Photo courtesy of Erin Johnson Photography
Ten things to think about before getting engaged.1. Have you had "the marriage talk?" You probably want this proposal to be a surprise, but it shouldn't come out of nowhere. I recommend having a conversation about what both you and your partner want before deciding to propose. Your partner may not want to get married, be ready, or may have a different idea of a future with you. Make sure that you are both on the same page before getting engaged. 2. Getting permission from the parents. Asking mom and dad if you can marry their child depends completely on your sweetheart's desires. If you think the gesture would mean something to them, then go for it. Some people hold strongly to this tradition as a way to honor their family, while others consider it outdated and may even be offended. If the two of you disagree on the importance of this tradition, an alternative option to 'asking permission' is to ask for their blessing. This is something you probably want to bring up in your 'marriage talk.' 3. Should you be the person popping the question? Traditionally, the man is the one to get down on one knee, but much has changed in the wedding world. Nowadays, many women choose to propose to their significant others. Some couples make the decision together without a formal proposal at all. Another popular trend, especially among same-sex couples, is for both partners to propose! First one partner pops the question, then later the other proposes in return. Whatever method you choose, make sure this is a dream wedding proposal for both of you.
Photo courtesy of Erin Johnson Photography4. Do I need an engagement ring to get engaged? There's nothing like a little sparkle to light up the moment, but it certainly isn't necessary! If you think your partner will want to pick out the ring themselves, you may decide to skip the new jewels. If you are proposing with a ring, make sure you know what they want (this is what best friends and Pinterest are for!). Diamonds have a troubling history for some, but are necessary for others. Custom rings and family heirlooms are also options to keep in mind. 5. Should this be a family affair? Many marriage proposal ideas include having family and friends present. Once again, this depends on what you and your partner want. If you choose a private proposal, make sure you consider the time of day. Odds are, you'll both want to notify a few people afterwards, and 2:00 a.m. may not be the most convenient wake-up call. 6. Flash mob or movie at home? Much like tip number four, this depends on you and your partner's preferences. If your sweetie doesn't like to be the center of attention, a private proposal may be best. Pay attention when they're watching marriage proposal ideas that went viral, or to what they say when their friends get engaged. If you've talked about getting engaged, they'll likely be dropping hints. 7. The best of both worlds. Invite family and friends over after your private proposal. Or, arrange for everyone to be waiting at a separate location for your first engagement party. This way, you can have your special moment together, and celebrate with family and friends afterward! 8. Capture the moment. One of the best marriage proposal ideas is to capture the magical moment on camera. Hire a photographer to hide in the bushes while you pop the question, or a videographer to capture the entire proposal. As long as you're confident this is the right moment, you will be able to see their look of surprise and tears of joy for years to come. 9. What to wear for "Will you marry me?" It depends on where and how you decide to propose, but you probably want to look nice for the big moment! If there is an inconspicuous way to make sure your partner is also dressed for the occasion, try to help them out. You could have a friend subtly suggest an outfit or even leave a gift-wrapped ensemble for them! If this moment is being captured on camera, or you will have family and friends in attendance, your sweetie will be grateful. 10. The most important thing to remember before getting engaged: When you're about to ask the love of your life to marry you, be in the moment, forget perfection, and speak from the heart. Whether you consider all nine tips above or end up proposing spontaneously, what's most important is to experience creating an unforgettable memory with the person you love.
Photo courtesy of Erin Johnson Photography