making maternity work (well): with Only Child Clothing

happy december, all! 

this year, december brings so many thoughts, emotions, and events with it for me. most especially the fact that my son, cade bolder, is due on the 16th! and yes, I'm in full freak out mode -- the good kind and the scared kind. ;) 

if you've been following my instagram at all over the last 8.5 months then you know that one of my goals and passions has been to redefine maternity style -- so much so, that I started the tag #wearmaternitywell to create space for conversation. I've made it my work to shift the maternity persective -- to make it both practical & exciting, and to embrace the idea that it doesn't even have to be that different from what I would normally wear. I wanted maternity style to fit into my lifestyle, not be taken over by the changes in my body and cause me to shrink back from who I am. and whether you're pregnant or not, I feel like this process is so empowering -- to learn how to take life's shifts and let them fuel your confidence and inspiration, not take something away from you. 

and it may seem like clothes aren't powerful to do that, but I vehemently disagree. 

clothes are life-changing. getting dressed every day is an outward expression of our inward state. and we can change how we feel, and therefore, how we tell our story of the day, when we get dressed on purpose.  I've lived by this philosophy since high school, and been a consistent game-canger for me in every season of life. 

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I will be honest, though, and say that as pregnancy has progressed, this has obviously gotten increasingly more challenging. the more uncomfortable I feel, the less I want to be purposeful. and I'm sure many of you connect with that. but that is why I have been so thankful to know so many great designers and brands that have seemingly already considered this concept, as their clothes are so versatile and of high quality, they stand up to the test of body changes and mood swings. having pieces in my closet already (before we got pregnant), and investing in a few more along the way, has made this journey so much more encouraging and easy.

one of these brands is the wonderfully simple and joyfully unexpected Only Child Clothing. I've been a fan of OC and designer, Haley, for a couple years, and every season she sets the bar in the small makers industry. every piece I own of hers has been wearable during pregnancy -- all of them worked through 6 months, and a number of them are still working at 8.5 months! there is so much contentment in discovering that the pieces in my closet work throughout such huge transitions. 

and I'm honored to be able to share about a couple of Only Child pieces from her newest collection for fall/winter that are currently holding me over in this last leg of pregnancy. 

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what I love most about haley's design aesthetic, is that she doesn't interpret each season within the confines of certain temperatures. honestly, each of her collections can almost be worn year-round, because she creates space to layer & play with combining her pieces to give you just the right look and feel for the weather and lifestyle you surround yourself with. 

this is most noticeable in her Alta Tunic -- an eggshell colored, raw silk beauty.

I would wear this piece in the heat of summer, and its just as easily layerable for the 50-60 degree temps in raleigh right now. genius. and the silhouette is both something I already wear on the regular, but it is especially perfect for my larger-than-life belly. I love the fall release tunic version of this piece (her Alta top is a staple in every collection) because of the extra length that makes it all the way around my stomach with some to spare so I'm not baring all underneath. 

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I'm wearing the M/L, a size I would buy pregnant or not. It really really works. and the color is just right to bring some softness and warmth to my plethora of black pieces. 

I've made quite the habit of pairing tops with turtlenecks during fall and winter -- in fact, one of my Only Child dresses from last fall was the first piece that inspired me to experiment with unexpected layering. and what I love about the Alta is that I can layer it both on top of a warmer base piece and then put on another layer over it. three pieces and still room to spare! and her Bolinas Duster is a great third piece. a hint of extra warmth without the bulk.

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but I'll admit, my favorite pairing for the Bolinas -- the way I first dreamed of wearing it -- is with all black layers. and while I hardly ever tend to wear body con style pieces, as my belly has grown, I have loved combining a tight layer with a lose one. here I wore one of my favorite Mimu Maxi dresses with the Bolinas, and the result is definitely one of my favorite maternity looks to date!

I'm wearing the size OS Regular, and it's just loose enough to wrap around my bump, and still be comfortable. I particularly love the slightly standing collar and the dropped armholes that make it perfect for layering even loose tops with it -- something a lot of outerwear pieces do not consider. I hate when layers bulk up under your arms -- anyone else? thank you, haley, for this very thoughtful addition to an already great piece.

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I can't say enough (clearly) about the worthiness of Only Child pieces as an investment. Every time I'm standing in front of my closet trying to invent something new, I always come back to her items, because they just work. with everything. her brand is, in my opinion, one of the most wearable for the everyday woman. it takes the guessing and striving out of "trying to be chic" -- allowing you to look good effortlessly.

and truth -- effortless is the name of the game for pregnancy. 

check out haley's fall/winter collection on her website -- www.onlychildclothing.com

and to all my pregnant friends, may your closet be one of the most inspiring parts of this season for you -- not one of the most frustrating. may you feel like you get to #wearmaternitywell.

