2020 brings a new leap year where women can take the reins by doing the asking.
Make like Zsa Zsa Gabor who proposed to all of her nine husbands, or Elizabeth Taylor who proposed to her second husband, Michael Wilding. Diane Von Furstenberg proposed to her husband as a birthday gift to him. Queen Victoria had to ask Albert as her superior status meant it was necessary protocol.
One of the upsides of proposing is getting to choose your own ring, and the additional opportunity to select a special present like some great cufflinks for your fiancé. For same sex couples, leap years are totally irrelevant and it’s always been a fabulous opportunity for double the gorgeous gemstones.
So who do women owe for the leap year custom? Irish folklore makes it St. Brigid of Kildare, who complained to St. Patrick that women had to wait too long for men to propose. St. Patrick decreed that women could propose on the extra day in February each leap year. Further details included women having to wear a red skirt. If the man refused, he had to give her a kiss, leather gloves, a rose and a coin. The gloves were to disguise her ring-less hand.
Other cultures have been less shy of making women the askers or levelling the playing field. On the Orango Island, West Africa, women are seen as the initiators of love. It must begin in their hearts, and they must propose. In Scandinavia, both partners wear an engagement ring.
Whether this year you do the asking, or the proposal takes a more traditional turn, there’s a fabulous design by Annoushka to give you the ring—and the spouse—of your dreams.