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Inspiration » Proposal Story » Joy Proposal Story: Claire & Nate

Joy Proposal Story: Claire & Nate

by Cali Pitchel

Claire and Nate met while Nate was in a band. Claire knew some of the other members of the band, and she and her friends went to their shows whenever they could. Nate asked Claire out a few times, but she said no for about a year. (Way to be persistent, Nate!) Eventually, she decided to give him a shot. It was lucky for both of them—they’ve been together ever since.


Give us the proposal details! When? Where? How?

It was so great. That guy deserves a gold star for romance. We went out to dinner to celebrate the beginning of my second year of grad school, and also just to do something fancy. We both work a lot, so there isn’t always time or energy for special dates. He found a really charming place in downtown Seattle called The Pink Door that collaborated with him for the proposal, and also hired a friend who is a professional photographer to take sneak shots of the whole thing. He did all of this without me suspecting a thing—a serious feat because I am pretty nosy!

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Alexa Rae Photography


We arrived at the restaurant, and it was gorgeous. The place is very trendy. To get to it, you go down an alleyway and open a large, heavy pink wooden door. They’re so cool, they don’t even have a sign! Just an actual pink door! I was totally amused. We descended down a tall set of stairs into the dining room, which was cozy and friendly. There were large crunchy leaves all over the floor for fall, which a) I had never seen in a restaurant before, and now felt quite glamorous and b) I very much enjoyed stepping on.

We ordered, chatted, drank wine and our food arrived. I was totally pleased. Nate had done such a great job on planning this date! However, he seemed a little on edge and I wasn’t sure why. He kept nervously looking at his phone, and I was hoping everything was okay. Because this is the future, I can tell you: he was texting the photographer who was seated with a friend (also eating dinner) about four tables away. Again, I had no idea. It would seem I am not as observant as I thought.

At the end of dinner, Nate stood up sort of suddenly. With a look that mixed elements of, “I just realized I’m not wearing pants in a crowded room*” with “I am so deeply in love with you,” he turned and looked at me. “I need to ask you a question!” he said, loudly. He was so nervous he didn’t even get down on one knee at first. “Claire, will you please give me the privilege of being my wife?” he asked, finally kneeling at the expert whispered recommendation of a kindly fellow diner.

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Alexa Rae Photography


I was totally shocked—and said yes! Nate put the ring on my finger, the dining room exploded in applause, someone bought us champagne and desserts, and without my noticing our sneaky photographer captured the whole thing. It was a really fantastic night.

*For clarity’s sake: he was definitely wearing pants throughout this saga.

What has been your favorite experience planning the wedding?

My favorite part of wedding planning has been sharing the experience with others. I really love being able to connect with family and friends, and to hear how happy they are for us. It is very nice to feel so supported – especially because I’m in the middle of wedding planning and finishing grad school. I can use all the support I can get!


After Midnight Photography


How do you stay sane under the pressures of wedding planning?

This is a great question, and I’m not sure I know the answer. Just kidding. (Kind of.) I find that it works well to stop working on “wedding things” for a few days when I am feeling really stressed about it. We’re still a little under six months out, so I find it helpful to remember that there are very few issues which are actually that urgent. No need to stay up all night researching the cost of bulk geodes!

What is your favorite part of using Joy for your wedding?

I like how customizable it is, and how easy it was to use a custom URL. That was very important to me, and Joy made it easy!


At Joy we believe that even though a wedding lasts a day, joy lasts forever. What does that mean to you?

I hope that my wedding will be a day I remember fondly for many years, which means not stressing about the small stuff! I want to remember the day where I got to marry the best, funniest, most handsome, kind, and charming guy around. I’ve got the guy part figured out, so I think everything will work out.


After Midnight Photography


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