This year, 2020 is a leap year – the once every four years phenomenon where we get an extra day – the 29th February.
Leaplings (those born on 29th February) have been planning their big birthday parties, but the big news is that traditionally the 29th February is the day that women can propose to their man! (according to tradition)
The roots of the idea can be traced back to the Irish tradition of Bachelor’s Day and St Brigit’s Complaint. According to legend, around the 5th Century, St Bridgit was unhappy about the length some women were expected to wait for their beau to propose. She brought her complaint to St Patrick who considered this and decided that a woman should be allowed to propose, but only once every 4 years – hence every leap year.
In 1288 a Scottish law was passed which gave St Patrick’s declaration clarity and popularity. As the news spread leap year balls and dances were held, where women could ask men to dance and could also propose, ending some of the inequality. Adding extra importance to the day, a man who declined must pay a fine, which could range from a kiss, clothing or £100 fine! It has also been said twelve pairs of gloves was an acceptable gift as the rejected lady could then hide her shame of not being engaged!
Of course, women proposing on any day is in Britain now thankfully culturally acceptable - and you don’t have to wear breeches or a red petticoat as was advised in previous centuries!!!
However, if marriage is something you think is right for your relationship and that your partner would be delighted with a proposal – after all it takes the pressure off him! Then see our guide to some of the best Men’s jewellery that will make him say “yes”.
Men's Engagement Ring Ideas
When we think of engagement rings, they usually involve diamonds. The traditional solitaire ring is not going to be the choice of most men, but a single diamond tastefully set into a band style ring is masculine, easy to wear, suitable in a variety of metals and can be tailored to his taste.
Bespoke bands are one of our strongest designs, which each design unique to you. Customers choose the metal they prefer, then the style of band such as court, flat etc and the width. Then you can customise with diamonds, sapphires or simply a polished or satin finish.
Our website has some great examples, however if you would like us to make a design just for you, then come into branch or contact us via email or telephone and we would be happy to discuss your requirements.
What if he doesn’t wear jewellery?
Choosing a ring for a man can be difficult. There are some men, that love jewellery, but many do not wear any (until they get married). If you think he’d love the idea of you proposing, but hate the idea of an engagement ring for him, here are three fantastic ideas…
Idea #1 - How about a watch?
If he’s not really a jewellery wearer, or feel that you would rather choose your wedding rings together, then how about a watch?
It will ensure he gets to the church on time!
We have one of the best selections of new and pre-owned watches in Sussex. Many are listed on our website however more are available in our stores.
Idea #2 - How about Cufflinks?
Idea #3 - How about a ladies' engagement ring?
If he doesn’t want to wear an engagement ring, then seal the deal by giving him the engagement ring you’ve always dreamed of wearing! Your proposal will still be a wonderful surprise and perhaps you can both get down on one knee.
However you decide to propose and on whatever day is special to you, we hope that Gold Arts can be part of your special moment.