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Guide To Planning An Engagement Party

Con­grat­u­la­tions – you’re engaged! This is such an excit­ing time in your lives.

But this also means and incom­ing of end­less ques­tions: When is the wed­ding? Am I invit­ed? How did you pro­pose? How big is the ring? Are you hav­ing an engage­ment par­ty? You just got engaged, who said any­thing about plan­ning a par­ty?

Engage­ment par­ties can be a blast, and we’re here to break down the basics if you sud­den­ly need to plan one and don’t know where to start. And by the way–they’re total­ly option­al. You don’t need to have an engage­ment par­ty, but they can be a fun way to cel­e­brate with your friends and fam­i­ly before the crazi­ness of plan­ning sets in.

bride and groom


Who hosts: Engage­ment par­ties can be host­ed by the cou­ple them­selves, their par­ents or friends. No strict eti­quette rules apply here. If some­one offers to host an engage­ment par­ty for you, that’s great!

What to do: Engage­ment par­ties can be every­thing from a for­mal din­ner par­ty to a casu­al pic­nic at the park to an open house. The idea is to have fun cel­e­brat­ing with those clos­est to you and plan­ning an event that will be fun and relaxed for all involved. You can even go out of the box and attend a sport­ing event or go on a brew­ery tour. An engage­ment par­ty is a good time to plan some­thing that may dif­fer from your wed­ding day fes­tiv­i­ties. Time to get cre­ative.

Who to invite: Do not invite any­one who will not be invit­ed to the wed­ding. Just don’t. It’s rude. Every­one at the engage­ment par­ty should be includ­ed on the wed­ding guest list. If you aren’t sure if some­one will make the list just yet, bet­ter to keep the engage­ment par­ty inti­mate than hurt feel­ings down the road when they don’t get an invi­ta­tion to the main event. You can also keep it fam­i­ly-only or friends-only depend­ing on the host and venue.

How to plan: If you don’t know where to start, enlist the help of an orga­nized or expe­ri­enced friend. They can help make sure you’ve cov­ered every­thing you need to for a suc­cess­ful event. Or, sim­ply reserve a room at your favorite restau­rant or bar and choose your favorite food and drinks to serve. You can’t go wrong with that.

bride and groom in blue tuxedo

Games: If you and your fiancé are the play­ful types, it might be fun to incor­po­rate some games into the engage­ment par­ty like your own take on the New­ly­wed Game. Just make sure that the games are appro­pri­ate for every­one in atten­dance and won’t make any­one feel uncom­fort­able or left out.

Hash­tag: Now would be a good time to start think­ing up your wed­ding hash­tag. You can start using it as ear­ly as the engage­ment par­ty to track your friends’ social posts dur­ing all of the spe­cial events lead­ing up to the wed­ding. Before you choose your hash­tag, how­ev­er, make sure it hasn’t been used on Insta­gram and Face­book by oth­er couples—you want it to be easy for your guests to find your pho­tos only.

Attire: If you’re host­ing a din­ner or cock­tail par­ty, a greytan, or navy suit is a great choice. As the groom, it’s nice to be slight­ly more dressed up than the rest of your guests. For­go the tie for the per­fect laid back look.

Alright, you’re ready to get start­ed with the plan­ning of your engage­ment par­ty. Con­grat­u­la­tions and have a blast.

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