02/12/2013 11:02 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

How to Propose this Valentine's Day

You've picked your someone special and the engagement ring. You've also decided that you're going to pop the question on the most romantic day of the year - Valentine's Day. The only thing left to do is plan the actual proposal. Here are three ideas to inspire your upcoming moment:


Dessert anyone?
Choose a restaurant that might be meaningful to your relationship -- whether it's the place you had your first date or the place that's become your favorite restaurant to go to together. Make a reservation and let the staff know you're planning to propose.

During the day on the 14th, stop by the restaurant, fill the manager in on your exact plan, and give him your materials. Let him know that you'd like a platter of desserts to be brought out for you and your partner to choose from after dinner. Then explain that you want to swap one of the plates with a ring holder or ring dish. Etsy or Bed Bath & Beyond both have of beautiful ones.

When the waiter comes with the platter, tell him you'd like "one of those" and have the waiter put the ring holder on your table. Your (almost) fiance will be a bit confused but her heart will most definitely start beating quickly. Once the waiter walks away, say your heartfelt words, get down on one knee, and ask her to be your wife.

Will you be my Valentine or wife?
Remember back in elementary school when you'd get Barbie or Power Rangers Valentine's Day cards and you'd write love notes to all your crushes? You'd tell them you loved their ponytail or that they were the best kickball player in the class?


Get an assorted pack of these cards (at Toys "R" Us) and write something special about why you love your soon-to-be fiance on each one. Think of your favorite memory, their most amazing qualities, or how you feel about your future together. Stick the cards around your home like Easter eggs (don't make them impossible to find) and have your girlfriend collect all 14 (in honor of February 14th). For the 14th card, make her a huge Valentine (you can get red paper from a craft store and cut it into the shape of a heart -- fold the heart in half and it becomes a card) with the words "Will You Marry Me" written on the inside.

Walk down memory lane:
Unless you're like Khloe Kardashian and Lamar Odom (engaged about a month after knowing each other), you and your beautiful spouse-to-be most likely have a library of memories together. Spend an evening strolling down memory lane and pick out a symbolic number of memories -- maybe it's five memories for the five years you've known each other, perhaps it's 14 memories in honor of the 14th of February, or it could be any other number that fits into your relationship's unique story. Print a photo of each memory and write a note or story about each experience. Try to share feelings you remember having that you may not have shared at the moment. Example: "When we had a picnic at the park and you suggested a game of catch with the family sitting next to us, I got this overwhelming excitement to start our own family in the future." Set up the memories along a wall or table in your house and surprise your love when she gets home from her day.


Try to capture her reaction by setting up a camera in your house as well. A few days after the proposal, make a book out of the memories you used in the proposal and add a photo and note from the actual proposal to the last page.

For more proposal ideas, check out and for wedding inspiration, head to Every Last Detail.

Top photo by David Wittig Photography, bottom photo by Chennergy.