Zanna Roberts Rossi's go to maternity-wear trick: layer black leggings under a dress to add a little edge. Credit: Guerre/ModMods.com
British born Zanna Roberts Rassi has taken the US fashion industry by storm since moving to NYC in 2006. Her job titles, yes that's plural, currently include Marie Claire senior fashion editor, E! News and TODAY show fashion correspondent, Judge on "Project Runway"'s spin-off show "Under The Gunn," stylist — and oh, she's also eight months pregnant with twin girls. Talk about multitasking!
Rassi set a daily style challenge for herself, one that we've been following on Instagram ever since she revealed her first look, a cerise pink Lisa Perry dress with the hashtag #stylethebump. Since then she's gone on to prove jumpsuits, graphic prints and full-length gowns aren't just for your pre-pregnancy body. We discuss.
Maternity wear and fashion. It's not a sentence that usually reads well. So how is your #stylethebump challenge going?
For me, most of the maternity wear I’ve found has featured bows and polka dots. You end up looking like a giant baby! My personal style is much more tomboy, it’s much more minimal and the idea of suddenly going all frou-frou is scary. Just because you’re pregnant doesn’t mean you have to change your style. Menswear has been great for me. I’ve robbed lots from my husband’s closet like white shirts and sweaters as there is nothing worse than a shrunken one that shows half your pregnant belly.
Are you wearing anything that you wouldn't normally go for?
I’m definitely wearing more dresses. They’re easier, so I’m embracing it. I got a pair of J Brand black leather leggings which I layer with everything. They’re my staple. I bought them in a size or two up. They add a tougher edge to any dresses I choose to wear because I’m not really a typical girly girl. For me dressing a changing body is difficult and I’ve learned a lot through the process. For years I’ve been telling people how to dress but I’ve never had to dress a changing body myself so it's been a great experience.
What's been your biggest challenge?
Lots of people said, 'Oh just get a pair of leggings and a white shirt,' and I was like I can't live my life like that for six months! When you have fun dressing, it motivates you so I’ve embraced it. I decided I’m not going to wear sweats and I’m going to go for it. I’ve really had fun with it. But the hardest styling challenge has to be the maternity bras. They’re so uncomfortable. And not pretty. Out of all of them I've found that Gap Body and Victoria Secret's non-underwired are the best.
Have you started clothes shopping for the babies yet?
It’s so much fun. I've found this store called YoYa which is full of divine baby things. Boden Baby is also incredible, I'm obsessed with its website. Baby Gap is brilliant too, you don't have to spend a fortune.
To read the full interview and see Rassi's stylish maternity wardrobe in action, head to ModMods.com.