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involved might Markle Mulroney friend

The royal wedding: How Jessica Mulroney, friend of Meghan Markle, might be involved

Rumours are swirling around Mulroney, who might be the matron of honour — and might be secretly planning the wedding

The Canadian Press

The Canadian Press

Published on: May 3, 2018 | Last Updated: May 3, 2018 1:52 PM MDT

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Jessica Brownstein arrives at St. Patrick's Bascilica for her wedding ceremony with Ben Mulroney on October 30, 2008. Amid the flurry of pre-wedding excitement for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's nuptials, an unexpected coronation has taken place - that of Toronto tastemaker Jessica Mulroney. The Montreal-bred socialite and public relations strategist has been a constant source of CanCon in the swath of international gossip stories: she's been dubbed the secret wedding planner, "one of the most influential women in fashion" and the favorite to be Markle's matron of honor. Graham Hughes / THE CANADIAN PRESS

TORONTO — Amid the flurry of pre-wedding excitement for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s nuptials, an unexpected coronation has taken place — that of Toronto tastemaker Jessica Mulroney.

The Montreal-bred socialite and brand strategist has been a frequent mention in a swath of international gossip stories musing on every breathless detail of the royal union.

Mulroney’s been widely dubbed Markle’s secret wedding planner, is considered “one of the most influential women in fashion” by ABC’s “Good Morning America,” and is the favourite to be Markle’s matron of honour, according to various royal watchers including U.K. tabloid The Sun and Vanity Fair.

It’s been a dramatic ascendance for the quasi-celebrity, also known for her marriage to TV personality Ben Mulroney, the son of a former prime minister.

“She’s really put herself out there,” says fashion journalist Jeanne Beker, who credits Mulroney with crafting a broad image that includes homemaker, style guru and brand influencer. “She obviously is very eager to be in the game.”

Those plugged into the style scene already know Mulroney as a fashion fan and prolific Instagrammer who projects a fairy tale life. Her account is rife with cute photos of her daughter and twin boys, often at their meticulously appointed home.

The varied snaps have also detailed a years-long friendship with Markle herself, before the romance with Prince Harry took off and sparked a media firestorm. They’ve since been removed from Mulroney’s page, and Markle deleted her Instagram account after they announced the engagement, but the images survive online.

British royalty expert Katie Nicholl says the two become tight after Markle moved to Toronto to shoot her seven-season run on the Bravo/USA Network series “Suits,” bonding over a shared love of fitness, travel and fashion.

“Jessica has been very important to Meghan, she’s been very important behind the scenes in the run-up to the royal wedding,” says Nicholl, author of the biography “Harry: Life, Loss and Love.”

“Apparently she flew over for one of the early fittings of the dress. She’s probably one of just two, or maybe even three, people who know who is designing Meghan’s dress so she’s holding a state secret close to her heart at the moment. And she’s on the phone to Meghan all the time; she is the unofficial wedding planner.”

Nicholl’s book traces a close bond that made Mulroney among the few friends entrusted with knowledge of Markle’s budding romance with the people’s prince.

So much so that when the paparazzi caught wind of their Toronto love affair, she says Prince Harry and Markle took refuge in the Mulroneys’ home, where Ben apparently regaled the spare heir with childhood memories of meeting the late Princess Diana when Brian Mulroney was prime minister.

Jessica has been very important to Meghan, she's been very important behind the scenes in the run-up to the royal wedding

By all accounts, Jessica Mulroney would certainly be well-positioned to offer wedding tips.

The style maven is a marketing consultant for the Toronto outpost of Kleinfeld Bridal, the New York-based designer boutique made famous by “Say Yes to the Dress,” and appears regularly on City TV’s “Cityline” to outline style trends.

She’s also a contributing editor at “Wedding Vacations” magazine from the travel company Sunwing, where she’s styled celebrity spreads including vow renewal ceremonies for HGTV Canada stars Sarah and Bryan Baeumler and “Cityline” host Tracy Moore and her husband Lio Perron.

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