Fit for a Princess
April 29, Winchester
shares with pregnant women every where: "She is having to face the challenge of accommodating her new body shape," says her friend, fashion expert Nikki Pennie. Unlike the average expectant mother, however, Kate occasionally takes cues from her grandmother-in-law the Queen, whose wardrobe is largely bespoke. For a visit to a children's hospice on her second wedding anniversary, Kate wore a coral Tara Jarmon coat over a nude-colored frock, made to measure by a dressmaker whose identity the Palace is keeping under wraps.
Keep It Classic
April 24, London
Say hello to the new Jackie O. "Kate's look is incredibly chic and rather retro," says British maternity expert Rosie Pope. Take this silk Emilia Wickstead number inspired by Mad Men-era society swan C.Z. Guest. Altered only slightly, it is not a maternity dress but rather one "that we have sold quite a lot to non-pregnant people," says the designer's rep. Modern approach aside, "Kate reminds me of Jackie Onassis when she was pregnant," adds Pope. "She's happy to show some leg with that 1960s vibe, but in general she covers up."
ONE YEAR AGO!
Bye Bye, Belt
March 17, Aldershot
The royal recycler just raised the bar. For a St. Patrick's Day ceremony with the Irish Guards, Kate donned the very same forest green Emilia Wickstead coatdress she wore last year (above right)—minus one all-important accessory. "She has a figure like a model," says coat designer Katherine Hooker, who has taken Kate's measurements. "She's one of those lucky preg nant women who hasn't changed much." The result? Only the belt got bumped. "Small tweaks are being made," says U.K. fashion expert Hilary Alexander. "But she hasn't changed her fashion philosophy at all."
Don't Stop till You Pop!
Feb. 19, London
Rather than rush to revamp her wardrobe, the duchess debuted her belly in a Max Mara jersey wrap dress that clung to every new curve. "Kate is clearly a very confident, healthy woman who is comfortable in her own skin," says the brand's creative director Laura Lusuardi. But even gene tically blessed mums-to-be face fashion chal lenges as delivery day nears. "It will be interesting to see what she does at eight and three quarter months," says Alexander. "After that, it does get a little tricky."
CROWNING GLORY !
Make Waves with Your Hair
April 24, London
Longer and lusher than ever (many experts say pregnant women shed fewer strands), those controversial feathered bangs forgotten, Kate's chestnut tresses have never looked better. For a gala evening, they were partially swept up into an intricate braid—likely the handiwork of her hairstylist Richard Ward, and a riff on the demi-chignon of royal wedding fame. "It brings out her cheekbones," says her wedding hairstylist James Pryce. "And her face is so glowing at the moment."
April 21, Windsor
When the bump was barely there, they served to conceal it. Now that the belly is proudly on dis play, Kate's trademark clutch bags simply, well, adorn it. Wearing a mint green Mulberry coat at a Scouts ceremony (left), Kate recycled her L.K. Bennett "Avona" clutch, Whiteley beret and trusty L.K. Bennett pumps. Tummy and clutch were also close companions when she paired a black velvet version with a Hobbs coat on March 5 (upper inset) and a model—appropriately called the "Muse"—by Stuart Weitzman with an Erdem dress on April 23 (lower inset).
Maximize Your Assets
April 23, Manchester
Six months pregnant, Kate pulled off this non-maternity floral Erdem frock (left) and thigh-grazing coat by Goat (above) while showing off her toned calves. "She's got great legs," Alexander says. The fitness enthu siast, who enjoys yoga, has every reason to flaunt the results. "Kate does a remarkable job of dressing herself in silhouettes that flatter her figure per fectly," Pennie says. "This will continue throughout her pregnancy."
STILL IN STILETTOS!
Pregnant in Heels
Nov. 30, Berkshire
That she fences with Prince William
(using a Hogwarts wand) during a Harry Potter studio tour, shoots hoops in a Scottish arena and dusts off her field hockey skills at her former prep school (above)—often in 4-in. heels— is impressive. That she does so with a baby on board seems superhuman. But spiky shoes, it seems, are the spice of a royal life. "Having to be modest about her clothes," says Pope, "wearing a heel will make her feel special."
Relatable Kate doesn't always feel "obliged to wear a posh dress," says royals author Judy Wade. Her $59 "Florence Spot" frock from Topshop's maternity collection is already sold out.
Ban the Yoga Pants
March 22, Cumbria
She snapped up a pair of yoga leggings at London shop Sweaty Betty, but this princess keeps her stretch pants at the Palace—and sticks to skinny jeans in public. Predictably, her style of painted-on denim is taking off. "The combo of skinny jeans and blazers is literally flying out the door," says Evelyne Callens, founder of London maternity bou tique Pretty Pregnant. "It's just a great mes sage she's sending—that even when you are pregnant, you can still keep your own style."
TWO BILLION PEOPLE WATCHED THE ROYAL WEDDING!
The Kate Effect
April 26, Hertfordshire
Even when it comes to maternity fashion, the duchess moves merchandise. "You hear Kate's name being brought up in the changing room," says Callens of her pregnant shoppers. Customers are even clamoring for a dress by Seraphine that Kate bought in March but has yet to wear. "Sales of the dress have increased 200 percent," says the line's designer Cecile Reinaud. "She has a huge following."