Hi! It's March. Did you know that? I could have sworn it was January. I woke up and realized we are officially one month out from the wedding (insert moment of panic/excitement here). Despite all the crazy last minute planning, I couldn't help reminisce about how fun this past year has been...and how it all started with our engagement party! Call me biased, but I think our engagement party was perfect. Not too big, not too small. So beautiful. And so. much. fun. I've compiled a list below of engagement party essentials to help you plan your special day and maximize the fun!!
1. Guest List. The most important element of any party is the guests. Try and pick a date as far in advance as possible so that all your closest friends/family can be there! We limited our engagement party to family and our closest friends. Having too big of a party makes it difficult to mingle and you won't be able to celebrate with everyone as much as you'd like. Plus, the longer the guest list the harder it will be to plan for venue, food, drinks, etc.
2. Don't stress about the food. Your best bet is to order appetizers from a local restaurant and maybe have a few family members/friends bring a few things. Finger foods that are easy to eat while holding a drink/talking is the best way to go. Anything requiring sitting down with a knife and a fork may actually prevent your guests from eating; they won't want to interrupt their conversations to go sit and eat. Any leftovers will make great snacks for the next few days and your guests can even take some on their way out as well.
3. Have a designated area for gifts/cards. As your guests arrive and you are busy mingling, it's easy to misplace a card or set a gift down and forget who gave it to you. Having a designated area for all of that will make it easier to account for everything at the end of the night. This will come in very handy when you're sending out your thank you cards.
4. Send out thank you cards!!! It is so important to thank your guests for celebrating with you (and of course for any gifts they may bring). Weddings can get to be very expensive as a guest and it all starts with the engagement. It is incredibly important to show your appreciation and remind your guests how much their presence meant to you. Ideally, you should send your thank you cards out within a week of the event.
5. PICTURES. If there is one thing you're going to invest in for your engagement party, have somebody there taking pictures!! You'll want to remember that day and everyone who was there. But you also won't be running around, iphone in hand, taking pictures with everyone as they come in. Trust me. This unfortunately, was the one thing we overlooked at our engagement party. Luckily we had a photo booth, so although we don't have pictures with all our guests...we have the most incredible (and hilarious) album of all our guests in the photo booth to look back on. Another alternative could be to have a few cameras being passed around and allow the guests to take pictures themselves. This would be much cheaper than hiring someone and it'll be a fun way to remember your event through the eyes of your guests.
Here's a few of my favorites from our engagement party.