We’ve all experienced it at one time or another: the inevitable post-Thanksgiving food baby. I for one have tried to binge eat a little less when it comes to the holidays, but let’s be real: it’s pretty hard to moderate myself when there are blue cheese mashed potatoes and chocolate bread pudding around.
I’ve made the mistake of wearing impractical clothing to Thanksgiving dinner on more than one occasion (think skinny jeans, shirts with buttons and zip-up dresses, none of which offer any give for that post-meal belly bulge), but over time I have learned from my mistakes and realized that there are plenty of ways to get dressed for Thanksgiving in a way that is both comfortable and chic.
Thankfully, there are plenty of styles available right now that can achieve this and I’ve compiled a round-up. Most of these pieces toe the line between casual and dressy so that they can be easily dressed up or down depending on the nature of your particular Thanksgiving celebration style.
Somedays Lovin Corridor Knit Sequin Dress 1 of 15
This is my favorite dress in the history of dresses and I need it to come live in my closet stat. I love how the knit sleeves perfectly balance and dress down the gold sequins to make it a great and versatile little dress. This dress is on my holiday wishlist for sure. Even better (and what you can't see from this front angled photo) is that the side view of this dress reveals a lovely, swing/trapeze shape. Perfect for post-Thanksgiving food baby hiding. So good.
Purchase for $119.00 from Urban Outfitters
Free Spirit Shift Dress 2 of 15
A little cream lace shift dress belongs in every woman's closet. It just does. Shift dresses are insanely flattering on so many body types and lace is just pretty. I have a dress like this and it is always perfect for every occasion. Just make sure the under layer has a bit of give.
Purchase for $24.80 from Forever 21
Arnica Swing Dress 3 of 15
This dress has a casual cut, but the sheer sleeves and overlay elevate it just a bit. The cut is perfectly flowy without looking like a circus tent, which will leave you plenty of room for that extra serving of mashed potatoes. You're welcome.
Purchase for $118.00 from Anthropologie
Fairbanks Maxi Dress 4 of 15
You can never go wrong with a forgiving maxi dress and this one is great for the colder months. I love the sheer overlay that offers a peek-a-boo effect for the legs and the pleating is elegant while pairing nicely with the more casual grey top half of the dress. The positioning of the waistline makes it perfect for hiding your post-meal food baby bump.
Purchase for $148.00 from Anthropologie
Kardashian Kollection Faux Leather Leggings 5 of 15
I was such a skeptic of leather leggings and always thought that there was no way I could ever look even halfway decent in them. I was wrong. I bought a pair and I LOVE them. They instantly elevate my casual sweaters and tops, are more interesting than wearing jeans (again) and are way more dressy looking than plain jane leggings. The key to making these work is a wide and comfortable waist band. Muffin top is never a good look. I have a pair with a waist similar to these and they are fantastic. Every woman should own leather leggings - even if they never get worn outside your house you will feel totally fierce as you channel your inner Sandy, a'la Grease.
Purchase for $15.40 from Sears
H&M Knit Sweater Natural 6 of 15
This sweater is just so perfectly cozy and has the perfect amount of drape - slightly loose, but still polished. I would pair it with my comfiest jeans and a pair of ankle booties. And when I say "comfiest" I mean it. Jeans with plenty of stretch and definitely not the jeans you reserve for your "skinny days." These ones from Rich & Skinny are my all-time favorites - totally fitted and flattering, but so incredibly forgiving with plenty of stretch. Also they are real jeans and not jeggings, even though they are just as comfy.
Purchase for $29.95 from H&M
Somerset Dress 7 of 15
For those who don't like to live their lives in all black (like myself) and prefer a bit of color, this dress is great. The pattern and texture are fantastic for distracting from your turkey pouch and any spills and the proportions of it leave you plenty of room for "expansion."
Purchase for $168.00 from Anthropologie
H&M Knit Sweater 8 of 15
This. Sweater. Drool. Just imagine how many servings of bread pudding I could eat if I wore this! Pair it with leather leggings and a pair of ankle booties or heels, add a pretty scarf or a statement necklace and you're golden. I need this sweater. BADLY.
Purchase for $24.95 from H&M
H&M Short Jersey Dress 9 of 15
I know you're probably thinking, "How does a little, stretchy, black dress sound like a good idea for when I'm dealing with a food baby?!" I would be skeptical too, but I swear by this classic style from H&M and here's why: 1) It's black. Black is always good camouflage, 2) It's stretchy which = room for your food baby, 3) The material is stretchy but a nice weight so it's not clingy and obnoxious and seriously flattering. If you go a size up from a super fitted dress you'll end up with a more shift dress shape and it's super cute. I lived in these during my pregnancy and they are amazing and I still wear them now albeit a little looser, but they're great and so cute with a cardigan layered over top.
Purchase for $12.95 from H&M
H&M Knit Cardigan 10 of 15
You can never go wrong with a cozy oversized cardigan as long as you choose a knit that is on the thinner size and doesn't add too much extra bulk. Throw it on over that simple black basic dress from the last slide with a pair of tights and some accessories and you're ready for Thanksgiving dinner. And when you're feeling a bit too full, you can wrap up in that cardigan a little more.
Purchase for $34.95 from H&M
H&M Satin Blouse 11 of 15
This shirt has a lovely dressy fabric and some nice tailored detailed that make it feel polished, but the flowy cut is totally forgiving. I love the unexpected color. Pair it with those comfy jeans we talked about earlier, a pair of heels and a statement bib necklace. Done.
Purchase for $34.95 from H&M
Classic Relaxed Fit Blouse 12 of 15
BDG Trapeze Striped Sweater Dress 13 of 15
Typically, I am not a fan of trapeze dresses, but this one is just fitted enough so it's flattering and doesn't look like you're wearing the tent for Cirque du Soleil. This would be great for a more casual affair. I might add thick tights, black ankle booties, and a draped cardigan.
Purchase for $59.00 from Urban Outfitters
Somedays Lovin Rambling Man Sweater Dress 14 of 15
This dress is another great option for a casual affair. It has all the comfort of a cozy sweatshirt, but is just slightly elevated. With the right accessories and hair this could definitely be juxtaposed to fit a slightly more dressy occasion as well.
Purchase for $109.00 from Urban Outfitters
Textured Geo Knit Top 15 of 15
I love everything about this top. The thick, quilted pattern is lovely (and forgiving) and the length is just right, while the cream color adds a simple elegance. I love this paired with leather leggings, boots and minimal accessories.
Purchase for $22.80 from Forever 21
Lauren Hartmann is the founder of The Little Things We Do, a blog about life and adventures in Portland Oregon. Follow her on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram or catch up on all of her posts here on Babble.
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