Meghan fans study the Markle sparkle

The Sunday Times - - NEWS - REGINA TITELIUS

RE­NEWED fas­ci­na­tion with the roy­als is in­spir­ing West Aussie women to get eti­quette train­ing.

Class en­rol­ments are up since Meghan Markle took royal les­sons be­fore get­ting hitched to Harry.

Perth eti­quette ex­pert El­iz­a­beth Soos runs “how to be a duchess” classes, which in­clude les­sons on proper manners and pro­to­cols.

Her pupils in­clude Ger­maine Koh, of Fre­man­tle, who said she felt out­side her com­fort zone at high-end cock­tail events a few years ago for her fiancé’s work in Monaco, Italy and London.

“I felt re­ally un­com­fort­able be­cause the level of eti­quette at the posh places we went to, par­tic­u­larly in Monaco, was be­yond any­thing I had come across be­fore,” Mrs Koh said.

Not only has she learnt the high tea rules of en­gage­ment and other pala­tial re­quire­ments, but the Sin­ga­porean-born woman, who is step­ping into real es­tate, was schooled on how to make the best first im­pres­sion.

Armed with the train­ing and a new wed­ding band, Mrs Koh was ready to min­gle with the Her­mes bag clique when she again ac­com­pa­nied her new hus­band for over­seas func­tions late last year.

“I was so much more con­fi­dent at these events com­pared to my pre­vi­ous trips, I just wish I had done the duchess course sooner,” she said.

“To know the proper eti­quette is good for ev­ery­one, it shows re­spect to your part­ner, re­spect to busi­ness. It’s not only a mat­ter of my hus­band mak­ing a good im­pres­sion but also for part­ners.”

Ms Soos said the royal wed­ding had helped re­turn eti­quette to the spot­light.

She said Meghan had gone through a phe­nom­e­nal trans­for­ma­tion in a short pe­riod, with royal watch­ers not­ing her im­prove­ments in how she curt­sied and in­ter­acted with other fam­ily mem­bers and the pub­lic.

“Peo­ple might think eti­quette sounds old fash­ioned and they think of Queen Vic­to­ria or young Queen El­iz­a­beth but eti­quette is re­spect for other peo­ple and it goes back to treat­ing peo­ple how you would want to be treated,” Ms Soos said.

Picture: Daniel Wilkins

Pol­ish: Meghan Markle has in­spired Perth women to study eti­quette. Above right, Ger­maine Koh pours tea for El­iz­a­beth Soos.

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