Tuesday, 30 July 2019

UPDATED: The Duchess to Partner with Leading British Retailers in Support of Smart Works & Harry in Vogue

The September issue of British Vogue is the gift that keeps on giving. We've been treated to an array of beautifully written pieces, behind-the-scenes video and images, and introduced to inspiring women and businesses striving to make their corner of the world a better place. This evening, perhaps the greatest of those gifts was revealed. In our post last night, we chatted about Meghan reaching out to Edward Enninful to discuss the outstanding work her patronage Smart Works is doing. A conversation which stemmed from a desire to maximise her impact as patron led to the Duchess guest-editing British Vogue. Smart Works was on Meghan's mind every step of the way though, and in a piece about the organisation 'The Smart Set', the Duchess revealed she has partnered with several leading British retailers to launch a capsule collection of workwear to benefit the charity.

British Vogue/Sussex Royal

The Duchess writes she was drawn to Smart Works because it "reframes the idea of charity as community" which she described as "incredibly important" to her. "It's the enthusiasm of the volunteers, the earnestness of the staff" and "the blushing, bashful and beautiful smiles that crosses a client's face when she sees herself in the mirror" that Meghan found so profoundly compelling. Throughout her many visits to the charity, Meghan noticed the mismatched sizes and colours. To help with this, she formulated a plan. "I asked Marks & Spencer, John Lewis & Partners, Jigsaw and my friend Misha Nonoo to design a capsule collection for a workwear wardrobe." During the inception of the project, the companies involved agreed to adopt the "one-for-one model" whereby each time a piece is purchased, one is donated to charity. Meghan added: "Not only does this allow us to be part of each other's story, it reminds us we are in it together."


More from Smart Works:


"The capsule collection is an idea that the Duchess came to us with," Kate Stephens, CEO of Smart Works told The Telegraph. "We are hugely grateful to our Patron for driving this collection and for all the difference it will make to thousands of women’s lives across the UK."


Meghan also touched on a misunderstanding Smart Works is simply about makeovers, writing if one is searching for a cultural reference "it's the story of Wonder Woman, ready to take on the world in her metaphorical and literal cape". The collection will be released later this year. This is going to be hugely impactful for Smart Works, yielding tangible support to enable them to broaden their services across the UK. With the collection due in a matter of months, I suspect the lion's share of preparation and planning took place during Meghan's maternity leave.


I've said before, in many ways Meghan's actionable approach to her role mirrors that of her father-in-law. It is widely reported Charles has served as a mentor to the Duchess and the two have bonded over their passions for causes closest to their hearts. Almost three decades ago, Charles set up Duchy Originals to sell organic food products. Since then it has become a leading brand in partnership with Waitrose. All profits have gone to charitable causes. Like Charles, Meghan approaches her role with a desire to be as effective as possible.


The BBC wrote a stellar piece on several women availing of Smart Works' services. Below Caroline's story:

'I was a hairdresser and I was going through a really rough time and I knew I needed a change. I had been in the same salon for 14 years. I should have left years ago but you're a creature of habit - you have to break free. I'd gone to the Job Centre and got an interview for a course to become a carer and they told me about Smart Works.The last time I went for a job interview was 14 years ago so it was a little bit nerve-wracking. I thought, what the hell do I wear? You want to look professional but you don't want to look like your mum.
At Smart Works they make you feel so welcome. They gave me a coffee and biscuits and were talking to me like they've known me for years. I'm not used to being treated this nice. There's something really special about women helping women. I'm usually quite self-conscious but it was like shopping with my sister. I was walking around in my pants. The dress I've got is Marks & Spencer and the bag is Osprey. I love it. As a normal person, living in a house share, getting the wages I get, I would never have been able to afford something like this. My other dresses are from charity shops.
We worked on my interview skills. She told me not to speak so fast, or be nervous making eye contact, and she said "don't twiddle with your hands". Everything she was saying I was writing down. When I went home that night I read through it. I did the interview and aptitude tests and [started] the four-week intensive course.
Now I'm a healthcare assistant at nursing homes and residential homes all over Birmingham. I'm a lot happier now. I've got my life back. I work 40 hours a week but it's flexible. I sent [Smart Works volunteer] Cheryl a picture of me in my work uniform, like: "Look at me. I'm in my work top". Smart Works made me feel wonderful. I would never have picked the dress out for myself but for someone to say "this suits you", it's lovely. It made me feel like I am worth being helped out.'

More from Sussex Royal: "Launching this autumn, The Duchess will be supporting a collective to help equip the women of Smart Works with the key workwear essentials they need as they enter into the workplace. This initiative is supported by four generous brands who share the vision to empower the women of Smart Works to look and feel 100 as they bravely venture in to what can often be a daunting environment for those who have been out of the job market."


Harper's Bazaar notes the charity has grown markedly since the Duchess became patron. This project is going to be the catalyst to take their efforts to the next step. Smart Works recently announced they will be launching in Leeds to bring their award-winning service to the women of West Yorkshire in the coming months. With news of this collaboration, I suspect they'll have all the resources they need to make this a resounding success. With Meghan on board, I have a strong suspicion Leeds will be one of many new locations :)


In the images from Meghan's visits to Smart Works, she's wearing her Gucci Tweed dress.


And the William Vintage coat she wore in New York. Meghan teamed it with black jeans and her Aquazzura Deneuve Bow pumps.


Prince Harry's interview with Dr Jane Goodall was also revealed today. During an overcast day in Windsor, the pair, who have very much hit off since with plans for a charitable collaboration in the works, discussed a number of topics. During the conversation Harry discussed plans to have no more than one more baby, saying: "Two maximum." The piece includes remarkably candid words from Harry. "I think, weirdly, because of the people that I’ve met and the places that I’ve been fortunate enough to go to, I’ve always had a connection and a love for nature. I view it differently now, without question. But I’ve always wanted to try and ensure that, even before having a child and hoping to have children…"


Harry also touched on racism and unconscious bias:

"It’s the same as an unconscious bias – something which so many people don’t understand, why they feel the way that they do. Despite the fact that if you go up to someone and say, “What you’ve just said, or the way that you’ve behaved, is racist” – they’ll turn around and say, “I’m not a racist.” “I’m not saying that you’re a racist, I’m just saying that your unconscious bias is proving that, because of the way that you’ve been brought up, the environment you’ve been brought up in, suggests that you have this point of view – unconscious point of view – where naturally you will look at someone in a different way.” And that is the point at which people start to have to understand."

More from Sussex Royal: "Earlier this summer HRH the Duke of Sussex met with world renowned ethologist Dr. Jane Goodall for an intimate conversation on environment, activism, and the world as they see it. This special sit-down was requested by The Duchess of Sussex, who has long admired Dr. Goodall and wanted to feature her in the September issue of British Vogue, which HRH has guest edited. HRH and Dr. Goodall spoke candidly about many topics including the effects of unconscious bias, and the need for people to acknowledge that your upbringing and environment can cause you to be prejudiced without realising it. The Duke described that “[when] you start to peel away all the layers, all the taught behaviour, the learned behaviour, the experienced behaviour, you start to peel all that away - and at the end of the day, we’re all humans." Click here to read the full piece.


The digital issue of British Vogue can be downloaded via their app now. I've only had a chance to read a handful of articles so far, but I can tell you it's packed with substance, each page curated with care. Familiar names and faces from Outland Denim to Clare Waight-Keller pop up in paragraphs. There's an array of wonderful features, articles, stunning photography and of course plenty of fashion. The print edition will be available on Friday.

145 comments:

  1. She is great ! I am sure that many associations would have liked to have as a boss, I bought the online version of the Magazine but I can not wait to have the paper version

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  2. Becca H in Colorado30 July 2019 at 22:57

    This makes me so happy. It's like having a bit of our Tig Meghan back, only now, she has a much greater platform. I loved Caroline's story about her experience with Smart Works. What she said about the feeling she got from women helping women is something I wish more would take to heart, especially in Instagram comments. Can't wait to read Harry's full interview!

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  3. That image of Meghan so focused in her tweed dress and huge bump is iconic! A seriously great shot.

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    1. Zora from Prague30 July 2019 at 23:42

      I agree. I also love the photo of Harry and Jane Goodall with the umbrella.

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  4. I’m just so impressed with the positive impact Meghan has brought with this wonderful project! I can’t wait to buy this issue!
    -JF

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    1. Same here! This is really stunning and thoughtful. As others say - Tig x 1000. This deal she's set up (excellent note on Charles's influence!) is really cool. Good luck to her!
      Hoping to catch a hard copy of British Vogue via Amazon. Thanks for all the tidbits Charlotte!
      -op

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  5. Becca H in Colorado30 July 2019 at 23:31

    I forgot to add that Meghan and Harry must have known Archie's gender before his birth. She mentioned in her opening letter that by the time readers held the publication, they'd be holding their 3-month-old baby boy! Did anyone else notice this, or am I crazy?

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    1. I think the opening letter was probably written towards the end of the planning. Archie was already born and she knew he would be 3 months old when the issue was released. That’s my take.

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    2. I expect it was added as the magazine was headed to the printer. After Archie arrived.

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    3. Hi Becca, I did notice that but figured that Meghan wrote that opening letter sometime after Archie was born.

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    4. That's how I interpreted it too.

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    5. I just assumed the opening was only written recently

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    6. Perhaps the letter was written fairly soon after the birth?

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    7. I wondered about this, too! But I've also seen that she has been working on the issue even while on maternity leave, so perhaps she wrote her piece after his born. I am sure Vogue has a pretty early print schedule, but maybe it requires less than three months' lead time.

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    8. Perhaps she wrote that after Archie's birth...

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    9. I noticed that, but we don't know when she wrote that opening letter. Edward Enninful said that he and Meghan worked together on this up until a few weeks ago.

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    10. I think that was probably written after Archie was born and just before the magazine went to press. It would be the last thing she wrote to finish off the project.

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    11. Maybe they did know, maybe they didn't. I certainly wouldn't blame them if they knew but kept it a secret. Some people are really crazy in what they think they have a right to know about others. I think most royals do that and I am pretty sure not all of them did'nt find out.
      But it is also possible that the letter was written later. Or she already finished it and they just put "boy" in it after Archie was born.
      C.

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  6. I didn't think I could love them more, but here I go, loving them more! I feel like the last few months we've been under a tsunami of negativity and lies and now at last we're getting more of the good, true, wonderful counter-message of how much they add and offer.

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    1. So true, Em in Oregon. Alas, that has done nothing to win over the coterie which consistently maligns every effort Meghan makes. The knives are out about everything. Every miniscule thing.

