Autumn is definitely in the air, and for me that can only mean two things. Firstly, I'm not going to get that Debbie Bliss baby blanket finished before this little bundle arrives.
Secondly, looming large is a major maternity fashion crisis - what the hell am I going to wear on my legs when it's too breezy to go naked??!! The legs that is, I'm no Demi Moore.
What's wrong with jeans, I hear you ask. I'll tell you what's wrong with jeans. Waistbands are wrong with jeans, even on the maternity versions that have the deep elasticated bump panel at the top. And if it's not waistbands, it's sheer boredom that's putting me off wearing denim.
A girl can't do jeans every day. No, really, this one can't.
Dresses and tunic tops is where it's at for the third trimester, though this awkward transition season provides a big challenge. Come Winter Proper, woolly tights are a definite shoe-in, but it's too early to get too snuggly and my feet are permanently on fire as it is.
Here's a picture of pregnant Coronation Street star Samia Smith out and about between filming in Manchester, in the kind of outfit I'm happiest in right now, give or take an inch on the wedges. A little bird told me she's wearing Mamas & Papas leggings in this pic, so I hotfooted it down to the Regent Street store to grab a pair. They cost £20, which seemed reasonable.
I've given the leggings a thorough roadtest now, including a whole day of shopping on the King's Road and a rather posh client meeting too, and I have to admit they're my new best-friend, and well worth £20.
First off, they're great quality; there's a real weight to the cotton fabric and you just know from the off that they're going to keep their shape. Most importantly, because there's a quality to the fabric, they're really rather slimming too, and while it might be wishful thinking I'm sure they smoothed out my thighs somewhat.
Big plus points in addition to that; they cover the bump, and I mean really cover the bump not perch halfway (I'm 29 weeks pregnant now), they have an ankle cuff which provides more definition in that gently swelling zone, and they hold their shape beyond one wear. They also wash decently when I finally realise that I really can't wear them another day without attracting stares.
There's only one drawback as far as I can tell so far, and that is the seam that runs up the middle of the bump bit. It irritated me a little at first, and leaves a mark. Last time I stripped off in front of the other half he exclaimed: "Oo, your linea nigra's come on." Well, erm, it's heading the wrong way, is very wiggly and quite pink, I thought to myself. At least he's paying me some attention!
Linea nigra or not, Mamas & Papas leggings mean I can wear Autumn dresses without boiling my feet, and for that alone they get a thumbs up from me. Apparently they also come in grey and blue this season. I can feel another shopping trip coming on.
By they way, if you like Samia's outfit here you can bag the whole lot at Mamas & Papas. Samia, who is six months pregnant in this pic, is wearing an embroidered tunic (£45) from this Autumn's Hippy Folk range with the handknit waistcoat (£38) from the Pioneer range, all at Mamas & Papas.