Did you know that there are 2.4 million weddings in the United States each year? The wedding industry is massive in our country. And no wonder — for many people, their wedding day is the biggest day of their life, and at the very minimum a wonderful celebration of love. It’s no wonder that Americans are willing to spend a significant amount of money on weddings. They want it to be special. But as we lead up to the wedding day, there are plenty of things that are significant, milestones that we should take note of and treat of special too. Before your wedding, the biggest milestone will be your engagement. And why not celebrate that as well? For some, an engagement party is not only an opportunity to celebrate and have a party but to get people together who might not, for whatever reason, be able to make it to the wedding. Some are essentially splitting up their engagement parties and their weddings, while others add on an engagement party as simply another additional celebration. But if you plan on having a destination wedding, for example, or an extremely unique wedding that your loved ones can’t necessarily attend, hosting an engagement party at home allows you to celebrate with everyone. But an engagement party is still a party, and it can be difficult to prepare for and ultimately organize.
While you can rely on a wedding planner to help you plan your big day, you probably don’t want to pay a party planner to help you with your engagement bash. If you’re planning it within your own home, you’ll have even more to get collected. From making sure that you don’t need to have an electrician over to fix faulty lighting before everyone meetings, to planning the menu, and of course putting together a list of games and activities for people to have fun with. But of course, that is just a taste of what you’ll have to take care of before your engagement party begins. Let’s explore some of that checklist together!
1. Spruce Up Your Exterior
As you considering hosting an engagement party at home, you’ll of course want your house to look its best. Part of that is going to center on the exterior of your home. Especially, of course, if you throw your engagement party in your backyard, as is often being recommended for people celebrating their engagements in a post-pandemic world. Celebrating outside gives you more space, and quite often a better atmosphere than what you would have when cramming everyone into your home. And even if you don’t decide to have the party itself outside, everyone is going to see the exterior of your home. Therefore, you’ll want to, of course, begin with your gutter and drains. These locations become messy before anywhere else in your home’s exterior will. That means that you’ll want to attack them first, beginning with a thorough drain cleaning. After that, you should consider having your roof cleaned, and to clear your yard of any lingering debris that has ended up in your yard, like old leaves.
Once your drains are taken care of, you’ll probably want to check around your driveway and garage. Your garage may very well end up being where you want to host part of your party. Just by opening up your garage doors, you can turn your garage and your driveway into a significant party space. From there, you should see if your driveway has any potholes or cracks. Firstly, because of course, they’re unsightly and embarrassing, especially if they’re significant. But secondly, because you can potentially end up with someone tripping and falling, or even damaging their car’s tires if your driveway has damage that is unattended to. Nobody wants that when you’re hosting an engagement party at home! But that’s fairly easy to take care of as well. Just get in touch with an asphalt paving company, and have your driveway smoothed out and filled in. If the potholes are a bigger issue on the road around your house, you may want to get in touch with the city; but there isn’t anything that you can personally do about that, aside from giving your party guests a heads’ up. But from then, make sure that your lawn is mowed, and of course, consider getting in touch with house painters if your exterior needs a bit of a touch-up. Keep in mind, though: don’t stress. This is just a party!
2. Double-Check Your Home’s Functionality
If you’re hosting an engagement party at home, you’ll understandably want to start focusing on the fun parts of the event first. But keep in mind that people will be using your home all day, and the last thing you want is an embarrassing failure in terms of functionality. You’ll begin that by checking on your lights and your appliances at home; the kitchen appliances, of course, will be especially important if you plan on preparing your own food and snacks. But moving on from there, you should check to make sure that any regular maintenance that you’ve been putting off is taken care of. An engagement party can get quite large, after all; you don’t want to have to worry about any failures during that process.
The biggest issue that homeowners can run into while hosting an engagement party at home, and especially the most embarrassing issue, is that of a plumbing problem. You would hate for a toilet to clog while a guest is over; furthermore, you don’t want to have to worry about whether or not your guests will have running water. Therefore, you should think about having a plumber over if you have any concerns over your plumbing before the party begins. If you have especially old pipes, too, they might be more at risk of bursting during a party, when they’re under duress. With that being said, you most likely have nothing to worry about. However, when you’re hosting a big event at an older home in particular, this should be a part of your checklist.
