Perhaps you’re tired of waiting for your man to seal the deal, or maybe you’re making the most of a socially-approved time slot to utter those four life-changing words: Will you marry me?; either way, this February 29 gives women the green light to propose to their partner.
If you’re looking to put a ring on it this leap year, we navigate rarely-trod territory with Tiffany Wright of The One Romance…
Browse through any wedding forum and you’ll find endless threads from nerve-addled ladies reaching out to cyberspace for reassurance as to whether it’s OK to be the proposer, not the proposed to. Why, when the gap in pay equality between the sexes nudges ever closer, and women are supposedly empowered to match the men in any field, is asking your partner to share the rest of your life together so taboo? “I think tradition still runs very deep,” says Tiffany Wright, the brains behind The One Romance, the UK’s leading proposal company. “The conventional idea of a man going down on one knee is a cultural blueprint that can feel hard to deviate from. If a woman does pluck up the courage to break from ‘the norm’, there’s no established ritual, which makes it more daunting. Men are lucky because they have the rule book.”
Tiffany – who has seen 20 women contact her this year (compared to an average two) – believes that this lack of form is actually liberating, not restrictive. “Many of my clients are nervous and want to know whether they should be asking the permission of their partner’s Dad, whether they should propose with a ring, and, yes, whether they should go down on one knee,” she explains. “Rather than be a hindrance, the lack of precedent means absolutely anything is possible, there’s no pressure so we advise women to do what they feel comfortable with and embrace the total creative freedom!”
Carefully considered, bespoke proposals are proving popular with women, many of whom have typically been dreaming about the magic moment their whole life. “Usually women are more confident in their ideas and favour a more private proposal,” says Tiffany, who points out the contrast between this markedly discreet approach and men’s preference for more public displays (think last year’s flash mob trend) involving photographer, videographers – even social media coverage. “The ladies we work with are looking for something much more luxurious and intimate that’s just about the two of them.”
Looking to initiate something a little different? Why not embrace this year’s emerging trend for themed gestures and take the lead from some of The One Proposals’ recent requests, such as a joint wedding-themed ‘Pinterest’ board rendered real (think each element of your planned nuptials brought to life in one room), and a personalised forest trail, in which a riding enthusiast was led past sign posts and love notes to their beloved. “You can do anything you want to, that’s why it’s so magical,” says Tiffany, who believes each coming leap year will see more and more women take the plunge. “It allows us to grab the bull by the horns without anyone judging us. Hopefully, we’ll get to the point it’s completely normal for women to propose any time, any year. Change is definitely afoot.”
Thinking of being brave and taking the plunge? We would love to hear from you if you are thinking of proposing to your partner! Please email us your stories to PR@birdiesbeautique.co.uk
looking for something different to do on Valentine’s? Have a look at our Alternative Valentine’s ideas