Over The Top Proposals – Enough or Too Much?

How far is too far when it comes to orchestrated proposals? Just ask “Hector ‘Tank’ Martinez, who proposed to Paige Hernandez in front of his family and friends,” the description on the YouTube video reads. “Big ups to the 710 Bikerz and everyone else who took part in this event.”

The California Highway Patrol said on Wednesday it is investigating the incident and that felony charges for impeding traffic could be filed.

To view first hand – click here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mWGlqmrGQ44.

Think that’s the worst? Oh, no…..

How about Ryan Thompson who pretended the tiny little plane he was piloting with his GF Carlie Kennedy as the only passenger was about to nosedive into Lake Shore Drive. There are a lot of words I would have for him, if I were her… “YES” is not one of them. She probably said yes from being nervous ( I hope). Personally,  I don’t want to be married to someone who thinks its funny to scare me to death. You can see his (awesome) sense of humor in this video. For me, it is hard to watch.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=kxTAjVGN4CE

Last but,  not least there’s the one  guy ( who wishes to remain anonymous) who decided to stage a ‘kidnapping’ to propose to his girlfriend. Well, it seems his friends who were roped into helping him got a bit carried away and police were called by a woman walking past, who saw a bunch of young men pull a young woman out of a van and into another car.

 

I get it. You want to be funny and clever, and original…women love that kind of stuff. But, eventually women want the kind of guy they can really count on. Someone who doesn’t think a practical joke is cutting their brake lines or filling our gas tank with explosives.

Gentlemen, please remember that this is not a competition, you don’t have to have the biggest, baddest,  proposal of all time. Just be sensitive, kind and if you have to do a public proposal, try your best to make sure you are not breaking the law.

-Penny Frulla for Bridal Expo Chicago

 

Say “Yes!” To Holiday Engagements

With twinkling  lights, jingling  bells and chestnuts roasting on open fires,  it’s no wonder December reigns as the most popular month to pop the question. Thirteen percent of marriage proposals happen in December, while February, despite Valentine’s Day, accounts for just 8 percent, according to the Conde Nast American Wedding Study.

Holiday proposals can be among the most romantic because there are so many creative ways to pop the question. Whether it is Christmas or New Year’s Eve or another celebration, these are my top five favorite  Holiday Proposals.

1) Spell out “Will you Marry me?” with Christmas lights. There are actually companies that will orchestrate the whole thing for you including setting up the lights or you can spend an afternoon (like Clark Griswold) toying with lights and extension cords – it’s up to you.

2) Wrap the ring box inside a large box and then successively smaller boxes so that your sweetheart will initially think the gift is quite large. Nesting boxes are great for this and often come in sets. As each layer is opened, the laughs will grow. Get down on one knee right as the last box is opened.

3) Decorating the Christmas tree together, you hand her an ornament which has the ring tied to the top of it. Make sure she is not standing on anything or she might fall off!

4) Organize a scavenger hunt. Start off with a simple clue to someplace nearby, then get more complicated as the scavenger hunt progresses, and have the final location be a place where you can hide and then pop out and get down on one knee.

5) Buy a scrabble game, spell out the words “Will you marry me” and glue the tiles onto the game board. When she opens the gift, make sure she opens the whole thing so she can see the tiles, and then present her with the real gift – the ring!

Whatever method you choose, this is a spectacular time to get engaged, since the holidays are all about family and celebrating with the people you love the most.

-Penny Frulla for Bridal Expo Chicago

 

 

Viral Proposals

One of the most exhilarating, romantic and personal parts of your wedding is the proposal and subsequent engagement. The story is told, re-told, sometimes shared with thousands of people online and sometimes even televised! It is also one of the few things that the groom does entirely on his own which is why the grand gestures are so much more significant.

For some, the uber-romantic proposals seem contrived. For others, like Kim Kardashian whose fiance spelled out “Will you marry me?” in rose petals and filmed the entire episode for their reality television show, it is not only accepted but expected.  Goodyear blimps, the jumbotron at the Super Bowl or Times Square, it seems like bigger is better and less is not nearly enough when it comes to getting hitched.

