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Meghan and Eugenie battle to be top the Windsor bride

Prince Andrew, pictured left, with brother Prince Charles, pictured right, are famously competitive

Fathers’ guest list tussles

Famously competitive brothers Prince Charles and Prince Andrew may be tempted to use their children’s weddings – in May and the autumn respectively – to show which proud dad can wield the most influence. 

But on the guest-list front, Charles’s hands are tied, as Harry has implemented a ‘no old fogies’ rule, telling his father he won’t be allowed to invite dozens of foreign dignitaries. 

He is insisting on an intimate wedding with a young congregation. Eugenie is said to be keen to please her father with his long list of friends, including Arab sheiks and foreign moguls.

Hot favourite: Eugenie and Jack.

Mothers of the bride with a gulf between them

Meghan’s low-key yoga instructor mother Doria Ragland has been hands- on but un-pushy as the big day approaches for the brides’ mums. Aides say Doria, below right with Meghan, plans to head back to LA anonymity once the party is over.

In contrast, Sarah Ferguson will be looking for any opportunity to show off her Royal credentials.

The Duchess of York has made headlines by gushing on social media about Eugenie’s ‘pure harmony’ engagement to Jack Brooksbank, who she describes as a ‘son, brother and best friend’.

Prince Philip can’t bear to be in the same room as her, but she may draft in big-name support from the US by inviting television chatshow queen Oprah Winfrey.

Hot favourite: Meghan and Harry.

Sarah Ferguson Duchess of York pictured with daughter Princess Eugenie

Meghan Markle pictured with her mother Doria Radlan

Pictured left, Sarah Ferguson Duchess of York with daughter Princess Eugenie are quite the different pair compared to Meghan Markle and her mother Doria Radlan, pictured right

Cocktails all round with barman Jack

As for catering, both brides are opting for the same upmarket company, Table Talk, which also handled Pippa Middleton’s wedding reception – doing little to douse rumours that Princess Eugenie is heading for a copycat wedding.

But there will be subtle differences: Prince Harry and Meghan have also engaged party planners Fait Accompli, for example, to add in quirky details like an American whiskey bar.

But former bar and restaurant manager Jack will be playing to his strengths.

He not only has plenty of contacts in the catering world, but he also owns a wholesale wine merchants – as well as having unlimited access to tequila, thanks to his role as a brand ambassador for George Clooney’s company Casamigos. Margarita, anyone?

Hot favourite: Eugenie and Jack.

The race to be fittest

Meghan’s regime to maintain her Hollywood figure is enviably no-frills – the actress runs regularly around Kensington Gardens and practises yoga. 

But in terms of effort, Princess Eugenie is strides ahead. Quietly on a healthy eating regime for a year, friends say she has dropped a dress size. It’s thanks to nutritionist Gabriela Peacock, who encourages wine and pizza ‘cheat days’ but otherwise advises cutting out cheese, alcohol and sugar. 

Eugenie also boxes and works out twice a week.

Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank, pictured in the Picture Gallery at Buckingham Palace after announcing their engagement

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, pictured at Kensington Palace announcing their engagement

Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank, pictured left in the Picture Gallery at Buckingham Palace after announcing their engagement not long after Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, pictured right, announced there’s at  Kensington Palace

Hot favourite: Meghan but Eugenie gets A for effort.

Bling behind the rings… 

On the rings front, Eugenie’s oval-cut padparadscha sapphire is strikingly similar to Sarah Ferguson’s ruby and diamond engagement ring. 

Meghan’s has diamond stones taken from the late Princess Diana’s jewellery. The women were once the closest of friends, so Harry may find the symmetry pleasing, especially as he is very fond of his cousin. 

But warm and fuzzy feelings aside, he may take some satisfaction in the fact that his bride gets to win the battle of the bling as Meghan’s 3.5-carat Botswana ring has that priceless Diana legacy.

