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NEW YORK — Sweltering humidity is fun for no one, but city sprites can usually pull it off hiply with a ponytail, sunglasses and a little sundress. But imagine lugging around your nine-months-pregnant self in such heat. A flimsy frock, no matter by whom or how cute, isn’t going to make life bearable or raise your self-esteem. And it’s precisely because of moments like this that Skye Hoppus has penned “Rock Star Momma,” a how-to that offers hints on keeping chic through some of pregnancy’s ickier moments. The book will be feted in Los Angeles by actress Joely Fisher.

Herself a rock star momma — wife of former blink-182 vocalist-bassist Mark Hoppus and mother of four-year-old Jack — Hoppus designs the maternity and children’s line Childish Clothing, worn by the likes of Heidi Klum, Jennifer Garner and Gwyneth Paltrow, who supplied the book’s forward. So she’s pretty well-versed on the subject. And to that end, she gets down and dirty on some details, eschewing the old-fashioned notion of “what you don’t know….” In one section, outlined in seemingly innocent pink dots, Hoppus discusses the why, how and when of Kegels or why cotton gussets on underthings are of the utmost importance.

“There are so many off-limit things,” she says of other non-medically driven maternity lit. “All the other pregnancy books are so clean and so, ‘Oh, everything’s going to be fine.’ Women need to be more honest with other women.”

Hoppus mentions fellow music wife Vicki Iovine’s full-disclosure tome, “The Girlfriends’ Guide to Pregnancy,” as a good place to start (Iovine’s husband, Jimmy, is the founder of Interscope Records). Where it leaves off, “Rock Star Momma” picks up on the fashion side. First off, invest in as many men’s T-shirts as possible, Hoppus says. “You have to have wife-beaters — I hate to use that term,” she says. The extra-long length covers up any sized belly. Then move on to a good tunic to layer, as well as any number of on-trend tent dresses. “If you can get five great pieces and mix and match them with your nonmaternity pieces, you’re set.” It helps, she notes, that a lot of non-maternity brands, like J Brand Jeans, are starting to dip into the market, while other labels — C&C and James Perse T-shirts and Juicy Couture sweats — lend themselves easily to it.

This story first appeared in the June 21, 2007 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

Of course, there’s a big list of things to avoid, such as anything too tight or pleated or, her biggest pet peeve, seeing the stretchy belly bands attached to skirts and pants. “If you have to buy clothes that have those panels that go all the way up to your boobs, that’s fine. Just cover it up,” she says.

Other than the 50 pounds she gained and one clothes-related meltdown during her pregnancy, Hoppus had a relatively easy time staying chic. But she recognizes that other women have it worse and respects them for it. “You have to give in and accept this time and make it work for you,” is her best advice. “Is it easy? No.”

— Nandini D’Souza

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