2) Not so good (although perhaps understandable) return policy. Everything on sale is no return and the one dress we liked just enough to buy, we learned at checkout was no return also (even though it was not on sale) because it was classified as an "occasional" or "party" dress. My wife was on the fence about the purchase anyway and this was enough to make her change her mind and not buy it.
Last year a friend of mine was pregnant and she wears plus size clothing. She had a tough time finding plus size maternity wear until she spotted this store. There is an entire section reserved for plus size woman ranging from X to 3X. The plus size selection is great and very reasonably prices. I'm sure if this store didn't exsist, she may have had to stay indoors for the remainder of her pregnancy because she couldn't find a thing to fit her at the other maternity stores in Halifax.
Commenters on earlier 'Mother of all' posts almost unanimously herald Seraphine as the best maternity jeans brand. Amtstevens swears: "I looked better in them than I did in my pre-pregnancy jeans! I am now pregnant with number two and relieved to be slipping back into these jeans. They are so comfy." Guayaba seconds this, saying her Seraphine jeans are: "even nicer than my normal jeans." CooperK says they work for her too, "and I'm no skinny minny." The maternity wear brand (they do breastfeeding clothes, too) was started by a French woman who honed her "fit systems" on herself during her two pregnancies. The jeans come in three lengths, and are all made in stretch denim for comfort and sag avoidance. They also do a good range of styles - here's a picture of Mad Men's January Jones, rocking their skinny grey luxe jeans (£65.00).
Spending more than £50 may seem pretty steep for maternity wear, but there's a small army of women who would argue that if you get enough wear out of your jeans, then it's worth spending over £100. I have heard great things, for instance, about designer maternity wear shop, Blossom. They sell jeans by Citizens of Humanity, True Religion and other revered brands with oddly cod-philosophical-sounding names. They adapt the jeans themselves, adding their "Blossom band". A fashionista friend shelled out about £170 on a pair of 7 For all Mankind straight legs from Blossom and says: "I wore them almost every day up until about five months after having the baby, so well worth it." Another friend of mine, who is stickler for quality, got some James Jeans for just over £100 for her first pregnancy and reckons, if you end up having more than one child, it's definitely worth the investment.