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четверг, 16 марта 2017 г.

Back in the day, all a bloke had to do at his wedding was get to the church on time. Not any more...

From the big white dress to the flowers, the favours and the music, weddings are all about the bride, right?
Not when you've got a groomzilla tying the knot. These days, hubbies-to-be are muscling in on their beloved's big day. Even former lothario Russell Brand has caught wedding-planning fever, according to his fiancée, Katy Perry.
"He's totally into it," she joked. "We go out for breakfast and he has to stop at a news-stand to buy a glossy bridal magazine. Then all through breakfast he's talking about dresses. He's way over his head with excitement."
No wonder Katy's looking scared...
For the groomzilla, the stag do's got to be wilder, the cake taller, the flowers more fabulous, the speeches funnier - and all at a bargain price, too. In a recent survey, 85 per cent of men said they were more organised than their fiancées and would do a better job of pulling off their dream wedding.
Add to this the fact the National Wedding Show has reported a rise in men visiting the exhibition for ideas and inspiration, and a quick look on internet forums for brides-to-be confirms that groomzillas are a steadily growing species, with ever-crazier demands.
"My groom wants to buy shoes with built-up heels so he doesn't look too small next to me!" one bride moans, while another is fighting with her fiancé over the colour of her bridesmaids' dresses.
"The red has to be blood-red - not burgundy, not scarlet, not cherry, not tomato," writes Bride of Groomzilla. "I'm very flexible and would be happy even if the girls' dresses were aubergine, but he's upset because he thinks that means I'm putting the bridesmaids before him."
So what's making modern grooms more assertive? Psychologist and marriage expert Jayne McCartney thinks it's down to men's competitive instinct, and their desire to outdo their friends and family members.
"One-upmanship used to be confined to the office or the sports field, but now, thanks to the rise of the metrosexual man, men are more comfortable expressing themselves in what have typically been female areas, such as weddings," Jayne says. "Before, they may have needed the best phone or the flashiest car, but now they want a wedding that's better than everyone else's. Groomzilla tendencies are an extension of their built-in competitiveness."
Is Simon's extravaganza now on hold?
It's no surprise, then, that Simon Cowell and his famously large ego should succumb to groomzilla-ness. Before reports that his wedding to make-up artist Mezhgan Hussainy were on hold, the X Factor mogul had decided on a Salvador Dali-themed extravaganza, according to former flame and best pal, Sinitta.
"A big bash is a way of the groomzilla upping his status in front of his peers," adds Jayne. "It says: 'Look what I've arranged - didn't I do well?' And taking credit for the big party ensures the limelight isn't all focused on the bride."
After centuries of us gals shouldering the organisational stress, it's about time the blokes showed a bit of interest - but ladies, beware. "It's understandable that some men might get carried away, but if he's a real control freak and completely disregards your opinions, then it could be a warning sign about what's to come," Jayne advises.
We've identified the two most common species of groomzilla - so if you suspect your man's about to propose, read on to see if you're going to have to tackle him about the table plans or fight for your favourite flowers...
Species one: The alpha-zilla


