Engagement Party Etiquette - Following the Right Protocol
Wish to learn about engagement party etiquette?
Now that you're engaged, you want the world to know it. And one of the first things that you might decide to do is to throw yourself an engagement party.
Although an engagement party is not mandatory, many couples like to have them so that they can share their excitement with their friends and family members. So what is proper engagement party etiquette and protocol?
To begin with, it is not uncommon to have more than one engagement party. This is particularly true if the bride's family and friends live in one town or state and the groom's live in another.
Although the parents of the bride, or groom, traditionally host the engagement party, this doesn't have to always be the case. It is not expected that the maid of honor or best man host the party, however, since they will be hosting other parties later on for the couple.
As part of engagement party etiquette, keep in mind that you should not invite anyone that won't be invited to the actual wedding. Some couples prefer to have small wedding ceremonies that only include very close family and friends. If you choose to do this, then it is not good manners to have an engagement party, or even a wedding shower, and invite those people that you are not intending to invite to the ceremony itself.
On the other hand, it is perfectly acceptable to invite people to the engagement party that are unsure as to whether or not they will be able to make the ceremony. Once you have sent out the invitations, the power is in their hands, and there is little that you can do in terms of ensuring that they will come.
As part of engagement party etiquette, guests do not have to bring gifts to the engagement party. In order to ease any awkwardness from those that did not bring gifts, you might want to consider opening the gifts in private with the person that brought them, or open them alone after the party has ended.
When it comes to toasting at the engagement party, it is expected that the father of the bride will make the first toast. The couple does not drink at this time, however. Once the guests have toasted the couple, it is then expected that the groom will toast his new bride and her family. It is at this time that the couple drinks. If the father of the bride is not at the party, then, as part of engagement party etiquette, the groom's best friend can offer the toast.
Typically, engagement parties are held about 6 months before the actual date of the wedding. Remember that it is not a wedding shower or a bridal shower, and therefore you shouldn't register for gifts at this point. When you register, people will feel obligated to purchase something for you, and that is not required.
Even though you have had an engagement party and announced the news, you might want to consider sending out formal announcements about your engagement just the same. Not everyone will be able to attend your party, and it's nice to be able to include everyone in your news in a manner that is not simply limited to an invitation.
Learn more about engagement party etiquette and protocol in the other related articles and pages on this website.
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