19. jonniker on September 10th, 2007 7:14 pm

    I like LinkedIn to keep up with old colleagues, but that’s about it. I did get a few unsolicited job interviews through there once in a while, and old clients contacted me about doing some freelance work. So thumbs-up to LinkedIn, although my profile is really lame and not at all resume-y.

  20. Donna on September 10th, 2007 7:18 pm

    The best investment I made was in a pair of painter overalls, not coveralls, but overalls. If you buy them a little long, you can roll up the bottom and then with low heeled sandals they are really cute, (white ones), and comfy as hell, no drag on your belly at all, and then you can wear all kinds of cute tops underneath, plus they have POCKETS all over for all the stuff that you usually put in your jeans pockets. Then you can accessorize with the iron on flower patches, or whatever on the ass pockets, and really cheap considering that you can wear them anywhere, and just change shirts…..that’s ALL I wore the whole time I was pregnant, both times. And then after you have the baby, they are great for gardening, and still stay up cuz of the straps till they get so trashed that you can just throw them with out thinking, damn there goes 40 bucks I spent on maternity shit. I had a friend that decorated hers with paint handprints from her little boy in different colors. Really cute. And the strap for the hammer on the leg? Perfect for Riley to hold on to while you shop or walk somewhere.

  21. Elizabeth on September 10th, 2007 7:19 pm

    I really really liked http://www.formes.com when I was pregnant.

  22. Gertie on September 10th, 2007 7:35 pm

    those button front sweaters are being worn by all the lasses here, and nary a pregnant one in the bunch, although the belly rolls can often be misleading.

    christ, there is such little material to those that for me it’d be just like wearing a bra sleeves.

  23. Christine on September 10th, 2007 7:56 pm

    Have you tried the Liz Lange line at Target?

  24. Christine on September 10th, 2007 8:02 pm

    Also, I find LinkedIn to be a good networking tool. After taking almost five years off to stay home with Thing 1 and Thing 2, I started consulting last year. I reconnected with friends and colleagues I neglected after leaving my job and have had a steady stream of work.

    I also find out that everyone shamelessly pumps up their numbers. For that very reason, I’m going to send you an invite.

  25. Lesley on September 10th, 2007 8:18 pm

    I know it’s kind of silly to spend much effort on a wardrobe that has such a short lifespan, but what the hell, if a reasonably-priced outfit makes me feel good about myself and I get a decent amount of wear out of it, I say money well spent.

    I apply this same rule to my hair. (You’re looking stunning btw.)

  26. Jenny H. on September 10th, 2007 9:08 pm

    I can’t believe no one has mentioned this yet- BUT YOU LOOK AMAZING!

    I had a really hard time the second time around because I DID start showing so quickly. Um, and, delicacy escapes me, but I have always been a girl with big boobs. Pregnancy makes them CRAZY BIG! A fact which my husband loves to no end. But I have a really hard time finding shirts that look decent. The bottom half of me is not a problem. Motherhood jeans worked fine. Shirts? They were a bitch. I looked like a freaking porn star half the time. My only suggestion would be Liz Lange from Target. Her clothes are pretty cool, and nary a bow in the bunch!

    Good luck!

  27. Jenny H. on September 10th, 2007 9:11 pm

    Sorry, I missed Lesley’s comment!

    And, I know it is so uncool, but I had a love affair with overalls during my first pregnacy. Seriously. The comfort level was practically orgasmic.

    Just sayin’…

  28. BRash on September 10th, 2007 9:17 pm

    Face-meat! Ha HA!

    Also? The magic eraser? Truly. Magic.

  29. Philos on September 10th, 2007 11:13 pm

    You’ve taught me a new word today – I can’t recall ever hearing or seeing “ruched” before, and had no idea what it meant.

    I would not say I’m a *fan* of LinkedIn – I don’t yet know if it’s any use – but I do have a profile, and I am sending you an email. Freelance editor, available for hire…

  30. Eric's Mommy on September 11th, 2007 4:39 am

    Oh I needed a morning laugh!
    I think if I got pregnant again I too would be more picky. I think the first time I had no clue what was going on and some of the things I wore….OH MY GOD, but I didn’t care, now I think I would. Plus I’m a little older and wiser.

    Also I totally forgot how the maternity jeans had that huge belly panel and no fly, that cracked me up yet again.

    I was the queen of “Giant Blue-Veined Monstrosites” and some of the blue veins didn’t go away!!

  31. Heather B. on September 11th, 2007 4:54 am

    I contemplate Linked in or any other social network besides Facebook when I’m inundated with group invites and pictures of scantily clad college Freshman with profiles that list their favorite activities as “Partying, vodka.”

