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“I can’t quite see,” laughed Michelle Dockery after posing for the red carpet photographers at BAFTA LA’s annual tea party before the Emmy Awards. An occupational hazard, one might suppose.

The Emmy-nominated “Downton Abbey” star was not only on time for the party at the SLS Hotel in Los Angeles, she was also the very first to arrive. Perhaps this meant she planned on saying a few quick obligatory hellos before heading out? Not so. Dockery held court under a shaded umbrella for much of the three-hour event. “It’s always such a nice event to come to. I get to see all my friends—lots of Brits, of course. It’s lovely to be here among our peers,” she said, before catching up with her co-star Joanne Froggatt.

This story first appeared in the August 26, 2014 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

When was the last time Dockery had high tea? “It’s been a while actually… other than at work of course, when I’m sipping tea as Mary.”

Fellow Brit Minnie Driver and non-Brit Mira Sorvino, plus Nigel Lythgoe, Cat Deeley, Chris O’Dowd, Kiernan Shipka, Betsy Brandt, Jacqueline Bisset, Ashley Madekwe, and Laverne Cox were among those at the Jaguar- and BBC America-sponsored soiree.

“Orange is the New Black” star Uzo Aduba arrived later in the afternoon, just in time to catch “Orphan Black” starJordan Gavaris and “Veep” actress Anna Chlumsky. After walking away a winner at last week’s Creative Arts Emmys, was Aduba feeling stress-free and ready to party? “Yes – certainly yes! I had the jitters last week. Now it’s time to enjoy,” she said.

For her part, the slightly overwhelmed “Masters of Sex” actress Lizzy Caplan was still taking it all in. “This is the first event that I’ve gone to. It’s a lot, but I’m excited. It feels like it’s going to be a fun few days,” she said. Riffing off soundbites like a pro, the Best Actress nominee added: “I think I’ve had high tea maybe once or twice in my whole life. I don’t recall the last time, but I have a feeling I’m going to incorporate it into my daily routine after this event.”

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