Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.
So you weren't one of the 600 invitees to the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle? Can't get to Windsor Castle? No problem. You can celebrate the royal wedding just fine from your living room – all you really need is a TV tuned to the festivities. But if you really want to get into the spirit of things, we've got step-by-step instructions for throwing the best party outside the main event itself.
First, you've got to know the details. The wedding itself will start at 9pm AEST, but you can watch pre-wedding coverage on channels Seven, Nine, ABC and SBS. In fact, Channel Seven even punted the footy to 7Mate so the wedding could be broadcast on the main channel.
For those of who want to know about the venue, cake, bridal party and more, your diligence is commendable and you should read this piece from Nick Miller.
If you're in favour of an Australian republic and feeling weird about celebrating the monarchy, remind yourself that Prince Harry would be getting married whether or not his grandmother is our head of state, and this is really just a good excuse to throw a themed party. And besides, as Peter FitzSimons points out, Meghan Markle is not exactly your usual royal spouse.
Next, you'll need to think about a menu. One option is to follow the royal example and serve “bowl food”. But we recommend finger food instead. For starters, you can go traditional British, with finger sandwiches (egg and cress, cucumber, coronation chicken), scones with jam and cream, sponge cake and devilled eggs. You could also include some American favourites, in honour of the bride: mini hot dogs, sliders, cookies and cupcakes. And don't forget drinks – champagne, obviously, but Pimms punch is also a good option, as well as tea.
Harry and Meghan souvenirs.
With all the food sorted, it's time to think about entertainment. The wedding coverage should keep you going, but some fun and games are always welcome.
You could create your own royal wedding bingo, taking inspiration for your bingo cards from this Bustle list:
Your party should be the talk of the town.
You could also turn that into a drinking game, but remember to drink responsibly! Royal trivia is another option, or you could play some tried and true hens games. Make sure you have your wedding-themed playlist sorted, too. Going to the Chapel by the Dixie Cups, Marry You by Bruno Mars … you get the idea.
There's a heap of outfit etiquette involved in any wedding, let alone a royal one (see: crazy hats, above). So make sure you have your own headwear sorted well in advance, and provide some options for your guests, whether it be tiaras, fascinators or actual hats.
And remember, tell your guests – no black! You can also make sure your own venue is ready for visitors by decking it out with flags, bunting and balloons in red, white and blue – which handily covers the countries of both the bride and the groom.
Don't forget to carefully select the guest list.
Meghan Markle has herself shown a love of hats.
You probably won't have as many people wanting to attend as the royal couple themselves, but you never know. At this point, it's probably too late to get luxuriously printed invitations, a la royal wedding. A group text is probably the way to go.
Now, with all the physical preparations done, you're almost ready to host your royal wedding party. But don't forget the mental preparations, too.
You can keep on top of all the latest news and developments right here, of course, but we suggest really getting into the zone with this classic, made around the time of the last royal wedding.
Have we forgotten anything? Leave us your tips in comments.
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