Before the wedding, the bride and groom’s families might meet at an engagement party. This is an excellent chance for everyone to get together and discuss your wedding. You can see the interactions of your extended family in a less pressured atmosphere than at the wedding itself.
But before any of that can happen, you’ll need an engagement party checklist to ensure everything goes smoothly. Viva Wedding Photography put together this guide to planning the perfect engagement party. It will help you and your fiancee have a great first party as a married couple. Just think of it as a dress rehearsal for your wedding!
2 To 3 Months Before The Party
Pick A Host
It’s traditional for the bride’s parents to plan the engagement party. However, you can plan and pay for it yourself if you want to. If your parents live in different cities, you might decide to have two separate parties so they can each celebrate with their family and friends. If you are not hosting the party, communicate your desired level of participation to the host.
Choose A Date
About 9-11 months before the wedding is an excellent choice. This will allow guests enough time to make travel arrangements. Because you told them ahead of time, they can put your event at the top of their calendars. Make sure your parents, family members, and friends can all come on your chosen date.
When deciding on a date in the engagement party checklist, keep in mind to avoid the following:
- main sporting events
- religiously significant dates for many cultures’ superstitions
- Constraints imposed by your elite circle (due to pregnancy dates, weddings, etc.)
- holiday seasons & extended weekends
>>> Recommend reading: Best age to get married – Guide for choosing the perfect time
Make A Guest List
Having a firm headcount before settling on a location is crucial. Do you plan on inviting everyone in the family? Are you only inviting very close friends and family?
Remember that you don’t have to invite the same people to your wedding as you did to your engagement party. Maybe in the past, but nowadays, newlyweds are getting creative with their weddings.
It doesn’t matter if you desire a small engagement celebration followed by a huge wedding. As long as you’re surrounded by the people you love, it doesn’t matter what you do to celebrate.
Select A Suitable Venue
With the guest list in hand, picking a location is the next part of the engagement party checklist. Your preferred eating or drinking establishment could be mentioned. This could be a public space like a park, beach, backyard, or a relative’s backyard.
If you need a bigger space, you might want to find out if any nearby places rent out event rooms. The level of formality or informality of your engagement is entirely up to you. Keep the mood joyful and carefree as the party honors you. Don’t let anything steal the spotlight from your engagement preparations!
Prepare A Gift List
Setting up a virtual wish list for the upcoming engagement bash is the next item on your agenda. Even though it’s not required, you must let your guests know if you’d rather not receive engagement gifts for couples during your party. The registry makes it easy for guests to buy small to medium-sized gifts you can open after the big party.
brides.com website says that the register shouldn’t be mentioned on the invitation. But it should be easy for guests to find if they want to. Wedding guests can show their support by making a registry without bringing a gift. Don’t forget to write down who gave you anything so you may adequately acknowledge them.
>>> Recommend reading: Engagement party etiquette – 11 tips for a joyful celebration
Engagement Party Checklist Before 1 Month
Send Out Invitations
Sending out printed invitations can help set the tone for a classy event, especially if guests will be eating or drinking. But if you want a less formal engagement party, you can send electronic invitations. Also, you don’t have to match the design of these invitations to the rest of your wedding invitations. Instead, choose a fun design that you and your fiance like that fit your engagement party’s mood.
But you shouldn’t just send a group text or email with a lot of text because that doesn’t show how important the event is. Your loved ones would appreciate it if you told them everything they needed to know in advance, like the time, place, what to wear, etc.
Choose The Theme
Choosing a theme is one of the essential parts of the engagement party checklist that reflects your personality as a couple. There’s nothing like a brunch buffet to bring two people together. If you’re an art enthusiast, maybe you should check out what the nearest museum offers.
Your mood and tone can affect everything—from what people should wear and eat to how they should decorate to where they should go. Even if it’s just an excuse to have a less traditional and formal theme, many engaged couples like to have a very different party from the wedding itself.
Plan The Food And Drink
What the food and drink spread looks like during an engagement party depends on the event’s theme. Choose the drinks served at the party (wine, beer, cocktails, juice, etc.), and make sure they go well with the food you’ll bring. When planning, you should consider guests who have food allergies or eat in special ways (vegan, vegetarian, pescatarian, etc.).
Get together with friends and family in the backyard. Then set out cheese, charcuterie, and everyone’s favorite picnic or barbecue foods. Instead of a formal multi-course dinner, try serving everyone a family-style meal.
Pick A Beautiful Outfit
The exciting part of the engagement party checklist is finally here! To celebrate your engagement, you don’t need to go out and buy a new dress or outfit. It’s not a serious activity, but it is enjoyable.
Choosing a formal and stylish outfit is a great way to start your life as a married couple. Not wearing white to your wedding is not something you must worry about matching. This will be more relaxed; save the white for the wedding!
Find A Photographer
Not only is it fun, but it’s also important to remember your engagement party for many years to come. When organizing your engagement party, consider how to keep things from going to waste.
Most people will go into a photo booth if it means they can have fun and make memories simultaneously. They may be set up anywhere and provide an enjoyable, laid-back memory-making experience.
Think about getting a professional photographer if you need more solemn portraits. If you like a photographer and are considering hiring them for your wedding, this could be a great chance to see how they work.
You might get some great photos of the two of you that you can use for wedding invitations or thank-you cards.
Create A Favorite Playlist
Music isn’t required when hosting a party at your house but it is something to consider. Compiling a list of your favorite songs is a fantastic way to celebrate your special day. Before choosing a playlist, ensure you have the right speakers and electrical outlets for the space.
Plan Some Activities For The Party
Icebreaker games aren’t necessary, but they can be fun if the goal is to “get to know you.” This is especially true if the party is small and people from both sides of the family can be put on different teams.
>>> Recommend reading: 21 Best Engagement Party Games To Make Your Guests Laugh
Up To 3 Weeks Before The Event
Prepare A Short Toast Or A Brief Statement
The bride, groom or both often give speeches at engagement parties. Please express your gratitude to the hosts for organizing the party and to all the guests for attending. It’s an integral part of the engagement party list. There is no need to go all out on formal attire or give a lengthy toast, as this is a small gathering. Your message might be brief and informal.
Do Some Shopping
Food, drinks, decorations, and engagement party favors should all be bought ahead of time, whether the party is at your house or somewhere else. There must be sufficient seating and eating utensils for everyone attending.
After The Party
Do Not Lose Track Of Presents
Make a tally of who attended and what they contributed in a guest list spreadsheet. This will allow you to promptly send out your appreciation notes (and keep sending them out as more gifts arrive). Don’t forget to thank the party’s host with a card and gift if it wasn’t you.
>>> Further reading:
- 40 Engagement party cake ideas that leave your guests in awe
- 8 Engagement party ideas on a budget to impress your guests
Viva Wedding Photography hopes these guides for the engagement party checklist help well-prepared you for the big day. Don’t forget that it’s your party, so do whatever you make happy. Also, check out some of our other articles if you’re still curious about weddings. We’re confident they’ll be more beneficial to you on this momentous occasion.