      My response to the endless vitriol is to examine the contribution of each naysayer. How is each one of them working to make the world a better, more beautiful and inclusive place? I've yet to discover one which measures up to anything Meghan has accomplished since her engagement to Harry. Few can hold a candle to even one of Meghan's successful ventures never mind the lot of them.

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  7. I’m so impressed with the way Harry talks about racism and bias. My job involves working with educators in the US around issues of equity, diversity, and inclusion in which identifying and analyzing ones own implicit bias is an enormous part of the work. It’s hard work and something people—even the most willing participants—find difficult to do. These conversations are difficult and many educators and education settings in the US would rather ignore the issue than address it head on. I’m so glad that Harry and Meghan are willing to do this work and to talk about it openly. Especially glad that Harry is willing to take the burden of addressing it since we can see how difficult some media outlets are regarding the subject of race and bias.

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  8. Charlotte, thank you for your informative blog. I’ve just purchased my 1st British Vogue, digital copy for now, and I’m looking forward to reading everything.

    I’ve missed Meghan’s writing and it feels we have a little bit of The Tig back, but on a larger platform. I think back to 11 yr old Meghan when she was on Nick Jr, I’m paraphrasing a bit, but in general when she said, ‘you can do something to help others, not just yourself’. I think she’s doing that by being a guest editor & so much more with all of these fabulous projects that she & Harry are working on. Harry’s interview with Dr Goodall was beautiful, necessary & appreciated on so many levels. So many things to talk about, but not enough time. Thanks again, Charlotte.

    Dena

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  9. Meghan never fails to amaze me. Look what shes done in less than 2 years. A best selling cookbook which totally changed the lives of the hubb kitchen ladies, guest editing vogue and featuring women activists, and now. Clothing collection to benefit smart works. I hope we will be able to buy in the US!

    As i said.to a good friend today, open a hospital or two and I shall.not know what to do with myself I will be so pleased!

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  10. I loved what Jane Goodall said about children to one of the most priviledged member of the royal family, 'Not too many'...
    Preach wine drink water comes to my mind.

    On the positive note, this couple is absolutely amazing, I have never thought she would get such negative press because she wanted to work, do real stuff for people. I am pretty heartbroken, hope she will never give up.

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  11. I'm so happy to see this. I need to slow down and go back a reread everything...I feel like in my excitement, I missed a lot

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  12. i just used Newsstand to order the issue and it's only 10.5 pounds equivalent to mail to Texas. Hope this issue is a best seller!! What I love, among so many things, is that she does a thorough fund-raising effort for each charity. The Hubb women have their (first) cookbook, and now SmartWorks will have a fashion partnership. So smart and thoughtful.

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    1. Allison in US31 July 2019 at 14:46...She has a great understanding that funding equals more access and opportunities

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    2. Nicole from france1 August 2019 at 13:41

      Allison in US , you just tick the right box ! Not only does she draw attention on a charity work to find donators, she does herself work by giving positive ideas and , most certainly , work on the possibilities of making them come to life , which is not that easy !
      That’s quite new , except for ... Prince Charles, may be , who certainly had himself ideas about ecology and sustainity , Duchy Organic and all that .
      I can nearly understand haters ... she is so fantastic ! Just joking , of course, and happy to live in France so that I hear nothing of all this bullying , thanks God !

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  13. I do like that Jigsaw is involved.
    They already have royal ties, so I think it was a nice touch they were added for the collection.

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  14. To be blunt, I have never understood the number of patronages the RF have attached their names to over the years. When the list appears each year of supposedly who the hardest working royal is I have thought to myself that it is virtually impossible to have truly lent more then a hand shake and photo op to most of the organizations. I have said before being a Pop in Princess is not being a patron. As an older follower of the royals I have recognized for years and admired the work of the Prince of Wales who years ago was a target for being a forward thinker. It has come to light that he was a man ahead of his time in the universal interests he has spent his life embracing. We who had followed The Tig already knew who Meghan was through her interests and what she valued most in her life. What I see in Meghan is the same person I imagine she always was with greater access to help others on a broad scale in a quiet behind the scenes manner. She is more the norm then many in the so called "roll" we often read about. She is a working Mom much the same as many in the world. It is so refreshing to read of the very relevant causes that she is bringing to the attention of the world that we can all personally support rathe then just view her appearances. Meghan is a true example of being in "the roll" as a royal in this current time in history. She is the Fairy Tale Princess we should all want our daughters to emulate in life.

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    1. You know I went to the Royal Instagram site today - looking at these fuddy duddy old non-woke, non-politicsised royals at work - getting comments in the tens of thousands, not the millions. I looked at the Duke of Gloucester (age 75) an old man in a slightly rumbled suit shaking hands with eager volunteers being honoured, at Anne, (age 69) in a plain unstylish dress at a textile factory - workers trying to show her what they do, at Alexandra (age 83) in a dated looking hat she's probably owned for years at a Thrive event - a charity using gardening to change the lives of disabled people all over the country, even at the Duke of York at the Great Yorkshire Show with a beaming old man handing him a rose bush -
      All of royals just doing these traditional royal visits that are getting heaped with scorn for being outdated here because they are only about a handshake, a tree planted, a little interest shown, a photo-op that won't end up in Vogue but will go on someone's mantel and be passed through generations - all these little local charities, volunteer organisations, universities, factories, who maybe get a visit once a year, maybe once in five years... there's nothing polarising about these visits, nothing fashionable nothing that will change the world, nothing about a 'brand' - just a celebration of ordinary people's achievements and interests.
      And I looked at the unmitigated joy and happiness and excitement in the faces of the people meeting these second tier royals - the smiles, the pride in having their small achievements recognised, not fashionable people - not celebrities, billionaires, movers and shakers, just a handshake for an ordinary citizen that could be me, that could be any one of us - it is not as much about the royal visiting as it is about the people they meet - about doing work at home, not lecturing us about saving the world, and yet all these organisations are helping someone....honouring people who have given their time...

      And I thought about what the royal family has been, not controversial, avoiding political causes, and causes of the moment, uniting, not dividing just like the Queen asked us to all do in her Christmas broadcast which has been so much ignored by her grandaughter-in-law who wants to be a player on the world stage - just about people. These visits won't get in the papers, no one will wear a Gucci dress, (can one imagine Anne in Gucci! A fairy princess she is not and wouldn't want to be.) Mostly they won't even get on the fashion sites - because they aren't about the royals but the thousands of people they meet, people doing small but vital things, giving their time, achieving, trying to help people in little ways...
      And I thought about what a magnificent modest thing the royal family has been for decades, because behind every tree planted and every ribbon cut, and every minor visit, there are people!! And thought about what a celebrity driven, egotistic divisive thing this new and improved royal family is becoming...
      I looked at the faces of those happy, honoured ordinary people - and I wept.

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    2. Uh wow Julia. It’s just the royal family. It’s not actually life. Chill out. And you’re convinced Charles/Camila/Harry/William/Meghan are doing this for ego and attention? Okay.

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    3. Ivy Lin1 August 2019 at 13:09...thank you Ivy

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    4. Julia, I actually thought of you when I saw this issue! It's good to hear your voice after so long. I know that you have a different philosophy about the RF than most on the blogs and I rerspect that. I think there is room for both the honorable work done by royals for whom there are no cameras, no write-ups and the work done by whoever is currently young and currently sought after. I imagine that Harry and Meghan, and Will and Kate, will someday be in their 60s and 70s and doing exactly what you describe. If the world didn't give M&H celebrity status, they would not have the opportunity to affect so many people. They also affect the few on their visits, like the senior royals, but they are currently given a boarder voice. It won't last long.

      For example, there must be so many girls and women of color in the UK who feel just a little better about the prejudice they have faced seeing Meghan become a duchess. You can't see them all but they are just as important as the happy ordinary people you mention.

      I think the attention stems from Harry and Will being Diana's children, so they are trying to drive that spotlight to help as many people as they can in the short time it's available. The world is creating the celebrity out of them. If Meghan can use her status to start a clothes line that gives new fashionable clothes to, say, 5000 women, surely that means 5000 women who are ordinary yet happier. And their ordinary families will be happier. I don't see how this is not a good situation. It would be unkind to wish for the small encounters only.

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    5. Well said Julia.You are absolutely right.

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    6. Julia, your words truly affected me. You made me see the worth of all royal visits and patronages. There’s a need for all sorts of royal involvement. It all affects the lives of others. Thank you for your comment. <3 Heather

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    7. Julia, you do raise some beautiful points about the value of a patron, and as an American who is only aware of the concept of the royal patron via following Kate and Meghan, I learned quite a lot from your post. There's no reason to consider the lower profile visits of lower profile royals to be mutually exclusive from these high-profile partnerships that happened to literally land in the pages of Vogue. Meghan does so very much in the public eye, but we find out that her public visits are just the tip of the iceberg. I'm sure she's lent plenty of behind-the-scenes heirloom photo ops for more people than we know, completely off the public record. Meghan recognizes that her profile is part of her power, and she is committed to using all of her resources...her gift of bringing people together, her ability to create synergy across systems, and yes, her profile...to generate as much good as possible.

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    8. Zora from Prague1 August 2019 at 14:47

      Thank you for writing this, Julia. I agree the ordinary work of less "famous" royals is vitally important and it would be a huge mĂ­stake not to go on with it and do "fashionable" and "celebrity" things instead. I do hope the Sussexes will never abandon this kind of work - Meghan's helping the women of the Hub kitchen is an example of how well she can do it.

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    9. I would like to suggest that any controversy has not been created by actions of anyone within the royal family. All of them are busily going about their work. Using their individual gifts, their connections and their status to serve the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth.

      Though it is not an elected body, the media wields enormous power for good in this world. It could get on board and mobilize people to take the actions needed to mitigate the numerous threats to all creatures living on the planet--ourselves included.

      Instead there's little reliable or serious news of any kind. Instead, much of it tears down, maligns, divides and shames people working for change in the name of "free" (read gutter, read irresponsible) press. It does so with careless disregard for facts. Alarmingly, in its present incarnation the press is one of the most serious threats to democracy.

      It is the media which focuses its attention on some royals over others. Then it has the gall to twist the narrative and suggest that they are "show offs" or "attention seekers." That's always said (most especially about women whether royal or not) who are vibrant, dynamic, brilliant people who get things done. Though Charles got a great deal of undeserved flack for being light years ahead of his time.

      Right now, the media lightning is constantly crackling, waiting to strike. Right now, Meghan is their primary rod. In the motive for profit, the press routinely whips up false and divisive narratives and uses misleading headlines as click bait. Here's but one benign example: That business about Duchess Difficult going through multiple nannies in mere weeks was bunk. They were "testing" a few applicants for best fit. I have been tested in similar fashion before being given contractual employment--nothing abnormal or sinister in that. But that's not how the story played out.

