All proposals are beautiful because they come from a place of love and love in all forms is as beautiful as life gets. You probably guessed from the title of the post that I got engaged! Writing is not only about sharing the story with others but also helps me remember and relive the memory.
A few years ago I found a graphic depicting the 7 rules for a guy to follow for the perfect proposal and half-jokingly but really quite seriously sent it to my boyfriend. Little did I know that he would take it to heart and it would be a point of stress. Although I do think all guys stress about proposing and pulling of the perfect engagement as they know how important it is to us.
1. Propose with a ring
Ring shopping was fun and the only step I was allowed to be involved in. There are some girls who are very happy with the surprise ring their boyfriend chose but I wasn’t willing to not give any guidance as men’s taste in jewellery versus the reality of what we like can be very different. It’s obviously not all about the ring but if someone is paying a lot of money for something you going to wear everyday I do believe it’s important you love it. fits well the first time around and is perfect for you.
You can have an idea of your dream ring but when you try it on it may look horrible on your hand. This is what happened to me with a princess cut diamond ring. It’s a harsh cut that doesn’t suit all plus I don’t even think I liked the square diamond, it was more a function of it being the trend at the time seen everywhere. I wanted a simple, classic and timeless ring so a solitaire round diamond was the next ring I tried.
I don’t like gold and I thought my only other option for a band was platinum. The sales consultant suggested rose gold and I was inmediately sold. I loved how it looked on my skin and made the diamond stand out. Plus it’s goes well with all jewellery!
The remaining decision was easy, 6 prongs because 4 gives the diamond a square look. A Tiffany setting as it is the original raised clawed setting which also lets the most light in. My perfect choice was round solitaire diamond set in a rose gold Tiffany setting with a round instead of the knife edge band.
My ring size was different at each jeweller I went to, so we were advised to get it fitted at the place it was going to be made at. While there one of our friends who was advising us as she is an ex jeweller made a comment that made me realize that the boyfriend had already bought a diamond. The fact that he can’t lie to me made it easy to get the confirmation out of him. My ring was made and safely stowed away since September last year.
2. Ask permission
I think asking permission from the girl’s dad is such a cute and respectful thing to do. This was a difficult one as I stay with my parents. The bf confessed that he had sneakily stopped by one day when he was on leave and I was at work. He made my parents promise to keep it a secret, which I am surprised they did!
3. Nails painted
This was least important on the list and it didn’t happen because you can’t expect a guy to ensure your nails are painted. I wasn’t going to get my nails done every week in the hope that I would be getting a ring. I actually think a ring still looks fine with natural nails, it keeps it simple and not over the top.
4. Keep it a secret
This is definitely the most difficult one on the list. He planned on proposing the week before in Johannesburg possibly on a rooftop somewhere. As luck would have it I got sent to Cape Town for work and he had 2.5 weeks to change his plans and decide on something new. He flew down to see me and we had a great time exploring Cape Town before checking into a gorgeous guesthouse in Somerset West. I was quite relaxed as I’m not sure why but I had somehow convinced myself that he wasn’t going to propose that week. Little did I know that he had transported the ring in his money belt and then hid it in his luggage. Looking back now there were a lot of signs but I’m so glad I didn’t pick up on any.
The thing about proposals is that girls never know what to expect. We picture the ring, the dress and the wedding but never the proposal. Thats because it is something we have no control over. I had no suspicions at all because we had discussed eating out at the Top 10 restaurants located in Cape Town. I had even phoned three on the list and asked that he phone and book at one of the others.
We had a 6pm dinner reservation at Waterkloof restaurant but he wanted to leave at 5:15. I couldn’t understand why because it would only take 15min to get there and I had read that dinner only gets served from 7pm onwards. We arrived on time at 6pm but a little late for the proposal set up. It’s funny how things work out. I am not a person that really dresses up. 99.9% of the time you will find me in jeans, a tshirt and sneakers. This was a rare occasion I decided to dress up for a fancy dinner.
I love taking photos which is the first thing I did as soon as we arrived. I was completely oblivious to him struggling to get the ring from his pocket into the box hidden in the car door and back into his back pocket. It was super windy and I clumsily dropped the entire contents of my purse. He had to manoeuvre the way he bent and picked everything up to avoid me seeing the box in his back pocket.
I was ready to go inside but he suggested we walk down the garden path for a better view. After a few more photos of the view of the beach from the garden I was ready to head back up. That when he led me to the right of the garden and told me that there were photos of us.
In a tree were photos of us pegged with little pegs and pink ribbons. Below that was a pink and white striped box with a single pink rose on top. And yes, my favourite colour is indeed pink! This might sound unbelievable but I still didn’t think it was a proposal. I thought maybe he is being romantic or playing a trick on me. He surely couldn’t be proposing, this isn’t how I imagined it, wait I didn’t actually imagine it!The garden setting was perfect – romantic, still and surreal. I even took photos of the setup because I was in shock and autopilot mode.
In the box was a storybook of our relationship together. I paged through that book really quickly but it didn’t matter because I could barely register what he was saying. There was plenty of tears and ugly crying by that point. I think it is quite common for women to blank out the actual words. The end of the story said “this lucky guy is asking this pretty girl, will you marry me?”
5. Use my full name
I did remember him using my full name and mentioning that he was proposing with my family’s blessing 🙂
6. Go down on one knee
He obviously went down on one knee and I said yes so quickly that he wasn’t even down for long!
7. Photograph the moment
I love photos and I have always wanted someone to capture the moment. I remember at one point looking around and thinking I can’t see a photographer, is he really proposing? Only afterwards did I notice her hiding in the bushes.
My proposal was so magical, special and perfect to me. The weather did play up but I think the wind the made it more real. After a little photo shoot we had a six course dinner at the restaurant where he had arranged a huge bouquet of flowers and chocolate.
Even though I knew it was going to happen soon, I was still completely surprised. I did not expect to cry and even had a proper cry at home from the overwhelming day. I think it hits home that someone can love you so much and plan something so very special. I really love having my storybook to look back on remember.
I hope you enjoyed reading this. I would love to hear about your special day in the comments section 🙂
Love & Proposals,