Clever Wedding Ideas to Make Your Big Day Stand Out

When those three things came together, we knew we were about to create something pretty amazing. So, back in January this year we asked for brave women who wanted to propose to their partners to step forward, and Brides and David’s Bridal would make it happen. And we did! And so, on one beautiful sunny day in February, our courageous women all met at London’s he Savoy hotel for the most important makeover of their lives. he Brides fashion team, along with the expert dressers and seamstresses from David’s Bridal, make-up artists from Beneit Cosmetics and stylists from top London salon Michael Van Clarke, dressed and pampered them before their entirely unsuspecting partners joined us for dinner that evening. hey thought they were arriving to do a restaurant review, so they ate, drank and enjoyed the inest dining he Savoy has to ofer. hen, one by one, our couples were led to the private proposal room, where the cameras were already rolling… Well, we’ll let our couples tell you what happened next.

Clever Wedding Ideas to Make Your Big Day Stand Out Photo Gallery



Heather Cox, 29, a teacher, proposed to Donovan LaLonde, 34, who works in security. They’ve been together for two and a half years She says: ‘From our very irst date, I’ve been smitten. We’ve become inseparable and, in all honesty, I’ve been waiting for him to propose. He’s been saving for a ring but I wanted to propose to make him feel special!’

Clever Wedding Ideas to Make Your Big Day Stand Out

DONOVAN’S REACTION:

‘I love you so much. I’m going to ask you later to make this feel real.’

A LITTLE LATER…

‘I joked she should propose to me, but now she’s done it I’m gobsmacked. I know that the guys back home are going to give me a hard time, ribbing me about being beaten to the chase, but I don’t care. I love Heather and she’s worth any berating! Now I’m on catch-up – I need to sort out a ring and plan our dream trip to Bora Bora we’ve talked about for years. Heather has surpassed all my expectations; now it’s my turn.’

Clever Wedding Ideas to Make Your Big Day Stand Out

MIKE’S REACTION: ‘I should be doing this! Of course! Of course I will, honey.

A LITTLE LATER…

‘I see this more as pre-proposal rather than the real thing as I still want to do it myself. At the back of my mind it feels like it should be a man’s job but I’d also hoped to ask for her hand in marriage in Yosemite National Park in California. I still hope to do just that.’ She says: ‘I love Mike and it feels like the right time to get married and start a family.

Clever Wedding Ideas to Make Your Big Day Stand Out

And we’re equals so why shouldn’t I take charge and propose? When we met at work I’d just been dumped ater a 13-year relationship and a 12-year engagement. It was one of those relationships where I was just going to be engaged forever, but with Mike everything is diferent.’ ‘I want to show him what he means to me’ Francine Francois, 35, a lawyer, proposed to Mike Geileskey, 41, an IT manager. They’ve been together for five years.

Clever Wedding Ideas to Make Your Big Day Stand Out

She says: ‘he breakdown of John’s marriage seven years ago hit him hard. I know he felt nervous about getting into a serious relationship and it took time for him to trust me. Me proposing would prove how important he is to me and that we’re in it for the long-haul. He’s a man’s man though; I don’t know how he’ll react.’

JOHN’S REACTION:

‘What?! Of course I will! Talk about catching me of guard!’

A LITTLE LATER…

‘I thought that I’d never love or trust another woman again. She’s actually trumped my plans. I had an idea to get my son to ask her by saying, “Will you marry my daddy?” But there was the fear of making that step. I can’t believe I’ve met this wonderful woman who loves me as much as I love her.’ ‘I want to prove that we’re in it for the long-haul’ Laura Moorhouse, 33, who works for the NHS, proposed to John Thomson, 35, a water engineer. They’ve been together for six years.

Clever Wedding Ideas to Make Your Big Day Stand Out

We’ve had an amazing year and this would top it of’ Meryl Hespel, 27, who works as a lighting technician, proposed to Henri Dupont, 32, an ice-skater. They’ve been together for a year and a half.

Dawn Danks, 43, a stay-at-home mum, proposed to Sonia Wylie, 37, who works for Royal Mail. They’ve been together for a year and a half ‘We have commitment rings and this is the next step!’ She says: ‘I split from my husband of 13 years and Sonia has been my irst relationship with a woman. From our irst date, we’ve never spent a night apart. Last year I bought commitment rings for the whole family – us and my seven-year-old daughter – and my little girl was overjoyed, a sign this proposal is right for us all.’

SONIA’S REACTION:

‘Yes! Oh my God. You’re so naughty.’

A LITTLE LATER…

‘I feel so lucky to have found someone so special.’ Beaded lace dress, £395.

‘He deserves a special moment, too’ She says: ‘Shaun was my irst love and he’s now my forever, and I think the perfect way of expressing that is to pop the question. From the irst year I met him at school, I knew I wanted to marry him, but he was an extremely diicult ish to catch – he stood me up ive times before our irst date. But I saw through his teenage cockiness.

