When you’re ready to take the next step, knowing how to propose can be tricky. The marriage proposal itself has become a bigger deal in recent years – simply picking a ring and booking a table at a fancy restaurant is so last millennium! This will be arguably the most significant day in your relationship thus far, so it’s important to get it right.
Here at EliteSingles, our matches are built to last, and our members are all here searching for long-lasting love – it’s inevitable really that many of our couples end up agreeing to marry. Even the most romantic among us can find coming up with great proposal ideas (and executing them! A marriage proposal is more than a great idea…) a stretch however, which perhaps explains the ever-increasing demand for professional assistance.
We asked marriage proposal planner Heather Vaughn, founder of California-based events company The Yes Girls, to offer us some tips on how to propose. Full of unique proposal ideas and practical tips, read our interview right here…
How to Propose with Heather Vaughn
When do you know it’s the right time to propose?
Popping the question is a life-changer. We have found every client has different timelines for when they feel ready so we encourage couples to have a discussion about marriage, future goals and dreams to make sure both people in the relationship are ready for the next step. She doesn’t need to know when he’ll be popping the question, but it certainly helps give the gentleman extra confidence when he already knows she will say ‘yes!’
What’s the most important thing to get right when deciding how to propose?
Personalization! The proposal idea and day should be catered to a couple’s individual relationship. If you make the proposal idea personal then everything else falls into place; for example, if she is an extrovert and loves hanging out with her family, it’s probably important they are involved in some way. If she takes photos during date nights, chances are having professional photos of the proposal will be a must. If he considers her interests and what they enjoy as a couple, he really can’t go wrong!
Flash mobs are great, but they’re not for everyone! Do you have a couple of proposal ideas for more private or introverted partners?
Absolutely! We always recommend making the proposal customized, so it makes sense to choose a location and idea that fits them. Some beautiful settings for a more private proposal would be a local winery, renting a rooftop for just the two of them, or reserving a private area of a garden or park. These locations are great foundations for a proposal idea.
From there we’d recommend the gentleman incorporate 3-5 of her favorite things at the setting. For example, surround her with her favorite flowers, or wine bottles painted in her favorite color, have ‘your’ song playing, or hand her a handwritten love letter.
Do you have any tips on how to remember the special moment?
Photos, and possibly a video! 95% of our clients opt to have a photographer there to capture her surprise reaction! If budget allows, filming the raw emotion and proposal story is highly recommended. It may feel like a whirlwind during the proposal, but photos and video allow couples to relive one of their best moments over and over again.
Do you have a favorite proposal that you’ve helped plan? What’s been the most memorable?
It’s so difficult to choose a favorite because honestly whichever proposal we’re currently working on is usually my favorite – it’s a new and custom idea and that triggers our excitement at The Yes Girls!
I would say one of the most memorable proposals we worked on (it was months in the works) was an intimate and quite magical proposal in San Francisco inspired by Disney’s Tangled. Surrounded by a fairytale ambiance – flowers galore, hundreds of floating lanterns, the sound of acoustic guitars, and a handmade blanket for the sweet couple – it was definitely a love story for the books. His relieved and proud reaction when she said “yes!” was adorable!
How to Propose: The EliteSingles Summary
Best proposal ideas! Do:
- Personalize your proposal – think about what your partner loves to do on a date, or the one thing that’s most romantic to her…
- Surround her with her favorite things…
- Book a photographer or enlist a friend to help you capture your special moment if photos are important!
How to propose badly… Don’t:
- Give away when you’re going to propose – but do try to discuss it beforehand…
- Plan a flash mob if your partner is a private person – plan something more intimate instead…
- Hide the ring in a cake. We all know from the movies that this is a terrible idea and bound to go wrong!
Heather Vaughn is the founder of The Yes Girls. Providing proposal ideas and planning services since 2008, her team have helped couples right across the US become engaged to be married in uniquely personalized and romantic ways. All photographs courtesy of The Yes Girls.
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