Bump Goes to a Garden Party

Bump age: 34 weeks 3 days

It is our annual tradition to invite friends and neighbours to celebrate summer’s arrival and this was the fifth anniversary of our little garden party. Having a garden party is our motivation to spend springtime making sure the backyard is party ready. But this year, while the backyard was ready to shine, the weather was not; so we set up indoors instead.

IMG_2534When I first saw the Carry Watercolour Grecian Dress, it  immediately channeled my inner Renoir and I knew it was the perfect garden party dress. I felt that the soft, dreamy watercolour print would look nice with the greenery and blooming flowers outdoors, which proved true once the rain stopped and we could move the party outside. I must admit that at this point in my pregnancy, comfort trumps style. Luckily with this watercolour dress, I did not have to compromise on either. With a simple thin belt that ties behind the back, the slip-on design does not get easier to put on. The fabric is light and breezy, which, given Toronto’s humidity, is always a bonus. The just-above-the-knee hemline is the perfect length for any mama-to-be. As pretty and comfortable as I felt in this dress, I was not at all surprised when Bump and I received lots of compliments from our guests.

Despite the weather not co-operating, the party was a blast, fun was had by all, and Mr. Fantastic and I were not stressed in our hosting duties (hint – hiring a couple of helping hands = less stress!) Good fun, good food, good people in a good neighbourhood … that’s why we plan to continue our family tradition next year.

xoxo,

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Enjoying the afternoon with my good friend Sarah

Bay_and_Bloor

Bump Goes on Vacation – London

Bump age: 23 weeks 4-6 days

If Tenerife was the do-nothing-but-relax vacation, then London was the explore-everywhere-down-to-the-last-minute holiday. I always find myself running out of time in London town so I listed a few spots as my must-sees and dos this time around: Harrods, high tea, Laduree and London Eye.

seraphine knot dressd wendyLuckily my good friend from Vancouver, The Lady and the Rose, was able to take the day off work and explore the city with us. We’ve decided to go to Harrods, since they have both afternoon tea and Laduree. Being in London, and naturally inspired by Duchess Kate’s pregnancy style, I wore the Jolene knot dress by UK designer Seraphine. This dress comes in two colours, fuchsia and peacock, and I proudly own both. Since the fuchsia was well-loved from my first pregnancy and the peacock from the new spring/summer collection, I decided to debut the peacock on this trip. Silky soft and flowing, the Jolene dress is stylishly knotted at the front, creating gentle gathers which drape effortlessly over the bump. This is not only suitable for maternity, but also for postpartum wear. (Just between you and me, it was perfect for the nursing times too!)  The Seraphine brand has also won the Queen’s Award for Enterprise in 2015. Now that’s what I call royalty certified!

After Harrods, the Lady and I settled at the Georgian Cafe for our Easter high tea. For more about our afternoon high tea experience, please read the Lady and the Rose’s post, as she truly writes beautifully and authentically for the both of us.

Carry B&W palm print side tie WendyFor the ultimate London Eye experience, I wore a Carry side tie dress. The black and white pattern went well with my new sleek Londoner hair-do. Comfy, lightweight and half-sleeved, this dress has a tie that cinches the waist on the side and falls just above knee. This cut is also one of Carry’s signature dresses, so you may find it in other colours. Since it was quite chilly, I wore my Burberry signature trench coat outside as a wind breaker.

The public transport system issues expecting ladies a pin that reads “Baby on Board” with the Tube logo on it. Pregnant women may wear this during their transit journey, and other passengers must offer their seats to the ones wearing this badge. I thought this was a fabulous idea and would love to see  Toronto do something similar.

London Eye is definitely a must-do at attraction in London. You can see the city with a 360 degree view during the 30 minute rotation time. Surprisingly, Squishy enjoyed the entire ride and wasn’t afraid of the heights. We met some friends for dinner at Gordon Ramsay’s Savoy Grill afterwards to top off the night.

This London trip was too short as always, but we shall be back!

Xoxo,

Bay_and_Bloor

Bump Goes On Vacation – Excursion Day in Tenerife

Bump age: 23 weeks

We decided to do “el must de” Tenerife – Loro Parque. Before we got there, I imagined it would resemble Ripley’s Aquarium back home, with a main focus on ocean creatures, but I discovered “loro” is the Spanish word for parrots. We were in for a whole new adventure!

Queen Mum floral tank dressI handpicked the floral print tank dress by Queen Mum because I thought the multi-colour print would go well with the greenery as well as the colourful animals we were about to see. The sleeveless design was also suitable for a hot day out. Of course, never knowing what the weather may turn into, I took a cardigan in solid beige in case it got chilly, which would  pair but not compete with the beautiful consistent print of the dress. Queen Mum is one of my favourite maternity brands, whether it’s their dresses, shorts, or pants. I find myself drawn to their fabric, cut and design, so my maternity wardrobe is filling up mostly with their label. This floral dress is made out of high quality fabric that has quite a bit of stretch, but isn’t too clingy or conforming on the body. The ruching on the side allows additional room for a growing bump, but also creates the signature B silhouette for all expecting mamas.  It feels as comfy and playful as it looks.

