By Brittany Talarico
Updated March 10, 2015 01:00 PM
Advertisement

When she’s not working on an acting project (or BFF-ing with Mandy Moore), Minka Kelly is busy giving back. The actress has partnered with fashionABLE — a retailer dedicated to creating sustainable jobs for vulnerable women in Africa — in honor of World Women’s Day. And the clutch she helped design needs to be added to your closet immediately.

Image
Credit: Esther Havens


Esther Havens

The “Hibret” (which means collaboration in Amharic, the traditional language of Ethiopia) pouch is made of a fine suede and comes in two colors — magenta and navy. The inside is lined with an Ethiopian cotton scarf, to support the community of women.

As you get out your credit card, here are a few things we earned about Kelly while chatting with her about her philanthropic endeavor.

Minka Kelly FashionABLE collaboration


Courtesy FasionABLE

She has a huge heart
Kelly has been taking trips to Africa since 2009, collaborating with Mocha Club and fashionABLE founder Barrett Ward and Women At Risk, an organization that helps rehabilitate former sex workers by finding them alternate methods of income. “I was affected on such a deep and profound level when I heard that one woman chose to go into the sex industry because she had to pay for sister’s breast cancer treatment,” Kelly told PEOPLE. “And that was just a big lesson of courage and sacrifice, and I just thought, ‘Wow, my mom had to make a lot of difficult choices to put a roof over our heads.’ She wasn’t a sex worker, but she was an exotic dancer. A lot of people would look at these choices of these sex workers or even my mom’s exotic dancing as bad choices, but they’re actually heroic choices. When you’re left with nothing else, you’ll do anything to provide for your family. And so a lot of these women carry a lot of shame and guilt. I just decided that it was my purpose to make sure that these women could and should be proud of themselves and that their children should be proud of them, too.

The suede pouch she helped design will go with everything in your closet
“We did a photo shoot, and I have pictures of me wearing the clutch in a suit and of me wearing it in jeans and T-shirt. It turned out to be such a versatile piece, and the colors are fun and elegant and also playful and really versatile. They can go with a springtime floral flowy dress and sandals or a really strong structured women’s pantsuit. Whatever you want to put it with. And if you have to travel and carry a bigger bag, you can throw it in your bigger bag and use it as a cosmetics pouch.”

She’s constantly cleaning out her own closet
“Whenever something starts to feel cluttered, I do a spring cleaning and get rid of things. And I give away a lot to not to accumulate too much.”

Her go-to beauty trick is one you’ve probably never tried before
“You know what I’ve been doing since high school? I always get a good laugh out of it — whenever I’m in a makeup trailer, I do it. I curl my eyelashes, put my mascara on and as soon as I’m done applying the mascara, I get a blow dryer and aim it at my eyes and blow my eyelashes up. It keeps them curled and keeps them set for the rest of the day.”

Minka Kelly Friday Night Lights


Michael Muller/NBC/Getty

She doesn’t have Lyla Garrity’s cheerleading outfit framed on her wall
Okay, maybe that was a just a dream we had. But the Friday Night Lights star didn’t get to hold on to her famous blue-and-white Dillon Panther’s uniform. “By the end, I wanted to burn that thing!” (If you haven’t watch Friday Night Lights, we suggest you binge watch it on Netflix immediately.)

What do you think of Minka’s latest collaboration? Sound off below.

–Brittany Talarico