I worked for Reitman's for over 9 years, moving to all branches, eventually being moved to thyme because they said it was the only store I would be able to advance in. After working there for a year and a half I was told that they were just going to hire from the outside instead because it wasn't fair that I might play favorites. While I enjoyed the time spent there with the people I worked with it wasn't a career sadly.
I couldn't bear shopping when I was pregnant, so I picked up a pair of black Moto jeans from Topshop and was done with it. It's true what they say about Topshop maternity jeans: they don't stay up - so you're forever hoisting them. On the plus side, though, they were comfy, fairly smart and under £40. This, I think, is what a lot of women end up doing. I asked Beth Graham, an independent fashion designer whose style I admire, and who has recently had a child, what she did about maternity jeans. I was expecting some obscure denim tip off but, no, Graham got a few pairs of Topshop jeans (and some of their chinos which she says earned quite a few compliments). "The jeans did fall down," agrees Graham, "but they were a good price and had some good styles."
I worked this job part time for a year before deciding to return to work full time after staying home for 5 years with my kids. Part time hours were fine; pay was minimum wage. I was repeatedly offered the store manager position but the hours would have been less than ideal (working every weekend and several evenings a week) and the pay offered was brutal. All associates were pushed to sell specific products and these sales were tracked weekly. The review process was horrible- you could rate 'excellent' in every aspect, but if your store wasn't meeting the sales budget, you 'failed' your overall review.
ThredUp is an online consignment store, but if you do not mind purchasing pre-worn items, then this can be an excellent destination for finding affordable maternity apparel. ThredUp is actually the first place I purchased a couple of maternity items from because I could not resist the low prices. They currently have more than 3,000 maternity items listed for sale, and all are a fraction of their original retail prices.
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If you are trying to buy on a budget (you have a baby to think about, after all!), Walmart is a great place to look. Its maternity section is brimming with dresses, tops and pants that are both fashion-forward and super affordable. We love Walmart's "Maternity Essentials" section, which has all the basics you'll need for those nine months (and beyond).