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outfit details:

look one: Alta Tunic | Only Child, size M/L in Eggshell; Pencil Skirt | Storq, size 4; Sneakers | Veja, V-10 size 38 in Black

look two: Bolinas Duster | Only Child, size OS Regular in Black; Turtleneck Body Dress | Mimu Maxi, size M in Black; Mars Boots | Rachel Comey, size 8.5 in Black/Natural; Bar Necklace | Mazi, in Speckled

 

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EM Jewelry Design: for the everyday minimal

most of you know that I am originally from texas. and my last ten years there were spent building a life & home in waco. it's where I started by business and where I found some of the most beautifully creative friends and fellow entrepreneurs. one of those is the timeless Ellen Mote, the owner and designer of EM Jewelry Design. she launched her brand just a year before I moved away, but I had the pleasure of getting to know her and getting to watch her early pieces take form. 

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today she is launching her fifth collection - the SELA collection. and as with all her pieces I own, I am totally smitten. one of the most distinct threads of this collection is the truly simple details. she decided to pare down the design elements of these pieces, to go back to true classic design -- the kind of things you can both wear every day, but also add on to your ensemble with a minimalistic chicness.

I was in a very long anti-jewelry phase before I met Ellen (right after a long heavy-jewelry phase - go figure), and her pieces were the first I bought when I decided I was ready to reintegrate accessories again. nothing I've ever bought from her has felt superfluous, overdone, or distracting to my clothes. and the SELA pieces really speak to that desire -- to use jewelry as a highlighter, not noise. 

and the really exciting thing about the pieces I chose from this collection is that I have yet to actually buy these styles in any other form since I have adopted jewelry into my lifestyle again -- bracelets, rings, and studs. (I've pretty much been sticking to earrings & necklaces)

the Cuff Rings are so subtle & can be adjusted to fit my fingers.

the Tola Cuff is a beautiful brass, just enough accent but not so much that I feel like I'm going crazy by pairing it with the rings or any other bracelet. its a great partner piece.  

the Ner Studs are a style I wouldn't normally have gravitated toward, but the way they hang just off my ear lobe gives them an edge that is so effective. and they'll pair nicely with my higher neck sweaters. score.

this collection has also come at a perfect time for my season, as I am now 7 months pregnant, and these little things allow me to add to my look without requiring a lot of effort or constant adjustments.

 

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ellen designs and constructs all of her pieces in her home studio in waco, texas. she handles brass, sterling silver, and gold with true skill & innovation. and I love the beautiful relationship she has helped me develop between clothes and jewelry again. and for all of you fellow minimal jewelry wearers out there, the new SELA collection is for you.

you can view the entire collection on her website today:  www.emjewelrydesign.com/sela-collection

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outfit details -- jewelry: EM Jewelry Design - gifted | sweater: Lou & Grey | ankle boots: Rachel Comey mars boot 

the spring edit

in the most unofficial fashion, wanted to make this inaugural post a list of ethical, slow, and small fashion brands I'm making my go-to for the season.

each of these brands are companies I believe in wholeheartedly, have bought pieces from, stand by their quality of design & manufacturing, and have owners who are amazing. will probably be dedicating many posts in the future to each of them as I just can't get enough. you've probably seen them tagged time & time again on my instagram, and you can check them out there as well. 

Clothing:

  • The Frock NYC || thefrocknyc.com || @thefrocknyc
  • Elizabeth Suzann || elizabethsuzann.com || @elizsuzann
  • Only Child Clothing || onlychildclothing.com || @only_child
  • Everlane || everlane.com || @everlane
  • Mimu Maxi || mimumaxi.com || @mimumaxi
  • Rise & Ramble || riseandramble.com || @riseandramble
  • Two Fold Clothing || twofoldclothing.com || @twofoldclothing

Accessories:

  • Sara Clark || shopsaraclark.com || @shopsaraclark
  • EM Jewelry Design || emjewelrydesign.com || @emjewelrydesign
  • Industrial Jewellery || industrial-jewellery.com || @industrialjewellery
  • LeCoeur Watches || lecoeurwatches.com || @lecoeur_watches

as a note: this list doesn't encompass everything I buy, just the ones I am most passionate about supporting. I still buy from large companies, but more sparingly now. more on that to come. as for today, just a taste.