      Frankly, if it weren't so dangerous, it would simply be tedious.

      And yes, though it's not likely to happen, I can imagine Anne in Gucci. She would rock this coat.
      https://www.gucci.com/ca/en/pr/women/womens-ready-to-wear/womens-coats/gabardine-coat-with-cape-p-581837Z8AEW1233?position=23&listName=ProductGrid&categoryPath=Women/Womens-Ready-to-Wear

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    10. With all due respect Julia I think you greatly exaggerate the role of the BRF. If I opened a hospital wing I would never ever ask to get a royal visit. Why should I let my hard work be overshadowed by a royal visit? Like it or not the BRF is an antiquated institution that the Queen has brought into the 21st century with her quickness on her feet and flexibility. If you want to weep that's fine. But we are no longer in Victorian England.

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    11. Thank you, Ivy Lin. Lets keep the RF in prospective. I am very much a fan of the RF. But, let us not loose prospective in the fact that they live unbelievable lives filled with benefits unknown to the majority of the world except for the 1%. Enter Meghan, who has a very different definition and knowledge of a work ethic.

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    12. Ivy Lin, you are showing your American lack of understanding for the British royal family, and insulting not only the Crown but also the British people. Please try to base your posts in fact and not emotional opinion and speculation about things of which you obviously do not even have a basic understanding or appreciation.

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    13. Philly, mostly I don't plan to comment here - like most others with nuanced views - I've shrugged and walked away from this forum. I did want to give a shout to not so old-fashioned royal ways of doing things - still proving successful in European monarchies (I've particularly admired Victoria's regional hikes.) My comment was actually inclusive of William and Kate - who whilst not seeming to be seeking to be global superstars like the Sussex pair, seem to be pursuing a specialist rather than generalist royal paradigm, which I feel is limiting - as well as not doing nearly enough.
      But the press is the mouthpiece for the British people - if Meghan's action were wildly popular they would write accordingly. Some articles are admittedly trivia. (Meghan's nannies seem an exercise in semantics - 'testing' versus 'going through' - since she's an actress maybe auditioning is the best word) and other articles - some of which seem likely to have come from leaks within the palace - others may be invention.

      But the issue of political involvement is a huge one for me and that has been the subject of several brilliant articles - I commend Melanie Phillips in the Times and Joanna Rossiter in the Telegraph - who like me sees a likeness with Meghan and Edward VIII, the prince who said something must be done but also flirted dangerously near politics - the fashionably 'woke' fascism of his time.
      The royal family needs to be both timeless and unifying - particularly in times of strong political divisions such as now. In my opinion this needs to be broadly interpreted as the queen has done. Charles seems to see now that he has gone too far and has stated he will not be a political king, but he has decades of experience in Britain. Most political causes have a social element - take Brexit for example - political but hugely affecting people socially. That's not bad - politics leads to change but it's also divisive and not a place for royals who are supported by everyone. That is the queen's expressed wish and Meghan would just be a jobbing actress if it wasn't for the queen. She married into a family and her role - any person of either sex who marries into the family's role - is to support the political neutral concept of the royal family - if that means being a bit bland - so be it.
      And please don't tell me the controversial prime minister of New Zealand and woman whose husband told Britain they were going to the back of the queue aren't political figures. How can anyone think that! The latter person has absolutely nothing to do with a British princess - why were no achievements of the family who gave Meghan her podium not recognized! One thing I think all this is doing is having people define what they want in the royal family - hence Sarah Vine's and Stephan Glover's articles. But the saddest think for me is that making the press into the big bad wolf has kept Meghan from self-correcting - necessary if she is going to ultimately succeed. Royals have gone wrong before and self-corrected - but without listening and learning, that will never happen.

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    14. No I'm not insulting the British people. I'm actually showing them respect by saying that ordinary people do not need to think they are inferior just by birthright and marriage to people who lead incredibly pampered lives. Royal watching is fun. But let's not pretend that a British Vogue magazine cover is shaming the sanctity of the BRF. That ship sailed a long time ago.

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    15. Alison

      I would like to give you a huge shout out. Beautifully said beautifully.

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    16. Becca H in Colorado1 August 2019 at 23:19

      I do not agree that the British press are a mouthpiece for the people -- so Piers Morgan is spewing out what the collective people think? I doubt it.

      All that aside, I don't understand why the "old" regime of royals can't continue to do the good work they're doing while Meghan & Harry, etc, continue to do theirs. Because they ARE doing good work.

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    17. Julia, thank you for a very insightful and, clearly, heartfelt comment. I'm sorry you left the blog, but I understand your decision.

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    18. There are plenty of people with nuanced views here, julia. I even agree with a couple of things you just said. Have you ever complained about nuanced views on the Duchess Kate blog? I dont go over there very much any more but when I did I don't recall you ever saying anything about how nuanced views weren't welcome, even though there's a huge contingent of fans over there who don't like reading anything less than positive about Kate or anything she does. Odd.

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    19. Why is it necessary to disagree like this? Julia has a point of view, argued respectively and yet people feel the need to not just disagree, but to insinuate something nasty about her motives. In addition, for those Americans commenting, there is a lot we don't know or understand about the relationship of the BRF with the British people. Royal watching is fun, but as Americans, we need to remember we don't have a full understanding of this complicated relationship, and so, I think, should be careful about making judgments.

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    20. Thank you Marianne and others. bluhare - we used to have quite spirited discussions over on Duchess Kate (especially when Maggie was able - she is so much missed, poor soul) but that doesn't happen much now so I've backed away there too and will again here after this post. There are things I'd like to say about that coming boat race (parallels to an event in the eighties) but I haven't the heart. Unlike so many, I don't wish to claim the Cambridges are perfect just because I have issues with the Sussex duo, but at the same time, it doesn't seem fair to be critical of them but not comment here.

      Like many friends, I'm not sure I'm a royalist anymore because for me the royal family was about uniting in a dividing world, especially in troubled times and that goal seems to be lost. That doesn't mean I'm opposed to change and initiative, that has to happen but within certain parameters that welcome all, even those of us who see a crucial division between celebrity and royalty and political partisanship and royalty. I like to trigger discussion and critical thought but not personal attacks so best to stand back at least for now and as always I'm sorry for trouble I've caused Charlotte.

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    21. Julia I appreciate your perspective and agree with you especially your second to last sentence. I can understand you taking a step back as you say, but hopefully you'll venture back again because you were missed before and you'll be missed again.

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    22. Julia, I know I missed you; your comments derive from your view of the RF, not from a bigoted or prejudiced mindset. I know you have been just as critical of Kate, but it is always because of your view of what the RF should be and should do, not because of any personal dislikes of the duchesses. I hope something will compel you to post again in the future, perhaps favorably? :)

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  15. Dear Charlotte
    Thank you for all this information about the September issue of Vogue. I agree, it’s the gift that
    keeps on giving. As I have commented previously, I especially appreciate the way you keep referencing Charles’ very thoughtful relationship with, and “mentoring” of, Meghan.
    Harry’s conversation with Jane Goodall is so profoundly important.
    I hope my comment gets posted; I don’t know why some disappear.
    Renee

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  16. the duchess of sussex really inspiration towsrds woman in general i truly aligned to be destined to the duke of Sussex the conversation between harry and Jane Goodall is so precious and important value i lot people spamming about prince harry touches about being racist and bias about they will be having to own children saying slamming her brother and her sister in law

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  17. That is a fantatsic idea. Hopefully her name will make those lines a success.
    Can I just say- I very much love the tweed dress. Such a beautiful piece and it really looks lovely on her.
    While I liked Harry's interview I think his comment about the two children has an air of improvidence. From the context it can be (and some already do it) read as "maximum of two children because of the enviroment (aka overpopulation, waste of ressources...)". This interpretation sounds very judgemental and I fear that will be all people might take from the tabloids. That would be sad.
    C.

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    1. Harry's comment about two children is actually a reference to Charles's position on population (and a more streamlined monarchy). It was wildly surprising to many when the Cambridge's opted for a 3rd child, and some criticized them for that, especially those who knew of Charles's feelings.

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    2. Thrilled that Prince Harry mentioned the “two maximum” children.I saw this yesterday and was delighted. Whilst in the States they seem to go on with the idea that there is “ no such thing as climate change” thanks to their current leadership, to the rest of us, especially here in Europe and in the UK, it is serious business. As a local politician, I can assure you my days are consumed in this issue. Good on him. It may make him unpopular, it may draw criticism of his 3-children- family brother, as there was back when the Duchess of Cambridge’s pregnancy was announced, but it may also cause people to think about what we are collectively doing to our planet - and the choices that we all individually make that can contribute to a less hostile and over-spent world for those that come after us.
      Beyond that, let the Sussexes use their current status to draw attention to important charities. Smart Works is fantastic- we have one in my town- and i know their work well- but the Duchess cant hit them all- and best to choose those she enjoys and can impact. Furthermore, the acknowledgement of the BRF to so many of those that toil away as volunteers in this country doing what they can to improve lives for others (which I am blown away by every single day), is precious acknowledgement to the work that many do tirelessly- no matter which BRF member shows up to acknowledge their work. Using their position and “office” is their duty- not one they chose but one that they all buck up to- and get on with. Good on them. It is indeed “ their job”- and they make a cracking good effort at it too.

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    3. C, Ms. Cuppa and Oliver, I didn't realize that that William and Kate were criticized for having a third child. I'm sorry to hear that and given how delightful those three are, I hope people's opinions have mellowed. I certainly don't think that a couple should be criticized for having more than two children...in essence replacing themselves. Today, couples are opting to have zero children, or just one. So William and Kate are not overpopulating the world. Also, part of H and M's wish for two children could be impacted by the fact that Meghan is not a young mother. Kate got started earlier.

