Whether you have a baby shower, wedding or spur-of-the-moment event to attend, don’t be caught off guard with a “nothing fits” kind of moment. Having a comfortable, all-occasion frock on standby can be an unforeseen lifesaver. There are two things you want to look for in a maternity dress: fit and fabric. It's all about keeping it simple with clean lines and quality materials.
Play up your new curves. Look for plunging necklines, empire waistlines and formfitting silhouettes that trim your limbs so you're always drawing attention to your best features. Wrap dresses, in particular, look great on every body type and adjust at each stage throughout pregnancy. If you're tempted to buy bigger, don't give in. The extra fabric in non-maternitywear might cover your bump, but it will hide your assets. You want a dress that will fit everywhere, not just in the waist.
Make your dollar stretch. Look for buttery-soft cotton jersey, Lycra-based fabrics that can grow with you. The stretchier the fabric, the better. Not only do these textiles drape nicely over your newfound curves, but your fanciest frock will feel like your favorite loungewear. These high-quality blends tend to be a better investment as well; you can grow with a dress, and it will look great before, during and after your pregnancy.