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Parent's Corner

Go Glam: Dressing Up Expectant Moms and Babies for the Holidays

By: Pamela Brill

Tis the season to look your Christmas best. But if you're pregnant and feeling as though you'd be more comfortable staying in your jammies, don't despair. This season, fashion experts reveal what's hot in holiday attire for moms-to-be and little ones, from top to bottom.

Don We Now Our Maternity Apparel

When dressing for the holidays during pregnancy, comfort is essential and luckily for expectant moms, it ties in to this season's layering trend. "From faux fur vests to long, open-front cardigans and fringe wraps, this year is all about layering a cozy, statement piece over your basics," says blogger Jill Seiman of Glamamom (www.glamamom.com).

For women mingling during the party circuit season in their last trimester, she recommends dresses that fall loosely around the belly area. "If all else fails, stretchy black leggings paired with a long tunic/sweater and flats or booties is always a chic but comfortable choice during pregnancy," adds Seiman.

Because pregnancy is the perfect excuse to accent that natural glow, maternity fashion can make a statement with the right accessories. "This holiday season is all about embellishments," says New York-based stylist Laura Solin-Valdina (www.nycstylist.com). "Dresses, pant suits, outerwear and even footwear are celebrating with lacey textures, bright hues, shiny hardware, luxe fabrics and dreamy fringe and furs—both real and faux."

And if you're really adventurous, she suggests trying on some trendy kitten heels. "Take advantage of this 70 mm (2.75 inches) height, as it will give you the lift required to balance your evening attire, while still allowing you to navigate the crowds, conversation and dance floor," says Solin-Valdina.

Practical, Yet Stylish

If your budget isn't permitting you to indulge in any major wardrobe purchases this season, fashion experts advise making do with what you already have. Seiman says moms-to-be can "glam up anything with inexpensive accessories and jewelry that you already own. Scarves and statement jewelry can be interchanged easily between outfits to keep you feeling fabulous and put together all pregnancy long," she enthuses.

And don't rule out repurposing an existing dress in your closet, as Solin-Valdina did with a maxi gown featuring an empire waistline. "I was able to let out the gathers and open up the seams of the hidden corset, allowing the dress to expand through my trimesters," she recalls. "This dress continues to make the rounds of evening affairs, worn by my grateful pregnant girlfriends."

Santa Baby

Who doesn't look forward to dressing up their baby for their first holiday season? While you may be inclined to stick to red and green color palettes, experts point to fashion trends for little ones that break with tradition this year. "Instead of just classic red plaid, we are seeing a shift to light neutrals: pink for girls and creams for boys," says Brianne Manz, a former fashion showroom manager who blogs at Stroller in the City (www.strollerinthecity.com). "Go outside your comfort zone." For girls, that means delicate chiffon and flowing tutu styles rather than heavy taffeta, and for boys, playful tees and sweaters instead of sweater vests.

Outfits that offer easy diaper changing are still a big hit, including dresses with button snaps underneath and one-piece body suits. Manz suggests glamming up these outfits with booties, Ugg-style boots or moccasins. "While Mary Jane shoes are still ongoing, footwear with the added warmth factor is important," she adds.

And to top off your baby's holiday look—literally—Manz recommends fun hats and bonnets for both boys and girls. "For older boys, a fun scarf looks great, too," she notes.