Admit it…when you’re reading a real wedding feature, who scrolls down to read the proposal story first? If your hand is raised, I can assure you, you’re in great company! We LOVE reading about how couples get engaged, and have the sweet privilege of hearing (and shrieking over!) many of your stories every single day. The moment you say “yes” marks a whole new chapter of your life, and since we know the not-so-secret secret that marriage is the really good part, each story we hear makes us so excited for what’s ahead for you!
Speaking of engagements, we’ve teamed up with Bailey, Banks, and Biddle for an AMAZING giveaway–honestly, one of our best ever!
From left to right: Statement Round Quilted Engament Ring, Intricate Basket Engagement Ring, and Quilted French Pave Princess Cut Engagement Ring, all by A. JAFFE
One lucky person will WIN his or her choice of one of three A. JAFFE engagement ring settings and a .55 carat loose diamond from Bailey, Banks, and Biddle. Whether you’re engaged or not or already have an engagement ring or not, ENTER below! One of these would make a great right-hand ring, too.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Official rules for this giveaway can be found here.
To add to the fun, I wanted to share some sweet proposal stories! We asked recently engaged gals on Instagram to send their stories in, and these are a few of our favorites!
Stephanie and Brady: We had been planning a trip to NYC since June. Being big theatre nerds, we wanted to go see all of the shows, especially Hamilton! Before I knew it, both sets of parents had decided to join us, and off we went. Right before we left, Brady told me that we were going to see Sara Bareilles host the Waitress Cast Album Karaoke, where audience members are invited on stage to sing songs from the show. He worked some magic and got us on that stage! It has been a dream of mine to sing on a Broadway stage for as long as I can remember, and he made that happen. With Sara Bareilles right next to us, Brady and I sang a duet from the show that has been meaningful throughout our relationship, “You Matter to Me.” The song illustrates a simple and trusting relationship, full of promise and hope. After the song finished, Brady began saying a bunch of nice things to me that I really don’t remember. All of the sudden, he was on one knee, I was ugly crying, and the audience was screaming. I managed to say yes, ask him if he was serious, and then I screamed “IT’S HUGE” when I saw the beautiful ring on my hand! We walked off the stage to a plethora of congratulations from the cast and crew of Waitress, our families, and even the handful of Broadway stars in the audience. The rest of the evening passed in a blur, and it truly was the most magical night of my life!
Beth and Jared: In November 2016, my sister asked me if Jared and I would like to do a “city” themed photo shoot in Downtown Toronto. Emily is a professional photographer and Jared and I had been in front of her lens a few times before, so I happily obliged. Jared seemed like he was surprised when I told him the plan, so I was unsuspecting of anything.
When we arrived to our shoot location on December 3, we walked to the harbor front and Emily set us up with the Toronto cityscape behind us, and rose petals all around us. Everything was going as planned until Jared whispered, “Do you want to marry me?” in my ear. I immediately responded with “What?” not knowing if this question was serious or not. Again, he asked, “Do you want to marry me?” Jared got down on one knee and started crying, and my heart swelled with love for this man’s tender heart. He said, “Elizabeth, you are the most incredible person I’ve ever met and I want to spend the rest of my life with you. Will you marry me?” Jared and I had joked about this moment countless times before, so I grabbed his face and asked, “Are you being serious?!” He assured me that this was the real deal, and I threw my arms around him saying “Yes!”
Moments later, Jared told me that his father had asked his mother to marry him in this very spot almost 25 years before. Knowing that we now shared this spot with his parents, the reality of Jared’s question sunk in–I realized that we get to spend the rest of our lives building a beautiful marriage together, just like his mum and dad.
Courtney and Bryan: I was graduating from UNCW in December, so Bryan and I planned a trip to Hawaii to celebrate Christmas, New Year’s, and my graduation. We spent five days in Maui full of hiking, kayaking, snorkeling, touring waterfalls, and soaking up the sun. On the last night there, had such a great day with an amazing helicopter ride and a couples massage on the beach. That night, we went to dinner at a restaurant located on the oceanfront. We then went to the beach to take what I thought was regular pictures on the beach at sunset. But what I didn’t know was that he told the women who took our pictures, “I am about to propose to my girlfriend, so take as many pictures as you can!” Before I knew what was happening, Brian was down on one knee. I had a full heart, eyes full of happy tears, and a new gem on my finger signifying his everlasting love! Maui will now forever and always hold such a special place in my heart!
Casey and Hunter: Hunter and I first met as toddlers when our families attended the same church and we were in nursery together. It wasn’t until middle school that we grew to be close friends. We became high school sweethearts our freshman year and were named prom queen and king our senior year. We continued dating through college, but after eight years together, we spent a year apart. A chance sighting of each other at Keeneland race course was all it took for us to decide that a year apart had been long enough. A year later, while standing in front of the track at Keeneland with our friends, Hunter told me that we had one last bet left. He got down on one knee and handed me the betting ticket–where the horse’s names should be, it read, “Will You Marry Me? I said yes!
