With an American about to become part of "The Firm," there's a definite buzz stateside as we get ready for the upcoming May 19 nuptials between Miss Meghan Markle and Henry "Harry" of Wales at Windsor Castle.
Over at the British American Foundation of Texas, they're time-shifting their Royal Wedding Party to a more civilized 8 a.m. start (the wedding actually begins at 6 a.m. CST), and doing it up right with television coverage, mimosas, games and plenty of hats and fascinators.
"You cannot have a British-American wedding without the wearing of hats," says Kay Thomson, executive director of BAFTX. Several guests selected their hats a few weeks ago when local milliner Gabriela Dror held a trunk show, giving them what could be an edge when it comes to the hat contest.
Thomson says the fun includes royal bingo, a royal trivia quiz, some raffles and even a royal photo booth. "We haven't told our guests too much; we've been quite cagey," says Thomson. It's all for a good cause, too, as the foundation provides scholarship assistance to academically-gifted students in the United Kingdom and the United States.
When the royal couple-to-be sent out invitations to the first 600 guests back in March, it left the rest of the world scrambling for how to best catch a glimpse of the wedding between the Suits actress and U.K.'s most eligible bachelor. Savvy Brits will be camping out in the town of Windsor but here across the pond, big screen televisions are our best bet. BATFX's Royal Wedding Party at Royal Oaks Country Club is sold out but Anglophiles can still celebrate with style.
The Bigger the Better. Poll your friends and whoever has the biggest flat screen gets to host your viewing party. The wedding will be televised on NBC, PBS and CBS, as well as on NYTimes.com. Take bets on which designer did her wedding gown. Front-runners are Ralph & Russo, Erdem Moralioglu, Roland Mouret, Burberry, Alexander McQueen, Jenny Packham and Inbal Dror. Hint: Both Victoria Beckham and Vera Wang say they're definitely not designing the dress.
Wedding Cake. Place your order ahead of time at one of Houston's bake shops. While fruitcake is traditional for British weddings, the couple decided on a lemon elderflower cake with buttercream icing. Hit up your favorite baker with enough notice and they might make one for your own royal wedding party; bonus points if it's topped with brightly-colored spring flowers.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
Hats, Fascinators and Military Regalia. Nobody will ever forget Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice unwittingly vying for most ridiculous hat during the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton. This is an opportunity to up-cycle something from the resale shop or, better yet, hit Michael's and load up on flowers, hot glue and ribbons to make your own style-setter.
Harry, on the other hand, has a few choices in his attire. He could go traditional with a morning suit or can don the uniform of the Royal Marines (he's Captain General) or the Blues and Royals (he's an officer of this branch of the Army Air Corps).
British Food and Drink. Tea is mandatory, and make a grocery run ahead of time at one of the many specialty stores in town. We've got British Isles on Rice Boulevard and many grocery stores have a well-stocked selection of international foods.
Alcoholic Beverages. Create your own drinking games, such as doing a shot every time Prince Philip says something inappropriate, or whenever one of the extended members of the royal family throws shade and it's caught on camera.