Congratulations – you’re engaged!
Incoming: endless questions. When is the wedding? Am I invited? How did you propose? How big is the ring?
The most confusing one might be – 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.
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 or 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.
Games: If you and your fiance are the playful type, 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 grey, tan, 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 plan your engagement party. Congratulations and have a blast.