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08/10/2014

My Big Beautiful Wedding Dress, review, BBC One: 'not enough material'

Best friends Jo (right) and Alison run plus-size bridal boutique Curves and Couture

Plus. Curvy. Full-figured. For the larger lady there is now plenty of choice in the dictionary of euphemisms. The problem arises when she looks for a gown to tie the knot in, whereupon the options run out. Take Jenna, whom we met in My Big Beautiful Wedding Dress (BBC One). She scoured the high street but couldn’t squeeze into any of the stock. One sales assistant held up a dress to show her what it would look like “on a proper person”. By “proper” the sales assistant meant slimmer.

Step forward Jo and Alison, who sell wedding gowns to the bulkier Essex bride. They spotted a plus-size gap in the market having encountered the same problem themselves. What exactly is big in this context? If you’re not a size 20, forget it. As one customer said, “22 is not really that plus, let’s be honest.”

This cheerful film about white weddings for larger princesses could have used a bit more honesty. No one mentioned that obesity is out of control in the UK. And neither of the brides who took part were interrogated about how their size made them really feel. Jo and Alison certainly weren’t going to go there. Nuptial suppliers are in the business of monetising fairy tales. When Jenna tried on her gown, exposing two brute tattoos either side of her spine, canny Jo was reminded of nobody so much as Marilyn Monroe. Ker-ching.

Other people’s weddings are like other people’s dreams. Best taken in moderation. In the old days when schedules didn’t have such rigid hour-long slots this would have made a compact half-hour. Modern documentaries are required to be plus size. Alas in this case there wasn’t, as it were, enough material, so to pad things out we were treated to a subplot in which Jo decided to renew her marriage vows on national TV.

“Why are we renewing our vows?” she quizzed her third husband. “Cos you wannoo?” said a poker-faced bloke next to her on the sofa. Actually it was because the first time round he had gormlessly omitted to tell her how beautiful she was. Just to make sure he wouldn’t make the same mistake twice she’d hit the StairMaster and gone down so many sizes that none of her own stock would fit her. For the occasion she’d also written her own doggerel. Sample couplet: “You are my lover, my partner, my soulmate/Us being together is more than just fate.”

Everybody cried. Everybody on screen, that is.Read more at:prom dresses 2014 | graduation dresses uk

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