Where will you be on April 29?

Since the wedding of Kate Middleton and Prince William is just around the corner I thought I’d share some fun facts about the wedding and royal weddings in general. By the way, isn’t it funny that Kate is always referred by her first and last name yet we just refer to the Prince as “Prince William”, no last name? I don’t think I even know what his last name is. Anyway, I digress.

The big day is April 29, and as usual for royal weddings, it will take place in the morning at 11am. This means, for those of us on the West Coast, we’ll have to get up at 3am to watch it live on the telly. Thank goodness for a DVR.

Huffington Post blogger, Lisa Mirza Grotts, who is attending the wedding, wrote about the difference between protocol and etiquette. Protocol refers to a strict code of behavior within a rigidly hierarchical group such as the military or the diplomatic corps. Social etiquette evolves over time, but protocol tends to be set in stone. And, there is quite a bit of protocol to a royal wedding.

The wedding will be planned from start to finish by experts. The bride and groom are able to give their consent to the plans but that’s about it.

Those who were lucky enough to receive an invitation to the wedding were informed that the dress code is “uniform, morning coat or lounge suit”. The attire falls between ultra-formal and business attire. It’s actually quite colorful for women and always includes a hat or fascinator.

If Prince William had asked Kate to marry him before his 25th birthday, he would have required Queen Elizabeth’s consent. But, the Prince and Kate have dated for eight years and, at age 29 the decision was his to make.

Kate must walk two steps behind Prince William at all times.

The British Royal Family will be, as protocol always dictates, the last to arrive at Westminster Abbey, just ahead of the Bride.

The tradition of brides wearing white wedding dresses was started by Queen Victoria when she married Prince Albert in 1840.

A receiving line is a must in a royal wedding. The bride and groom, Prince Charles and Kate’s parents will greet each guest as they enter the reception.

If you were to meet the Queen, women must give a small courtesy and men a slight bow of the head. Don’t shake the Queen’s hand unless she extends her hand first. And for goodness sake, don’t touch the Queen, who you address as “your majesty”.

The Queen will decide what Kate’s royal title will be. It is expected it will be announced the day of the wedding. Kate would prefer to be called by her given name, Catherine.

Royal wedding mania is in full swing. It’s expected over two billion people will watch the wedding. For a fun royal wedding spoof, don’t miss this video.

I know I have a few readers who are rabid royals fans. Are any of you going to London to see the event?

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Arden Clise is founder and president of Clise Etiquette. Her love for business etiquette began in previous jobs when she was frequently asked for etiquette, public speaking and business attire advice by executives and board members. The passion for etiquette took hold and compelled Arden to start a consulting business to help others. Read more >>

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