5 Affordable, stretchy dresses (some bump-friendly)

first trimester maternity fashion casual bump outfits

Madewell dress xs, Halogen linen cardigan xxs petite (also worn here & here), Gucci soho bag, Gucci belt sz 75 (27″ at smallest setting), Steve Madden heels (old), Urban Decay lipcolor in “backtalk”

Through these first few months of pregnancy, I’ve been stretching my existing, non-maternity wardrobe both literally and figuratively! This Madewell ribbed tee dress is older but is currently available at Nordstrom Rack (I hope some of you were able to snag the smaller sizes after my last e-newsletter). For other affordable, petite-friendly Rack recommendations that are each under $30, be sure to check out the bottom of this post!

madewell striped dress petite fashion blog
Since I packed light with just a carry on, I repeated this same outfit for both flights just with comfy flats and this cozy dolman cardigan (cardigan pictured here). M.Gemi Felize or Pastoso loafers (the new grey color is so pretty!) are my favorite leather travel shoes, and are easy to slip bloated feet into at the end of a flight. See my older review on these flats – since several of you requested it, they gave me code JEAN50 for $50 off a first order!

mgemi felize pastoso loafers leather italian flats

Ann Taylor coat (similar here in petite or here), M.Gemi loafers 35.5 c/o, Bric’s 21″ luggage on sale!

gucci soho disco bag tan tassel
Below are a few other affordable finds I had from recent Nordstrom Rack try-ons. All of these pieces are stretchy for comfort and are machine or hand washable. Some of them are good for accommodating an early bump – I’ve starred ** the ones I kept for current and post-pregnancy wear:

1) ** Free Press ruched dress (true to size; also in a long sleeve version) – Stretchy jersey fabric and side ruching on the lower half has made this an early maternity favorite that I plan on also wearing long after pregnancy! It’s double layered in the front half but not in the back. Style is similar to the popular Leith ruched dress (blogged here) except with a slightly thinner non-cotton material and shorter length (hits 2″ above my knees). As my bump grows it may become too short, so I’ll probably wear the Leith dress more.

XS measures: 15″ across underarms, 13″ across waist when unstretched, 31 – 34″ length due to the crossover style.

2) Velvet Torch cap sleeve jersey dress (runs narrow; also in a striped version) – At this price point, I was pleasantly surprised to see a second layer acting as a full lining. Jersey-like fabric is comfortable and stretchy, and runs pretty slim throughout the entire dress so I’d size up to accommodate a growing bump. The navy and black colors in this are very figure-slimming, especially with this flattering, slightly longer length that hits right at my lower knees. I’d break up the large amount of solid color with an accent waist belt!

XS measures: 15″ across underarms, 11.75″ across waist unstretched (stretches 2-3 inches), 37″ length.

3) Velvet Torch turtleneck ruched dress (runs narrow) – Another lined Velvet Torch dress with a slim, stretchy bodycon-style fit. The side ruching is camouflaging for trouble areas, or looks cute with a bump (also size up for room to grow). Hem hits right above the knees on me, which I found to be very lengthening combined with the turtleneck. This could be a simple ” night out” dress with heels, or I’d style it with either a slouchy cardigan or knotted button-up shirt to dress it down.

XS measures: 10″ across waist un-stretched (stretches ~ 3 inches), 32.5″ length.

4) ** Dual Nature twist front dress (true to size) – This one was super soft and comfy on me in sz XS. I adore the twist front detail and it’s also fully lined with a second layer. The midi length is ideal for someone a little taller than me, though.

XS measures: 12″ across waist un-stretched, 14.75″ across underarms, 14″ from top to waistline, 39″ length.

5) Love Fire maxi skirt (waist runs small) – This lightweight double slit skirt is a good length for petites, and the waist runs at least one size small at the waist! Skirt has a shorter lining that ends around the thighs, and the fabric has a slight crinkle texture.

S measures: 12.5″ across the waist (elasticized back is stretchy), 37″ length hits right below my ankles.

madewell striped dress petite fashion
This Gucci bag ranks high up there with the Goyard St Louis PM (used with this bag organizer insert) in terms of my most used and most versatile purses! A lot of you expressed concern about color transfer, which is unfortunately just a fact of life when it comes to light colored leather bags. I just avoid letting this bag rub against dark dyed jeans unless they’ve been washed 2-3 times already, and I also keep it away from any colored denim if I get caught in the rain.

FYI, a little info on sizing for my skinny belt – the size 75 measures about 27″ at the smallest setting. A size 65 should fit someone xxs to xs (will depend on whether you want to wear it higher at the waist or lower near the hips), and you can always punch extra holes.

first trimester maternity clothes petite stretchy dress

Leave a Comment


  1. Angela wrote:

    Although I am not petite sizing, I’m excited for more of your maternity posts !! I am currently 11 weeks and would love to see how you navigate maternity fashion (not having to buy too much maternity wear, working with the pieces already in your closet, and what to do for wedding season!) Thanks for all the work you do for this blog! 🙂

    Posted 4.14.18 Reply
  2. Sylvia wrote:

    Wonderful post as always, Jean. I like how you included the lip colour you were wearing!

