Princess Diana: The small ways she'll be present at Harry and Meghan's wedding

CNN/ Newswire | 5/14/2018, 10:35 a.m.
When Prince Harry and Meghan Markle tie the knot in Windsor's St. George's Chapel, there's one person whose absence will ...
Diana and Prince Harry appear at an event commemorating VJ Day in London in 1995.

By Laura Smith-Spark, CNN

(CNN) -- When Prince Harry and Meghan Markle tie the knot in Windsor's St. George's Chapel, there's one person whose absence will be keenly felt: Diana, Princess of Wales.

But small details in the planning of the wedding make it clear that Harry wants his beloved mother's presence to be felt despite her early death in a road accident in Paris in 1997.

In a BBC interview last November marking his engagement to Markle, he spoke of his conviction that his fiancée and his mother would have been firm friends. "They'd be thick as thieves, without question," Harry said. "I think she would be over the moon, jumping up and down, you know so excited for me, but then, as I said, would have probably been best friends with Meghan."

Here are some of the ways in which Diana will be recalled at the wedding.

The jewels

Harry included two diamonds from his mother's own jewelry collection in Meghan's engagement ring, which he designed himself, "to make sure she's with us on this crazy journey together," he said. They flank a central diamond from Botswana, where the couple's relationship blossomed.

"It is days like today when I really miss having her around and miss being able to share the happy news, but with the ring and with everything else that's going on I'm sure she's with us, jumping up and down somewhere else," Harry said in the November interview.

There has been speculation in the UK press that Markle may wear the Spencer family tiara -- worn by Diana for her own marriage to Prince Charles -- as "something borrowed" on her wedding day.

Harry's older brother, Prince William, gave their mother's famous diamond-and-sapphire engagement ring to Kate Middleton, now the Duchess of Cambridge, when he proposed to her in 2010. She will no doubt be wearing it for her brother-in-law's big day.

The flowers

Harry and Meghan's chosen florist, Philippa Craddock, will be decking out the chapel with white garden roses, among other blooms. White roses were a favorite of Diana's and were included when one of the gardens at Kensington Palace -- where Harry and Meghan live in a cottage -- was transformed into a "White Garden" last year to mark the 20th anniversary of her death.

Crown Estate gardeners have been busy growing and preparing the flowers that will fill the church on Harry and Meghan's wedding day.

The guests

The couple have invited Diana's younger brother, Earl Charles Spencer, and her two older sisters, Lady Sarah McCorquodale and Lady Jane Fellowes, to the wedding. The latter has been chosen to give the reading at the ceremony.

"Prince Harry and Ms. Markle both feel honoured that Lady Jane will be representing her family and helping to celebrate the memory of the late Princess on the wedding day," said a palace statement.

Lord Spencer's heartfelt eulogy at his sister's funeral, in which he pledged that her "blood family" would do all they could to steer her sons' upbringing "so that their souls are not simply immersed by duty and tradition," reportedly caused a rift with the royal family that has taken years to heal.