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“She's not shopping because she's excited, she's shopping because she has to,” says clothing designer Ingrid Carney. She’s talking about the relationship between expecting mothers and maternity clothing, a category that a lot of pregnant women need to spend money on even if they don’t want to.
Jeans with elastic waistbands and blouses that can accommodate a growing bump don’t tend to run cheap — nor do they have a reputation for being particularly attractive — so it makes sense that a lot of expecting moms just beeline it to the nearest big-box chain, grab some cheap basics in bulk, and call it a day.
Thankfully, Target is now offering a middle ground between “just give me black leggings that fit” and “how is this maternity sweater almost $400?” with a new in-house label called Isabel Maternity by Ingrid & Isabel. The Target-exclusive line is an offshoot of the maternity brand Ingrid & Isabel (which you might know for its Bellaband). But more importantly, the 110-plus piece collection is cute, normal-looking, and mostly under $25.
“We want Mom to really not lose her sense of style,” says Carney. “We want to make pieces that adapt to who she is — that she can relate to herself.” The line accomplishes this with a lot of stretchy dresses, draped shirts that can also function as nursing tops, and a good amount of jeans and T-shirts. Here are a few of the best pieces, which you’d be forgiven for mistaking for normal clothes that are just a bit more roomy in the belly.