Princess Eugenie's ring, pictured, is similar to her Sarah Ferguson's. It contains a padparadscha sapphire surrounded by diamonds

Princess Eugenie’s ring, pictured, is similar to her Sarah Ferguson’s. It contains a padparadscha sapphire surrounded by diamonds

Meghan's 3.5-carat Botswana ring, pictured, has diamond stones taken from late Princess Diana's jewellery

Meghan’s 3.5-carat Botswana ring, pictured, has diamond stones taken from late Princess Diana’s jewellery

Hot favourite: Meghan and Harry.

We’re dressed to impress

Both Meghan and Eugenie are fans of the Canadian designer Erdem. 

Meghan wore an Erdem dress for her first society wedding with Prince Harry and Eugenie recycled a two-year-old Erdem dress for engagement photos. 

When it comes to their wedding dresses, they are both said to want something traditional – and elegant. Meghan’s close friend Jessica Mulroney has been styling the actress for years and has been spotted going into Kensington Palace for top-secret meetings, while Charlie Anderson, former fashion editor of Tatler, has been helping Eugenie.

Hot favourite: Meghan.

Waterloo or portaloo for partygoers

In the battle of the venues, Meghan and Harry have set their hearts on 17th Century Frogmore House, left, in the grounds of Windsor Castle for the post-reception knees-up.

Guests will have to use the same plush (but hardly regal) portable toilets hired by Pippa Middleton for her wedding last year to financier James Matthews.

Eugenie is yet to confirm the setting for her reception, but like Harry, she is likely to make use of one of Windsor Castle’s state rooms, such as the famous Waterloo Chamber, left, for the first reception immediately after the wedding.

At least neither set of guests will be subjected to a plastic ‘throne room’ there.

Hot favourite: Eugenie and Jack.

Windsor Castle in Berkshire where Harry and Meghan have their sights set on the 17th Century Frogmore House, pictured, for a post-reception party

Windsor Castle in Berkshire where Harry and Meghan have their sights set on the 17th Century Frogmore House, pictured, for a post-reception party

Pictured, the Waterloo Chamber where Eugenie and Jack are likely to hold their post-wedding reception

Pictured, the Waterloo Chamber where Eugenie and Jack are likely to hold their post-wedding reception

Invites are strictly A-list, by George!

Meghan may be a Hollywood star but Eugenie is expected to have the best guest-list. 

The formidable networking skills of her mother Sarah, combined with Eugenie’s time spent in the US, means Oprah Winfrey and George and Amal Clooney are likely to be invited. 

Harry and Meghan will invite friends Michelle and Barack Obama, right – but they are likely to politely decline to prevent a diplomatic row with President Trump (unlikely be invited to either). 

Hot favourite: Eugenie and Jack, unless Obamas accept.

Harry wins service game

Pictured, Princess Charlotte attending the wedding of Pippa Middleton and James Matthews

Pictured, Princess Charlotte attending the wedding of Pippa Middleton and James Matthews

Harry’s ceremony will see the Dean of Windsor, David Conner, left, carry out the general service and the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, far left, perform the marriage. 

Although Archbishop Welby is expected to officiate at major Royal weddings, Eugenie – who will be ninth in line to the throne by the time of hers – may be deemed too far down the pecking order for his services.

Hot favourite: Meghan and Harry. 

The cutest of them all

Eugenie, 27, is one of the first of her group to get married and has few friends with children, so her bridesmaids are expected to be mostly made up of adult girlfriends, including maid of honour sister Princess Beatrice. 

She will ramp up the cute factor with one or two of Sir Richard Branson’s grandchildren – his children Sam and Holly are close friends. Meghan will find it impossible to resist having adorable Princess Charlotte scattering petals. 

A draw.

PS…watch your house, Harry! 

Eugenie even has her eye on Harry’s marital home. 

Aides are whispering that she and Jack will get Nottingham Cottage, above, when Harry is eventually moved up the Kensington Palace ladder. 

 

 

 

 



Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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