Engagement Party Ideas For 2023.
Congratulations! You’re engaged! Now comes the anxiety-inducing part, actually planning the wedding. Don’t get us wrong, being engaged can be an amazing time. However, there are some people who experience a significant amount of stress because of the lack of control they have over the situation. Honestly, it’s understandable. An engagement represents a new dynamic between you and your partner, and it can be daunting. But something that people suffering from this anxiety find makes them feel better is the process of actually planning an engagement party, if you’re having one.
This likely means that very soon you’ll be googling “how to plan an engagement party” and the “best engagement party ideas”. Well, let us put your search to rest. In this article we will discuss:
How to Plan an Engagement Party?
Remember- it’s all your choice when it comes engagement party ideas. This is your time! And if you’re dealing with the dreaded post-engagement anxiety, then chances are that you’re actually kind of needing this party so that you can feel in control of something. This will help you feel like you are easing into being engaged rather than cannonballing in. Planning an engagement party will also get people used to the idea of thinking of you and your partner both as a unit AND individual people, as the decision-making process will highlight your differences in your sense of style, and how you work together to overcome those differences.
Some people might not be on board with the decisions you make though, and feelings of guilt and frustration can be common around the planning of an engagement party.
Just remember, this is a celebration of the love you and your partner share. No one has any right to dictate to you what you should or shouldn’t do. They can make suggestions, for sure, but be sure to set the expectation with anyone helping with the planning that guilt trips and manipulation won’t be accepted or tolerated. In the end, all decisions come down to you and your betrothed.
Step 1: Decide Who’s Hosting
There is a tradition that the engagement party is hosted by the bride’s family. However, the bride’s family also traditionally pays for the entire wedding, so maybe this is a good chance to cut them some slack. With recent social paradigms regarding gender and sexuality undergoing upheaval (positive upheaval!), “traditional” weddings are becoming rarer.
However, we recognise and respect that there are people that gain a lot of comfort from tradition, and for some, it’s a way of connecting with ancestors and lands they never knew but have a bond with, or loved ones that have passed on.
Whatever the case, and wherever you fall on the traditional vs progressive debate, a decision needs to be made about how to plan an engagement party, let alone who’s hosting. Maybe no one hosts it, maybe your engagement party ideas takes place at a quiet little bar or a restaurant, or maybe it’s just a big picnic at your local park. Whatever makes you happiest!
Step 2: Save the Date! No, the Other One
“Save the Date” is typically saved for the date of the wedding, but in this instance, we’re applying it to the engagement party. Setting a date as early as possible is helpful, as it gives you a solid timeline to put all your planning into, making sure that you have a good idea of how long it will take to do certain things, as well as knowing what to tell venues, caterers, etc. Also the earlier you set a date, the easier it will be to change in case some favourite guests won’t be able to make a particular time.
When you plan to celebrate this time is up to you, however, 25% of couples choose to celebrate with friends and family straight away, while another 25% take a month or so just to let the dust settle a bit.
Step 3: Determining the Budget for the Best Party Engagement Ideas
The point of planning the engagement party is to give you a sense of control and blow off steam, as well as to celebrate this joyous occasion around you and your beloved. Making sure that you have a budget as your first step will be a good measure of making sure you’re getting exactly what you need, and then can prioritise extra cash for additional “fun” elements of the party. Remember, when budgeting it’s always best to be as conservative as possible when drawing up initial figures.
Step 4: Decide on your Formality
Some people like very traditional weddings and parties. Other people like looser, more chilled-out vibes. You might prefer a backyard party with a marquee, or a more lavish winery. Whatever your deal, it’s important to pick a venue that matches the level of opulence you’re expecting from your guests. After all, it wouldn’t be too good an idea to host a suit-and-tie event at Jump’n’Jiggle, would it?
Step 5: Who’s Coming?
This will largely depend on your budget. After all most venues cap admittance after a certain number, and many more charge a price-per-head if they offer catering. Make a list of the guests you most want at your party, and call them first. Find out who can/can’t make the date of the wedding, and prioritise inviting them to the engagement party over people who can make the wedding. This means that people who can attend the wedding get to see the wedding, and the engagement party allows you to celebrate with those who won’t! People who can attend both get a double celebration! Joy!
Step 6: Sending Invites
Again some people opt for the more traditional method of practical invitations for this, but these cost additional money and time, and even cheap weddings fetch around $20,000. This is the time for some modern innovation. Digital invites for engagement parties (and even weddings) are rising in popularity, not only because they’re efficient, but they’re also free and allow for easier chasing up of people slow to RSVP. This method helps you update all the invitees with relevant information about the party through social media. As wonderful as an engagement and wedding is, it is also very expensive. We’re sure no one would begrudge you saving some money on the engagement party.
Step 7: Decide on FOOD
This is honestly my personal favourite part of any party. If it wasn’t for food I’d probably never go to another party ever again, but if you tell me there are mini pizzas and a cheese platter I’ll be there faster than a bullet. Some people like set menus, some people like to get caterers, and some people like barbeques. Choose what is most efficient for you and yours when planning an engagement party, and what matches the atmosphere of your party. Above all, pick what MAKES YOU HAPPY!
Step 8: Set Up Decor
Depending on your venue choice you might not even need to consider this. If you’re having the party at a venue then it’s most likely decor will be taken care of anyway, or have a set of options available for you to choose from. If you’re going completely with your own deal, then you want to start by picking a colour palette, then looking at the space where you’re having the party and deciding what adornments would adequately suit it. And remember to match your event’s formality!
Step 9: Consider Your Gift Strategy
Gifts aren’t a necessity with engagement parties, but it’s not a bad idea to have a registry for people who want to get them for you. This is easy enough to make, there are numerous registry-making sites that are cloud-based so that gift givers can even collaborate to ensure no one is giving the same thing more than once…or twice…
Step 10: Understand Everyone’s Job When Planning an Engagement Party
Depending on how big your engagement party is, you might need to enlist the help of some friends and family to keep things organised. Some people hire photographers and event coordinators, but again it’s not necessary. However, it can help to have someone/some people designated with the task of making sure people are sitting where they need to be, running games, and taking photos. Whatever needs doing to ensure you’re party-ready!
Want to learn more about hosting and how to plan an engagement party? Want more guides on how to get the most out of your marquee experience? Whether it’s for planning a teen birthday party, New Year’s Eve party at home or a garden party, explore the Marquee Monkeys blog for engagement party ideas!