Meghan Markle’s designer best friend Misha Nonoo has spoken out to defend her pal against what she describes as ‘unjust’ public criticism.
The 31-year-old fashion designer, who has thus far refused to open up about her relationship with the Duchess of Sussex, shared some small insight into their friendship during an interview with the Today show on Friday, during which she also gushed about Meghan’s work ethic, and her determination to ‘make people’s lives better’.
‘I think [the criticism of Meghan] unjust, and I think that people should really focus on the good work [she and Prince Harry] do,’ Misha said, after being asked about the public controversies that have plagued the royal couple over the past few months.
Best friends: Designer Misha Nonoo (left) has spoken out to defend her pal Meghan Markle against what she describes as ‘unjust’ public criticism
Speaking out: During an interview on the Today show, the 31-year-old gushed about her royal friend, praising her work ethic and her determination to ‘make people’s lives better’
‘No comment’: Misha refused to confirm whether or not she was the mathmaker who first set Meghan up on a blind date with Prince Harry in July 2016
Misha, who was speaking with Today about Meghan’s new charitable clothing collection, Smart Set, for which she designed a shirt, said that the project is a prime example of the royal’s unwavering focus on women’s empowerment.
‘This is her first official engagement after having had her baby, [and] it’s all about empowering women, all about what she has essentially always sought to do,’ Misha said.
‘When she goes to Africa with Prince Harry and their new little one, she is going to do some events there on empowering women,’ Misha added. ‘She’s really interested in empowering women around the world.’
However, while she happily defended her close pal against public criticism, Misha once again refused to confirm the many rumors that she was the matchmaker behind Meghan’s first blind date with Harry, 34, in July 2016.
‘No comment, no comment, no comment, no comment,’ she responded when probed about the topic, laughing as TV host Keir Simmons continued to ask her about her role in their relationship.
Misha did praise Meghan’s choice of outfit for the couple’s first public outing – a pair of ripped blue jeans that the Duchess paired with a white button up from Misha’s eponymous brand.
Supportive: The New York-based, Bahrain-born designer created a shirt for Meghan’s new charitable clothing collection, Smart Set, which launched on Thursday
Reunion! Misha traveled to London to help her royal friend launch the collection, less than a week after they are understood to have spent time together during Meghan’s New York trip
That shirt made headlines around the world after it was revealed that the style was called The Husband, sparking much speculation that Meghan was trying to share a message with the world about her and Harry’s relationship.
‘She looked beautiful and relaxed and comfortable, and I think it’s really essentially who she is,’ Misha said of Meghan’s choice of ensemble – which resulted in a surge in sales of the Husband shirt.
Besties: Meghan and Misha have been friends for years, having met while the Duchess was working as an actress
But when it came to the topic of Meghan’s new charity project, which is aimed at raising funds and awareness for Smart Works, a charity that helps unemployed women to find professional clothing for job interviews, Misha was incredibly open.
‘I think that is something that her and I bonded over from the very early days of our relationship was that she genuinely seeks to help people,’ the New York-based, Bahrain-born designer said of the beginnings of her long relationship with the former actress.
‘It comes from a place deep within her where she really wants to make people’s lives better.’
Misha went on to wax lyrical about Meghan’s hard work on the project, revealing how hands-on the Duchess had been on every aspect of the process.
‘She’s the consummate professional, and she’s been extremely hands-on in the project, and it’s something that she’s really passionate about,’ she said.
The designer joined Meghan in London on Thursday to celebrate the launch of the Smart Set collection, which has seen an overwhelmingly positive response, with some of the most popular designs now being sold on eBay for three times their original price.
Best seller: For her first public appearance with Harry, Meghan wore a classic white shirt by Misha’s eponymous label
Many of Meghan’s friends have taken to Instagram to share congratulatory messages for the Duchess, including Misha, who announced her Smart Set collaboration in a post on Thursday.
‘We’re thrilled to be officially launching our partnership with Smart Works and The Duchess of Sussex, as we work together to support women as they re-enter the workforce,’ the post said.
‘Here at Misha Nonoo, our mission has always been to provide women everywhere with a stylish work-ready wardrobe. With our release of the Smart Set Shirt, we can spread this mission further – with every purchase of our shirt, one will be donated to Smart Works, equipping their clients with the key essentials they need to attend interviews and return to employment.’
She added in a comment shared on the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s official Instagram account, Misha added: ‘It has been such an honor to participate in such a meaningful cause. Thank you sincerely for involving our business in the Smart Works mission.’