We all love a high-end outfit for special occasions, but which brands are really doing the hard yards under the play-gyms of babies, on the knees of crawlers, out in the garden and at playgroups and daycares around Australia? And which brands do mums-to-be turn to for those pregnancy staples that fit well, look great and are reasonably priced, too?
Here's what the voters had to say.
Our clear winner, Bonds has proven itself over and over again as the hardy and fashionable king of clothing brands.
It's been 96 years since George Bond first started his company in Sydney and the iconic Aussie brand Bonds has gone from strength to strength ever since. With a loyal following of mums-to-be and parents, Bonds makes your preferred maternity bras, underwear and baby and toddler clothing because of its comfort factor and unique, yet simple style.
From maternity bras, singlets and undies, through to baby onesies, nappy covers, singlets and socks, Bonds is the brand that most Aussie parents turn to. (See the Bonds maternity and baby ranges.)
Read what our members love about Bonds:
- Very comfortable, soft, doesn't pile, wears well. I'm totally in love with the designs and sales. Amelia W. VIC.
- Zippys are comfy and easy zip goes both ways for easy nappy change and much quicker and less fiddly than snap buttons. Tamara M. WA.
- Maternity bras and knickers are so comfortable, make breastfeeding easy and attractive colours. Tasha K. WA.
- Great quality, can be expensive but lasts wash after wash after wash! Singlet snap onsie were great for under layers and no fiddling with singlets - kids warm, nappy change easy. Tess O. ACT.
- I am so in love with the wonder suits. Gorgeous patterns that regularly change, two way zip for easy changing, option for hands/feet out or covered, good price as they are regularly on sale. Claire B. VIC.
Target achieves a high level of popularity with the Australian public with its affordable, on-trend children's and baby wear. Target is often expectant mothers' first stop for quality maternity lingerie and comfort-driven fashion ranges. (See more of the Target Maternity & baby range here.)
Read what our members love about Target:
- Great choice, wears and washes well. Very comparable to other more expensive brands. Michelle H. SA.
- They are good quality, run true to size, are cute and are affordable even on a single income. Patrina W. QLD.
- Absolutely loved the range of clothes. So much variety, great fit and amazing quality for a great price! Alicia W. VIC
- Great value for money with good choice from the basics to the more fancier items. Great choices in onsies. Also the quality is awesome. Jen G. VIC.
- Their breastfeeding Cami is just about thr best on market it's long and has perfect cup size. Umi A. NSW.
Celebrating 25 years of business this year, Pumpkin Patch now has even more to celebrate, coming in as one of our readers' favourite kids' fashion and maternity brands. Hard-wearing and fantastic value, Pumpkin Patch clothing often lasts through many children, while still looking good.(See more of the Pumpkin Patch range here.)
Read what our members love about Pumpkin Patch
- Great quality clothes, I always get newborn and going out clothes from here. Trendy and look new after several washes.Vascilla C. NSW.
- Flat and tight around belly, all other brands allowed for post pregnancy belly and I didn't have one so it was nice to find a brand that catered for a breastfeeding mum with a flat belly. Clare F. VIC.
- Cute, great end of season sales and really durable. Also love that all the pants have the elastic waist and good length (easy to find fit for tall/skinny kid). Kerri D. VIC.
- Very stylish, reasonable price. Lots of choice and they often have fantastic specials. The clothing is of very high quality and it is a brand you can trust. Melissa T. WA.
- They stock a variety of neat casual and business style clothing that lasts. I love the sizing as I found it fitted my shape perfectly. I used the same outfits for three pregnancies and they still have wear left in them. Patina P. SA.
Since Kmart's revolution a few years ago, it has catapulted into the hearts and minds of Australian parents looking for great fashion for a budget price. Kmart stores are full of clothing and homewares which reflect the trends parents love, at prices which they love even more. (See more of the Kmart range here.)
Read what our members love about Kmart
- Great cheap maternity clothes and cheap kids clothes with colourful, playful designs that you don't need to worry about getting dirty or ruined while playing and being a kid. Karina P. NSW.
- Price hands down... Maternity tops are comfortable and the clasps don't get stuck or open too easily. Hayley H. NSW.
- Kmart have such a great range at such great prices! My boys got so much wear out of the clothes and they stay in great condition! Love it! Kikita A. VIC.
- It was the most affordable maternity brand for me. The range wasn't huge so I just got essentials but it has lasted me. Kaitlin Y. NSW.
- Great quality of their brand clothes maternity/baby/toddler for really cheap pricing, and lasts for a long time if you take proper care of them. Macey A. SA.
See more 2015 Essential Baby Award Winners
Best Prams/strollers 2015
Best Baby Carriers 2015
Best Nappies (disposable & MCN) 2015
Best Nappy Bags 2015
Best Car Seats 2015
Best Family Cars 2015
Best High Chairs 2015
Best Cots 2015
Best Swaddles and Baby Sleeping Bags 2015
Essential Baby "Must Haves" 2015