MMM: My Maternity Must-haves, by YOU Magazine Fashion Editor Katie Lester

Katie Lester, 31, is the Fashion Editor for the Mail on Sunday’s YOU Magazine.

She is surrounded by gorgeous clothes every day of her working life, but now pregnant with baby number two – her son Saul is two – Katie’s struggling to find clothes to suit her style and her wardrobe.

Here she talks to MMM about what works in maternity wear – and what is wrong with high street pregnancy ranges.

Katie Lester, MMM


  1. Katie and son Saul, aged two
  2. Styling up a shoot in YOU Magazine’s fashion cupboard
  3. The perfect maternity skinny jean from J Brand
  4. Tutti Frutti scarf, £69 from Alexia. Katie says ‘invest in scarves as the beauty is you can wear it afterwards too.’
  5. Dress, part of the new LUXE range by Seraphine.
  6. Basic tees from ASOS Maternity
  7. Studded glossy brogues from Church’s at Net-A-Porter



Congratulations on your 2nd pregnancy! When are you due?
Thanks! I’m due at the start of January

How are you feeling about clothes this time around?
I retrieved all of the maternity clothes I’d put in storage after my first pregnancy. I was surprised about how much I can still wear this time round. It’s nice not having to start from scratch with an entire new pregnancy wardrobe. That said, there are a few tops that I practically lived in towards the end last time and I’m not sure I can bear the thought of wearing them again!

How do you usually dress? What would you say is your usual non-pregnancy style?
I ALWAYS like to feel comfortable. Not in a lounge wear kind of way. Even if I’m dressed for a function I hate to feel too try hard. My basic wardrobe is fairly classic, but I always like to wear one special item, whether it’s a beautifully cut jacket, a striking bold colour or fun texture. That’s always the one thing that someone will ask me where it’s from (and that’s the ultimate compliment)

What did you tend to wear during your pregnancy with Saul? Can you describe a typical look?
I lived in a pair of black skinny Seraphine Jeans and jersey or silk tops from H&M and Topshop. I found that I had to invest in a couple of pairs of maternity jeans but could find non-maternity tops that worked well.

I think it’s near impossible to find fashion forward maternity ranges. Many brands do smart office attire well (Seraphine and Isabella Oliver) and many do great basics (Boden and JoJo Maman Bebe) but hardly anyone does anything trend focused. I don’t wear jersey wrap dresses normally and don’t want to just because I am pregnant.

Do you want to do anything differently this time around?
I’d love to be able to be more on trend!

Katie’s ultimate wish-list. Prada’s brocade trousers, AW12.
Image: Catwalking
The perfect peplum jacket, by Christian Dior AW12
Image: Catwalking

Are there any current high street maternity wear collections that excite you? Who do you rate?
Not really! Topshop come closest and ASOS are pretty good. But the others always seem like after thoughts. I love shopping in H&M and Zara when I’m not pregnant, but their maternity ranges don’t come close to their main collections. My brother in law is getting married in November and I had no idea what to wear. Seraphine have just launched a new LUXE range of dresses and I have my eye on one of their dresses (in main image above). It costs slightly more than high street prices but I just love the jewelled straps.

Maternity necklace jumper £42, Topshop

Who do you think should be offering a maternity range who doesn’t currently?
All of my high street favourites should – it would be great to have more choice! I’d love to see what Reiss, Cos and Whistles would do

If you could pick your ultimate AW12 maternity capsule collection, which five pieces would you choose?
I’d love a black lace dress with a flippy hem; something fun that could work from day to night. A pair or brocade trousers, there are so many on the high street for autumn and it’s a trend I’d normally embrace. A peplum jacket, that I could wear open over a plain tunic dress; something well cut that would look good even with a bump. A great embellished dress, maybe in burgundy that I could wear come party season. A great blouse with lace inserts or clever designed print.

Katie wishes these gold brocade trousers, Limited at Marks & Spencer, came in a maternity version. She says they’re the ‘perfect AW wardrobe updater.’

And which five basics do you think every pregnant woman should own?
Great jeans, white vests, white T’s, brogues or flats and a fabulous print scarf (that can always pep up the most basic of outfits)

Can you suggest any stores or brands that would work for a pregnancy despite not specifically being maternity wear?
I always find tops in Topshop and H&M that will grow with my bump despite not being maternity.

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