Katherine and Jonathan: My fiancé, Jonathan, proposed on a beautiful Sunday morning in December! We went to church in the morning, and then he took me to a small Catholic shrine, which has become our favorite place in Austin. As we were walking towards the shrine, he popped the question. It was simple and it was perfect! After I caught my breath and covered him in kisses, we prayed together…for our relationship, for our future family, and that we may always strive to help each other towards heaven. I couldn’t hold back my tears, thinking about how truly blessed we were to find each other! Without a doubt, it was the best moment of my life!
Jillian and Jarret: It was Christmas morning this past year, and we were preparing to take family photos down on the water near Jarret’s grandmother’s house. The two of us arrived at the lighthouse and saw the photographer, so we say our hellos. While Jarret made a fake call to his mom to find out where they were, I started checking my makeup using my phone. Jarret said so naturally, “Hey, why don’t you check the family SnapChat filter I created for the photos to make sure it comes up in this location?” I replied, “Aww, you made a filter? How clever!” As I scrolled through the filters, I saw his custom design and froze. It said, “Jillian, will you marry me?” So many emotions went through me at that moment, and all at once, I laughed, cried, and turned around to see him down on one knee with the most gorgeous ring in a Neil Lane box! I felt like a celebrity as I heard the shutter of the camera go off, and a crowd of strangers taking a Christmas stroll clapping and congratulating us!
Sydney and Stephen: Last year, I bought a white lace dress that I was bound and determined to be proposed to in. Stephen, lover of surprises that he is, said there was no way I would be able to wear the dress when I got proposed to because then it would not be a surprise! Fast forward to June 30, some friends invited me to a fancy dinner, where the theme was none other than white lace. Reluctant to wear my special dress, but knowing Stephen would not ever ask me to wear it for fear of ruining a surprise, I decided to just go for it. When I put it on, it was even better than I had remembered!!
I quickly got over my disappointment of not getting engaged in this dress as my friends drove me to dinner on my favorite route–right through NC State (my alma mater)’s campus and then to my absolute favorite place in the world: downtown Raleigh. Feeling so nostalgic about all the fun memories Stephen and I had shared in these places, I was emotional as we walked toward Boylan Bridge Brewpub. As we rounded the corner, I saw that the restaurant appeared to be closed, but there was a note on the door. I saw my name as I got closer and read the note: “Sydney, I have something for you on the bridge.” At first, I didn’t believe I was the Sydney the note was referring to! What in the world? The sun was just starting to set, casting the most beautiful pink-orange glow on the Raleigh skyline I had grown to love so much over the years. I walked up the bridge as the note had instructed me to do and saw Stephen’s smiling face at the center of the bridge. That was when I knew my life was about to change forever.
He beamed at me as I walked up to him, and I had barely reached him when he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. It was so magical and surreal–I couldn’t believe he had pulled this off!
Bailey and Myles: From Myles: We had dinner plans at a very nice restaurant on the night of December 23rd. When I arrived at her house, she was just as beautiful as always and dressed to the nines. We hopped in the car and started down the road, when my best friend called me and said to go back because he wanted to meet me at Bailey’s house to show me what he had gotten his wife for Christmas. As we came up the hill, a shiny, candy apple red helicopter was landing in the cow pasture in her front yard (yes, we live in the COUNTRY) and she gasped and said “WHO IS GETTING MEDIVACED?!” I replied, “No, that’s what Scott got April for Christmas: a ride in a helicopter.” We parked the car, and in a frantic wind turbine, greeted them and they begged us to come ride along for a couple of minutes. We told her we were going to make a big circle around her house, but instead, we made a straight line from central South Carolina to Charleston. As we were landing, 72 miles away from home at my grandfather’s plantation, she started realizing what was happening. Once we landed, I walked her to the end of the pier on the pond and dropped to knee. I told her two things and asked her one thing at the end: will you marry me?
She burst into tears and I got a YES!! She cried her little eyes out until we could take pictures with the hidden photographer, and I told her this was only the start of the evening. We loaded up in the helicopter and went straight back to my parents’ house where 60-70 of our closest friends and family were gathered for a super fun holiday party, celebrating our beautiful Bailey. It was by far the sweetest night of our lives and I am still so happy to see that ring on her finger, knowing I get to spend the rest of my life with the prettiest girl I know!
P.S. Looking for creative Valentine’s Day date ideas? We teamed up with Bailey, Banks, and Biddle to share some inspiration right here!
This post is brought to you by Bailey, Banks, and Biddle. Thank you so much for your support of the brands who make Southern Weddings possible!