Kate's Style Evolution and Pregnancy Diary Secrets

05/01/2013 at 08:20 AM EDT

Kate's Style Evolution and Pregnancy Diary Secrets
Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge
All hail the Duchess of Cambridge: a newlywed and loving, devoted wife, a mother-to-be of the newest future king or queen and a gracious, charming public figure who, two years ago, became an instant style icon – from the moment she stepped out in a royal blue silk-jersey-wrap Issa dress on the day her engagement to Prince William was announced.

Kate continues to captivate the world with her easy grace and impeccable style, which show no signs of slowing down as she evolves into maternity wear.

From her hairstyles to her hemlines, mixing high fashion and High Street, Kate continues to school the world in the art of dressing for two with style, grace and her own sense of fun – even as her much-anticipated bump presents its joyful fashion challenges.

Among her tricks: Keep it classic (she stunned in a blue silk Emilia Wickstead dress for a gala at the National Portrait gallery); distract from (or accentuate!) the bump with a go-to clutch bag; and don't wear maternity clothes if you don't have to (her non-maternity floral Erdem frock on a visit to a Manchester school also showed off her toned legs).



Her every style choice – from pumps to purses – is studied, copied and discussed.

"Kate is clearly a very confident, healthy woman who is comfortable in her own skin," says designer Max Mara's creative director, Laura Lusuardi.



And the next months, as she carries out her pregnancy and moves into motherhood, are ones the fashion world (and mommies everywhere) will delight in watching.

For more on Kate's style choices, including insider interviews with designers and royal watchers and new photos, pick up this week's PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday

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