Evidence this week with the “Live Lip Dub Proposal” by Isaac Lamb that went viral on youtube and every other imaginable news outlet. It is front page on Comcast, Yahoo, Huffington Post and more. In case you are not one of the 7 million hits on youtube, you can see it here:

http://player.vimeo.com/video/42828824

Its no longer enough to pop the question in a quiet, secluded romantic setting like sitting on the beach watching the sunset. You have appear on a white horse,  hire musicians and  have a candlelit dinner catered at a cloth covered table on that beach, complete with waiters and chilled champagne. God Forbid you pop the question during the seventh inning stretch without the approval and knowledge of everyone at Wrigley Field… it must be on a screen larger than your first home with throngs of people waiting for the inevitable ‘YES’ !

These types of proposals at once rare are now almost expected. They are no longer about you as a couple, they seem to be  about how you want everyone else to perceive you as a couple. They can also be  quite expensive. There are even entire websites dedicated to unique wedding proposals and how to impress ( their word, not mine) your fiance by making a grand gesture.  Interesting.

Of course no matter how you decide to propose, it is important to wait for the right moment and to make sure you know the answer before you ask. The best proposals are from the heart, they are intimate and really only involve two people. 

Proposal Dos and Don’ts

 
Don’t propose without a ring. It doesn’t matter how large or small, you must bring some ring to the proposal. There are instances where it is spontaneous and there has been no preparation but, this is rare.

Do be prepared. If you are thinking she might be the one, buy a ring (insure it) and keep it with you… just in case.

Don’t propose at another celebration. Interrupting a toast at your brother’s wedding to ask your girlfriend to marry you is in poor taste. Let them have their moment, you will have yours.

Do include the family. Getting engaged during Christmas or family holiday celebrations can bring everyone closer emotionally even if they lived thousands of miles apart. 

Whatever you decide, remember that romance is not always a grand gesture. Sometimes it is simply remembering her favorite flower, favorite color or in my case, just replacing the toilet paper every now and then.

-Penny Frulla for Bridal Expo Chicago

Remembering St. Valentine

For many years I thought Valentine’s Day was a Hallmark holiday, one that was manufactured so that greeting card companies and florists could make us buy things we didn’t need and candy sales would soar. It wasn’t until I was an adult that I came to know the history associated with this holiday and the legend behind all of the cards and flowers.

Folklore presents a tale of a priest named Valentine (later to become a martyred Saint), marrying lovers in secret, against the wishes of Roman Emperor Claudius II who ordained his soldiers remain single and celibate in order to maintain their focus. There is an additional modern embellishment to this story, provided by American Greetings to History.com, and widely repeated despite having no historical basis whatsoever. On the evening before Valentine was to be executed, he wrote the first “valentine” card himself, addressed to the blind daughter of his jailor, Asterius, signing the card “From your Valentine.” From that point, ‘Valentines’ were sent in secret as expressions of love by those who could not openly proclaim their feelings for various reasons.

In elementary school, we exchange valentine card with everyone in the entire class, for those who are home-schooled- this is a fairly easy task. In middle school, students send lollipops or messages to friends and crushes either anyonymously or as a blatant show of affection. In high sc’hool it starts to get complicated and only the ‘couples’ really get into the celebration unless there is some really burning desire to use this as the day to come clean and profess your undying love. As we get older, Valentine’s Day becomes the day we send our loved ones greetings; mother, father, grandparents, dear friends, etc.

In the dating world, Valentine’s Day is the day to pull out all the stops and possibly pop the question. In fact, about 10% of all engagements occur on this holiday. More than that, many couples decide to get married on this holiday for a myriad of reasons: it is a very romantic day to join together in matrimony, there is a lot of history associated with this holiday, and it’s an easy date to remember.

For whatever reason you get engaged or married on this holiday, remember the sacrifices of those who gave their lives for someone they love, the ones who kept their love in secret and for those who could never join together for whatever reason. Openly express your love for those around you, show them you care with thoughts and actions, a homemade card, a diamond necklace or whatever speaks to you.

Happy Valentine’s Day

-Penny Frulla for Bridal Expo Chicago

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Love Is In The Air – Celebrity Engagements

There must be a little “Love Potion # 9” in the water supply because this past week has given us a rash of celebrity engagements. From pop stars to sports legends,  from the unlikely to the hopeless romantics, it is obvious that 2012 is starting out to be the year of matrimony.

Britney Spears – Engaged to Jason Trawick, released the news via Twitter. Her Neil Lane engagement ring was custom designed with the help of Jason to look like a mini-tiara. Wishing that third time is a charm for the pop princess. Although this is her third trip down the aisle (if you count the Vegas debacle) there is no reason she can’t don a bridal gown again. In fact, wouldn’t she look stunning in this gown by Ines di Santo?

