Name: Melissa Stern

Neighborhood: Murray Hill

Occupancy: Development Manage for a nonprofit

Pregnancy Number: First

How would you describe your pregnant style?

Easy and comfortable. The fewer layers the better, especially as the temperature increased in NYC.

Have you had any challenges learning to dress your pregnant body?

Yes! I've learned that all maternity clothes are not created equal, and that one bump size does not fit all. I was shocked to learn that you find maternity clothes sizes by your normal clothing size. My body has changed in more places than just the belly region, so I often felt as though maternity clothes weren't fitting, because they were sized to fit certain body areas. I also had a really hard time finding long pants (I always buy size Long in pants). Maternity pants and jeans tend to be short, and they only get shorter as your belly grows.

So far, what has surprised you most during your pregnancy?

I have been surprised by the number of symptoms one experiences and the way in which those symptoms appear and disappear with or without my doing anything.

What's been your favorite pregnancy piece or brand to show off your bump?

I knew I didn't want to spend a lot on maternity clothes and was lucky to be able to use my regular shirts and sweaters well into my second trimester. Of my regular clothing, my wrap dresses were the perfect professional transition dress. They grew with me and still looked elegant. My maternity clothing essentials have been my maternity jeans, my maternity denim skirt and my maternity black pencil skirt. I will recommend those three pieces to all my pregnant friends in the future.

What NYC experience are you most looking forward to sharing with your baby?

I am looking forward to enjoying NYC parks (especially those along the water), museums and arts/culture events. I love that in NYC, I won't have to pack the baby into a car to get around!

Photos by Sara Kalish Photography.

Shot on location at the ducduc showroom in NYC.