Our Maternity Shoot

For months I’ve debated whether or not I wanted to do a maternity shoot. I always felt like they were a little weird and felt silly. But after all we’ve been through to get to this point, my hubby and I decided we’d probably regret not capturing this time in our lives so, we decided to go for it.

After a few weeks of searching, I came across the incredibly talented, and incredibly kind, Mercedes Baker of Mercedes Baker Photography. Mercedes has the coolest style and aesthetic. She is super creative, collaborative, and makes you feel so comfortable. After just 5 minutes, it felt like we had known her for years. If you’re looking for a wedding, engagement, couples, or family photographer, Mercedes is incredible.

Mercedes, I will never be able to thank you enough for your beautiful work and for coming all the way out here to take these special photos. I can’t wait for baby girl to get here so we can work together again!

Our journey to this point has not been easy but it has been such an incredible gift. We are so lucky and I’m so excited to meet our baby girl! Thank you to our family and friends for all of their love and support, we can’t wait for her to meet you. To my husband, words can’t express how much I love you, how grateful I am to have you by my side, and how excited I am for our daughter to have you as her daddy.

Xo
Julie





Maternity Style Tips and Tricks

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Let me start with the fact that wearing anything but sweats in your third trimester is not ideal but you do have to wear grown up clothes from time to time. So, I have a few tips to share for the occasions when your “quick trip to Target” attire just won’t do.

Stay True To Your Style

While finding stylish, affordable maternity clothes is no easy task, there are options available to you that don’t need to make you feel like a toddler, a frilly Peter Pan, or a walking version of your grandmother’s floral drapes. Most are only available online so check their return policies and get familiar with your local USPS, FedEx, and UPS locations!

I’ve found, with a few exceptions, that sticking with solid colors and simple patterns can help keep your maternity outfits chic. I usually avoid ornate details like big ruffles, bows, or too much texture up top which helps maintain clean lines and a modern feel. Brands like PinkBlush offer a variety of styles in a range of sizes. I’ve fallen in love with their dresses and sweaters. I actually wore one of their dresses for my baby shower and one for my cousin’s wedding (pictured here). I chose them because their dresses are stylish, flattering, and super comfortable. Remember, you don’t want to wear something that is bothersome just because it looks good at this point... but more on that later.

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Flatter Your New Figure

Styles that used to be your go-to just may not cut it anymore so it’s helpful to try new things in order to figure out what works for you. I was never one for super fitted pieces before but I learned that if you go too baggy when it comes to maternity styles, they can actually make you look bigger. Wrap tops, v-necks, belly-skimming tunics, and midi length dresses have been must-haves for me. 

Things to avoid? Oversized tent-like outfits (unless you’re hanging in and just want to be comfortable), thin fabrics that don’t support your new curves, and anything that is too short... unless you’re Carrie Underwood or Kendall Jenner. I find short pieces to be awkward and uncomfortable the farther along you are but you do you, girlfriend!

Opt for Staples

I can’t tell you how much a quality tee or a great pair of maternity jeans can truly be. It’s tempting to splurge on super trendy pieces but stocking up on basics that will also come in handy post-baby is the key to having multiple new outfits to wear without breaking the bank. 

In the warmer months I purchased a few solid midi tank dresses that I could wear at work and out on the weekends. Now that the weather is a bit chillier, I’m opting for tunic sweaters and some solid long sleeves that are loose enough for the months just after bubby girl arrives. I won’t get into nursing here but if you’re going that route, I suggest you grab a few tops and some stylish loungewear that you can rock pre- and post-pregnancy.

PS. If you have a stylish friend, who is a similar size, offering you maternity clothes you should check them out. Why spend money if you can share pieces you love?

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Comfort is Key

Let’s be real, pregnancy can already make you feel pretty uncomfortable so opting for outfits that are made from fabrics you like that fit you right can make a huge difference. Whether you’re at the office or a special event, you want to choose styles that you can feel relaxed and confident in. The better you feel, the better you’ll look.

I always try to find pieces that are soft, have a bit of stretch, and help downplay the things that I’m not the biggest fan of (cough... upper arms). And when it comes to athleisure ensembles (AKA the inevitable third trimester uniform), keep it cool with a stylish zip up and maybe treat yourself to a pair of sleek black kicks. 

Never Underestimate a Good LBD

When you do have a special occasion like a wedding or holiday party there is nothing better than a great black dress. The one featured in this post (from PinkBlush) looks formal but feels like I’m wearing pajamas... it’s amazing. If you can find a flattering dress you like, don’t be afraid to wear it on multiple occasions! Reinvent the dress with different jewelry, shoes, hairstyles, and more. After all, if Kate Middleton does it, so can we!

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Give Yourself a Break

If I start getting down about my additional curves, or I start mourning the shoes I know may never fit again, I have to remind myself that I’m growing a human! I’m going to get to be someone’s mom and there’s nothing more exciting or special than that to me. Yes, my body is going to be changed by this experience (not that it was anything near perfect before) but she will be so worth it.

I also realize that we are so much more than our appearances. Being a good mom, wife, friend, family member, and working hard to support my family and accomplish my professional goals is more important than what I wear. And I want my daughter to know that the inside matters so much more than the outside. But I’m not going to lie, feeling confident in what you’re wearing can help motivate you and make you feel good, too.

So, just because your body is changing, or it might take a while to bounce back post-bub, taking time to find clothes that make you feel good, and to take care of you when you can, will help you be the best version of yourself.

Happy shopping, mamas! Leave any questions below or over on Instagram.

 

 

This post is sponsored by PinkBlush. All opinions are my own.

TSO Loves: Ali + Oli

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Okay mamas and mamas-to-be, I have a fun brand to share with you today! My new friends at Ali and Oli were kind enough to send me some goodies for baby girl and I couldn’t wait to share them with you. Not only are their items cute and modern, but they are made from safe materials, which is a huge plus!

Their pacifier clips, teethers, and the adorable placemat you see in the gallery below are made from 100% food-grade silicone that is BPA free! This definitely puts my mind at ease and makes each item that much better. The color options and patterns for bibs are so fun and they even have some great decor items like the wooden eyelashes that can be mounted to the wall for a little flair in your nursery.

The best part… you can get 20% off now when you use the code 20STYLISH on their site (aliandoli.com)! The offer is limited so definitely go check them out now if you’re looking for some great baby gear or gifts for a new little one in your life!

This is a sponsored partnership post. Items have been received and viewed in person. Julie Saldarriaga does not claim any liability for the products or service.

How We Shared Our Baby News

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When we first got the news that we were expecting, it was definitely difficult to hold it in. Our journey to this point has not been easy and after years of trying, loss, and ups and downs, we were super excited but also a little scared. Because we had suffered loss before, we didn’t want to disappoint anyone or become too invested ourselves. But, once we got confirmation that it was safe to share, we couldn’t wait!

I dreamt of how we would tell my parents, my best friend, and our families for a long time. It was really hard to decide what to do. Instead of simply telling my parents and best friend, we decided to put together a special little package for them to celebrate the news with us.

We chose a bottle of nice white wine and I ordered these bottle labels from Label With Love on Etsy. We found this cute “grandparents” onesie on Amazon to include for my parents and this “aunt and uncle” one from Little Bird Basics on Etsy for my bestie. Then, I headed to Target for the gift box and wrapping paper. Because we weren’t sure if we were having a boy or a girl at the time, we decided to go with neutral colors (black and white) for the gifts and packaging. I found these great containers from Joanna Gaines to use as the gift boxes and a pretty white and green wrapping paper — which was actually wallpaper!

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Our gifts were simple but heartfelt and definitely got everyone in the baby spirit!