Pattie's Sage Advice: 6 Tips To Have a Fun Engagement Party!
1. Who’s hosting?
Often it’s the parents of the engaged couple who throw the party, but sometimes the party is thrown by friends, or by the couple themselves.
2. Who to invite? When to have it?
An engagement party usually takes place within a month or two of announcing it to the world. It is essentially a small, getting-to-know-you party. Invite people you definitely want to be a part of your wedding day, taking into account any travel plans that may need to be made for out of towners.
Etiquette Note: Office and “pay back” friends are not invited to this event, maybe a shower later on...
Etiquette Note (2): Gifts are not expected at an engagement party. Please make sure the invitation is clear that “Your being at our engagement party is the only present we need.” If someone does bring a gift, thank them and set it aside, do not open it in front of the other guests...awkward!
3. Where to have it? What to eat and drink?
At your home, in a private room at a restaurant or rentable venue, remember, you want to keep the party small and private so that you can get to know your fiancé’s family and friends.
A bubbly beverage at guests’ arrival sets a fun tone. Champagne or Gingerale just make sure the flute is festively decorated with a berry! Have drinks you enjoy – after all this party is all about YOU!
Menu-wise? Can be as varied as flipping burgers on the grill or an upscale tasting party in a penthouse. The only “wrong” menu is one where the tastes of the engaged couple are not taken into account. If you have a specific diet, please make sure the host knows so there is plenty of delicious foods for you to enjoy.
4. What to do?
Having a couple of ice breaker activities that don’t involve embarrassing anyone (that’s for the rehearsal dinner) is a very good idea. Google “party ice breakers” and you’ll find tons of fun “wedding-centric” ideas.
Remember, this party is only 2-3 hours long, so make it chock-a-block about YOU, the engaged couple!
Express warm, heart-felt thanks to your party host, parents, guests, and especially, to each other.
5. Why have an engagement party?
Discovery. Now is the time to meet each other’s family and very close friends, and actually have real conversations with them. You’re about to embark on a lifelong relationship with them, too, start it off right!
6. Thank everyone – profusely.
Wedding engagement is a time for excitement. It’s also a time to become profoundly grateful, after all you’re going to be married to the love of your life!