Petite Maternity

Apparel for the petite mother-to-be

In general, petite proportions can be difficult to accommodate, which may be why so few stores and brands have taken on the challenge of outfitting shorter women. Of course, the petite expectant mother poses an even greater challenge—the petite maternity garment must not only respect her small frame and shorter limbs, it must work with an expanding belly. While an oversized T-shirt may cover up a growing body, it certainly won't be sufficient several months later. Properly fitted petite maternity clothes can keep you comfortable and stylish through your pregnancy, if you know what features to look for.

Fits that Flatter

Since it can be difficult to find dresses that flatter a short and wide stature, your best bet will be to go with separates that fit cleverly around your belly instead of across it. You may find that some regular-sized tops with empire waists will fit very nicely over your baby bump without restricting or squeezing. Don't be too afraid of color, but be wary of bright, overwhelming patterns that can make you look short and squat. Stick with fitted maternity clothes for petite ladies to lengthen your figure, like knits that will stretch and drape nicely. As for bottoms, you'll likely find that skirts are more comfortable and versatile than pants; though straight-leg or boot-cut petite maternity jeans are trendy yet casual choices as well.

Best Brands

You'll find most of the companies that offer petite maternity clothing operate solely online, so browse around to find the right style for your proportions. Japanese Weekend has some trendy tops and dresses in very small sizes, while Bella Blu has a wider variety of petite maternity pants in a range of sizes. Some department stores like JC Penny may have what you're looking for, though you'll probably find a better selection of plus size petite and petite maternity items in specialty stores. If you do order petite maternity clothing online, be very careful to check the site's sizing charts and return policies before ordering, in case it doesn't fit well.

Style Secrets

If you have a hard time finding petite maternity clothes that flatter your form, you can modify pretty, billowy garments with some carefully chosen accessories to give your outfit some shape. A tasteful shawl or a little shrug will hug your shoulders and chest to give some definition to your upper body, while a wide belt high just below the bust will create an empire waist that allows for comfort and style.

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