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    4. Spin is not a new concept. Turn the fact that any mutual affection between the two was gone and both spouses were too busy having affairs with other people to go for a third - turn that fact into a righteous crusade for humanity. He got by with it because it wasn't until Diana spilled the beans that the true state of the marriage was widely known.
      Having more than two children does not rule out one's taking an active interest in the environment and world resources. There was a time China limited families to one child. We saw what happened there. Is there to be mandatory sterilization/abortion after one child? In retrospect, we have learned that baby girls were being born and abandoned and orphanages filled. China's population problem was being handled by the adoption of these unwanted females by parents in other countries. Does that really solve world population problems? Shifting the burden to the other side of the Earth? However, I digress...
      Most of the European heirs who have not experienced marital distress or fertility or other child-bearing issues have three or more children. The heirs of Denmark and Belgium each have four children, for example. Heck, they can afford it. Some people are born with intelligence or beauty. Are we to dumb down the smart ones and ugly up the beautiful to keep them from utilizing the gifts they were given? Then why try to deprive the wealthy of having the number of children they can afford? I am stretching the thought to extremes to make a point, of course. on the other side of the procreation coin, Lincoln and others who left their mark came from humble beginnings. Being poor does not disqualify one as a person worthy of having children. There is aid of all sorts for such families but it is humiliating to have to ask for it. It isn't fair but I don't see a completely egalitarian society coming any time soon. It is what it is. It is exactly the Kate and William and Harry and Meghans of the world who should be populating the Earth.
      Depriving people of children because someone else can't afford them makes no sense. It doesn't help the poor person while it punishes the more fortunate. Charles himself comes from a family of four children. Both Edward and Andrew were born in the sixties, a time of increasing awareness of depletion of world resources. The space race was based partly on the knowledge that the population of Earth was on target to outgrow its home.

      I know this comment won't be published but I will say it amyway: Harry's recent quotes and speeches almost parrot opinions Meghan has publicly expressed before. From remarks Harry has previously made he gave the impression that he looked forward to a large family. With a 38 year old wife, that is no longer feasible, unless adoption is considered.
      By the way, the Gucci is lovely but at $4000, it ought to be. It is not really the High Street that is being offered to the charity's aid recipients. The black maxi coat with skinny jeans outfit- much more flattering.
      While I am expounding without hope of being published and in sure expectation of being deleted without consideration, (I am one of those former frequent commenters who have lost hope in this blog's ever being reality-based) I have another thought. Blaming the messenger (the press) for reporting more than one side of an issue is one of the first steps in creating a totalitarian state. That a commenter said a free press was the enemy absolutely leaves me gob-smacked. Of course, there are the tabs, whose royal reporters are quoted when flattering to favored royals and soundly bashed when criticism is given. Richard Palmer was once hailed here as a favored and trusted source. His name is now never mentioned because, although initially wildly flattering to Meg while harshly criticizing Kate, he changed his tune, once Meghan had settled into her role and given a glimpse of the future of the BRF, Meghan-style.

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    5. Please. Harry is now parroting Meghan. Don’t infantilize him. He’s an adult. Perhaps he’s influenced by his wife but the implication he’s somehow having his strings pulled by her is ridiculous. We’re all influenced by our families and significant others.

      Having many children IS a drain on resources in this time of fragile climate and global health. No one is proposing a sterilization policy. You are being quite hyperbolic and it undermines your argument. Harry was speaking to ethical choices. And it did raise eyebrows when William talked a big game about this and proceeded to have 3 children. They can afford it doesn’t make it ethical. The royal family’s carbon footprint is immense given their housing, transportation, and other needs. So yes there SHOUlD be some ethical considerations.

      I’m disconcerted by your take on the press. They are not offering “another side” in good faith. They are engaging in racist attacks. If you can’t see that I don’t really know how to illuminate it. It’s plain as day.

      I also have no idea what “the future of the royal family, Meghan-Style” means. Is she staging a palace takeover? She is the sister in law of the future king. She will one day be the sister in law of the king. Her role won’t be more than that and she’s not trying to make it. She can use that role to strategically support charities and causes. I think she has done splendidly in this regard.

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    6. I have more than 2 children. I do not consider myself a toughless criminal endangering the planet. This point of view is highly judgemental. I know a lot of other ways one does endanger the planet, won't list them here, but I am sure none on this forum is carbon footprint free, if only as Internet users. I sometimes feel like people like me are not allowed, and so called diversity is just another excluding ideology...

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    7. Do a search. "What's the carbon footprint of the internet?" You'll find hundreds of articles on the subject. How many of us ever consider the amount of time we spend on our electronic devices is contributing to the destruction of the planet? We probably never give it a thought. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2010/aug/12/carbon-footprint-internet

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    8. Helen and RM, thank-you. I had never thought of the internet in terms of carbon footprint. Lessons learned. Then again, maybe I have, without realizing it.I do try to avoid using more than one electronic device at a time-- no radio, tv, and no unnecessary lighting simultaneously with internet use. I thought that habit was the result of having had parents who grew up during the Great Depression. Dad was always turning off lights in empty rooms and televisions when he noted we weren't actually paying attention to it. (however, he growled if he awoke from a catnap in front of the television to find it had been turned off. "just resting my eyes" he would say. We were reminded of "all the starving children in Africa" when we didn't "clean our plates. )
      This may be an unpopular thought but has anyone considered the carbon footprint both glossy print and online fashion magazines involve? The fashion industry itself?
      World population growth exceeding food supply is probably one of the top five
      threats to our planet. At the rate we are killing each other off that may be a self-correcting issue.
      I do believe there is a solution that does not require shaming healthy, involved, caring parents for having more than two children.

      talking to myself here... we need to stop pointing the finger at others and, yes, look at the man in the mirror. Perhaps that was the other message behind that cover mirror.
      The habits developed from anonymous internet communication make finger-pointing so easy and often reflexive. I have limited my social media contact because it is so seductive and can be used as a weapon as deadly as a gun. That is why William is working with social media heads.
      I have begun to realize that my mind requires the constant care such as one gives a garden: don't let weeds take root; yank them out if they do; prune old branches that won't hear fruit; add something beautiful as well as functional from time to time.
      It looks like I have a serious weeding project ahead of me. Sari

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  18. Let’s not rewrite history. Princess Anne, the Kent’s, Gloucesters, York’s, Wessex, POW, all had controversy in their royal lives. Living free in Kensington palace, millions of pounds renovating homes,money influence from wealthy friends, public affairs, not doing enough royal duties, disregarding the public concerns. I can go on and on. Their was no social media like today, but their were headlines during the time.
    The Royals job is to highlight charities. The DOS is only being more creative in her role. She gets the attention good and bad because her creativity is outside the norm. The POW was heavily criticized about his politics, selling the Duchy products, climate concern. The Queen is doing the same thing. They sell their meat products, sell plates, cups, key chains, and her forest initiative is about climate change. No one complains about her for profit initiatives. Celebrities are in and out of Buck house getting awards everyday. The DDOS are not reinventing the wheel, they just added leather to it. Let’s not be hypocrites because the other royals are getting older and more refined, in their heyday they were pieces of work.
    History is your friend. The Sussex family may not be your cup of tea, but they are doing, being, saying, living the same life as all the other royals, just adding a little spice to their tea.

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    1. I agree, Andrea, very well said.

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    2. I wasn’t going to mention this but if half the stuff about Andrew and Jeffrey Epstein is true than Julia blaming Meghan for debasing the royal family will be truly ridiculous.

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    3. Actually, I'm a (was?) a royalist - so for me it's how any individual fits into the family and how the family should conduct themselves in royal duties. Obviously there are hugely problematic royals (Andrew!); royals I don't like (Camilla); royals I admire but wouldn't want to invite to dinner. (Anne). I'm speaking generally of what I think has been a successful royal design that shouldn't be discarded and will add my opinionated caveats:
      1. Good Royals don't flaunt their lifestyles - I call this the 'dog leads cost money' rule. We know they live more lavishly but they don't throw it in our face like - for instance - wearing thousands of pounds of expensive foreign clothes. Better to be like Anne who wears what she wore in 1980. Kate does quite well with this - although Mustique rather spoils it.
      2. Extremely important - thou shalt not preach. Ever! We accept royals have more lavish lifestyles and don't carry our burdens but we don't want them telling us to peel our carrots. Stay out of my kitchen Harry!
      3. Royals should avoid hypocrisy - this is related to the above two - obviously the more someone tells you what to do - the more you look at how they're living - going to conferences of billionaires on private jets for instance. (And it will be assumed the jet is private unless shown otherwise.)
      4. Royals stay rigorously out of politics - this isn't spice, it's poison that's capable of destroying the entire institution. For what it's worth, it's the rule of dining at Julia's as well because we have friends of all political views. A very Meghan-like guest recently thought we needed a little spice over the coffee in spite of being warned by Julia and he offended other guests. He won't be asked back.
      5. Royals are not celebrities. Celebrities aren't respected, they are there to amuse and entertain and be cheerfully despised. They flaunt their lifestyles, they act loved up and then break up, they talk 'luvvie' talk, they gush, they name-drop. And if they get involved with politics, they're particularly reviled and their own life comes under close scrutiny. Look at Emma Thompson recently - an actress with a much greater career than Meghan but her recent involvement with demonstrations made her hated.
      6. Princess Michael carries the title Princess Pushy. Let her keep it. What is 'strong to an American, sounds brash to the British.
      7. I am at a loss as to why 'Because Charles does it, it's okay for Meghan to do it." Quite apart from the fact he isn't popular and is scraping by on the basis of his traditional work and inertia - he is a very senior royal with decades of experience. You wouldn't assume as a new employee that because the CEO does something, it's great for you to do it too - and to do it more loudly and more obviously than he or she would dream of doing. At least, not if you want to stay employed.
      Recently - quite frankly, I haven't met anyone outside this forum that think the Sussexes are their cup of tea and some of those people are people of colour. This is unusual for a youngish royal couple when the man was until recently quite popular. Yet both Meghan and Harry have considerable gifts. I would like to see them put things right (like Sophie once did) but that means accepting mistakes and self-correcting. Time will tell.

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    4. Ivy - Just based on what we know about Andrew that he should have been removed from royal duties long since. I don't think he does his duties badly - his work is admired in the business world particularly, but his personal life has become far too much a distraction. Won't happen - he's the queen's favourite son.

      I also would like Camilla to say once and for all she won't be crowned and take that dangerous distraction away from the family like was once said would happen - even though she would be legally queen consort. Solve that crisis before the queen's death when it will become a huge crisis. That won't happen either.

      I'd like to see Harry and Meghan fire all their PR people and concentrate on small visits around England for the next year - they both have great charm and would do well to build a solid foundation at home, as well as avoiding all things remotely political. Meghan wearing all British designers, high street or repeats (Beradi is my preferred choice for her) would be nice. Do everything in a normal way and bore the press. Won't happen. (Although whilst derivative, I do think their current Instagram scheme of finding out what people want them to represent may show signs they're trying to capture the mood of the public - and that could be positive.)
      I'd like to see William and Kate triple their engagements and quadruple their patronages and really get out there. And holiday at a resort less tied to the rich. Won't happen.
      I'd like to see both foundations - Cambridge and Sussex wrapped up. There are excellent charitable foundations out there to support causes and the fundraising, hobnobbing with the rich, is a terrible distraction from duties centred around people. Head's Together is
      important but Cambridge interests need to extend outside of that, sports and gardens. Won't happen.
      I don't know what I want Charles to do. I'm sure there's something but it's getting late.