An hour and a half bus ride later, we set foot on the biggest park in Tenerife. The first thing I saw were black swans! I have only heard of these majestic creatures in fairy tales so it was as if I was seeing a unicorn in real life for the first time.  

There were so many beautiful and exotic animals in Loro Parque, but my favorite were the pink flamingos. We also got to view the orca show, the sealion show and the loro show. It was exciting to watch Squishy’s expression on seeing these animals for the very first time in her life. While we were passing through the orchid garden, I thought to myself that the backdrop matched my Queen Mum dress – the perfect photo-op location. You know it’s the money shot when shortly after I posted, it was regrammed by Queen Mum’s official account! That just made my already perfect day even better.

Xoxo,

Bay_and_Bloor

Happy Chinese New Year!

Chinese New Year dress

Bump age: 17 weeks 3 days

Happy Chinese New Year y’all! It’s officially Year of the Monkey. To start off the Lunar New Year right and ward off any evil spirits, most Chinese people opt to wear red during Chinese New Year’s Eve, and I was no exception.

Let’s talk fashion first. What I’m wearing – this ruched T-shirt dress from Isabella Oliver in wine colour (purchased here), form fitting and accentuates the body, shows off the bump. The side ruching allows extra space as the bump grows bigger throughout the term, and also hides any love handles from the baby weight gain. My favourite type of maternity dress – that’s what I call a win-win situation. The material is breathable and comfy, suitable for all-day wear, and can be dressed up or dressed down. It’s a must-have piece for versatile day to evening transition.

The tights I’m wearing are the Noppies 40 denier tights in black (purchased here). With tights, there’s always the million dollar question: do they really stay up? Noppies, in my opinion as a veteran preggo lady, makes the BEST tights and leggings that the maternity clothing industry has to offer, hands down! They not only stay up all day long, but they also don’t catch easily, which means longevity for your tights. They also make equally excellent tights in 15 denier (for summer) and 60 denier (for the cold Canadian winters) if you are looking for a pair to suit different climates. How Noppies maternity tights differ than regular tights is that they allow extra material where the bump lives, so Sesame doesn’t feel “squished” throughout the day (see packaging picture below). One key to selecting tights that don’t fall is to purchase the right size. Noppies comes in 2 sizes S/M and L/XL. As a petite woman I take the S/M, which fit like a glove. Now I think I must get the same ones in nude!

The pearl necklace is a wedding gift from my maid of honour; it was my “something old” since it’s vintage. It also comes with an equally gorgeous matching bracelet, which I shall debut here some other occasion. The clasp is a wing-shaped closure, encrusted with baguette diamonds. It’s exquisitely unique and I love that it has a story behind it before I took ownership.

The leather bracelet I’m wearing is from Mulburry with a gold twist lock hardware and my shoes are red Kitty flats by Charlotte Olympia, both in colours perfectly suited for this festive occasion. All to accompany the red envelopes and I’m ready for a prosperous Year of the Monkey!

Xoxo,

Bay_and_Bloor

Celebrity-Inspired Maternity Dresses to Suit Your Personality

No matter if you are a confessed celeb watcher, a closet admirer of the rich and famous or an occasional curious cat, celebrities can inspire our fashion choices. It can be fun – and even affordable! – to be led by the wardrobes of some of our favourite public personalities. So feel inspired! Match your personality with each of these expectant celebrities and find out what our designer Pat has created, just for you. That’s what makes us different at Carry Maternity; we help you to choose the clothes that say “you” best. Because clothes that express “you-ness” are the most fun to wear, fit the most comfortably and make you feel amazing – even with morning sickness, water retention and heartburn! Take a look at these celebrity inspired maternity dresses and match your style.

Celebrity Inspired Spring Fashion - Look 1 on Carry Maternity

 

Celebrity Inspired Style 1: A Pregnant Zooey Deschanel

Buzz-word: Retro-Chic

You are: Confident, quirky, with a fun and flirty style

You like: Prints, black and white

Pat has designed this gorgeous black and white print dress with twist knot detail at the waist to accentuate your feminine curves. It plays up your flirty style, while being breezy and effortlessly beautiful.

 

Celebrity Inspired Spring Fashion - Look #2 on Carry Maternity

Celebrity Inspired Style 2: A Pregnant Keira Knightley

Buzz-word: The New Romantic

You are: Graceful, old world with a new world, modern edge

You like: Florals, hand-crafted details like lace and ribbons

This floral dress brings a pop of colour into the romantic’s wardrobe and is perfect for the girl who straddles the old and new world of fashion; classic but with a modern refinement. This dress would soften the angular and waif-like character of Keira’s body, but looks stunning on any woman who loves feminine style in her wardrobe.

