Friday, November 16, 2007

Proposal Planner

Deck the Halls with boughs of holly
Fa la la la la, la la la la la
'Tis the season
To make a proposal

Yes, we are coming into "high season" for gentlemen to go down on one knee. We've heard of so many wonderful proposals. The most successful were not the ones that cost the most, but the ones that were created with a lot of thought toward what the bride would cherish.

The first question is whether to ask her Father for permission. Would she find this sweet or outdated? If she is quite close to her family, it might be a nice touch to arrange for them to meet at the restaurant after the proposal. Our good friend Karen Miyanaga at the Ritz Carlton thought she was just going for a lovely Sunday brunch with her boyfriend. But he surprised her with an unforgettable question. What followed is something that she will never forget. He flew her parents from Japan to California to surprise her and share in the joy. We happened to be at the Ritz finishing up filming a morning-after brunch and saw her. I will never forget the joy in her face. It went so far beyond joy to a place for which I have no word. What a great way to start a marriage, with the utmost consideration.

We've heard of creative proposals which clearly had the bride in mind. Some have been simple - a Scrabble board with "Will You Marry Me" spelled out to a bride who loved to play Scrabble. Some have been elaborate vacations to a tropical paradise, or a trip to a restaurant that has become "our place".

I don't know why, but a large number of proposals do not go as originally planned. Our friend John planned to ask Stacie to marry him while vacationing in Quebec. The weather was rainy and blustery, but he plowed ahead with his plan and took her outside, set up a small camera and proposed anyway. It is hilarious to see, because you can't hear a word over the 30 mph winds! He created a short video with sub-titles, which makes it even funnier. Until you see Stacie's reaction. Then, you cry.

And if all else fails, there are proposal planners who can help you come up with an idea and plan it so it is perfect. There are some independent ones, some at luxury hotels and resorts. The skills required are similar to those required of wedding plannes, so that may be a route to go. Or, you can advertise on Do My Stuff to find a proposal planner.

And of course you'll need a ring. The proposal is something she will always treasure, remember and talk about - so make it a good one.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

A Fun and Flirty Wedding!

Chuck and I attended Stacie and John's wedding a few weeks ago and had a smashing good time. Stacie is the genius behind The Flirty Guide. In the Guide she advocates that every bride and groom should create a wedding that both suits them and uniquely caters to their guests. It doesn't have to cost a lot of money, it just has to be authentic. Everything she advocates, she did at her own wedding.

Stacie had an original Colleen Quen gown (a dear friend of Stacie's and one the most talented couturiers in the US). Stacie, being a talented seamstress herself, created a wonderful, colorful bustle of several kanzashi flowers (see photo), which honored her Japanese heritage. She also had a beautiful display of 1000 origami cranes forming the backdrop to their ceremony. Since Stacie loves origami, all of the gentlemen's boutonnieres were origami flowers, unique to each gentleman.

John was on the Apple team that brought you the iPhone. This theme was creatively integrated into the cake. The icing was simple, but three iPhones, trimmed with Swarovski crystals, were mounted on the front of the cake, each playing a different movie of Stacie and John's life together.

One of my favorite Flirty Moments was when John and Stacie took the dance floor for their first dance. Neither particularly likes dancing, so as soon as they took 2 or 3 steps, another couple dressed as the bride and grom waltzed in from the sidelines and performed a steamy hot tango. Then, John and Stacie stepped back in at the very end for the final dip, and of course, the thunderous applause. It was fantastic! It didn't cost anything, yet it totally suited Stacie and John and entertained everyone who was there.

Oh, and the wedding took place on a Thursday because that was the day of the week that they first met. How romantic!

These were the outward expressions of their personalities as individuals and as a couple. But what really made this a wonderful wedding was the love and respect they have for each other -- the look on John's face when Stacie floated down the aisle, the truly heartfelt speech John delivered at the reception to honor his bride, the way Stacie lightly touched John's arm to reassure him she was there by his side. These are the moments we will cherish. We wish them a lifetime of happiness together.