      There are moments thinking of those hundreds of charities behind those names on the senior royal patronages that I feel there will need to be more young royals to carry the connection with the nation and maybe Beatrice and Eugenie should have been brought in. And there are moments I don't think that. Doesn't matter. Won't happen.
      Anne can just carry on being Anne.
      And once upon a time, if I was opening a hospital wing, I would want a royal attending - it highlights my work, doesn't distract from it. I'm not sure today but if I was in hospital, I would much enjoy a visit - all too rare these days.

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    5. I don't understand where all these comments about "they are telling us what to do," "they are preaching" etc. are coming from. Where in the article are Harry and Meghan telling people what to do? The entire Vogue piece was highlighting people Meghan finds inspiring and what those women are doing in their part to be forces of change. The only people saying they are preaching or virtue signalling have been the right wing tabloids. This is why I never admired the royal family and never will - they only appeal to the super conservative population, anyone even remotely different is vilified, - they are told to shut up, put up and never complain, you have no right to speak up even if you are being abused. Women's rights and equality IS NOT political! Caring for the environment should also not be considered political. How annoying is it that even after the Suffrage movement women's rights are still considered political. Your point on royals are not celebrities is probably the most hypocritical - all the outlets that cover the royals cover them like celebrities, no serious journalistic outlet covers the royal family. The tabs barely touch on what they are doing for charities - just what they are wearing and XYZ unveiled a plaque at XYZ place, who is royal "A" dating? Who is this specific royal getting married to? They are covered by celebrity gossip and celebrity magazines. I also find it distasteful the amount of hate that's given to celebrities within the royal fandom - yes they live lavish lifestyles - ones they have actually worked to afford. Many of them are actors or musicians (some reality stars) who worked hard within their own area to produce art. Music is art, acting is an art - they are not just entertainers, they are also artists. If they choose to become involved in politics that's their right. What does the royal family stand for - an ancient institution that destroyed civilizations across the world, assimilated and suppressed people for their own economic gain. The effects of colonization are still felt in societies today. Compared to them, I would take celebrities any day. I have met plenty of people outside this forum who think the Sussexes are amazing people - including people of colour. Also the young people that they appeal to now are society's future. The self correcting you want from the Sussexes is to shut up, put up with the abuse, stop even doing any projects and just doing cookie cutter engagements - and like Sophie fade into the background. Honestly, I don't even know about any of the charities that Sophie supports or what she does, and if people want Harry and Meghan to do that their charities won't get any of the attention they deserve. What has Sophie's self correcting done? She gets barely covered by the media, so no one even knows about her or the charities she supports. I think what Julia wants is for Harry and Meghan to not outshine the other royals and that they are going above their station.

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    6. Anonymous 22:30 your post is spot on. Why should celebs be treated with contempt? To give an example, Adele. Adele’s music touched me deeply when I was going through a painful breakup. Adele has done extensive charity work. She has been open about her struggles with weight and vocal crises. If she has nice stuff then I say she deserves it because her music has touched so many ppl. Compare this to , say, Andrew. The Queen’s spoilt favorite son, he has acted like an irresponsible playboy for much of his adult life. Thank god his daughters seem fairly grounded. But he has brought shame to the Royal Family repeatedly with his poor choices. If there someone who deserves nice stuff I’d say Adele the “celebrity” deserves it 100x more than Prince Andrew.

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    7. Ivy Lin yes, yes, you go girl, and don't back down. Meghan has been working hard for this family only to be viciosly criticized even when she was pregnant.

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    8. Royal đź‘‘ Watcher2 August 2019 at 01:02

      Thank you Julia.

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    9. Sophie's 'cookie cutter' engagements include major work including much overseas for preventable blindness, attending the UN sessions on the status of women - CSW which seeks gender equality and empowerment for women, Making for Change, a programme teaching women in prisons skills to enter the fashion industry, as well as a host of others from opening dementia units to charities that help the mentally disabled. No, she's not a glamourous figure like Meghan is at the moment, but her work is covered often in the press - you need only to look for it, and the people whose children had their sight saved probably aren't too worried about how glamourous she is.

      I mentioned her because she came back from a very bad beginning - with plenty of vicious criticism. But I would expect Meghan to get more attention at this hour, at least, until within a decade or two, attention turns to younger royals such as Charlotte. But unlike most celebrities who have expiration dates and vanish - royals soldier on - not so much in the press but still with a vital role.

      It's worth remembering Diana spent a decade doing traditional royal work and was as much loved for that as for the landmine work much later - she paid her dues at home first. People were deeply touched by representatives of her many charities being part of her funeral procession and those of us who lived through that period still remember her sitting on a hospital bed, or kneeling before and old man at a blindness charity, as much as the gowns she wore and the covers of Vogue. I don't see why Meghan can't be the same.

      But celebrities work for themselves and can push boundaries. The royal family is what it is, as an historic institution, greater than any one member - even the queen. You don't have to like it - I have many republican friends, but it a hierarchical institution, demanding deference, and because it is supported by the nation, carrying particular requirements, including political neutrality that must be broadly observed.

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    10. Julia, you are my hero! Thank you so much for saying what needs to be said. I have always learned from you and appreciate your insights.

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    11. Anonyme 1er août 2019 22h30 thank you 👏🏽👏🏽👏🏽

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    12. Thank you Julia.

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    13. Anonymous, August 1 @22:30. I think I love you!! ��. So well said. The British media is racist and it is quite evident they want Meghan to stay in her lane. It tells you everything about how they view Meghan when a white male TV presenter can openly refer to her as “uppity” which word has such connotations for black Americans. What next? The N word? How to forget the chimpanzee comment after Archie was born? Denying the press are racist toward Meghan is absurd.

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    14. Julia I think you have quite missed many points here. Andrew is not widely respected in the business world. He’s seen as a charlatan far out of his depth thanks to connections. He’s akin to Donald Trump Jr as far as I am concerned. His associating with child abusers should be disqualifying in all aspects of his life. There is no nuance to be had here.

      And it’s news to me there’s a national crisis brewing over Camila’s role. She will be Queen, I thought most people had moved on from this. Just because you personally disagree with it does not a crisis make.

      Your opinions on the non political are mystifying. Please give us the list of Julia-approved non political topics. The royals don’t vote or openly support candidates or parties. In this respect they 100% follow their precedent to be neutral. However supporting causes is not the same. Nor do I think environmental issues, women’s rights, or human dignity issues are ever political. They are human rights. The fact that they are ever viewed as controversial or political to me is quite disheartening.

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    15. This so much. How is Charles’ pet cause of preserving the environment “political”? Or equal treatment for women. And while we are on Sophie she recently made a visit to a refugee camp in Lebanon. There’s no more political issue in Europe right now than refugees from Syria. Yet I admire Sophie for being “political” and recognizing that refugees do not deserve the names, say, Boris Johnson calls them. Seems like you want Meghan to just shut up. That’s quite frankly backwards and indicates more about you than her.

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    16. Julia, I am so glad to read you. I always feel you are the most knowledgeable informed and consistent poster here! No slight to the others, of course, but that's how I feel.

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    17. Julia, I have never agreed with you but enjoy hearing your thoughts because I know they do not have a racist origin. You are just as critical of Kate as you are of Meghan, for example. I agree that Sophie is doing some marvelous work that would be widely praised if Kate or Meghan did it; that is the fault of the media. I imagine Sophie is not praised but also is not hounded or viciously scorned. She probably doesn't need the security that Meghan and Kate require.

      In general, though, I don't believe you should adopt a "we have always done it this way" view of the RF. Things have to change. The family was different in the 1950s and in the 1850s and in the 1750s ..... My very first job was in a basement at the Harvard Business School running a small printing press! The older women there said they used to have to wear a dress and white gloves on the job. Nice touch but that needed to change. When I later worked on the Harvard Business Review as an editor, we had no one in the organization who was not completely white. Then they hired a lovely woman who was Jamaican -- as the person who answered the phones. She was well aware of the situation, and that needed to change. And there have been many other instances where my white privilege was apparent. Meghan, and her friends and the people she admires, can help move things a little in the right direction.

      There are some royal activities that I don't like at all -- I'm still irritated over the outfit Beatrice wore to Kate's wedding! I don't like Ascot; I don't like seeing all the welcomed guests enclosed in their finery while the "commoners" gather outside to see them.

      I agree that more "work" would be appreciated from some members, and I feel like Eugenie would be a huge asset. I think she's trying to show now her value.

      But it's not an easy family to marry into and security is an increasing problem.
      Regardless, I truly love to hear your comments, Julia, because they represent a view that is different from the usual posters' and because they derive from an appreciation of the institution rather than from a bigoted attitude.

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    18. Ivy Lin2 August 2019 at 12:34...thank you again IVY

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    19. Julia, thank you so much for adding to the discussion. You express your opinions respectfully, without insult, and that is so rare today. It's a pleasure to read your posts.

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    20. Julia, the royal family will only survive as long as the democratic vote let's it. Honestly after all this nasty coverage the past week, I'm more inclined to get rid of the royal family, especially since it seems the only ones who cover those events are right wing tabloids who only operate on sensational headlines and gain capital by allowing nasty comments under their posts regarding the royals (especially Meghan). All the charities you mentioned Sophie supporting are also technically political - they are within the same arena that Meghan also operates. There is a reason why Sophie's work never gets any attention, because while its traditional work that you admire, it doesn't appeal to anyone outside of the royal watching community, if your goal is for exposure on the charities that you are highlighting, why not use some creativity to do so. I'm sure the charities that Sophie works with appreciate her and I'm 100% sure that the charities Meghan works with also appreciate what she's doing for them. It's so weird that Meghan using her creativity to help charities and shine the spotlight on others is being viewed as negatively. The Hubb women with who she did the cookbook with not only are able to operate their kitchen 7 days a week now, but those women have also been able to go on and get further education, gain awards and expand their own charitable work to others. Regarding Diana - her work with charities only got amplified after she passed away, while she was alive there were sensational headlines regarding her that took all the spotlight away from her charities - she was vilified too.
      There are different ways to do charity work, the traditional way appeals to some, whereas utilizing creativity to highlight charities others. Neither method is wrong, and I have never imposed my opinion on other royals to do royal work the way that Meghan does. Everyone should be allowed their own method to bring a spotlight on charities without being vilified in the media and being called unroyal as Meghan has been this past week. In fact, just recently it was announced that Eugenie is going to be doing a podcast regarding an anti-slavery charity and I think that's a great idea - kudos to her. I can't believe that people would be criticizing how some one conducts charity work.