 

Celebrity Inspired Spring Fashion - Look #3 by Carry Maternity

Celebrity Inspired Style 3: A Pregnant Jessica Biel

Buzz-word:  Glamorous Leading Lady

You are: Sexy and polished. A classic hollywood beauty that belongs on the red carpet.

You like: Sophistication and sparkle, shape and sex appeal

Reach for this high-waisted, curve-flattering dress in the ultimate feminine shade of soft pink. The detail on this dress elevates it; a empire waist emphasizes the baby bump while offering a figure-flattering cinch. The ruching along the side draws the eye to the curve of the hip and is flattering on all body types. This look is glamorous, sexy and polished.

Let’s face it, celebrities inspire us. And sometimes it is fun to steal a little something from their style book and replicate it in our own wardrobe.

While celebrities make for great muses for our designer Pat, it really is the customers that determine the styles we end up creating. It can be a gorgeous dress to look at, but if it doesn’t fit your life, it just isn’t worth it. We work to match your personality with the clothes that bring you alive. A woman wearing the perfect dress is confident, happy and a celebrity in her own right.


So, which celebrity style best suits you? And where will you be wearing that perfect dress?!

Packing for Your Beach BabyMoon: 5 Tips for Jet Setting Without All the Baggage

Escaping the cold weather, snow and dark afternoons of winter is right on trend this time of year, and so is enjoying some time with your partner before 10 little fingers and 10 little toes change your lives forever.

When you are headed to a warm-weather destination for a beach babymoon, you want the simplicity of easy-breezy clothes that serve multiple purposes. And we’re here to help.

Here are our top tips for what to pack for your beach babymoon.

Always Pack Shoes First

Starting with your shoes first encourages you to think about what you will be doing on your vacation. How does your wardrobe need to perform? I say everyone needs to pack three pairs of shoes. You can’t really do it in less, and more makes you a slave to your luggage:

  • Pack the most fashionable walking shoe you have in your closet. This means you pair comfort, for those long trips into town or sightseeing, with something that has a bit more of a “look” than your dingy runners;
  • Because we are talking about a beach escape, also look for a shoe that can get wet. This is a shoe that is perfect for walking on the beach;
  • Pack something that can take you to dinner, something that you feel sexy in.

A Good Foundation: Pack Your Undies

Pack some good underpinnings. I recommend nude coloured silk seamless underwear that doesn’t create panty lines. Smooth camisoles are great layering pieces: if it is hot or cold, you can take off or add layers. Pack a black plus a light or fashion colour. This sounds so practical (my mother would be so proud), but you really need to make sense of how each piece will work.

Pack a Bathing Suit You Feel Confident In

How to Pack for a Babymoon by Carry Maternity-1
Invest in a good suit and a beautiful cover-up to go from beach to lunch.

Find a good maternity suit that accentuates your growing belly and gives you the coverage you want to hit the beach with confidence. Grab some colour, look for the support and coverage you need, but remember to pick one that makes you feel like a million bucks. Investing in a good maternity suit will help you to feel that confidence.

Don’t forget a cover-up. This will protect your sensitive belly skin, which is stretching thin with a growing baby and therefore highly exposed. Cover-ups are also great because they can help you dress up your suit for lunch. For example, a fashionable tankini looks great with a sarong.

Shown: Striped maxi skirt from Seraphine. Tankini from Indrid & Isabel.

 

How to Pack for a Babymoon by Carry Maternity - 2
A few comfortable dresses make for easy wear and light packing.

Some Easy Wear Dresses

A Tees by Tina dress is a highly fashionable way to look great and be comfortable even in the heat. The fabric is not only moisture wicking but figure flattering as well. This amazing clothing line, loved by celebrities, is one-size fits most and packs easily. The dresses look great with sandals or runners, so you can move from beach, to dinner, to sightseeing.

You might want to pack two Tees by Tina dresses along with a flowy floral dress. Why focus on dresses? Dresses are comfortable to wear when you are pregnant; in hot weather this can be key.

Shown: Lattice maxi dress from Tees by Tina. Floral knot dress from Carry Maternity. Maxi sundress from Seraphine.

Shorts and Capris

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Pack shorts and capris to take your swimsuit around town.

Throw in a pair of shorts, and/or a pair of capris that take you from day to night and all around town. A pair of shorts over your bathing sit when heading for lunch makes for an easy outfit, and capris can be worn with a multi-functional shirt (acts as a bathing suit cover-up too).

Shown: Tank from Tees by Tina. T-shirt from Isabel Oliver. Khakis from Seraphine. Shorts (inquire in store).

 

There you have it! Five summer-y staples to take you from the cold of a Canadian winter to the warm sand of a beach destination. Not only will you be in love with the scenery, your partner and your growing belly, but you’ll be in love with the fit and feel of your clothes …. and the light ease of your suitcase as you haul it home. Enjoy your babymoon. Rest and be well.

 

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One Dress, Three Looks

Getting to Know Yorkville’s Carry Maternity