Neil has nicked ideas from weddings he's been to with Marian
Neil Watts, 29, is a PR consultant from south London. He is marrying Marian Jones, a 31-year-old nanny, next month at Ruthin Castle in north Wales. He says:
"For me, life's not about the taking part, it's about the winning, and the same applies to my wedding. I want all my mates to come away saying: 'Wow, that was amazing!' The day reflects on me so I want it to be perfect, and for my guests to be impressed with the effort I've put in.
I proposed to Marian on holiday in Turkey last June after five years together, and we started planning the wedding in September.
Before then, like most guys, I hadn't thought a lot about the type of wedding I wanted, but I'd always known I'd be heavily involved in every aspect of it.
I'm a bit of a control freak, if I'm honest, and I've kept a close eye on every detail, with the exception of Marian's dress. I want that to be a complete surprise.
I calculated the wedding budget on a spreadsheet, and drew up a month-by-month timeline to ensure all the preparations went smoothly.
We chose the olive-green bridesmaids' dresses together, and I had a say in the wedding invites, which are white with a green bow and a diamanté detail.
I've taken total control of the wine we'll drink on the day. I didn't think much of what the venue was offering, so I'm sourcing it myself. I've spent months sampling different wines to ensure I'm happy with our choice.
And I'm determined that my groomsmen and me will look as amazing as Marian and her bridesmaids. Other grooms go for top hat and tails, but I want my outfit and the lads' to be remembered. We're having our shirts handmade with our initials on the cuffs.
I even took part in a cringe-worthy bridal fashion show and managed to win £1,000 worth of suit hire. The cash I've saved will go towards other special touches to make the day stand out - like a smoke and bubble machine at the reception.
At every wedding I've been to recently, I've kept an eye out for details I can steal and improve on for our big day. I've nicked jokes for my speech from other grooms and we're personalising each menu with the guest's name and photo, like a friend did at his wedding.
I've hated the music that's been played at some receptions, so I've compiled a song list for our DJ, and banned anything by ABBA and Lady Gaga.
I also dislike chocolate fountains - they look messy and there's a risk our guests' clothes will get ruined. Instead, we're having a sweet shop stall - an idea I got from a wedding programme on TV.
Marian loves that I'm so involved. She's not carrying the burden of all the planning the way some brides have to. She knows I'm totally committed to making this a special day for us. I want our guests to remember our wedding as the best they've ever been to!"
Marian says: "I think it's great that Neil's taken over the planning. He's always liked things to be a certain way, so it's no surprise. And I'm really laid-back, so I'm happy to leave him to it. Some brides-to-be would be horrified at the thought of handing over control, but as long as he turns up on the day, I'm happy."
Species two: The Frugal-zilla


Note the matching dress, flowers, tie...
Andrew Thomas, 30, from Brighouse, West Yorkshire, has been with Hardip, 32, for seven years. They married in July 2009.
"As soon as my then-fiancée Hardip and I set the date, something kicked off in my brain, and I had to take control.
Hardip's nickname is 'Dippy', and it's pretty appropriate. Gorgeous and smart, she's also disorganised and very indecisive.
With just nine months and the £8,000 we'd budgeted, it had to be my way or no way - no matter how much she protested.
Tipping the scales at 26st, I didn't want my weight to ruin our wedding photos, so I signed up for the LighterLife diet programme.
As the months went by, I chose the venue, booked the DJ, picked my suit, found a caterer and decided on the menu.
I also religiously updated spreadsheets, compiled music playlists, approved Dippy's choice of flowers - then refused to budge when she changed her mind two hours later. It was typical of her, and just proved why I'd been right to take control in the first place.
Keeping a tight grip on the purse strings, I gave Dippy £250 to have her wedding dress made, even though the average frock costs up to £1,000.
Weight loss was on Andrew's 'to do' list
And I categorically refused to let her have a steel band playing at the reception, as it was much too expensive.
Most of the time, Dippy let me get on with it - but sometimes her frustration bubbled over. 'How can you be so brutal?' she'd shout. 'It's my wedding, too.'
I did feel a bit bad, but I just had to remind myself why I'd taken charge - to make sure our day was perfect and that it came in on budget.
As the wedding approached, I planned our schedule with military precision, made sure our best man and woman would be properly attired, and handled any last-minute hitches.
On top of all that, I shed 11st, and slimmed down to my target weight of 15st, thanks to a hardcore diet of soups and shakes.
Then, on the morning of the wedding, I arrived at the hotel two hours early. Was the arch we'd exchange vows under dressed properly with ivy and flowers? Were the seat covers the right colours (cream and green)? My best man Richard thought I was nuts, but everything had to be spot on.
And of course, it was all worth it. Everything went perfectly - all thanks to my groomzilla tendencies."
Hardip says: "Like any bride-to-be, I had plenty of ideas about our big day, but I had to compromise on almost everything.
No matter what I suggested, Andrew dismissed it as unnecessary, and while it didn't make me question marrying him, it was infuriating.
Not letting me have fireworks, wanting to 'approve' my bridesmaid dresses, not understanding why I wanted little touches like coloured napkins and lanterns He was an absolute nightmare.
I know he just wanted to shoulder the stress and avoid a mountain of debt, but every tiny decision became a battle.
Thankfully, it all turned out OK in the end. Our day was amazing, and my nightmare groomzilla has given way to a perfect hubby."
What's that coming down the aisle? Is it a monster...
How to tame a Groomzilla

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