Man Makes “Stardew Valley”-Inspired Pop-Up Book To Propose, Charms Internet

Romantic gestures are always a hit on social media, whether it’s a “magical” library proposal or a hilarious surprise in the woods. The latest addition to this pantheon making the rounds of Reddit saw a user based in Colorado asking his girlfriend to marry him with a DIY pop-up book inspired by the video game Stardew Valley.

Shared by Garrett Frickey (the_goop2526), the Reddit post has received over 40,000 upvotes (and counting) in the r/StardewValley subreddit.

“I proposed to my girlfriend on our 5 year anniversary with a Stardew Valley themed pop-up book I made. (she said yes!),” the post read.

The user attached eight images of the book in question as well as a photo of the newly engaged couple posing with their dog. Each page of the book was customized by the user to reflect on their relationship with a ton of puns and references to the farmlife-based RPG.

“It’s such a nice way to spend time together, especially when we’re playing games where we get to play on the same team,” Garrett told Newsweek.

For the unfamiliar, Stardew Valley is a simulation role-playing video game that sees players look after a farm in the country. First released in 2016, the retro-looking game also has a co-op mode allowing users to team with up to three other people at the same time.

In the thread, the user further explained what prompted him to propose in such a unique way: “We both love this game and have spent hundreds of hours playing the co-op mode. She’s my best friend in the whole world and I’m over the moon excited to spend my life with her.”

Since the post was shared, it received an overwhelming amount of positive responses from other users, with many congratulating and praising the OP (Original Poster) for coming up with such a creative idea to propose to his girlfriend.

“I am crying, truly the sweetest thing I’ve ever seen in this sub!,” one user wrote.

Even those who never played Stardew Valley and didn’t get most of the references were still impressed by the effort: “I don’t play this game at all but saw this pop up on [r/All]. Just wanted to say this is an amazing idea and so happy for you guys! Congrats indeed!”

The cover of the pop-up book depicts the launch menu of the game, though the user swapped the title with the names of the happy couple, stating “Garrett + Ariel.” Other pages included a heartfelt letter, in which Garrett congratulated Ariel on their 5-year anniversary.

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But the most impressive part of the book was the pop-up figures that followed in later pages, which Garrett appeared to have made from scratch. Some of them included a house and street signs, but the best was certainly saved for last. Garrett enclosed his proposal in the last pages, in which he cited the process of proposing to someone in Stardew Valley that includes gifting a “Mermaid’s Pendant.” The page also included a folding card that contained the big question. Garrett went as far as crafting the said “Mermaid’s Pendant” himself.

In the months coming up to Garrett’s and Ariel’s 5-year anniversary, Garrett considered many proposal ideas before settling on making a Stardew Valley-inspired pop-up book. “It took about a week-and-a-half of mental planning, scribbling sketches in my notebook, and watching tons of pop-up book videos on YouTube,” he told Newsweek. The actual process of making the book took Garrett nearly a whole weekend: “I did a full-on 23-hour sprint to finish it.”

Garrett said he wanted the proposal to feel personal, so he printed out as many photos as he could find of him and Ariel together over the last five years and pinned them up on the walls of the couple’s dining room. “I’d made us dinner and afterwards we gave each other our anniversary gifts,” he shared. And just as Ariel opened the last page of the book, Garrett popped the big question.

“There were a lot of happy tears, and she said ‘yes’ right away.”

Stardew Valley gameplay
An image showing a Stardew Valley gameplay. A Reddit user has recently shared his marriage proposal, which included a Stardew-Valley-inspired pop-up book.
Concerned Ape Eric Barone


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