After becoming recently engaged on Christmas Day 2015 we understood the hope for a wedding anytime soon was out of reach. We have a little girl so like many people financially we just couldn’t afford a wedding, with saving to buy our own house our main priority. On a whim I applied for ‘Don’t Tell The Bride’ whilst on maternity leave in between nappy changes and feeding:) Chris at first and actually up until the last few days before filming was never 100% sure on the idea, not (I hope) because he didn’t want to get married but because we all know how manipulative filming can be and how they like to edit what you see but I persuaded him to stick with it. After a homemade family video, interviews in London and at our home we found ourselves then signing contracts to be on the show. To be honest getting married on TV wasn’t either of our drives, it was the chance to be a ‘proper’ family and get married and for FREE.

The show was definitely memorable. I was one of the very , very lucky brides on this show who actually got the most incredible wedding… in the end. When I actually think about the day even now I get butterflies and it makes me smile. I cant say as much for the 3 week filming process and I am sure Chris will agree. It was from day dot gruelling, embarrassing and emotional and physically draining. The crew ask so much of not only us as a couple but our family and friends. Chris’s poor best man was only able to work 4 days in 3 weeks, his lovely wife was dragged into it and my sisters were asked to try and take days off work here there and every where. We are still forever in debt to all those who gave up their time and to the wonderful girls who helped Chris put together the final touches on the wedding day. So, although my bridesmaids and i got married in a tutu and leotard which was a poor decision on Chris’s behalf (but i forgive him) I did eventually get the most beautiful gown for the evening. We literally experienced everything in one day; inflatable obstacle courses, fairy liquid, water, competition, soggy soup from brown bowls…then followed by fine dining and 1920’s Gatsby style evening venue. I am totally obsessed with 1920’s, in particular The Great Gatsby and I never actually knew how aware Chris was of this. The detail in the venue was incredible, down to the selection of drinks, cutlery and centre pieces. My favourite things that I still hold close to my heart were the beautiful quotes framed around the room and the changing room, there wasn’t an inch of detail missing or out of place. I even eventually got my professional hairdressers and make up artists.

So, would i recommend anyone else going on this show? I’m not sure of my response. As I said I was a lucky one who had a good man stand his ground and have me in the forefront of every single decision even when the crew tried to change his ideas. I would do the horrific 3 weeks of filming all over again just to relive our wedding day, however Chris had it a lot harder than me, so not sure he would encourage any other man to step up to this. It has yet to be aired, but I could change my mind and regret it all. Anyone else reading this who dares to sign up to the show I do have some advice, make sure your man books your own photographer. Most people fail to organise a photographer for their day because they get swept up amongst the film crew and forget, yet the crew aren’t there to snap those special moments only to see the tantrums and tears. They literally packed up the 100’s of cameras after the first dance and disappeared and we have never heard from them since, crazy isn’t it. We are still worried that maybe we might have just sold our souls to the devil haha. Anyway, Chris nailed it and organised our photographer who was incredible. She really did capture the excitement, love and happiness not only from us as the married couple but from every one of the guests. Chris, being a man didn’t give her any direction when booking, Joanna just got on with it, amongst the craziness and got it all spot on. We are so pleased with literally every single image.

Good luck if anyone follows in our footsteps. I still and will always treasure the day forever, even if they do edit the footage to make us look like fools.

Blog written by Mrs Charlotte Dunsdon

Charlotte and Chris Review 5* – “Wow – what a beautiful, kind girl who took such amazing photos of our crazy and very different wedding day (we got married on don’t tell the bride! ). Joanna’s photos are a perfect memory of the wedding, capturing every moment, emotion and smile of not only us as a couple and family but of every guest. Now to try and pick our favourites from so many ready to get printed. Would highly recommend to everyone. 5***”

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