10 Tips for Planning an Unforgettable Proposal in Portland

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Thinking of getting down on one knee and popping the question in beautiful Portland, OR? First of all, congratulations! Asking those 4 little words (will you marry me?) is a big moment in your life together.

If you’re feeling nervous or unsure of how to propose, you don’t have to go at it alone. Malka Diamonds is Portland’s full-service boutique jewelry store and we’re here to help.

Keep reading as we teach you the art of the perfect proposal in Portland. We’ll outline simple tips for planning a special event personalized to your relationship and that you’ll both remember forever.


Get Inspired: 3 Malka Diamonds Engagement Stories


1. Give yourself some time to plan

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Once you know for sure that you and your partner are on the same page about marriage, it can be tempting to rush immediately into a proposal. Remember, this is a moment that will be part of your story forever, so take a step back and give yourself time to plan and make it perfect.

There’s no magic number here, but many of our clients find that 6-8 weeks is the perfect amount of time to organize everything for the event, like finding or designing the perfect ring, without feeling stressed.

Do what feels right for you and don’t be afraid to adjust your timeline as needed. Whatever you do, don’t put it off. If you’ve been talking about marriage, your partner will likely be waiting for the moment. So as soon as you’ve decided to propose, begin to make your plan.

 

2. Find out what kind of ring your partner likes

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It’s hard to pull off an unforgettable proposal without an unforgettable engagement ring.

Take time to get a feel about what kind of ring your partner likes or wants. Your partner may have a very clear idea of exactly what she wants. If so, it’s likely she’s mentioned it to you already.

If not, there are a few ways you can get a feel for preferences, depending on your situation:

  • Consider personal style — What’s your partners fashion style. Vintage, classic, trendy?

  • Look at other jewelry choices — What kind of jewelry does your partner wear? What colors and shapes?

  • Consider “just browsing” — If you two are out shopping, drop into a jewelry store to browse and see what your partner gravitates towards.

  • Just ask — If you really have no idea, ask your partner what she’s hoping for.

Keep in mind that a jewelry store can be a lot of help when it comes to identifying the perfect style for your partner. And at Malka Diamonds, we make it even easier.

If you’ve decided on the diamond you want to purchase but aren’t quite sure which overall design she’ll like, we’re happy to put the diamond in a temporary solitaire setting. That way, you have the diamond to propose with and afterwards, you and your partner can visit our shop and design the perfect ring she’s always wanted.

 

3. Find the perfect engagement ring

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Now that you have an idea of what kind of ring to purchase, it’s time to begin your search. You’ll have a lot of options to choose from, starting with the type of ring — vintage, designer, or a custom design.

From there, you’ll want to get an idea of the 4C’s of the diamond — Carat, Color, Clarity, and Cut. The gemologist at your jewelry store will help you understand what makes a good diamond, showing you the difference between diamonds and helping you choose the perfect setting.

Our Malka Diamonds blog is a great resource for first-time ring buyers. We encourage you to take some time to click through these guides below. They’ll help you understand the ins and outs of buying a diamond ring. Be sure to give us a call if you have any questions at (503) 222-5205.

 

4. Location, location, location

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It’s time to dive into planning the big moment, starting with the location. There are many beautiful places in Portland to propose, so you have a lot of options to choose from.

When deciding on a location, think about a spot that will be memorable and that makes sense for you and your partner’s interests. For example, if you both love hiking, you could choose a proposal location up in the mountains. Do you both enjoy watching the sunset? Find a viewpoint to pop the question or charter a flight above the city as the sun goes down.

You could also opt for a location that has a deep personal meaning in your relationship. For example:

  • The location of your first date or kiss

  • Your favorite restaurant

  • Where you first said, “I love you.”

  • Your go-to anniversary date location

 

5. Consider who needs (and doesn’t need) to know

You may have already confided in your partner’s best friend, siblings, or parents to get advice on the ring or ask for their involvement. But keep in mind that the more people you tell, the bigger the chance your partner will catch wind of your plans.

So while you may want to talk about your plans to a few people, make sure anyone you tell will keep the secret to ensure the day is as special as possible.

 

6. Add a special touch

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You can make your proposal as simple or as extravagant as you think your partner will love. Either way, adding some special touches to the big event will help make it memorable. Here are some ideas to get you inspired:

  • Set up the proposal spot ahead of time, decorating with flowers, candles, and so on

  • Bring champagne and roses

  • Hire a photographer to capture the moment

  • Invite family members to watch from a distance

  • Write a letter, poem, or song

  • Create a slideshow of photos together

  • Have someone serenade you with live music

 

7. Plan for the rain

Planning an outdoor proposal? Make sure you have a plan B or that the spot will still work if it starts to rain. This is Portland, after all, so there’s almost always a chance of showers.

Depending on your plans, the mood, and the location, a light rain can actually make a proposal that much more magical. Just don’t let a rainshower catch you by surprise — have a plan ready.

 

8. Practice the moment

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Will you marry me? The words are simple, but in the moment, you might feel nervous and struggle to get them out.

As silly as it may sound, we always encourage our clients to take a moment and practice what they’re going to say and how they’re going to say it ahead of time.

Is there anything else you want to say when asking the question? Are you going to get down on one knee? At what point will you pull out the ring? Take a moment and practice what you want to say to make sure you can feel confident going into the question.

 

9. Have a plan to celebrate

Some people are so focused on planning the moment, they don’t consider what happens after the question. Will you immediately leave the location and go home? Go out to dinner? Something else?

Consider what will happen afterwards and plan something to round out the moment. This can be something simple but special like champagne and dessert, or a bigger celebration like a dinner party with your family and friends. What you do will depend on a lot of things, like where you proposed and how. But having some plan for rounding out the day will help make the moment even more special

 

10. Above all else, make it your own

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This is your love story, so make sure it’s a proposal that speaks to your relationship. And remember, what matters is that you both leave the moment feeling happy and excited about the future together.

Bonus: Proposal Mistakes to Avoid

Avoid committing these proposal faux-pas:

  • Not having a ring or forgetting the ring

  • Proposing in a spot where you might drop and lose the ring (example: on a bridge or in the water)

  • Baking your ring in a dessert or dropping it in a drink (you may never see it again!)

  • Overcomplicating the proposal by involving a lot of different things or people

 

We’ll help you find the perfect ring for the perfect proposal

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Our team at Malka Diamonds is here to help you pick out the most amazing ring to complement your unforgettable proposal.

We are a locally-owned jewelry store located in downtown portland and are proud to offer a specially curated selection of designer and vintage rings. We’re known for helping couples realize the perfect engagement with unique, one-of-a-kind custom rings. We can’t wait to help you, too.

We invite you to visit our store (no appointment needed) or learn more about our ring collection.