How to Plan the Perfect Proposal

It’s that time of year. Subtle trips to the jewelry store to “try on rings”, and subtle hints to your partner of how "empty your fingers feel". Tis’ the season for proposals and I am here to make sure that anybody and everybody who is planning to get engaged knows how to plan the perfect proposal.

Contrary to popular belief, proposals can be a very tough thing to plan. Something as simple as dropping to one knee is more than just "asking a question". There is a lot of thought and planning that goes into planning the perfect proposal and being able to execute properly for the most perfect reaction. Over the years, I have been able to photograph a handful of proposals, so I have learned some of the very best tips to share with you on how to plan the perfect proposal.

Steps To Plan The Perfect Proposal

1.) Secure The ring

First things first, you're obviously going to want to secure the ring! Above all else, when it comes game time to plan the perfect proposal you want to make sure that you are having the ring to get down on one knee with. Whether it be a ring that both of you have picked out together, or it's a total surprise, make sure that you have it ready for you to pop the question.

2.) hire a photographer to capture the moment

I may be biased by saying this, but hiring a photographer for your proposal has got to be one of the most important steps in planning the perfect proposal. You want to make sure that you are capturing the moment properly, not just on your friends smartphone. This is a life-changing moment and it deserves to be cherished and documented in all of its glory. After getting engaged the influx of questions will be astronomical. You want to make sure that you are ready for them and with receipts to show! Oftentimes the moment overwhelms you so much. So much that you can often forget what even happened or what you or your partner said. It's true! You want to be able to document every laugh, tear and emotion so that even you can remember what a wild time it was.

3.) choose where you're going to ask

Of course, the next step is figuring out the where. The location is equally as important as how you ask the question in the first place! It can make such a big difference in setting the scene and making sure everything goes according to plan. I always say, choose a location that you both enjoy. Bonus points if the location is somewhere that means something to your love story.

Also, when deciding on a location to pop the question, you also want to make sure that you are choosing a location that your partner would want/feel comfortable with. While some of us would love a proposal in the middle of a busy park, beach or restaurant, not everyone may want that. In fact, this could make your partner uncomfortable if this is not their normal scene. Make sure that wherever you choose, it is something that both of you feel comfortable and are okay with the type of scenery.

4.) are you going to go all out and decorate?

In planning the perfect proposal, you also want to make sure that you are setting the scene properly. By scene, you can essentially call that "setting the mood" for the proposal. Are you wanting to go all out and decorate with balloons and a floral sign or something more subtle like a candlelit dinner for two in your home? Whichever you choose, make sure that you are taking into account your partners wants and needs. You also want to consider the kind of *wow* factor that you're looking to have. If you're wanting to stray away from all that extra fluff, then maybe leaning towards a simpler alternative is the best route for you. If you're wanting something with an extra *oomph* and wow factor, then by all means GO ALL OUT. If you do decide to do something a little bit bigger for the proposal, I would definitely recommend hiring a photographer to document the moment. You didn't invest all that time & money for nothing, so make the most of it!

5.) time to pop the question

Okay, the time has come. You've got your location and scene on lock and now it is time to pop the question. It's not just about "popping the question" it's how you're going to pop the question. Surprisingly, there are a few alternatives you can do when deciding to ask your best friend to marry you. This is all dependent on if you hire a photographer to capture the moment btw!

Your first option consists of booking your proposal with a photographer. Your photographer will then help direct you and plan for this specific moment. They will help implement your wants, needs and ideas and make sure that everything is executed to the best of their ability to get your dream outcome... that "yes" of course! Here, you can have your photographer either disguise the surprise proposal with either a complimentary session or models for a stylized shoot. Or you could update your holiday cards to send to friends & family. Whichever "reasoning" you give, your photographer will be in on it. Your photographer will be there throughout the process up until you get down on one knee to help make sure everything is executed.

The second option consists of a more hidden approach. Rather than letting your future fiancé know that a photographer is going to be around, instead you can have your photographer be a bit more hidden. In a bush, behind a tree or disguised as paparazzi. This option is a bit more discreet and really gives the element of surprise. You are more likely to have your partner be completely clueless with this option, especially if your photographer is really good at hiding. This option is a bit more hands-off and gives you more control in how the proposal will be executed since you won't have your photographer out and about to guide you.

Whichever way you may choose, just remember to keep this moment true and authentic to you. That's all that matters!

6.) Keep in mind your audience

Along with popping the question, you're also going to want to keep in mind your audience. No, I'm not talking about your future fiancé, I'm talking about the people around you when you propose! Are you wanting your family to witness the proposal? Are you wanting to be a bit more private and secluded for this special moment? Keep this in mind when you are deciding where and when to propose. This can dramatically impact your partner's reaction and you want to make sure you are receiving the full effect of this life-changing moment.

7.) after the proposal... now what?

Okay, you've popped the question and your partner said yes!!! You are riding on cloud 9 and all is right with the world... now what? Well aside from the proposal itself, the fun doesn't have to stop there. Relish in this moment and enjoy riding on the fiancé train. Go out for dinner to celebrate or have some friends and family over to celebrate the engagement. Or if you're more of a homebody, go home and snuggle up on the couch while you watch your favorite movie. Any of these would be the perfect way to end the night of you getting engaged and enjoy all of the excitement that is to come.

how to plan the perfect proposal

So whether you’re looking to go all out for your proposal or something a bit more casual, the most important thing is that it feels right to you and your partner. Knowing how to plan the perfect proposal is only half the battle.

Now, you have to gear up, get ready, drop to one knee, and actually do it! For all you future fiancés out there – congratulations!

Don’t forget that these moments deserve to be documented so if you’re in the need to hire a photographer for this special moment, I’m your gal! Click here to fill out my inquiry form and let’s start planning!

Gayle does more than just take photos of people. Rather, it is capturing moments of LOVE and HAPPINESS. Singing to the skies, dancing in a field, smiles that hurt because they’re so big. There is nothing else I would rather be doing than photographing these unique details that make you and your significant other a couple. If this blog puts a spark in you, you know where to click <——— right there!