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    21. Pam from Boston2 August 2019 at 17:30

      Allison in US - my daughter just graduated college and has started her first job - at the Harvard Business School. And last summer she interned at the Harvard Business Review and also worked for HBR as a contracted editor during her senior year. (By the way, she got that internship by contacting an alum from her college who worked there and asking for it! I'm very proud of her!) Anyway, she hasn't talked about diversity at either place but I know Harvard (I work at the University) strives very hard be to inclusive and diversity in the workplace here is a priority. I don't want to ask you how long ago you worked there, but hopefully things have changed a lot.

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    22. Caroline in Montana2 August 2019 at 17:33

      Julia, I am with you 100%.
      But I thought the queens favorite son was Edward?? LOL

      and if "This is why I never admired the royal family and never will" - Why are you here???

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    23. Pam, it was a very very long time ago -- let's say I was under 20 but watched "Love Story" at the Cambridge theater when it first came out. I'm sure things have changed -- they were changing when I was there. Everyone we knew was from a different country, so that was fun. We lived on one side of the Charles, so I rode a bike to the B school everyday, past all those lilacs, and kept it in my office. It was the most fun I've ever had, but all my friends at HBR have left. This was when the HBR was ruled by old white businessmen and the woman had to really strive to get some respect. One great woman was Eliza GC Collins; maybe your daughter has heard of her. I think she's still in Cambridge

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  19. A reminder that Meghan's 38th birthday is Sunday. Among many, she shares a birthday with the Queen Mother, Barack Obama, and musician Louis Armstrong.

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    1. Thank you for the reminder Sarah from NC. Meghan is in good company and easily matches the beloved company of these historic people.

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  20. the magazine is already sold out on 2 sites online

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    1. Faiza, I wondered if it would need a second printing! That is very exciting!

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    2. Allison it will be the first time I buy Vogue in 38 years and I'm very excited I already have the digital version I wait for the paper version with impatience

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    3. Faiza -- this is my first Vogue and I had not bought a cookbook in years until the Hubb book came out!

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    4. Allison :The Meghan effect ;-)

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    5. Exactly! :)

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  21. thank you charlotte. this is such an exciting time and im so proud of meghan she is such an inspiration to a young woman of colour like me. happy bday to meghan

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  22. ps i think it is fantastic that she is going to launch a charity collection she sure is working hard on her role. I just heard Piers Morgan say she is self promoting he and other criticizers are so racially biased. It is nice to come to a place like this and get positive news about meghan.

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    1. Nicole from france2 August 2019 at 12:57

      Melissa, I do wish other self promoting people would achieve what Meghan has already achieved for the benefit’of Needy people ahaha
      The French Tv has just aired a long video about Prince Charles’s life , from early childhood up to now , luckily the Daiana and Camilla story was not the center point of the video ! Some of PC works have been widely explained, and indeed I related this to Meghan’s work, they both not only visit charities, but they , as we’ say in French « get the shirt dirty with sweat » working on the subject and calling out to all people they know who can help build something . The similarity was really obvious’!

      Delete
    2. Anne-Sophie de Paris7 August 2019 at 23:29

      Nicole de France!
      J'ai également regardé pour la 2ème fois "secret d'histoire ".
      Je me rends compte que Meghan lui emboîte le pas.
      Le prince Charles est un précurseur et beaucoup de gens en son temps se moquaient de lui pour sa passion pour la nature , son jardin bio et ses différents trusts.
      Meghan étant proche de son beau-père qui est en même temps son mentor réalisera avec Harry beaucoup de choses comme lui.
      Je partage votre analyse Meghan est une travailleuse acharnée.

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  23. I’m glad the magazine is selling well. I’m so proud of Meghan & Harry. And very happy that individually & together, they are doing great things to help others. I’m British, my family have been long time supporters of the Monarchy. I started attending The Queen’s Birthday parade, when I was of school age, but long before then, my earliest memories of The Queen was the large photo of her that was displayed with prominence in my Grandfather’s sitting room. Despite all those years of respect, now that I’m well into adulthood, it’s only within the last 3 years that I relate to the BRF. Members of my family & some of the larger community that I interact with have similar feelings. It may mean nothing to others, however representation matters to some of us.

    When I attended the Invictus Games and sat with many military families, from all over the world, a common positive discussion was how many people related to Harry & Meghan. And appreciated their work & compassion.

    It’s not even a year since the successful Together Cookbook was published. It’s nice to see how some of the Hub Kitchen members have furthered their entrepreneurial endeavours. Now we have Vogue Magazine to read for leisure & also learn about other charities that are helping in communities. I’m looking forward to helping others near & far, many good things to appreciate & look forward to. Thanks Charlotte for your informative site.

    Dena

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    1. Thanks for your heartfelt POV, Dena. The Sussexes are indeed the perfect representatives, especially for the Commonwealth and for many in the UK who have not felt connected to the RF and its good works. If the Queen or PoW felt the Sussexes were being disrespectful to The Crown, it would have been nipped in the bud. Thankfully they appear to have the ability to ignore heedless criticism and to move forward with their good works while they still loom large in the public eye.

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  24. Interesting some to be boxed some to spread their wings wow! Wow.

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  25. Susan In Florida2 August 2019 at 04:43

    First of all , Thank you, Charlotte for links so we could read this article !!! It’s very clear that Sussexes will use their platform to promote what they believe. I’m glad the Duchess life in the RF hasn’t forced her sit down and be quiet. Prince Harry is his father ‘s son in terms of caring about the planet , and his mother’s son in compassion. They might lean as too outspoken or liberal for some, but the public doesn’t dictate their lives. I’d rather see them do a few patronage’s very well than just a drop-in for an hour every two years. Yes I know it’s nice for the people, but that to me is more like a politician’s visit than true caring. Busy work and small talk for the sake of pretending you have a job, in my opinion. This is why I think the Cambridge’s limit their time as well. Also, they have small children; yes, the kids should be the priority for now.
    In America, if you are a patron of a charity, you show up multiple times a year, work diligently behind the scenes, and get very involved. I hope the Sussexes continue to ignore the sewer of negative British Press to call attention to what they believe. They have a long life in the public eye. Looks to me like they want to use all the scrutiny they have to suffer and turn it to publicity for good things. I loved what Prince Harry said about unconscious bias and racism. Many people needed to hear/read that. I also think your Queen is smarter than we all believe. Maybe she always wanted to say more about the world but we know she could not. I lean conservative on a lot of issues myself, but I believe empowering women and cleaning our planet is a global issue. One press person called Vogue the Bible Of Privilege. Where else and what better place to show people who lead those privileged lives another point of view ? I’m watching the British Press “get their knickers in a bunch” and loving the Sussexes more and more.

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  26. Charlotte, sincere thanks for your work. Please keep it up. The appalling reactions to Meghan's hard work are so disheartening. Such negativity! I am so disappointed in the people who thrive on tearing others down and seeing virtually every move she makes as a bad choice because it somehow doesn't fit within a personally narrow, shallow, nonsensical and impossible to define "role" of appropriate royal behavior. Tearing people apart will not build a better world. Harry has been appointed a leader for the Commonwealth, Meghan is contributing in significant ways, that make real differences to the citizens of the UK and the Commonwealth. I can only hope she and Harry keep their strength and commitment to the people they serve, and to use their privilege as a force for good.
    For those on this blog who find inspiration and hope from this couple, I am grateful. The more of us that reject the false narrative driven by some media, and by the forces of racism and sexism, the better, and those like Charlotte who counter it consistently with positive and factual information, the better!

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    1. Anne-Sophie de Paris7 August 2019 at 23:37

      Bravo anonyme du 2 août 13h55
      Soyons nombreux à les soutenir et remercions Charlotte de nous donner cette opportunité avec cette bientraitance et l'humanité avec lesquelles elle gère ce blog
      Je suis de tout coeur avec vous
      Anne- Sophie

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  27. Why can there not be more than one way for royals to make a contribution. I think the older royals have been very important, but why should it be the only way to be a royal. It's wonderful for ordinary people to have a picture with a royal as great memento (although I think that can be a rather patronizing attitude), and to be able to meet and shake hands with a royal, and have their work acknowledge by a royal. However, why does the work of royals like the Sussexes, the Cambridges, and Charles be denigrated? Why can't both be important, and indeed, necessary. I don't think royals can go around simply just drawing attention to good works, planting trees and cutting ribbons forever, without modernizing and adding to their roles in order to remain relevant and of use. I don't think a woman who is out of work and in need of a little self-esteem, for example, would think that being helped by a charity which is growing by leaps and bounds because a certain Duchess has decided to work hard for it as a patron would fail to appreciate the kind of royal work being done. Everyone, as far as I'm concerned, who is currently a working royal, is doing something to make the monarchy useful and relevant, and all facets of royal work and involvement are vitally needed.

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    1. Regarding SmartWorks, I so agree with Anon 19:27. Reading between the lines from what Meghan said, I am guessing that the organization can use some simpler basic good-quality clothes in sizes larger than those of the usual donors. How discouraging to be a size 1X and find clothes in size 10! So she did the usual appearance and promotion but then set about to determining what would truly help this group. Again, it's win-win for everyone. The designers get their names mentioned. M&S gets increased customers. The women served by SmartWorks receive what should be the most attractive and useful clothing that looks good on them. This would go nowhere if Meghan was a "celebrity" -- just like the Hubb cookbook would be just as good a cookbook but no one would care without Meghan's "branding." I would love to be in her circle of idea generators!

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    2. Hear! Hear! Anonymous 19:27 and 20:49. Each generation of royals has tweaked the role they've inherited by accident of birth or marriage. King George and Queen Mary "came off the mountain" and began to interact with their subjects. King Edward the VIII tossed off the yoke (something Harry seriously considered it as one of his options as well before figuring out strategies that would work for him and taking it on which he now can share with Meghan).

      Then King George VI and the Queen Mum put their own brand on things during the difficult war years--and the Queen Mum hung around Buck House as long as she could before shoving off into Clarence House after her daughter became Queen. Her influence had a long reach, but the circumstances surrounding Diana's entry into the Firm and then her death, showed the need for a different approach.

      Charles hasn't had his chance at the crown yet, but he has put his mark on the family with ventures that his antecedents couldn't have dreamed. Now Charles and Diana's sons and their wives move in traditional paths as well as the directions previous generations could not have done.The world is a different place than it was then.

      The world is a different, less stable place than it was fewer than 4 years ago. World figureheads such as the royals, leaders and influencers who are working to create positive change and draw attention to the need for inclusion, equality, diversity and mutual respect of all people are needed now more than ever.

