celebrity

Why Sarah Harris didn't mind being papped in her wedding dress.

Having your partner see your wedding dress before the big day is, for many brides, a nightmare.

Sarah Harris had hers shown to the world.

Since becoming a host on Studio 10, Sarah Harris has made the transition from journalist to local celebrity, meaning she’s often followed by paparazzi wherever she goes – and yes, that includes shopping for her wedding dress.

During a fitting prior to her wedding in 2014, photographers snapped Harris from outside the shop with her chosen wedding dress clearly visible. The photos were then published online and in print.

While most people would be upset, the 34-year-old had a surprising response.

“Being papped in my wedding dress was a shock, but it wasn’t the end of the world,” she tells Mia Freedman in the latest episode of No Filter.

“I was really zen, because I was like, ‘I can’t believe someone wants to marry me!’. I was so excited about actually getting married that the wedding day was just a small thing.

“We weren’t selling pictures so I didn’t have a deal to protect. Tom [Ward, husband] doesn’t read that stuff anyway.”

While accepting public attention is part of the parcel of being in the public eye, Harris says there was one occasion she wasn’t quite so “zen” about.

“Where I did take umbrage was with the pregnancy photos,” she recalls.

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“For me, because your personality and life becomes fodder for conversation, I got the interest but what really pissed me off wasn’t the fact they were unflattering photos; the fact I looked less than fabulous didn’t get to me.”

It was the reaction and the “revolting” comments that followed. (Post continues after gallery.)

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Pictured leaving a Mexican restaurant at seven months pregnant with her son Paul, Harris was body shamed for her appearance.

“The headline was something like ‘Bumping along nicely’ which is fine, I get that. I’m a journalist, I know how the machine works,” she says.

“But it was reading through the comments – one of which said ‘Is her face pregnant?’ and a couple of women who’d said ‘This makes me feel better, I’m two weeks behind her and I’m not that fat yet’,” she said.

She addressed the photos on Studio 10 in a move that had viewers applauding.

“My first reaction when I saw these photos was ‘Oh my God.’ When you’re pregnant you do feel very vulnerable and very self-conscious about your body, but then I thought, ‘You know what? Bugger it – I’m growing a baby, this is me and this is how I get around,” she said on the show.

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“I hope those photos make other pregnant women feel better about their bodies because I’m kind of fed up with the body shaming that happens when you’re pregnant and then the pressure that comes afterwards to lose the baby weight.

“On behalf of all of the pregnant women out there who might be feeling a little bit chubby and bit flabby, I want to say to the haters, get stuffed!”

The response to her speech made the experience a bit more positive.

“I actually thought it was a good thing. You look at some people, you’re hormonal, and I was really glad that people saw a normal pregnant woman. I wish I could have been one of those people that just have a nice little bump but everything blew up. My ankles were the size of my head. Everything was pregnant,” she said.

“But I went, ‘This is a normal body too’. I felt like I needed to say something on the show. I got so many messages from people saying ‘Thank you – I’ve put on heaps of weight too’.”

Harris says the worst part is not knowing when she’s being targeted.

“I heard Sam Armytage say she can hear the clicks [of the cameras]. I’m completely oblivious. I’ve got this weird resting bitch face and frown when I’m thinking and double chin. I wish I could hear them!” she said.

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