  32. Kristin H on September 11th, 2007 5:26 am

    What is UP with the button front sweater? Seriously. Awful.

  33. Jeanette on September 11th, 2007 5:42 am

    When I was pregnant MANY moons ago shirts with the word “Baby” on them with a arrow pointing down were all the rage!!! GOD!

  34. Cavu on September 11th, 2007 6:35 am

    The outfit you’ve got on on the belly photos is super damn cute. I’ll have to go check out LinkedIn–I’m trying to get a freelance medical writing thing going over here.

  35. McCashew on September 11th, 2007 6:44 am

    I have a Linked In account, but don’t use it. I think I might use it more if and when we move again, but social workers aren’t exactly famous for networking… too busy “saving the world and all.” On the other hand my better half felt betrayed that I had an account and did not invite him to link to me, why I do not understand, but he was seriously hurt (?????).

    I LOVED my Gap Maternity jeans.

    Said better half was not onboard with a new fancy maternity wardrobe at the time and requested that I try to only buy what I absolutely needed to get by. Luckily I was able to get away with the Bella Band until about 5 months followed by cold winter months where I could hide under big sweaters and my husband’s North Face. If there is a next time I am fully stealing your statement about feeling good about yourself.

    Go ahead Mr. Frugal Noodle, I dare you to question my maternity wear purchases. Such statements are bound to produce instant waterworks and whining, which I know you have no tolerance for. =)

  36. JennB on September 11th, 2007 6:54 am

    I lived in stretchy pants from Sears for my pregnancy. I had given up on cute clothes and was all about functionality.

    Not in LinkedIn, but I’ll check it out. I do have a myspace page and a facebook page! I’m not SO square!

    http://www.opaqueprintproduction.com/jbblog

  37. Amity on September 11th, 2007 8:16 am

    Can I just say how I hate those shrug sweaters, period. Like they don’t even look good on non-pregnant people. I wish that fashion did not exist. Thank you.

  38. Kate on September 11th, 2007 8:37 am

    I lived in those Gap maternity jeans when I was (recently) pregnant, but in the end, I LOATHED them, because the demi panel had become stretched out, and it would just roll down and try to slice me in half right at the top of my pubic bone. So fantastically uncomfortable.

    Of course, there wasn’t much I didn’t hate during the last couple of months.

  39. breckgirl on September 11th, 2007 8:54 am

    You know, when I was pregnant, I found myself wearing things that I would never wear as a non-pregnant person. Puff sleeves (WTF?), flower patterns, even a top with a bow on it – but it was cute, really. I hope that next time I can wear cute things – I was overweight when I got pregnant so I had a hard time sometimes finding cute clothes. One of those cute lables (Mimi?) doesn’t even make XL. I mean, what is that? /Anyway – loved your recommendations – hoping to be knocked up soon. And you look great – the red top makes the blue veined monstrosities look fab. You go girl – and just think – candy corn season is almost upon us!!!

  40. MRW on September 11th, 2007 9:25 am

    I’ve never even heard of LinkedIn because I’m practically a Luddite and rely on you and my husband to tell me about things the rest of the world has probably known about for years and years (for example, was amazed to find out just two months ago about this new fangled thing called Second Life), but I will now check out LinkedIn.

    I am not pregnant and tried on one of those stupid 1/2 sweaters recently – my friend and I laughed and laughed. I have no idea who they look good on, but it sure as hell wasn’t me. They were good for a solid belly laugh at Nordstroms though, so I guess they aren’t totaly useless.

  41. Josh on September 11th, 2007 9:51 am

    Salma Hayek you say? Time for some Google magic.

  42. Lisa on September 11th, 2007 3:35 pm

    Seven maternity jeans….bad me look like crap and wouldnt stay up BUT citizens of humanity ones made me feel totally sexy and stayed up till I was on the bed in labor. I still cant let them go. Both kinds will run about 100 on Ebay but the citizen ones you will love. Oh, and they may be pricey but I spent over that on 5 different old navy ones and never even wore them they sucked so bad. I wore the designer ones everyday and they made me look and feel sexy!

  43. Christina on September 11th, 2007 8:42 pm

    I love this post. I am not pregnant yet but looking to next be next year. I was a total slouch the 1st around and did not care. We were holding the purse strings tighter with the 1st but this next one I want to enjoy my maternity clothes and feel pretty while pregnant.

    Also, I had a pair of Gap jeans with the demi panel and LOVED them. I think I wore them out!

    Thanks for this post!

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