Your Engagement Party

Engagement Party Invitation


While I re-adjust to real life following the holiday break, enjoy this re-posting of a blog I wrote last January. 

If you got engaged over the holidays, CONGRATULATIONS! What a special and happy time this is for you both. At this early stage you have little to do but bask in the glow of the loving well wishes from family and friends.

Once you’ve shared your happy news your first order of official business is to attend your engagement party. Some couples use this opportunity to announce their engagement, but most likely the engagement party is simply an opportunity for your families and close friends to join together in celebration of your happy news.

Traditionally hosted by the bride’s parents, these days the hosts could be other close relatives, a special friend or the groom’s family.  Common sense and the travel considerations of the guests will dictate the location. The party could be hosted in a public park, a private home or a restaurant, and can be as formal or casual as you like. Back in 1945 etiquette doyenne Emily Post wrote “…there is not a rule in the world to hamper the complete freedom of your own imagination. You can literally give any variety of party you choose, invite whom you choose, and serve whatever you choose.” I would update Emily’s advice with this caveat: try to only invite guests who will also be invited to the wedding. (Engagement parties are more intimate than a wedding so not everyone who will be invited to your wedding needs to be invited to the engagement party.)

During the party it’s customary for the bride’s father (or the host if not the bride’s parents) to congratulate the couple and offer a toast to their happiness. The bride and groom-to-be will want to take the opportunity to express their joy of their coming wedding, to thank their parents for their love and support, and to thank all the guests for coming out to share in their happiness.

(Remember:  one should never drink when being toasted! It’s the equivalent of toasting oneself.)

Officially guests are not expected to take gifts to the engagement party (other than a thoughtful hostess gift), nor should the newly engaged couple expect gifts. Discreetly tuck away any gifts you do receive and open them at a later date. A week or two after the party is the time to send thank you notes, both to your hosts and to any guests that brought gifts. The notes should be handwritten and signed by both the bride and the groom-to-be.

These early days of your engagement are a relaxed and happy time. Enjoy this calm; you’ll be in the storm of heavy duty wedding planning before you know it. Cheers!

Champagne Toast |Engagement Party Toast




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