Kate Middleton Had These Two Very Normal Jobs Before She Became a Royal

Before she joined the royal family in 2011, Kate Middleton worked at normal jobs just like anyone else. She worked for her family's party business and then as an accessories buyer for a jewelry company, where she performed assistant-like tasks.

The Duke And Duchess Of Cambridge Attend The ICAP Charity Day
(Image credit: WPA Pool)

Before she was a staple of the royal family, Kate Middleton (opens in new tab) was just a regular human trying to find a way to make money with her art history degree (opens in new tab). Relatable, no?

After Kate graduated from St. Andrews in 2005, she held two normal person jobs before royal wedding (opens in new tab) planning and, later, royal engagement (opens in new tab)s became her life.


First, she worked for her family's business, Party Pieces (opens in new tab), which sells party supplies. Having a family business to work for is a certain kind of privilege in and of itself, but the work was still no doubt more normal than literally being royalty (not that that's a high bar to clear).

Next, Kate (opens in new tab) took a part-time job as an accessories buyer with British retailer Jigsaw, according to the Daily Mail (opens in new tab). "Accessories Buyer" might sound like an impressive title, but in reality, Kate, like so many young, entry level workers, functioned more or less as a personal assistant. Her job tasks included such menial, non-duchessy duties as running errands and bringing tea and snacks to the talent on the set of photo shoots.

Belle Robinson, who cofounded the brand with John Robinson, dished about Kate's work ethic (opens in new tab) and already-royal composure during a 2008 interview with the Evening Standard (opens in new tab)Kate, who was already dating Prince William at the time, had to balance normal person work with some of the less-awesome aspects of fame—like paparazzi (opens in new tab).

"I have to say I was so impressed by her," she said. "There were days when there were TV crews at the end of the drive. We'd say: 'Listen, do you want to go out the back way?' And she'd say: 'To be honest, they're going to hound us until they've got the picture. So why don't I just go, get the picture done, and then they'll leave us alone.'"

If you're thinking, "Damn, that's a very mature attitude," you're not alone. Belle thought the same thing.

"I thought she was very mature for a 26-year-old, and I think she's been quite good at neither courting the press nor sticking two fingers in the air at them," she said. "I don't think I would have been so polite."

Kate, who stayed at Jigsaw until November 2007, didn't let her royalish-by-association (opens in new tab) status change her attitude. She was friendly with all the other not-dating-royalty commoners.

"She sat in the kitchen at lunchtime and chatted with everyone from the van drivers to the accounts girls," said Belle. "She wasn't precious."

Kayleigh Roberts
Weekend Editor

Kayleigh Roberts is a freelance writer and editor with more than 10 years of professional experience. Her byline has appeared in Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, ELLE, Harper’s Bazaar, The Atlantic, Allure, Entertainment Weekly, MTV, Bustle, Refinery29, Girls’ Life Magazine, Just Jared, and Tiger Beat, among other publications. She's a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.