What is an Engagement Party?
An engagement party is a celebration of the couple’s intention to marry. Unlike a bridal shower or bachelor party, which celebrates only one person in the couple, an engagement party is for both the bride- and groom-to-be. An engagement party is not necessary, and many couples forgo the event because of scheduling constraints or travel limitations for distant friends and relatives.
An engagement is a time of romance and celebration, and many couples enjoy engagement celebrations to kick off the wedding planning period. Engagement parties are naturally more laid-back than bridal showers or other wedding-oriented events, and they should focus on both individuals rather than just the bride- or groom-to-be. There are no set activities for parties, nor should gifts be expected. The main point to remember is the heart of the event: the couple’s intention to join their lives together with love and commitment. That intention is truly worth celebrating.
When do you have an Engagement Party?
Ideally, an engagement celebration is held soon after the official engagement announcement, often within a month. Couples who choose to host their own party may use the event to announce their intentions, even surprising their guests with the happy news. If the engagement party is going to be an elaborate affair, it may be several weeks or months after the couple becomes engaged. An engagement party should never be held longer than three months after the proposal, however, or it will seem too pretentious or presumptuous.
Who Hosts an Engagement Party?
Usually, the couple’s parents or friends host the party, unless the couple is using it as a platform to announce their engagement. It does not matter which set of parents arranges the event, and there may even be two engagement festivities if the families live in different cities. It is extremely poor taste for a couple to suggest an engagement celebration. Parents, particularly if they will be helping with wedding expenses, may be unwilling or unable to support the additional cost of a party, and it may be an unfamiliar custom to many families. If no offers are forthcoming but the couple still wants to celebrate with a specialized party, they should consider hosting the event themselves as an informal celebration.
Who Should We Notify About Our Engagement First?
Your parents-and any children you may have from a previous union-should hear the news about your engagement first. Then comes other relatives and close friends. Whether you do it in person or over the phone, do it yourself. Those closest to you will no doubt be hurt to hear the news second hand. Never announce an engagement until a former union has been dissolved, whether by divorce or annulment.
What Do We Do If Our Parents Don’t Already Know Each Other Before Our Engagement?
Your engagement should not come as a shock to your parents. Obviously, it's a good idea to get acquainted while you're dating. Your engagement certainly signifies a change in the relationship with your fiancé's/fiancée's parents. Now's the time to lay the foundation for a positive bond with your future in-laws. This is also when the parents of the bride meet-or at least make contact with-the parents of the groom. Traditionally, the groom's parents call the bride's parents to introduce themselves and extend an invitation to meet. However, the bride’s parents can also make that first contact.
Choosing an Engagement Ring
Not clarity cut or color. We're talking about consideration, communication and compromise. How you handle your wedding plans can foretell how you will handle the other major decision of your life together. Along with the stress that will accompany the big decisions and little details should be a sense of adventure and fun. You are celebrating one of the most joyous milestones in your lives. Do so with a focus on consideration, communication and compromise and the process is sure to be smoother.