Meghan Markle’s words about women supporting women are extremely important

Meghan Markle made fashion news today as she officially launched The Smart Set – a five piece capsule collection alongside Smart Works Charity – and in partnership with Jigsaw, John Lewis and Partners, Marks and Spencer and Misha Nonoo.

The collection – revealed today – aims to equip the Smart Works clients with the classic wardrobe pieces to help them feel confident as they mobilise back into the work space.

Opening up about the exciting new collection, Meghan delivered an emotional speech about how she starting working with the charity.

‘When I first moved to the UK, it was incredibly important to me personally to be able to connect with people on the ground in really important work and one of the places that I went to very early on was Smart Works,’ Meghan announced when unveiling The Smart Set.

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Last month, The Duchess of Sussex surprised Smart Works clients during the capsule collection shoot in west London…Today, The Duchess, alongside @SmartWorksCharity – in partnership with @InsideJigsaw, @JohnLewisandPartners, @MarksandSpencer and @MishaNonoo – are incredibly proud to reveal to everyone, #TheSmartSet – a five piece capsule collection that will equip the Smart Works clients with the classic wardrobe pieces to help them feel confident as they mobilise back into the work space. • “Since moving to the UK, it has been deeply important to me to meet with communities and organisations on the ground doing meaningful work and to try to do whatever I can to help them amplify their impact. It was just last September that we launched the ‘Together’ cookbook with the women of the Hubb Kitchen in Grenfell. Today, a year later, I am excited to celebrate the launch of another initiative of women supporting women, and communities working together for the greater good. Thank you to the four brands who came together in supporting Smart Works on this special project – placing purpose over profit and community over competition. In convening several companies rather than one, we’ve demonstrated how we can work collectively to empower each other – another layer to this communal success story, that I am so proud to be a part of” – The Duchess of Sussex The collection – which features a shirt, trousers, blazer, dress and tote bag – will be on sale for two weeks starting today, with the objective of selling enough units to give Smart Works the essentials they need to help dress clients for the coming year! For every item bought during the sale of the collection, one will be donated to Smart Works, this 1:1 model allows customers to directly support the Smart Works women by playing a part in their success story – how they look and more importantly, how they feel. Photo © @JennyZarins

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‘Now, funnily enough and purely by coincidence it was just a year ago, at this same time that I was working on a project in Grenfell with this woman at a community centre called Al-Manaar, and that’s when we put together the ‘Together’ cookbook. So though this is a year later and obviously this is fashion, not food, at its core these are very similar projects because they’re about women who are empowering each other.

‘[I] have the opportunity to meet them, get to know them, learn from them and then say what can I do in some small way, how can I try to help you amplify this? How can we make this even better, greater and more impactful for the movement that you’re trying to help?’

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Introducing the new Smart Works collection, #TheSmartSet Over the last year, The Duchess of Sussex and @SmartWorksCharity have come together to launch a very special initiative. Following numerous visits to the charity, The Duchess, who is patron of Smart Works, noticed an underlying issue… while the donations were plentiful, the right sizes and classic wardrobe staples were not always available. Since then – having partnered with leading British fashion designers @InsideJigsaw, @JohnLewisandPartners, @MarksandSpencer and @MishaNonoo – The Duchess has championed the launch of a new Smart Works capsule collection that will help properly equip these women for their next chapter. • “When you buy any item in the Smart Set Capsule Collection for Smart Works, the same item will be given to a Smart Works client, and with it, the confidence and support she needs to enter the workforce and take an important step in building a career.” – The Duchess of Sussex Created in September 2013 with the goal to help unemployed women regain the confidence that may have been blurred during more difficult times, Smart Works provides invaluable support in these women’s return to employment and towards transforming their lives. Not only do they supply complete outfits for job interviews, Smart Works provides access to one-to-one interview training and the opportunity to join Smart Works Network, meeting every month to further their professional and personal development. #TheSmartSet collection – that features a shirt, trousers, blazer, dress and bag – will be on sale for two weeks starting today. Please support the women of Smart Works by purchasing one of the pieces and being part of another woman’s success story. Video ©️ SussexRoyal / Photo ©️ @JennyZarins

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Going on to speak about the work that Smart Works does and how it is transforming the idea of charity to community, she continued: ‘When we go into our closet as a woman, we say “I’m going to make a donation”, you don’t go through your closet and just toss in a box whatever you don’t care about anymore. That’s charity, as we know it today. Community is going through your closet and saying “this is the blazer that I wore when I nailed my first job interview and got my dream job and I don’t need that anymore because I’m where I want to be”. But if I’m able to share that blazer and be part of another women’s success story, then that’s community. This is sort of how we thought of the Smart Works Capsule collection.’

Concluding her speech, Meghan announced: ’This is the kind of work that I’ve been doing for a really long time and to be able to do it here in my new home of the UK means quite a bit to me. It’s also the same range of work that my husband and I will continue doing, really strong community based projects and this is something that we’ll be excited to be able to share more about next year when we launch our foundation Sussex Royal in 2020.’

The collection – a shirt, trousers, blazer, dress and tote bag – will be on sale for two weeks starting today, aiming to sell enough pieces to give Smart Works the essentials to help dress clients for the whole next year.

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