Buying enough maternity clothes just to get through the work week can be such an investment that some pregnant women will forgo a black-tie occasion altogether rather than sink money into an expensive maternity cocktail gown to be worn only once.
Indeed, even for those with unlimited funds, finding attractive maternity formal wear can be next to impossible.
One solution to the dilemma, however, is a rental service, such as Judy's Maternity Rentals, a 3-year-old company based in Alexandria, Va., which offers not only custom-made evening gowns, but also dressy separates and even bridesmaid and wedding gowns. Prices start around $50 and go up to $250 for a wedding dress. A mail order service is available. For more information call (800) 727-7214.
Nearly all the cosmetic companies these days are touting fancy new products based on all-natural ingredients. Words like rice bran, licorice, cucumber and carrot are the trendy new beauty buzzwords. The thrifty-minded, however, can simulate many of these new treatments for much less by using everyday household items.
In the August issue of Elle magazine, top fashion modeRoshumba (which means "beautiful" in Swahili) describes an economical beauty regime that she's created from products she just happens to have around the house.
First she steams her face, then she scrubs it with cornmeal and deep cleans and disinfects it with an antiseptic mouthwash. As a finishing step to close her pores she applies an egg-white mask.
Convertibles you can wear
With consumers now so cautious about parting with their money for non-essentials, manufacturers are getting more creative in their packaging.
The jewelry company Trifari has come up with a new line of convertible jewelry that makes the cost of a single piece of jewelry go further. One necklace can become five different pieces of jewelry.
Promoted as "Take-Apart Jewelry for a Put-Together Look," the Convertible line of jewelry due in department stores this fall, includes necklaces, earrings and pins in black, pearl and gold.
The long double-strand pearl necklace can be taken apart at the decorative clasps to become one pearl collar and two bracelets. Or you can make it a medium-length necklace and have one bracelet.
The earrings fold, snap or flip to different shapes and colors. The pearl drops and the gold or black door knockers or toggles can be detached from the simple button earring base when a more tailored look is desired. The gold and jet pin with pearl center can be worn as a pin or a pendant.
Saving In Style welcomes questions and suggestions. Write Catherine Cook, Fashion Editor, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, Md. 21278.