Meghan Markle Learned This Fascinating Skill at an All-Girls Catholic School

Before Meghan Markle met her prince, and well before landing her role as Rachel Zane on Suits, she was your typical aspiring Hollywood actress. She attended auditions and worked “real” jobs to pay the rent. In her case, however, she was spared the backbreaking waitressing jobs because she had another special skill garnered during her years attending Catholic school.

See what skill Markle learned at her Los Angeles high school that would help her earn money when starting her career (page 3). Find out which pop music star hired her because of it (page 5) and how she wowed Larry King with it (page 6).

Immaculate Heart High School

Immaculate Heart High School in Hollywood, California | Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images

Markle graduated from Immaculate Heart High School in 1991. Other alumnae of the all-girl, Catholic institution include Tyra Banks and Mary Tyler Moore. Former classmates described Markle as talented and driven, saying she knew where she would go to college and that she would major in drama.

The future Suits star had a brush of sorts with royalty in high school when she was nominated for the prom court. Although she did not win prom queen, “everybody knew her and she had an ability to be effortlessly kind,” a high school friend said.

Next: A teacher’s advice she still lives by

The teacher who influenced her

Her theology teacher had a big influence on her. | Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images

Theology teacher Maria Pollia taught Markle and remembers her as always being up for a challenge. Once she counseled Markle not to be afraid of volunteering at an inner-city soup kitchen, advising her “to put the needs of others beyond your own.”

Markle ended up following that advice throughout life. She referred to it in a 2016 book in which she was interviewed: The Game Changers: Success Secrets From 40 Women at the Top: How to Become a Fearless, Fabulous Girl Boss. “[Pollia] told me that ‘life is about putting others’ needs above your own fears.’ That advice has always stayed with me,’” Markle wrote.

Next: An artful yet lucrative skill

Cursive

Meghan Markle

She loves handwritten notes. | Ben Birchall/AFP/Getty Images

In high school, Markle also had classes in handwriting. “I’ve always had a propensity for getting the cursive down pretty well,” she said.

Markle has a love for handwritten notes: “I think handwritten notes are a lost art form,” she wrote. When I booked my first [TV] pilot, my dad wrote me a letter that I still have. The idea of someone taking the time to put pen to paper is really special.”

Next: How Markle made money off the skill

Freelance calligraphy

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 09: Meghan Markle during a visit to Reprezent 107.3FM in Pop Brixton on January 9, 2018 in London, England. The Reprezent training programme was established in Peckham in 2008, in response to the alarming rise in knife crime, to help young people develop and socialise through radio. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

She taught calligraphy at a Paper Source store. | Dominic Lipinski/WPA Pool/Getty Image

This skill turned into something that could pay her rent. “What [cursive] evolved into was my pseudo-waitressing job when I was auditioning,” Markle said. “I didn’t wait tables. I did calligraphy.”

Back in 2004, the royal-to-be taught calligraphy at the Paper Source store in Beverly Hills. She also taught the arts of gift-wrapping and book-binding.

Next: A pop star client

Robin Thicke’s wedding invitations

Paula Patton and Robin Thicke are posing together on the red carpet.

She designed Paula Patton and Robin Thicke’s wedding invitations. | Chelsea Lauren/Getty Images for Hyundai

When Blurred Lines singer Robin Thicke married Paula Patton in 2005, Markle designed the wedding invitations. She took on the job when the engaged couple went to Paper Source to order the invitations.

“I met her because she helped me with my wedding invitations,” Patton told Entertainment Tonight. “She had this beautiful writing. That moment I feel like I said something to her. Like, ‘You are meant to be royal.’ She was just so graceful and lovely and actually really kind.”

Next: What she wrote for Larry King

Larry King

Larry King holds up Meghan Markle’s handwriting sample. | Larry King via YouTube

Markle appeared with Suits co-star Patrick J. Adams on Larry King Now. During the interview, King brought up the actress’ calligraphy skills and asked her to write for him on a notecard. She wrote, “I love Larry King,” adding flourish to the letters. “I don’t write things down in front of her anymore because I’m embarrassed,” Adams joked.

Next: She gives some handwriting pointers.

Markle’s tips on writing cursive

Meghan Markle is wearing a purple shirt and talking at a podium.

She has great tips on better handwriting. | Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Are you inspired and hoping to hone your own cursive skills? Markle gave Esquire some advice on making a better handwritten note: “I guess the number one thing is you have to take your time,” she said. “Just do fluid strokes, you don’t have to have a fancy pen by any means.

“And here’s the other thing, you have to write in a way that’s authentic to you. So even if it’s chicken scratch, just take a little bit more time and try to make the letters more fluid.”

Next: What about her own wedding invitations?

Meghan and Harry’s own wedding invites

Hands hold invitations just printed at the workshop of Barnard and Westwood for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's wedding on March 22, 2018 in London, England. The couple will marry in St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle on May 19.

We’d be surprised if she wasn’t hands-on with the wedding invites. | Victoria Jones – WPA Pool/Getty Images

In March 2018, Kensington Palace tweeted that Markle and Prince Harry’s own royal wedding invitations had been sent out. Following royal tradition, they were made by London-based Barnard & Westwood, featuring the gold badge of the Prince of Wales. There was no word on whether Markle handwrote a personal touch onto each one — although we wouldn’t be surprised.

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