Clever Wedding Ideas to Make Your Big Day Stand Out

He’s always on my side, looking out for me and he makes me feel complete. I can’t wait to let him know.’ SHAUN’S REACTION: ‘Yes, of course. Christ!’

A LITTLE LATER…

‘I had a funny feeling that something was going to happen, but this was the last thing I expected. While Jessica was getting ready, I spent the day with her grandmother who talked about weddings non-stop – I should have taken the hint! I couldn’t be happier.’ Jessica Patterson, 23, a restaurant supervisor, proposed to Shaun Charles, 23, a postman. They’ve been together for five and a half years.

Clever Wedding Ideas to Make Your Big Day Stand Out

She says: ‘Two years ago I told a friend I’d hate to be proposed to on my 30th birthday as it would overshadow it – suice to say, it ruined Dan’s plans! But I’d love to be engaged I have a son from a previous relationship, and I can’t wait for us to be a happy family.’

DAN’S REACTION: ‘

Really? I’m labbergasted hat’s amazing, thank you!’

A LITTLE LATER…

‘Being proposed to as a man is both good and bad. It’s so sweet but as a traditional bloke, I assume that the man should do it. I was going to propose when we’ve moved into our new home.’ Melissa Parsons, 31, an account manager, proposed to Dan Booth 30, who works in finance. They have been together for seven years ‘I ruined his proposal so it’s only fair’

Clever Wedding Ideas to Make Your Big Day Stand Out

There was another surprise for our couples – the chance to win a £5,000 mega honeymoon, all thanks to Club Med (clubmed.co.uk). Holly and Peter’s jaws hit the floor when they found out they were jetting off to La Plantation d’Albion in Mauritius, a beach resort with its super-luxurious spa and all-inclusive activities, including tennis and sailing.

Clever Wedding Ideas to Make Your Big Day Stand Out

She says: ‘I never thought marriage was for me – I’m a bit of a commitment phobe – but that was before I met Pete, who makes the idea seem exciting, not scary. Because I’ve been open about my views, I knew he wouldn’t suspect a thing. I’m not sure how he’ll react but you only live once!’

PETER’S REACTION:

‘Right, this has to be nonsense. Really? here’s no way. Is that real? Are you serious? You’re 100% serious? Yes, yes.’

A LITTLE LATER…

‘I know it’s taken a lot of courage to do what Holly did today, but that’s made it more special. I had plans to pop the question in Paris at a point in the future, but the moment when I thought, “today is the day” just hadn’t come. Now I needn’t worry! She’s the perfect girl for me.’ Holly Patrick, 29, who works in marketing, proposed to Peter Barnes, 29, a recruitment consultant.

Clever Wedding Ideas to Make Your Big Day Stand Out

They’ve been together for a year and a half ‘The leap year spurred me on’ Marzena Tokarz, 23, who works in social media, proposed to Paul Howsgo, 23, who works in product marketing. They’ve been together for three years ‘The proposal waiting game is killing me’ She says: ‘It’ll be our third anniversary and what better way to celebrate? I’ve even started planning the wedding itself – I’ve designed the stationery, found a photographer, and my mum’s got a venue.’

Clever Wedding Ideas to Make Your Big Day Stand Out

PAUL’S REACTION: ‘

Oh! Yeah, ok. Yes, I will.’

A LITTLE LATER…

‘Despite the fact that Marzena buys wedding magazines, her proposal still came as a shock. When Marzena wants something done, she does it, and that’s one of the things I love about her.’ She says: ‘I know Drew has had a ring since we went on holiday last July, but that the right moment to propose hadn’t come. his leap year is it – and I can’t wait to see his face when I propose instead! I do feel bad for taking this proposal away from him, but I had warned him I’d do it in the leap year if he hadn’t.’ DREW’S REACTION: ‘Are you serious? Oh, yeah. Yeah, I will then. Oh dear. Flipping heck. I wasn’t expecting that. I’m getting hot now.’

Clever Wedding Ideas to Make Your Big Day Stand Out

A LITTLE LATER…

I’d been meaning to propose, but I wanted it to be a surprise – but Nicola beat me to it! Funnily enough, walking up to he Savoy today I thought: “I should’ve brought the ring – this is the perfect spot!’” Embellished chiffon dress, £1,050, Wonder by Jenny Packham collection Tulle dress, from £625. All bouquets, Savoy Flowers Beaded lace dress, £1,395 ‘I can’t wait to see his face’ Nicola Sanders, 25, who works for the NHS, proposed to Drew Brandreth, 28, a roofer. They’ve been together for five years

Clever Wedding Ideas to Make Your Big Day Stand Out

DREAM HONEYMOON’ ‘OMG! WE’VE WON A £5,000

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