      I'm delighted that Harry and Meghan, William and Catherine are stepping up and taking concrete actions that create results. They're not content to cut ribbons and unveil plaque as a means to make the world a better place. Instead, they are initiating conversations and projects vital to our global future. I try to do my bit in my little corner, but I'll never have the clout or the reach that they do. So glad they are bringing it on! Boom!

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    3. Really, if you watch any of the older, longer, documentaries on the Queen, she has been doing good for ordinary individuals for years. One of the documentaries told about the Queen spending time every day, an hour or more, I think it was, reading letters written to her by ordinary subjects. Just ordinary people who had problems for which they could find no solution, and wrote to the Queen hoping she could put in a word for them. The letters would go to her staff and they would read through each one, and then forward to the Queen, the ones they thought she could help with. They would go to her "in" basket and she would read through each one and then make recommendations to her staff about who to contact on the persons behalf. I think Queen Victoria started this tradition and Elizabeth carried it on. I used to think the Queen was a haughty old woman, who showed up for ribbon cuttings and shook a few hands. Hearing this about her, changed my opinion. She was helping in the way that she could, quietly, behind the scenes. The same for Charles. All I ever knew of Charles, as an American, was the whole fiasco with Diana and Camilla. I thought he was a selfish, pompous, ass. But the more I learned about the projects he has been working on for years, the more I came to admire him, despite his personal shortcomings. The Duchy Organics line of products he started, didn't just involve conservation and didn't benefit him in any way. He started it to help the farmers who farmed on Royal lands. The farmers rented land from the royal family--like sharecroppers, I suppose, only they sold their goods on the open market. This wasn't terribly beneficial for them financially, so as part of Charles' push for organic farming and eating farm to table, he organized the farmers, educated them in more productive farming methods, convinced them of the value of farming organically, and then started a company through which they could sell their crops. He met with the local shop owners--butchers, bakers, restaurants--and convinced them to purchase the organic produce, meat, poultry, honey, etc., further benefitting the local farmers. He did it all to benefit the local farmers. It was a brilliant idea. The work he has done with young people through "The Duke of Edinburgh's Award", begun by his father. A great program for self improvement, by young people who are kind of drifting along in life and need some direction. Read about it on Wikipedia. In reference to Julia's comments about Meghan, I really can't see how Megan promoting charities, or individuals, that she feels are helping the small people--ordinary folks--is any different than what the royals have always done, behind the scenes. The only difference I see is that she is doing it in the age of social media, unlike most of the older royals. It's what she knows and she knows how to use the medium. Unlike the other royals, with the exception of maybe Kate, she comes with a ready-made following. She's just using that medium and that following, to spread the word about charities she feels are doing so much good. If Vogue had approached her about being on the cover and she had agreed to a cover photo and an article about herself, then maybe people and the media would be justified in saying she was promoting herself. By asking to NOT make it "all about Meghan", she took the focus off of herself and highlighted the charities and individuals whose work she admires. Nothing different than what Diana did, and like Diana, very personal and hands-on. Diana caused quite a stir at the height of the AIDS epidemic by visiting AIDS patients and actually shaking their hands and sitting with them, talking about their illness. If that wasn't a political statement, and a moral, social statement, I don't know what it was. Surely, what Meghan just did is not nearly so political.

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  28. Ivy Lin, I couldn't get a "reply" to your comments, but I appreciate them!

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  29. Thanks Duke and Duchess of Sussex for being yourselves and doing something positive to HELP people. Thank you, Charlotte.

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  30. Judith of Michigan3 August 2019 at 04:41

    Charlotte, If I accidentally submitted my post please do not post. It was incomplete! Too tired to redo tonight! Perhaps another time! Thanks, Judi

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  31. Judith of Michigan3 August 2019 at 06:32

    Charlotte I’ve enjoyed your DOC blog since the trip to India and Bhutan and the DOS blog since it’s beginning! What I love is your evolving coverage of focusing as much on the activity as the fashion! In fact, at times the fashion seems secondary. At the same time the comments have also grown in their depth and expression. To read so many thoughtful comments expressed in a supportive, positive way is unique and refreshing! That you have to wade through a lot of muck comments and save us from them is disheartening! I was discussing with one of my daughter earlier today about the depth of negativity and hate being written on two very different topics than the BRF. It seems that any topic brings out more hatful, negative and distorted information than positive facts. So thank-you for being a voice of fresh air! Regarding the work of the work of either the DDOS or the DDOC, it seems obvious to me that if the Queen and Charles did not approve of the choices, the approaches or even the quantity, it would be different. Charles has talked of a stream lined Monarchy. He understands the need to change, at least in certain ways, to be relevant for the future. Perhaps the approach to their work taken by his sons and their wives reflects his plans. There was a comment that they needed to do more than athletics and gardens. A year or so a comment was made that Heads Together had no substance. Such comments fail to see the complexity of what such activities can accomplish nor the breadth of people who will benefit. What I see are two women who are thinking beyond cutting the ribbon or unveiling the plaque. They are taking different approaches. Why is not important, results are. Megan has been able to identify projects that can have immediate impact and far lasting result - the Hub Kitchen cookbook and the Smart Works capsule wardrobes! Catherine’s focus on mental health especially the early years requires a different approach but certainly her garden served its purpose - children need to be outdoors, playing, exploring and learning! Their separate projects are neither better or more appropriate than the other! In fact, if one can be objective, the projects support a common goal of bettering the lives of women and their children! As William focuses on men’s mental health, Harry the Invictus Games (Veterans are both has men and women) and both on animal and environmental issues, again women and children benefit! When the children, women and men of a community, of a country, of the world are thriving mentally and emotionally, it’s a win, win! But that doesn’t
    sell tabloids! Sensational stories, hate and negativity do! We may not agree that every dress or pair of shoes that the Duchesses wear are to our liking but what is not to like and support in their working endeavors! Is it that they are two beautiful women with more riches than most married to real Princes that makes them targets, that Megan is bi-racial and American, that Catherine was a commoner without a profession, that too many people like hating? For some, all of the above! Let us be the opposite of such people. Let us be the women (and men) who see two caring, loving, thoughtful women who want to make a difference in the lives of others and are doing it in the best way they each know! Besides one can not be rich, can be well educated, concerned and involved in social issues, informed on world issues and still enjoy Vogue, especially the always spectacular September issue! And if it’s British Vogue, read it with an English accented voice in your head!

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    1. Thank you for your comment, Judith. You hit the crux of the matter: there are forces that exploit the natural urge to cling to the familiar while shunning the unfamiliar. You gave the example of the press. We have seen how social media has been exploited to incite divisiveness.
      Change in attitude is difficult. I have found myself joining in with the confrontational tactics one encounters in internet communication. I have made repeated efforts to resist divisiveness. I regress and then try again. Unfortunately, my rant above was done in one such moment of weakness. it was too long and did not express my opinion as well as in other comments I have submitted.I truly did not expect it to be published and I apologize to Charlotte for it. I doubt I will ever become an altruistic, other-minded Mother Theresa . It takes conscious effort to alter behavior. I have to consciously restrain my impulse to counter attack-the tit for tat, "gotcha" moment. I am sure that internet communication becomes a sort of drug. It is more than just the sharing of ideas that motivates" followers " to return again and again.

      I don't think the answer to divisiveness, which exploits diffetences, is to move toward sameness and total agreement. What a boring world that would be. One might say that the differences between Catherine and Meghan reflect the true spirit behind the diversity movement.
      Race is only one difference in humans. sexuality another. On the other hand, there is a multitude of ways in which humans differ when learned and acquired behavior is considered. Biologically, we are nearly identical. Species that don't diversify and adapt become extinct. Homo Sapiens is a relatively new species. We are taller now, for example, but most human adaptation has been in the ability to alter our environment and behavior, not in biological adaptation. We are not going to develop a kindness gene. We have to change behavior first and perhaps attitude change will follow.

      Celebrate the differences while keeping in mind the very basic ways in which we are alike. I would also like to see a Vogue magazine cover that celebrates the many ways we are all alike . Sari

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    2. Hello Sari,

      I feel compelled to reply to your comment.

      "Unfortunately, my rant above was done in one such moment of weakness. it was too long and did not express my opinion as well as in other comments I have submitted. I truly did not expect it to be published and I apologize to Charlotte for it."

      Although you did not expect it to be published, you knew I would read it as I have read hundreds (if not thousands) of similar remarks from you under your many pseudonyms over the years. Because it's published and you read it again in print perhaps you see the aggressive tone with which you comment on my blogs?

      I feel you have a major issue with my running of both blogs. Something about which you have been vehemently vocal here and elsewhere for so long now. The time I have to dedicate to blogging, I want to spend writing posts, learning about good causes and enjoying royal watching. There is an abundance of terrific sites and blogs covering the royals, at this point I would ask you to consider them.

      There's a person behind every screen. I know I would never enjoy a blog where I took constant issue with the writer. As you've said, you think this blog is devoid of reality. At the end of the day, I'm going to run the blogs as I see fit. I'm not a journalist, nor am I running a news outlet. This is my hobby. I believe I do a fair job, you obviously don't. You're perfectly entitled to that opinion. I would, however, ask why keep commenting here? It's clearly not enjoyable for you and detracts from my own enjoyment of this space and my other blog. I'll be perfectly honest and say my heart sank when you followed over here from DKB.

      I write this peacefully, without any malice, and hope to appeal to the conscious effort you spoke of making. I've debated replying to you for some time now, and although it may be a fruitless endeavour, it's my sincere hope you'll leave the blogs and move on.

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    3. Brava, charlotte. đź‘Źđź‘Ź

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    4. I’d like to add my voice to bluhare’s Brava, brava Charlotte!

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    5. I would just like to add a final comment, Charlotte. I wish you luck and success in your future efforts.

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    6. Charlotte's blogs are gifts to strangers. I learn so much and I enjoy the images so much -- plus I know that there is love in her heart for the RF. The worst she has ever said is that perhaps an outfit will receive critical comments. She is such a kind person and cares so much for her subjects; the amount of time she spends must be incredible.

      There are SO many sites that I would hate; I accidentally saw a tweet from some site that was criticizing Meghan for how she held Archie, and I was so angry. I wanted to let the person know how wrong she was, among other thoughts, but I let it go. No point to it. But this is a good site; there is always a kind and generous word for Kate, Meghan, their children, their husbands, their extended families ... if the basic philosophy isn't yours,
      Sari, please do move on.

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    7. Thank you, I really do appreciate that Anon.

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  32. Judith of Michigan3 August 2019 at 06:36

    PS Philly, I just read your comment! We think alike on those ribbons and plaques, plus several other points! Charlotte cultivates such a wonderful community of thoughtful caring people!

