It’s been a little over a year since New York-based designer Misha Nonoo attended Meghan Markle and Prince Harry‘s royal wedding, and now Meghan is swapping roles by being a guest at her good friend’s nuptials.
Nonoo, who wed American technology entrepreneur Michael Hess in Rome on Friday, is widely believed to have been the mysterious matchmaker who set up Meghan and Harry on a blind date in July 2016.
Nonoo first met Meghan at a lunch in Miami, and they quickly became friends.
“We were seated next to one another at a lunch, and we got along like a house on fire,” the designer told the Evening Standard in 2017. “She has the most remarkable and generous spirit. I aspire to be as philanthropic as she is, and to have as much of an impact as her.”
“I love her to death,” Nonoo added. “She is the coolest girl in the world.”
The Bahrain-born business woman, who was raised in London, took a trip to Spain together (when her Instagram was still up and running!) shortly after Meghan met Harry.
Meghan also wore one of Nonoo’s designs — “The Husband Shirt” — during her first public appearance alongside Harry at the Toronto Invictus Games in 2017.
“Everybody loves a good white button-down and this idea of a versatile piece that works for every woman,” Nonoo told PEOPLE recently. “You can wear this shirt with jeans or tucked into a chic black trouser. That’s one of the reasons it has been so successful.”
As for the name, she added: “It’s from the oversized nature of the shirt — and there’s nothing sexier than stealing your boyfriend or husband’s shirt and wearing it.”
In addition to attending the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s royal wedding, Nonoo also Meghan’s baby shower in N.Y.C. in February ahead of baby Archie’s arrival.
Nonoo has long run in royal circles — until 2016, she was married to Paddle8 founder Alexander Gilkes, who is one of Harry’s closest friends.
She’s also pals with Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie, who both were in attendance for her wedding. Eugenie was even in attendance at her pop-up launch event recently.
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Meghan and Nonoo have recently teamed up on their own design project: the Duchess of Sussex turned to Nonoo to design a crisp white shirt for her capsule collection on behalf of the Smart Works charity. In fact, Meghan wore the button-down blouse for the line’s official launch!
Nonoo told PEOPLE the project “aligned so closely with my values of empowering women and dressing women for their professional pursuits, so there was no way I’d say no to it. I was asked specially to do the white shirt because that’s our signature. It was actually a very, very easy process. The Duchess is a consummate professional. It’s been a real pleasure to work with everyone on the team.”
“She is an extraordinarily supportive, kind and loving friend,” Nonoo told PEOPLE after the launch of the capsule collection last week. “From the beginning of our relationship we bonded over our shared ethos about supporting other women — it was something that we absolutely felt, and as friends who support each other over the years, you see that.”
Nonoo manufactures her styles on demand, meaning that no item is made until an order is placed. This sustainable switch was an important undertaking for her.
“The idea of sustainability is becoming so critical to our generation,” she recently told PEOPLE. “I support people who are talented or creative, but I think you can use your creativity for ways outside of just designing a pretty dress and think about how you impact the industry and the environment at large.”
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