As we talked about in our last post, one of the first clothing issues you’ll notice early on in your pregnancy is that very soon you can’t do up your pants. But a belly band can help you wear your regular pants for longer, by allowing you to leave your pants unzipped, and both covering up the gap over your lower abdomen, and holding your pants up.
What you’ll need:
- just over half a yard of very stretchy jersey fabric – preferably something with a bit of spandex or lycra in it.
What to do:
- Measure your hips using a tape measure. Now take off 2 inches from that measurement.
- Cut a rectangle of fabric that is as wide as your hip measurement minus 2, and is 20″ tall. For example, my hips measure 34″ so I cut my rectangle to be 32″ by 20″. Make sure that the fabric is stretchiest along the longest side – or else the belly band won’t work properly.
- Fold your rectangle in half (length ways) with right sides facing each other and sew 1/2″ from the raw edge using either a zig zag stitch on a regular sewing machine- you could use a serger if you like, but I find this project a little easier on a regular machine. But do not stretch the fabric as you sew!
- Turn your tube of fabric right way round,
and match up the seams, and the raw edges on either side of the tube.
- Now sew around the edge once again using either a zig zag stitch or a serger/overlocker – leaving about 4 inches unsewn (actually you’ll have no choice, it’s impossible to keep sewing at this point because the fabric is all twisted!)
- Lay your tube flat,
tuck the raw edges under, and close up the opening by hand stitching it closed.
if you’re feeling lazy (and that’s no crime!), then you can wait till after our next step to close up the opening.
- Now head over to the iron – shift the seam of the tube around, so that it will be invisible from the outside, and iron it flat
- If however, you were feeling lazy in step 6, and decided not to hand sew the gap close, head over to your sewing machine, and close it up by topstitch along the verticle seam line, either using your zig zag or straight stitch on your sewing machine. This actually has the added benefit of keeping the hem in place.
- Now you can get some extra mileage out of your regular jeans, by leaving them unzipped and popping your belly band on top!
- This tutorial is a guide only, you might to make minor adjustments to the length of you are quite tall or short.
- If you aren’t able to sew, but you still want to make your own belly band, never fear! Use this tutorial for a no sew bellyband
- If you’d rather make your own maternity jeans, rather than using a belly band over your current ones, then use this tutorial on how to transform an old pair of jeans into maternity jeans.