- Publish Date
- Monday, 25 February 2019, 8:52AM
From writing her own speeches to spontaneously scribbling notes on bananas, Meghan Markle is the duchess that does things her own way.
And her baby shower has been no exception. Bucking royal traditions, the mum-to-be's lavish celebrations in New York are said to have cost more than $731,000 - and have reportedly ruffled royal feathers back at the Palace, with Prince William in particular.
According to The Sun, Princess Diana's former butler Paul Burrell describes Markle's latest stunt in the US as making her look more like Kim Kardashian than a royal. And he has discussed why she needs to "knuckle down and toe the royal line".
Burrell explains that Markle's baby shower and such a parade of "lavish extravagance" will anger William because he has worked so hard to create a line with the press which dictates a boundary of relative privacy.
Markle's New York trip is being viewed as an attempt to court attention in a way the future king despises, and feared after his mother's experience with the tabloids.
While a baby shower isn't a British tradition, Kate did have one ahead of the arrival of Prince George, but it was a "very private and contained affair", notes Burrell.
He told The Sun: "I think William as well as Kate Middleton will be totally bewildered by why Meghan is doing all this, as there's no excuse for overindulgence or excess and that's what it seems to me.
"Although William mixes with A-list celebrities, he doesn't take them home with him, they aren't his friends, they are people he works with."
He foresees Markle's continued shoulder-rubbing with celebrities as a recipe for disaster, noting the duchess knows how to "project herself" in a highly considered way. And he warns that her recent adventure signals a dangerous blurring of lines between royalty and celebrity, claiming "Meghan doesn't know the difference".
He refers to the Queen's statement - "We are not celebrities, to be royal is something very different" - and highlights the likes of Meghan's New York trip as something that would never be indulged in by the Cambridges.
"They are so British, they are so well-behaved ... they believe the key is to not let people in."
While he signals Meghan will need to "tow the party line if she is to last" Burrell acknowledges the division of the Cambridges and Sussexes is a positive one, considering the families' very different trajectories.
"I think we all have to wait with bated breath and watch the way this one is going to progress.
"It is certainly a fiery, tempestuous comet streaking through the royal family."
This article was first published on nzherald.co.nz and is reproduced here with permission.