Whether you’ve just got engaged or you’re helping your besties to plan their party, we’ve got engagement ideas, hints and tips to help you out.
When you’ve just got engaged, of course the first thing you want to do is celebrate, and planning an engagement party is a great way to get all your closest friends and family together to do just that.
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Before you get going there are a few things to consider to make sure your engagement party ideas come together easily and simply, without causing you unnecessary stress (or costing too much money!).
Just like with a wedding, engagement party decorations are completely personal. You might want a classic black tie affair, or a relaxed barbecue round your back.
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Whatever you decide, here’s a quick round up of our favourite advice when it comes to planning the party, and we’ve even thrown in our top pick of themes and some easy engagement party decorations.
If you’ve been dreaming of your partner popping the question for a while now, you might already have your engagement party ideas nailed, but if it was a complete surprise you might be coming at this with fresh eyes. Either way, we think these are the things to consider:
When Should I Organise My Engagement Party?
With everyone having such busy lives now - we’re talking work, family, exercise, hobbies, and that’s before we even get into Netflix - it can be tricky to find the time to put on a party. Our advice, though, would be not to delay for too long.
An engagement party is typically put on around a month after the proposal, which should give people enough notice to keep the day free while still maintaining everyone’s excitement.
The danger with leaving it too long after you’ve said the big ‘YES!’ is a combo of time and money. Once you start saving and organising the wedding other things can get easily put on hold in order to prioritise the main event.
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An engagement party is such a fun celebration that it would be a shame to miss it. Keeping it as close as possible to the big proposal, while allowing enough time for people to put aside the evening in their calendars is perfect. This also means that all the excitement will be fresh, not many people will have seen the ring, you’ll still be on cloud nine and everything will have a bit of a buzz to it.
Who Should I Invite to My Engagement Party?
Who to invite can be a little political, but with a few boundaries put in place early on there’s no need for anyone to feel they’ve been dealt a short straw.
The most important thing to remember is that this is about you and your partner, and who you want to celebrate with.
It’s all well and good your mum wanting to invite your great aunt Anne twice removed, but have you ever met her? Inviting a huge amount of people can feel stressful when you’re trying to get round and speak to everyone.
Keeping the invite list a bit smaller means you’ll feel relaxed and have the time to enjoy chatting to your favourite friends.
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We know it sounds obvious, but it’s always best to only invite people to your engagement party who you’ll have at your wedding.
Drawing up a guest list for your wedding before you’ve even sorted your engagement party ideas out might seem a little premature, but it will help organise things in your head and make sure you don’t end up inviting long lost primary school pals and then realising later on there’s no space for them at the nuptials.
As a rule we’d say people will assume they’re invited to your wedding if they’re invited to the engagement celebrations, so just bear that in mind when you’re planning.
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That all said, if you’re a really sociable couple who think the bigger the better when it comes to celebrations then invite anyone you please!
This is your party, and you’ll invite who you want to. Plus, if you’re planning on having a small intimate family wedding, or perhaps have a limited guest list because of a venue or destination then you could make it clear to the majority of people that you’re keen to have them at the engagement party as the wedding will be a much smaller affair.
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Engagement Party Do's and Dont's
It’s easy to give a great list of do’s and don’ts, but it’s best to take the below with a little pinch of salt.
All engagement parties are unique to the couple, which means you should only pick and choose what resonates with you from the below list, and if none of it does, then skip on down to the next section (it’s the fun bit anyway, DECORATIONS).
As a guide we think these are the most commonly agreed do’s and don’ts when it comes to engagement party etiquette.
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Send out your engagement party invites as early as possible, to give people plenty of time to set aside the date
Make sure the date is okay with key people. There’s nothing worse than booking a venue to then find out your maid of honour is busy
Make a note of any engagement gifts you get as you open them, so you can remember who gave you what when you come to write thank you cards.
Think about the music. Whether it’s a band or a Spotify playlist, make sure the songs you pick are likely to keep the dance floor packed all night. We all know that’s the true sign of a good party
Feel like you have to put on food or drinks, from our experience people come expecting to pay for their own night
Forget to take plenty of snaps. Your engagement party is a really monumental occasion, so having those memories documented will be precious in years to come. If you’re likely to forget get one of your bridesmaids or friends to be in charge of snapping away all night
Expect to spend any time with your partner! The evening will go so quickly, and with so many people there it’ll be hard to catch a minute where it’s just the two of you. If possible try and sneak off, even if it’s only for ten minutes, for a quick moment of quiet
Themes and Engagement Party Decorations
When it comes to engagement party decorations, you don’t have to spend a fortune to get big impact.
With just a handful of things and a good idea of your theme you can throw together a night to remember in not much time at all.
Here are some of our favourite themes, and engagement party decorations for each:
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If there’s one word for your impeding marriage, it’s adventure - so why not go all out and theme your engagement party around that?
Get yourself some earthy toned balloons, bunting or tassel garlands to kick things off, scatter tables with map confetti hearts and top your cake wtih a ‘let the adventure begin’ sign. Job done!
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United Kingdom Map Confetti Hearts - From £1.25
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Evergreen Tassle Garland - £11.31
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Hello, when else in your life do you get a pretty bit of bling given to you? Well, unless you’re really, really lucky… But anyway, whatever the frequency of diamond-based-gifts in your life, a diamond theme gives the perfect excuse for plenty of glitz and glam.
To go all out why not have everyone dress in a black tie theme, then treat yourself to a giant engagement ring photo frame, get some prosecco glitter to make your drinks extra fancy and pop gold diamond ring straws in the cocktails.
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Gold Diamond Straws - £8.08
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Prosecco Sparkle Drops - £3.99
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Love yourself some buds and blooms? Why not throw a floral themed soiree?
Having such a pretty idea to base your engagement party decorations around can only mean one thing: An Instagram-friendly bash.
Why not pick up some floral giant letters for yours and your fiance(e)’s initials, pick up a pack of pretty paper tiaras with flower decorations for you and your pals to wear, and hang up some pastel floral bunting for quick and easy wall decoration.
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Floral Tiaras - £3.85
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Floral and Rose Gold Bunting - £5.80
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For a subtle theme you could go for a colour, instead of basing it on one strict idea or another.
Our favourite broad colour range for an engagement party is pastels. These soft colours ensure everything looks really tasteful, while still adding a splash of colour.
We think personalised Love Hearts are great to get guests’ going on a bit of a sugar high (we’ve found it helps keep the dance floor full), then you could go all out on old fashioned pastel party hats for a bit of fun and flair.
Pastel Party Hats - £7
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Personalised Love Hearts - £2.13
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What’s a celebration without some bubbles? Champagne is a fun and easy way to set a theme without having to go too over the top on decorations.
Make sure to get plenty of fizz on ice first and foremost, then you can think about champagne cork name places a bubble machine if you’re feeling fancy and a good old fashioned game of prosecco pong for guests to play.
Prosecco Pong Game - £13.50
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100 Used Champagne Corks - £6.47
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Once your engagement party is out the way, make sure you read out complete guide to everything you need to do when you get engaged!