3. Get Your Invites Delivered Early
It’s incredibly difficult to make sure that everyone you want to have attending your engagement party at the party, just as it’s difficult to have everyone you want at your wedding at the wedding. If you’re hosting an engagement party at home, you should probably expect a few people to decline, just because they’re busy with work or prior commitments. Unless, that is, you’re inviting a very small amount of people. However, the sooner you get your invitations sent out, the more time that people have to plan for your party and make sure that they can go.
If you’re planning on inviting a lot of people, of course, you’ll probably want to make a system so that you can have a lot of them sent out efficiently. Now, you could spend money on having a company send them out for you. But that is usually a bit more expensive than sending them out on your own. Conversely, you could save money by sending out e-vites. But a lot of people miss those e-vites or find them less personal. Some prefer to save physical invitations, out of sentimentality, or in an attempt to keep track of the date. So, if you’re sending out your own invitations in large quantities, you should try finding another way to cut down on the amount of time you spend on preparing them. A great way to do this is through the use of address stamps. Address stamps allow you to put down the same address in a quick way, making what could be a tedious process much more efficient. For that matter, you could have your physical invitation messages or address pre-printed, and keep them uniform in that manner, even if you’re still actually sending them out on your own.
4. Prepare Some Games
Everyone wants to have a bit of fun when hosting an engagement party at home. But everyone’s idea of what is fun does vary, and therefore you’ll probably want to think about setting up a few different games throughout the day, or at least a few different options in through your home entertainment systems. Some people like to play games that focus on the couple’s history, somewhat like the Newlywed Game. For that matter, some like to turn these into physical games; for example, a race outside, or even an old-fashioned bean bag toss, or turning a traditional ring toss into an “engagement ring” toss (without your actual engagement ring, of course). Consider having a ring hunt, a classic game in which you hide plastic rings throughout the party and give prizes to those that find the most rings. A game of wedding-themed charades could also be a good addition to your roster. While some of these might seem a bit silly at first, there’s a reason why they’re classic. People enjoy spending time with each other, enjoy playing games. This is a game that you’re playing with friends, right? Think about the types of activities that you would enjoy with each other at any other party.
Of course, going back to your home entertainment system, you could also play some music and have some dancing. You can also take advantage of technology by adding a photo booth to your party, in order to preserve your favorite memories of the parties. A particularly fun idea, popular in recent years, is the addition of a customized filter for your engagement party. When hosting an engagement party at home, you’ll want everyone to preserve their memories of your party. A custom filter is something like a scrapbook label. This custom filter is called a geofilter, and it’s determined by the size of the area where you want people to use the filter. While some assume that a custom filter would be expensive, it’s actually only $5 per hour, most of the time. It’s special, and can really make a couple feel celebrated.
5. Consider Using A Caterer
When hosting an engagement party at home, you’ll find that there are plenty of things you’ll need to take care of by yourself. But you don’t have to cover all of it on your own; you can also work with a caterer to take care of your food and beverage needs. Now, this might not be the best idea for a smaller engagement party, where it may cost more money than it’s worth. But if you’re having a lot of people over, rather than having to pack all of your own hard coolers with food that needs to be kept at a certain temperature all day, why not pay someone else to take care of it?
The fact is that if you’re hosting an engagement party at home, you will be stressed at some point or another. It’s just natural. Therefore, you may want to put together a list of favorite foods, especially appetizers, to discuss with a catering company. If you do decide to go with a caterer, of course, discuss any allergies and dietary concerns that your guests might have. This way, your caterer can make sure that they are accommodated.
There are a lot of amazing aspects of throwing an engagement party. It’s wonderful to get so many people that you care about together, especially in a more relaxed setting than what you might be able to provide at a wedding. But remember that it’s supposed to be enjoyable, and you’re meant to be celebrating something exciting and joyful. You don’t want to put so much pressure on yourself that you miss out on that aspect.
With that being said, put together a list of musts ahead of time, and make sure that you check it off as you plan. Organization is key in cases like these. The more you organize ahead of time, the more enjoyable the engagement party will be on the day of!
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