This up-and-coming startup is redefining maternity wear with stylish clothing women can wear before, during, and after pregnancy
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- HATCH is a chic maternity line that was founded in 2011 by Wall Street alumna Ariane Goldman.
- Duchess Meghan Markle has been seen wearing Hatch's Eliza Dress ($218) during her pregnancy.
- The clothes are unique in their attention to style, and their ability to be worn before, during, and after pregnancy.
- Some styles have a digital "bump slider" you can drag across the screen to see how they look during and post-baby bump.
- Prices range from $88 - $350 and appeal to pregnant and non-pregnant shoppers.
Most of the pictures I have from when I was just a baby bump are invariably accompanied with a self-conscious, embarrassed wave of my mom's hands. "Those overalls are so terrible, I can't believe we had to wear those." What she means, of course, is that pregnancy clothes have pretty much always been unsexy and unflattering, conjuring up visions of denim pants with stretch waists and self-effacing empire-waist dresses.
You'd think that during pregnancy, the balance of celebrating this new stage of life while retaining your identity would become extremely important. However, you wouldn't come to that conclusion after spending an afternoon shopping for maternity clothes. The sack dresses and utilitarian denim seem to suggest a surreal nine-month stint unconnected to your life before and after - and lived through in someone else's uniform. The reason is simple: designing clothes for a changing body is a daunting task, and most retailers aren't lured by the challenge.
That void is why I was so excited by the up-and-coming label HATCH, a chic maternity line that's meant to provide pregnant women with the sort of cool, stylish options that they'll feel like themselves while wearing. It was founded in 2011 by former Wall Streeter Ariane Goldman, who emphasizes the ability for women to wear HATCH clothes before, during, and post pregnancy - a holistic approach present in site features like the thoughtful "bump slider," which allows shoppers to drag a slider across clothes to see how they look during and post-baby bump.
HATCH's maternity line is exceptionally stylish. I would choose to wear these clothes without being pregnant. And according to Goldman, a quarter of HATCH's customers are like me - not pregnant, but fans of the brand's easygoing style.
You don't have to wear clothes meant for one nine-month period of your life and then retire them to the attic. HATCH maternity clothes look good, feel comfortable, and don't look like they were meant for a stranger but ended up on you by mistake.
As Goldman explained to Elle Magazine in 2016, "I'm trying to make it sexy and okay and lovely and interesting because that's what it is. How cool is it? You're having a baby!"
The new Fall 2018 line is filled with slip dresses, boyfriend cords, airy bohemian blouses, and a seemingly endless roster of slimming, effortless dresses. Prices range from $85 - $350, but most dresses fall in an attainable $150 - $280, prices that make more sense when you don't have to retire them post-pregnancy or in your third trimester.
HATCH Collections are culled and scrap-booked from the design team's own favorite closet pieces and then modified or tweaked to be the solution-driven pieces that become no-compromise first choices.
Fabrics are breathable, low-maintenance, and wrinkle-resistant. Designs are a rotation of beloved staples with thoughtful additions - like white jeans with stretchy inserts - and effortless but impactful tweaks like bell sleeves and drop waists that balance a baby bump without hiding your entire body.
For decades, pregnancy clothes have been a non-interest for most retailers and the stable of accessible but stylish designers. The job was a tough one, and the payout - clothes tethered to a finite timeline - was not appealing. As a result, the market was saturated with options that were barely in the same neighborhood of what those women would opt to wear before and after pregnancy. The carousel of dowdy pants, dresses, and shirts cater to the need for comfort but inadvertently erase the distinctiveness of the person shopping - treating the effects of her pregnancy, but not acknowledging her identity or desire for choices.
HATCH seems to be an exciting step in another direction, and, thanks to its trailblazer success, competitors are sure to follow.
All in all, HATCH is a great option for pregnant women looking for chic maternity clothes that they can feel as genuinely excited about wearing as the rest of their closet. The collections are stylish, have maternity-specific tweaks, and combine comfort without compromise. They may fetch a higher upfront cost ($88 - $350), but ultimately have greater utility. Yes, you can wear HATCH clothes post-pregnancy, but, most importantly, you're actually going to want to.
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