Baby Showers

s/o engagement party

I find the concept of an engagement party to be ridiculous.  I have been to a handful, and they've fallen into two categories: 1) the bride or the groom's family has a ton of money and they move in circles where this is expected, or 2) the bride is the last among her friends to get engaged and the friends are so relieved/excited that they feel a party is in order.

However, I fully acknowledge that my own experiences with these may have turned me off to them. 

Is there any practical reason to have one of these other than calling attention to oneself? 

Secondary English teacher and mom of 2 kids:

DD, born 9/06/00 -- 9th grade
DS, born 8/25/04 -- 4th grade

Re: s/o engagement party

  • Haha, I know what you mean.  We didn't have an engagement party, but we also got married 4.5 months after getting engaged.  I feel like maybe it's for very young people who plan to have a long engagement?  But that, plus a shower, bachelorette, and wedding seems like overkill.  You're not the queen of France, chill with the parties for every single life event, you know?
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  • We hosted a housewarming/engagement party at our new condo. Looking back that may have been a faux pas since hosted it ourselves. Although I think I sent the Evite with my parents as hosts! Maybe an etiquette fail? Who knows! But I was shocked when people brough us nice gifts (lots of wine, booze, serving dishes, etc.) as I didn't think of it as a gift giving event!
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  • The only one I've ever been to was for my aunt who was marrying someone who lived hours away and most of the family (all live very close) hadn't met him yet. It was strictly family, basically a big cookout, no gifts. When it's a big fancy thing with everyone you've ever met I just don't get it.
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  • I've actually never been to one.  They just don't happen in my area/ my group of friends. 

    At some point there needs to be a limit to how many parties are in ONE couples honor!

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  • We throw/attend them for friends who are either having a destination wedding that we won't be attending. OR if the engagement will be longer than a year. MH and I didn't have one, but we got married 7 months after he popped the question. 

  • Engagement parties were actually quite common and only recently began to lose appeal. They were meant to announce the pair as a couple to the world in times when quite often the parents of one or both engaged people arranged the marriage.

    These days they are usually reserved for
    1. Wealthy families
    2. Extended engagements of over a year
    3. People with a majority of OOT family

    It is not considered tacky in most instances to host your own because it is NOT a gift giving event. Although many people will bring a bottle of wine or something similar.

    ::From my wedding planner sister::

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  • I had a huge engagement party, as did all of my friends. It was at my parents' country club for cocktails/dinner. I was married at 22, so I suppose I fall into category 1.
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  • My patents hosted an engagement party for us in my hometown.
    It was partly because they wanted to do something and partly because a lot of people in my hometown wouldn't be able to travel for the wedding.
    It had nothing to do with wanting more attention and everything to do with my parents wanting to celebrate with their friends and family.

    I don't know that they are the norm as I have only ever attended two others.

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  • I had a small engagement party... I had a small wedding, 25 guests, all family. I didn't have a bridal shower or bachelorette party. So my brother hosted a casual engagement party BBQ for a dozen or so friends, just to drink some beer and play games and such. It wasn't a gift giving event and it wasn't a big todo.
  • Okay, I hadn't thought about having an engagement party so that OOT family could meet.  Seems completely reasonable.  And I would not have a problem with the combined house-warming/engagement thing.  I would bring wine and/or a Home Depot gift card and consider it mostly a house-warming.

    I think the engagement parties I attended left a bad taste in my mouth because many people brought gifts, which seemed weird to me.  I'm all about celebrating, but both of these events really seemed to cross into "AW/gift-grab" territory. 

    Secondary English teacher and mom of 2 kids:

    DD, born 9/06/00 -- 9th grade
    DS, born 8/25/04 -- 4th grade
  • I personally am not a fan of showers, and prefer engagements parties any day. I agree that it is a bit overkill when people have ALL the parties. My husband and I had an engagement party (hosted by my parents) about a year before our wedding. We did not have a shower at all. 

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