What’s the hottest craze of 2011? Having a bun in the oven, of course! Two’s a coincidence, three’s a trend but ten - yes, TEN! - pregnant A-listers is surely an epidemic. From actresses Penelope Cruz, Natalie Portman and Marion Cotillard to fashionistas Victoria Beckham and Rachel Zoe, moms-to-be are popping up all over Hollywood.
But before they do literally pop (chortle!), the real labour of love is their maternity wardrobe. So far, we’ve seen the reemergence of comfy dungarees on Selma Blair [above], chic ponchos on Kate Hudson and sensible lace-up heels on Alicia Silverstone. But can the stars be knockouts when they’re knocked-up? Let’s investigate...
We begin with the woman who maintains her style beacon status despite being ready to drop in a matter of minutes. This January, we’ve seen a seven-months-pregnant Rachel Zoe proving that being "with child" does not mean being "without chic". Take her recent array of pretty trapeze-style dresses, if you will. At this weekend’s Golden Globes, the super stylist looked seriously sophisticated in an LBD featuring mesh cutouts for a flash of sexy and teamed it with a pair of tights, plus – golly gosh! – ginormous heels.
Of course, Natalie Portman’s doing a sterling job at making her baby bump a stylish accessory as she whirls through awards season. For Friday’s AFI event, she stayed true to her new loose & lovely aesthetic with a cobalt blue Michael Kors dress and, after picking up a gold statue on Sunday, she swapped her silky Viktor & Rolf gown for this grey Azzaro number. It’s party - and pregnancy - perfect thanks to the halterneck, which keeps it comfy, and the pleats, which keep it OTM. Plus, Nat sensibly ditched her heels in favour of cute metallic flats, et voila: glam even with a bulging tum.
Alicia and Selma have followed suit by taking voluminous silhouettes from the glitzy red carpets to the LA streets. Grazia Daily has long admired Ms Blair’s impeccable style so we’re excited to see what body-skimming delights she’ll provide in the coming months. Her adorable white smock would fit quite nicely into our own wardrobe, despite the fact we don’t have a bump to wear it with (boo). So you see? Maternity wear does not equal frumpsville, people.
And here’s more proof! Drop-dead gorgeous model Devon Aoki may look like the average woman who’s just eaten a bowl of pasta but that teeny bulge is in fact a growing child! So when you’re blessed with such a divine figure, why disguise your belly beneath layers of chiffon? Make like a bump-bearing Miranda Kerr and flaunt it in snug maxi dresses adorned with flattering vertical stripes! Stunning.
And unsurprisingly, maxis have become trusty eveningwear alternatives for Natalie (above in Gianfranco Ferré at the Critics Choice Awards) as well as La Zoe too, although both have opted for roomier versions for their growing tummies. Oh, and even after the mini-me has arrived, the floor-sweepers will still be totally on-trend garments for the warmer months. Result!
So dresses out the way, what inventive ways have these celebs come up with to disguise their bumps from the pesky paps? As we mentioned above, Kate Hudson kept her cool under an all-encompassing poncho (a lesson she learnt from Victoria Beckham, no doubt) while Penelope Cruz wrapped up in a chic camel coat.
Hudson has also been spotted using a slouchy tote as a stylish cover-up - another tip from VB who, as predicted, has been seen dangling her handbag creations over a barely-there bulge.
Meanwhile, lovely Frenchy Marion Cotillard has got a, er, guitar to do the disguising...
But it is Natalie and Selma who’ve come up with the most adorable cover-up: their pups!
And finally, we leave you with a reminder of what NOT to wear when you’re gestating, courtesy of Mariah Carey last Christmas. Good God woman, get on the blower to Rachel Zoe immediately!
So there are the goods, dear readers, and now we want to know who YOU deem the chicest mummy-to-be...
by Jessica Vince