Engagement Week 2017, Day 1: Planning a Proposal & Why You Should Have it Photographed

2017 Engagement Week: How to Plan Your Proposal

Ah, it’s finally that time of year again. Today begins the second annual Steph Parker Photo Engagement Week Series in honor of engagement season! Last year’s series was such a success, I wanted to bring back the series again this year, but with even more information! I’m going to do my best to avoid covering the same topics I did last year, so if you’re new to my blog, make sure to check out last year’s posts.

We are currently smack dab in the middle of engagement season – my second favorite time of year – and I’ve already seen a ton of friends and acquaintances get engaged. Congrats! To start off the 2017 Steph Parker Photo Engagement Week, I first want to talk about the actual proposal. If you’re planning on proposing to your special someone, check out the tips below to help make it awesome!

1. Don’t Stress!

I know – easier said than done! The biggest thing to keep in mind is to be confident and to try to be stress-free. Your special someone loves you and will be completely shocked and excited when they see you get on one knee!

2. What’s the Plan?

Whether you have a big production planned or just want to keep it simple, remember to keep it personal! Does your special someone love flowers? It would make the proposal even more special if you gave your S.O. flowers when you ask them to marry you. Or, if you want to go even further with it, plan to propose while you’re at a garden or a park with lots of flowers! Your S.O. will LOVE it!

3. Should I Hire a Photographer to Document this Special Moment?

If your S.O. has told you before that they want the proposal photographed, I’d highly recommend hiring someone to document the proposal! While hiring a photographer is not required when proposing, a lot of people I’ve spoken with truly appreciate the extra thought their S.O. put into their proposal by asking someone to photograph it. Photographers love to photograph proposals, myself included!

There are a few ways that photographers can photograph a proposal:

The easiest option is to surprise your S.O. with a couples portrait session booked with their favorite photographer. When your S.O. can be prepared enough to dress up a bit, they’ll definitely appreciate the heads up so they look nice in the photos! I would definitely suggest speaking with the photographer in advance and agree on a signal or password so when you’re ready to pop the question, you can alert the photographer without giving away the surprise. You and the photographer can also discuss in advance a specific location where the proposal will take place.

Another option is to coordinate with the photographer in advance about a specific location, date, and time and then the photographer will arrive early to hide out so your S.O. can’t see them! Then after you have proposed and your S.O has said “yes,” the photographer can either pop out and say hello or they can sneak away without your fiance ever knowing they were there! If you opt for the last method, that gives you the opportunity to later surprise your fiance again with images from the proposal!

Lastly, here are just some last, quick tips:

  • Don’t rehearse a long, drawn out speech – keep it simple, but personal. Your S.O. will be so thrilled and shocked, they probably won’t even hear most of what you say anyway.
  • Make the proposal personal to you and your relationship. Think about important locations, dates, and moments that are special to you both and how you can possibly coordinate something meaningful to you into the proposal.
  • It’s never too early to start planning! A friend of mine told me about his plans to propose to his now wife almost TWO YEARS before he actually proposed! NOTE: It did not take two years to execute the plan 😉 He just wanted to wait for the right time.
  • Be yourself! You don’t want to throw off the surprise because you’re acting nervous or differently than normal. Your S.O. knows you better than anyone else and will probably be able to tell that something’s up.
  • If your S.O. is shy and/or extremely private about their personal life, it would probably be a good idea to skip the photographer. Putting a camera in someone’s face will probably make them even more nervous. This is an exciting day – it’s perfectly okay to keep it between just the two of you 🙂
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for help from your photographer! Most likely, they’ve photographed at least one proposal before and will have a ton of ideas for you!

I can’t think of a better way to end this post than to say GOOD LUCK and congratulations! Proposing and getting engaged is a super exciting time of life and I hope you found my tips to be helpful in planning your proposal!

Check back tomorrow for tips on what to do after the proposal and in your first few weeks of being engaged!

All photos are © Steph Parker Photo.