Kate Middleton and Prince William have been notoriously private about the Duchess’ pregnancy, but during a shopping trip in London last week the expectant mother flaunted her growing baby bump for the first time.

The royal family has been increasingly protective over the Duchess of Cambridge during her pregnancy, asking for more privacy from the press, especially in the wake of Kate’s hospital stay in early December. But Middleton appeared to throw the paparazzi a bone on Wednesday when she stepped out in public sporting a noticeably larger figure, reported People.

The 30-year-old Duchess of Cambridge showed off her bump in leggings, riding boots, and a black-and-white tartan shawl, while reportedly shopping for maternity clothing in West London.

The magazine reported that Middleton searched for a pair of jeggings at the Gap, but couldn’t find anything the right length for her. The Duchess, pictured in the photos smiling and with her hair casually pulled into a ponytail, looked relaxed and happy as she shopped.

The public appearance will likely come as a relief to the many fans of the Duchess, who have been concerned about her health since the palace first announced that she was suffering from hyperemesis gravidarum, a dangerous type of morning sickness which reportedly affects only one in 50 pregnant women.

The announcement, along with the news of Kate’s pregnancy, came shortly after her admittance to a London hospital in December.

"The Duchess was admitted this afternoon to King Edward VII Hospital in Central London with Hyperemesis Gravidarum," a rep for the palace said in a statement . "As the pregnancy is in its very early stages, Her Royal Highness is expected to stay in hospital for several days and will require a period of rest thereafter."

The Telegraph also reported that Middleton had been forced to cancel many of her meetings and appearances due to her state of health, prompting immediate concern from the public.

According to Us Weekly, the Duchess’ condition has since improved. A royal source for the magazine said that she is now, “arranging meetings with the charities she is involved with and planning future engagements before the baby is born.”

“She wants to keep herself busy now that she is feeling better,” the source added.