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  33. Well said, Judith of Michigan. Aside from racial, class, and xenophobic biases, I think some people approve of the monarchy as it has always been, and do not want to see any changes to the way it does things. When the younger royals use their "celebrity" to leverage the level of their influence and their ability to get things done, it brings up the "me, myself, and I" meme. I see Meghan and Harry following in Charles's footsteps, but he did not seem to have the charisma that Meghan and Harry have, so he was always criticized for his forward thinking and actions, and not for his 'celebrity." When Meghan does something to help her patronages, and does things afforded by her position and fame, the media makes it about her, rather than about who she is trying to help. In the case of the birth of Archie and the Sussexes' desire to avoid the media circus, the media in turn made the whole thing about themselves, just like they did with the christening. I now believe that tabloids approach everything with the idea of spinning everything in either a critical or negative way. It is not what the royals are trying to do, which is to help and unify people, that will bring down a monarchy, but the constant negative sniping of the media. In fact, they are a lot less needed to bring the news to people, what with all the SM rampant, and they realize it. However, I think traditional media is still very important in a having an actual reporting function, and they are failing massively by making it all about themselves, and a preconceived biases.

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    1. I think there is a happy medium to be found. Maybe it wont be what some want but there is compromise here and it should be considered. There are two people here with more clout than everyone else put together. Seems a bit like throwing out the baby with the bathwater to rein them in to where they only go and open hospitals and libraries. I think this part of their job is really important as I've said ad nauseum. But something like the clothing collection is a brilliant way to highlight british fashion, business, while helping unemployed women get back to work. I dont know what is not to like

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    2. I so agree, bluhare! And I was thinking more about the clothes. As someone who used to be very slender, I got older. I started to work from home, and life got stressful. I ate at the computer! For a woman who has been out of work, with little resources, it follows that they would not be a size 8. How frustrating to want to provide a basic work wardrobe of perhaps a jacket, pants, skirt, and some blouses in basic colors that can be interchangeable when such clothes are not donated. Meghan's "we're in this together" attitude keeps the recipients' self-respect, and makes it a fun activity. The designers get attention, M&S gets shoppers who might buy other items, too, and someone gets a tax deduction. And we get to anticipate the collection, critique the collection, and buy some! And perhaps 5000 or 10,000 women will be helped at once. (I can envision Amal Clooney buying a lot of items and donating them.) So helping 10,000 women, plus their families, their children, in one idea is worth at least some visits and handshakes and ribbon cutting.

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  34. So now I'm wondering what wonderful idea Meghan will have for her pet/animal rescue patronage. Often even good news "stories" are fake, like those claiming to know that the Queen will have a special tea party for Meghan's birthday!
    But I read one today saying that Meghan is writing a children's book about her rescue puppies, and it sounds like a money-maker for her patronage if true. Hope Amazon is ready for my order!

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    1. I was just thinking about what she will do for mayhew!! A line of dog biscuits? I can see a healthy and nutritious line of dog and cat treats.

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    2. bluhare, that is a great idea!! Duchess Dog Cookies -- who could resist? A great Christmas present, too. I hope she'll think of it, perhaps be inspired by Charles' line of food.

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    3. A partnership with Duchy Originals would be great.

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  35. Anne-Sophie de Paris3 August 2019 at 20:56

    Bonsoir Charlotte !
    J'ai envoyé pour la première fois sur votre blog plusieurs commentaires pour faire partie de cette grande communauté.
    Malheureusement les commentaires ne sont pas publiés est ce normal ?
    Merci de m'Ă©clairer
    Anne -Sophie

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  36. Anne-Sophie, Je suis désolé, les commentaires étaient dans spam. Bienvenue à 'Mad About Meghan'. Merci pour la lecture :)

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  37. Anne-Sophie de Paris4 August 2019 at 00:09

    Merci Charlotte pour votre réactivité.je vous en suis reconnaissante.
    Je vous suis depuis un certain temps.
    Je souhaite faire partie de cette communauté que je salue au passage.
    Je tiens à féliciter Meghan pour le travail qu'elle abat depuis son entrée dans la monarchie.
    Je félicite au passage Harry qui doit beaucoup la soutenir.
    La période post- partum n'est pas évidente à vivre pour toutes les femmes mais quand on est aussi dénigré comme elle l'est, je lui dis bravo pour tout ce qu'elle a pu réaliser pendant cette période.
    J'aurai l'occasion de porter un regard plus" fin" la fois prochaine.
    Joyeux anniversaire Meghan et tous mes voeux de bonheur.
    Anne-Sophie

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  38. Anne-Sophie de Paris4 August 2019 at 00:11

    Merci Charlotte pour votre réactivité

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  39. hello you read the word that sue wrote to Luminary Bakery and Matt Haig ? it makes me very happy because suffering from depression his book helped me a lot and it is thanks to Harry and Meghan that I knew this author

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    1. Faiza, it's so wonderful that the book helped you. To be able to help just one person makes a life worth living.

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  40. Happy Birthday Meghan!! I hope this coming year is filled with laughter, love and many, many blessings for you!!

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  41. I just did a little research on Prince Albert. Prince Albert was maybe the first "working royal." He traveled around while Victoria was frequently out of commission because of her pregnancies.

    Here are some reforms Prince Albert championed:
    1) Labor reforms -- better working conditions. Higher wages, less child labor.
    2) World Fairs - Prince Albert thought it was important to highlight different cultures and inventions from different countries
    3) A more equitable system of public education
    4) Abolition of slavery -- he actually held an anti-slavery conference

    Does any of this sound apolitical? Absolutely not! Yet Albert as the consort of Victoria saw a very different England as a "working royal" and was able to use his position to further the reforms he thought were best.

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    1. He sounds like Meghan! I find that so interesting. It's just amazing how people reinvent history to suit what they wish to say, isn't it? I also am noticing how much Eugenie is doing, how many things she champions. I suspect that Meghan and Eugenie have some good talks.

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    2. Another similarity: Albert was not popular at all when he first became Royal consort. He was German, of the wrong religion (Lutheran), and the concept of a working royal was quite new. There were a lot of calls for him to stay in his lane. Also he recommended controversial people for knighthood: Charles Darwin after Darwin wrote the Origin of Species. (TODAY, his theories are still "political" with politicians weighing in on whether to teach it in science course.) His renovations to several residences as country houses where he and his family could live in more privacy was also controversial (sound familiar???). But he kept on campaigning for what he thought was right and it's a shame he passed away so early.

      I think it's really important to remember that Meghan is not reinventing the wheel. Over a century ago Prince Albert was putting himself out there for criticism to fight for what he thought was right.

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    3. Oh, way to make your argue with FACTS, Ivy Lin! You are absolutely right about Albert--and Victoria, who always got a bad rap. She wasn't a prude at all. I really hated--or came to dislike intensely--the Masterpiece Theater program about Victoria and Albert. It painted a better picture of Albert, but did a real disservice to them, by making their relationship seem to be full of conflict, and Victoria seem petty and shallow. Her own diaries can still be read, even though her daughter destroyed many of them after Victoria's death, it's very obvious they were a very hands-on royal couple and tried their best to help their subjects--as you said, often under much criticism from their government. I think the current Queen and her husband tried followed the example set by Victoria and Albert. They were a remarkable couple.

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    4. Darn! *argument

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  42. Charlotte: Thank you for curating this excellent discussion. I've returned to this post numerous times because so many of the comments are lengthy and substantive. I can imagine the work you must do to keep the tone civil and the discussion full of sensible and thoughtful observations.

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  43. I wish I had more downtime to keep up with this blog (and Duchess Kate). Interesting comments here covering everything from the fuddy duddy BRF of yesteryear to the “woke, all about me” of today. Whew! What a lot of revisionist history.

    Princess Margaret, Edward VIII and his infamous country parties, spendthrift Charles II - father of illegitimate sons who were given dukedoms (our Di is a descendant of one such Duke), Henry VIII who kept the chopping block quite busy, and on and on ripping through the history books. You know for good reasons, Shakespeare had a lot of materials to play with when it comes to colorful English (and imported) royals. The royals were far more flamboyant, gaudy, profligate and full of odd sexual proclivities before QE2 generation. This younger generation is positively staid in comparison.

    Victorian England may like to cover human and wooden legs alike, but everything above a woman’s waistline was pretty exposed fashion wise. Victorian era had more brothels than schools and an estimated 80,000 prostitutes were living in London. Beyond the thriving sex trade and child trafficking, it had rampant STDs affecting all level of social classes. Dickens had a lot of materials to write his great opus from.

    In conclusion: the BRF has a very colorful history long before Miss Meghan got a place on the balcony.

    To the matter of politics and the press. British conservative media has not taken to this mixed marriage well. Add in the tabloids and wowsa, eating avocados= genocide, women empowerment/ pay parity = socialism and rise of the harpies, diversity/ multiculturalism = destruction of the new post Brexit British Empire by an invasion of err.... folks from former British colonies and gah, Europeans. Yeah. About that. The Empire is dead. Dead. Dead. Not ever coming back because the rest of the world has moved on and discovered the force is with them.

    The press is only as good as what it prints. It can be garbage in and garbage out. As news media becomes more and more consolidated and are owned by a few really rich people like Rupert Murdoch and a British Viscount, society is quickly losing press neutrality and impartiality. Pushing political agenda and king making are becoming the new journalism’s standard alongside making these rich owners richer and even more powerful. Columnists are now media darlings, celebrities, pundits, leaping to political appointment and back as media personality without ethical concerns. I see the days of the independent press coming to a close, though romanticizing the idea of a free press is as useful as romanticizing that “England's mountain green” (which was plowed under by “those dark satanic mills”) in order to fool people into thinking they still have these things. (Well we can sing those lovely words of Blake’s ‘Jerusalem’, but the success of England’s economy and its might came about because of its industrialization.)

    If you read the descriptives of Meghan, she is portrayed as a threat to the idea of this green, pastoral, medieval, gentrified England (BTW, serfdom and being poor, landless really suck). She has come to personify that uppity foreigner -too global, too elite (lol, rich irony here), too brash, too well educated, too ghetto, too lefty liberal, too well spoken, too Hollywood, too famous, too ambitious, and never quite good enough “to be one of us”.

    History is a reality check, gut puncher. No wonder powerful people prefer the heaving mass to remain ignorant of history, and what’s really happening and be easily distracted with bread and circuses. It’s working too.

    - Martine


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Welcome to Mad About Meghan! We do so look forward to reading your thoughts. Constructive, fair debate is always encouraged. Hateful, derogatory terms and insults are not welcome here. This space focuses on Harry and Meghan, not any other member of the Royal family. It's not the place to discuss politics either. Thank you for reading, we look forward to your comments :)