He popped the question and you said yes! Now it’s time to celebrate with your closest friends and family!
An Engagement Party will usually be hosted for the happy couple by the couple’s parents or close friends. If you’re wondering what else you should know about hosting an engagement party or what's expected of you as the guests of honor, we’ve narrowed down the top 5 tips you should know when it comes to celebrating an engagement.
ONE: Celebrate soon after to show off that ring!
An engagement party should be given within a few months of the engagement, when it’s still fresh and before the wedding planning begins. If you are the newly engaged couple, we would suggest gathering your parents together for dinner to make the announcement. This would be a fun and memorable way to let them know first! As a rule of thumb, it’s tradition to let the Parents of the Brides be the first to celebrate the announcement with family and friends. For the newly engaged, may choose to keep the engagement a secret from your guests so that you can reveal the news at the party or simply send out your invitations with the news. Once the core members of your family and friends know, there is no limit to how many engagement parties you may have as everyone will want to celebrate with the happy couple.
TWO: The Guest List
As times change, the traditional rule suggesting inviting only those who will also be asked to the wedding has been thrown out the window. Since many couples these days choose to have a very small and/or destination wedding, the engagement party is becoming an accepted way to include those who will not be able to attend the wedding. For the most part, both families should be invited, regardless if not all members will be able to attend the event. Then there will be the list of close friends of both your families as well as your own group of friends.
THREE: What type of party is most appropriate?
An engagement party is meant to be a casual celebration instead of a formal event, let's save this for the wedding day. When brainstorming locations for the party, think about the type of ambiance you are looking to create as well as the number of people you will be hosting. The event should be comfortable for the guests of honor to be able to mix and mingle with all in attendance and easy for the host to entertain the guests too. The Location can be anywhere from a private room at a restaurant to an intimate cocktail party hosted by the couple’s parents even a Sunday BBQ at the home of the couples close friends will do. There really is no right or wrong answer!
FOUR: It’s all about presence, not presents.
An engagement gift is not expected but some guests will still choose to bring something such as a bottle of wine or flowers for the happy couple. Make sure to let the hosts know that you request no gifts or your registry info for those who may want to give a little more. If you are the guests of honor, and have been lucky enough to be thrown such a wonderful celebration, it is a good idea to give a thank you gift to the host. From a pair of tickets to a show they’ve wanted to see or a nice dinner out, a gift that is meaningful to them and reflects your friendship and appreciation for their time and kindness is perfect.
FIVE: Mix, Mingle, Toasts!
At the party, be sure the Newly engaged couple has a space (sort of an informal receiving line) preferably near the entrance. As everyone enters the party, they will want to have a few minutes to offer their congratulations to the couple, so we don’t want to overwhelm the guests or the couple. Also, keep in mind that the engagement party will usually bring together the couples families for the first time. To make sure everyone is comfortable and having a great time, mingle around and introduce yourself and guests to one another at the party. Something like “Hi, I’m Katie, I’ve been friends with the bride since Kindergarten, how do you know the couple?” letting each person know how the other is affiliated with the bride or groom is a great icebreaker. Lastly, don’t forget to raise a glass and toast to the couple. If following proper etiquette, the order of toasts should begin with the, the father of the bride, next the future groom and lastly other guests who would like to toast the couple and the host.
If you are in need of some creative juices for an Engagement Party you are hosting, we have it covered with some our Engagement party wording examples. From traditional and simple to unique and festive, check out our Engagement Party sample wording for to use for your engagement party invitations. Let the planning begin!