Sunday, May 20, 2018

How did you spend the Royal Wedding Day? BTS on Fox 2 News and Afternoon Tea at the Townsend

Fox 2 News, Royal Wedding: Charlie Langton, Barbara Gulley, Christopher Coscia and Maurielle Lue

Were you up at the crack of dawn yesterday, with teacup and TV remote in hand, to partake in the Royal Wedding viewing? Or, perhaps, you donned your favorite hat and shared the experience at a fancy tea room with fellow royalphiles. We here at BTS did a little bit of all, including appearing live on Fox 2 News!

Barb and Rachel partake in afternoon tea after presenting "Royal Afternoon Tea and Tea Etiquette" at the Townsend Hotel 

Our day began at 4:30 am, to be ready to meet make up artist, Kelsey, of Kelsey Marie Claire, at 5:00 am. During the transformation from "sweat pants zone" to "camera ready", I was able to sneak in a few minutes of pre-wedding festivities on network TV.  Already, the day was filled with more pomp and circumstance than I typically experience in six months.

I rendezvoused an hour later with Chris Coscia, Assistant Tea Director of The Townsend, at said hotel, and we made our way to Fox 2 Studios, armed with an array of Harry and Meghan souvenirs from my recent trip to the UK and several platters of afternoon tea delights, including scones, sweets and savories.

A bit nervous, but SO, so happy to be part of The Townsend tea team presenting at Fox 2, we were ready to go once the director gave the orders to begin.

Here's the link to the interview! We got to talk about our book, Michigan Tea Rooms, our upcoming etiquette book and the origins of "pinkies out".

Fox @ Royal Wedding Tea at the Townsend

Charlie Langton is in for a good time and with no rehearsal or script for us to go by, he greeted us a few seconds before the cameras rolled with a warm greeting of "let's have fun"! Maurielle Lue joined later for some tea drinking and inquiries regarding afternoon tea fare.

BTS Michigan Tea Rooms displayed next to Royal Wedding souvenirs 

Although I brought a range of commemorative trinkets purchased while in London and Edinburgh, as well as my treasured photo of me with Harry's uncle, Lord Spencer, when I interviewed him back in 2014, the "pinkie story" was what sparked more interest in the time we had allotted.

Meeting with Harry's uncle, Lord Spencer in 2014

However, we were able to share these items as well as few others later in the day, when Rachel and I presented "A Royal Afternoon Tea and Tea Etiquette" program to a sold out tea lobby of guests at Birmingham's Townsend Hotel.

BTS presented to a sold out crowd at Townsend's tea lobby

We know first hand the enthusiasm for Harry and Meghan's big day at Windsor Castle is shared equally among the UK and the US, having just been in Great Britain two weeks earlier and finding our way home via the Queen Mary 2, from South Hampton to New York. Even our cruise ship got caught up in the Royal Wedding, assembling their crew, including the captain, in the wee hours of last Wednesday morning in the grand lobby to send their congratulatory wishes to the bride and groom.

The crew of the Queen Mary 2 assembles for congratulatory wishes for H & M

I purchased wedding souvenirs at Holyrood Palace in Edinburgh, home to Queen Elizabeth one week every year, as well as Harrod's in London. At the latter venue, I also perused the hat department and found a delightful fascinator to wear for "Royal Wedding Day".

Shopping of hats and souvenirs at Harrod's.
Holyrood Palace history & retail 

A long, but one-of-a-kind day, filled with entertaining festivities and anglophile camaraderie.  A little excessive, a little frivolity, but lot of fun for us Royal-watchers.  (and, remember, pinkies in!)

A special thank you to Kelsey Marie Claire MUA and hair stylist, Liz N., for the early morning "transformation". Amazing artists, professional and a whole lot of fun!