    Posted 4.13.18 Reply
  3. Katya wrote:

    This is such a lovely dress you are wearing. I like that comfort and style are both present in your dress. That Gucci bag is wonderful.

    StyleSprinter Blog

    Posted 4.10.18 Reply
  4. Amelie wrote:

    BEAUTIFUL!!! Elegant, classy and a nice way to start the spring season.

    Posted 4.9.18 Reply
  5. Jessica wrote:

    I purchased a GG thin belt like yours; however I am torn on color. I got the natural tan; however debating on the black or maybe your color. Any drivers behind why you went with the color you did or reviews on the different options?

    Posted 4.9.18 Reply
  6. Kelcy wrote:

    I haven’t traveled in many dresses. I should try it again. Those dresses are so cute, even though they’d be way too short on me.

    Posted 4.9.18 Reply
  7. Jenny Yang wrote:

    I love that little belt you matched with it!
    xx Jen

    Posted 4.9.18 Reply
  8. I’m such a jeans and leather trousers wearing in winter but come spring and I’m all about the dresses! Your suggestions are so pretty and feminine and look great on you. Thanks for the inspiration!

    Allegra xx

    Posted 4.9.18 Reply
  9. I am loving all of these dresses, they look amazing! Such fantastic photos as always Jean, you look fantastic with your baby bump! I hope you’re having a wonderful week!

    Happy Sunday!

    Posted 4.8.18 Reply
  10. Carrie wrote:

    You look amaing in that dress!
    Congrats on your baby bump!


    Posted 4.8.18 Reply
  11. Kelly wrote:

    Love this! And I’ve been looking for a similar neutral cardigan. What color is this? Is it “tan cobblestone,” or “pink smoke”?

    Posted 4.8.18 Reply
  12. Elizabeth wrote:

    These are such beautiful photos, Jean! <3 🙂 Love the blossoms! And yayy for stretchy dresses!

    XO, Elizabeth

    Posted 4.8.18 Reply
  13. You look stunning! The dress hugs your bump perfectly. X

    Posted 4.8.18 Reply
  14. Elle wrote:

    Hi Jean,

    You selections are very pretty. Would you mind sharing the brand of your nude open toe booties you’re wearing with the stripped dress? Thanks I’m advancd!

    Posted 4.8.18 Reply
    • Elle wrote:

      Thanks in advance! 🙂

      Posted 4.8.18 Reply
    • Jean | Extra Petite wrote:

      Hi Elle! They are Steve Madden but unfortunately from a few years ago. I keep checking hoping for them to be brought back!

      Posted 4.8.18 Reply
  15. Merav Shoham wrote:

    You look absolutely beautiful, pregnancy definitely suits you 🙂
    Can you please share a link to where you bought your shoes (not the flat ones). Thanks so much!

    Posted 4.8.18 Reply
    • Jean | Extra Petite wrote:

      Hi Merav! Thank you! The shoes are Steve Madden from Nordstrom’s Anniversary a few years ago. I wish they’d make them again!

      Posted 4.8.18 Reply
  16. Shivenagi wrote:

    You look so pretty in all different outfits! Can you also share how do you like your new Gucci cashier bag that you posted on Instagram a while ago?

    Posted 4.7.18 Reply
    • Jean | Extra Petite wrote:

      Hi there ~ hmm, perhaps you saw it someone else’s Instagram? This is the only Gucci bag I have : )

      Posted 4.8.18 Reply
      • Shivenagi wrote:

        Sorry I meant the grey Prada Cahier bag you posted a while ago. I’ve been looking for a bag in that size and would like to know how you like it so far. Thanks

        Posted 4.8.18 Reply
  17. May wrote:

    Awwww!!! You look super duper cute!!!

    Posted 4.7.18 Reply
  18. May wrote:

    I love all your pictures! You look so pretty in pink!

    May || http://themoderness.com/

    Posted 4.7.18 Reply
  19. Briana wrote:

    I may not be pregnant, but I love stretchy, comfy dresses!


    Posted 4.7.18 Reply
  20. Rena wrote:

    You look perfect in this dress and I love also the pink coat!
    xx from Bavaria/Germany, Rena

    Posted 4.7.18 Reply
  21. La Bijoux Bella | by mia wrote:

    The dress still looks beautiful on even if your belly grows bigger. The material and print pattern are just the parfait look for an everyday wear! 💗👍🏼💗


    Posted 4.7.18 Reply
  22. Jean, you look so gorgeous, and the cherry blossoms in the background are so beautiful. 🙂 I’m not pregnant right now (and it’ll be some time, haha!) but you’d definitely be the person I’d look at for clothes, being the same size! ❤️


    Posted 4.7.18 Reply

Get the newsletter!

What updates would you like?