Rosie Pope, star of Bravo’s Pregnant in Heels, made an appearance on Bethesda Row last Friday as part of  for the Writers on the Row series for launch of her book Mommy IQ.

Now, I have a lot of fashionable friends that are first time moms or are about to be. So, naturally, I turned to them to find out what burning questions they had about how to remain stylish during and after pregnancy.

Here’s what Rosie had to say.

Tell us about your personal style and how it has evolved.

I love classic feminine cuts that are easy to move in and effortlessly chic.  I think I used to be much more fussy about all the little accessories and additions to my outfits and now I just want to be able to throw them on and go. Having three kids means anything that doesn’t look pulled together in an instant pretty much goes to the back of the closet. I am also never afraid of a bold print or bright color, or pairing a heel with something casual…I love those opposites. It makes even the simplest of outfits seem fashion forward and intentional.

What are the five clothing staples every pregnant woman needs?

It’s not that simple. Every pregnant woman has such a different body and such different style. She has to identify the things that make her look good and feel good and not follow a standard list. I would say however, that versatility is key. Find outfits that work through the day and night rather than looking for a “work outfit” or “occasion.”  Think about a few key dresses than transcend one occasion, longer tanks, leggings that you can wear as pants and comfortable but versatile pants, plus some of course denim. Also, think about switching to wedges instead of a heel when looking for height.

How do you recommend transitioning your clothes from pregnancy to post pregnancy body? What are the must have items you can’t live without that moms should have on hand after the baby is born?

The truth is maternity clothes are great postpartum too but you probably don’t want everyone to know you are still wearing your maternity jeans (although I say wear them loud and proud!).  A good idea is over the belly pants that are great during pregnancy but also hold it all in afterwards. Stay away from side cinched maternity styles and stripes. Focus more on loose shirts and empire waist lines from your maternity wardrobe. Don’t be afraid of bold prints to distract from the post pregnancy belly bump. Also, I love ivory! It’s the color of spit up so a good color for camouflage!

You don’t always feel so great about yourself when you’re pregnant. How can women use fashion to boost their self-esteem during this time?

When you look good, you feel good and when you feel good you can enjoy your pregnancy more. I think staying true to your pre-maternity style is key. You are still you! I always tell my clients when you are shopping maternity, ask yourself the question: “would I have worn this before I got pregnant?” If the answer is “yes” then go for it!

What do you say to those women who “throw in the towel” when they’re pregnant in terms of their fashion?

There isn’t a woman out there that truly feels good about the decision to “throw in the towel.” I tell them feeling good is a priority to being a good mom. If you don’t feel good, you have low self-esteem, low energy, and that starts to affect parenting – so make feeling good a priority.

What’s your secret for designing fashionable maternity clothes that look good on all pregnant bodies (is it the fabric, the design or both)?

A combination of fabric, fit and pattern innovations.

What are other maternity designers you love?

Hatch and MoreofMe are cute.

What are some maternity fashion no-no’s?

Too many frills, bows or graphics of the embryo!

Want to find out more about Rosie’s stylish maternity line? Check it out here.

Interested in reading her new book? You can purchase Mommy IQ here.