 

 

 

 

 

Matthew McConaughey popped the question on Christmas day to his longtime girlfriend Camila Alves. This previously confirmed bachelor was giddy as he notified his fans, also via Twitter. This couple looks great every time they appear on the red carpet and for all his shirtless antics, Matthew cleans up nicley in every  tuxedo he is photographed wearing. Can you inagine how fabulous Camila would look in either of these couture classics by Yumi Katsura? 

 

Steven Tyler of Aerosmith and more recently, American Idol fame, also popped the question over the holidays to his girlfriend of 6 years, Erin Brady, with a 5 carat ring designed by his personal jeweler, Loree Rodkin. Tyler is a Rock and Roll legend so I would guess the most important part of his celebration will be the music. The lineup will likely include some of his dearest R& R friends… maybe Bon Jovi since he is still alive and kicking?

Justin Timberlake and Jessica Beil reportedly became engaged over the holidays and if recent photos are any indication, couldn’t be happier. JT has long been a style icon for twenty-something men and is always willing to take a fashion risk. Will he go traditional tuxedo or something edgy? Jessica Beil, known for her stunning figure as much as her acting ability will stop traffic  in anything she wears.  This gown by Jorge Perez would certainly do the same, proving the back of the gown is just as important as the front.

Michael Jordan (#23)  proposed to Yvette Prieto over the holidays with a ring  that is reported to be in the 7 figure range. No photos, yet and still no reports as to where the wedding will take place. Having a line of his own  tuxedos in the 1990’s gives Michael the ‘home court’ advantage when it comes to selecting his attire for the wedding. Although now defunct, the Michael Jordan Tuxedo Collection took the 199’s by storm… much like he did.

Other recent celebrity engagements include Wynona Judd, Chris O’Brown (from the Bridesmaids movie), and LeBron James. There certainly are a lot of high-profile engagements. Personally, I cant wait to see them unfold because if there is anything I love more than a wedding, it is a celebrity wedding! Best Wishes to everyone who got engaged over the holidays and here’s hoping your ‘happily’ is forever after!

-Penny Frulla for Bridal Expo Chicago

Tis the Season – Holiday Proposals

Whether you opt for the grand gesture, something private or somewhere in between…. this is definitely the most popular time of year to pop the question. But, before you rent the Times Square ticker on New Years Eve, make sure you know your fiance well enough to know what kind of proposal she will be the most likely to respond to in a positive manner. There are only 3 rules to popping the question:

RULE # 1 – Know your audience . I will admit that I watched the Kardashian Khaos long enough to see Kris Humphries on bended knee with rose petals scattered into the words “Will You Marry Me?” A seemingly intimate proposal with a twist: reality tv cameras rolling for the world to see their personal romance unfold.  Ladies, there is some accountablity on your part as well. Make sure your fiance knows your likes and dislikes and what she considers romantic vs. sappy.  The reality: Humphries proposal should have come with a stack of pancakes and it only reinforces my somewhat skeptical view of grand romantic gestures. However, this proposal was designed for a woman who loves the spotlight. He knew exactly what he was doing and who he was proposing to…. a quiet dinner without an audience would have left his future ( and now former) fiance wanting more.

RULE #2 – It’s your proposal, too. If you met at a Cubs game, went on your first date to a Cubs game, have season tickets together and named your dog Wrigley… getting engaged at the season opener is definitely the way to go. If you share hobbies like playing golf or wine tasting, these are great time to incorporate that into your proposal. If you are both wacky, go wacky! If you are both animal lovers – use that. Be careful, though, dogs have been known to swallow diamond rings.

RULE#3 – Never propose without a ring. Every woman is different, we all have different wants and needs, we all have different taste. And trust me, not every woman wants or needs a 10 carat diamond. The 3 month salary guideline was set by the diamond industry not by lawmakers. Spend only what you are comfortable spending, a proposal from the heart with a modest ring beats a sparkly reminder of debt every time. But, make no mistake a proposal without a ring is not a proposal.

One of the most exhilarating and romantic part of your wedding is the proposal; the story will be told re-told for years to come. Of course no matter how you decide to propose, it is important to wait for the right moment and always, always  make sure you know the answer.

-Penny Frulla for Bridal Expo Chicago