Engagement party traditions

Engagement Traditions

Engagement traditions have changed dramatically over time. Strict engagement etiquette of yesteryear has relaxed and today, even the most traditional engagements offer plenty of opportunity for the bride and groom to demonstrate their unique personality. Traditions that surround an engagement and marriage have a history that stretches back over several centuries. Engagement traditions of today are a blend of traditions from the past and from different cultures, which have been made relevant to contemporary life.

Four Time-Honored Engagement Customs

Popular traditions followed and respected by couples around the world include these engagement traditions:

1. The Proposal

The engagement and wedding process starts with the proposal. The following proposal traditions are among the most popular:

  • Man asks permission: Traditionally the man speaks to the parents of the bride-to-be and asks for permission to propose marriage to the bride.
  • Man proposes without permission: The tradition of asking for permission from the parents to marry has relaxed over the years, and it is widely accepted that the man proposes to his loved one without first asking permission of the parents.
  • Woman proposes to the man: Another much loved tradition is that girls can propose to their boyfriends on the 29th of February which occurs every leap year.
  • Man popping the question on bended knee: The method of proposal is flexible, and the tradition of a man getting down on bended knee to propose is becoming less common with more unusual and innovative proposals growing in popularity.

2. Choosing an Engagement Ring

One of the most well known engagement traditions is the wearing of an engagement ring. While popularity of diamond rings is a relatively recent tradition, rings have been given to mark a betrothal throughout history. Very traditional styles of engagement rings include solitaires. Fashions and trends help dictate popular styles of the time, however many brides-to-be still opt for traditional and classic styles. One engagement tradition was for the man to buy an engagement ring for his partner as a surprise. While this is still a popular tradition, many couples now choose the engagement ring together. When choosing an engagement ring it is also important to consider the wedding ring and how it will look combined with the engagement ring. Very traditional styled engagement rings look best paired with traditional styles of wedding rings.

3. Holding an Engagement Party

The tradition of holding a party to celebrate an engagement with family and friends is one that remains popular today. The party is a way for the newly engaged couple to share their news and celebrate with their loved ones. Traditionally the party would be given by the parents of the bride, however today the party is as likely to be hosted by close friends as it is by family members. Engagement parties can be low key affairs, perhaps a dinner party with just the parents of the couple but a large flamboyant party is also common. The type of party a couple chooses will depend on their personalities as well as budget and the location of family and friends.

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Engagement Party

by GardnerGirl

So my fabulous parents agreed to host our engagement party at their house next weekend (9/21-the same weekend we get married next year!) and almost everyone has RSVP'ed yes. Which is great, but now we have almost 40 people coming, and my mom and I are kind of at a loss for what to do for it. What makes it an engagement party, besides the fact that we announce our engagement? I was going to put out a few pictures of my FH and I as kids and then together now, but was wondering what some of you lovely ladies (and gents) had at your parties. I've researched some traditions on google, like planting a tree together at your party to symbolize your new life together, but wanted some more ideas

Shower vs. engagement party (long, sorry)

by esb

I'm feeling slightly confused.
FH & I are not so into traditions. We are picking here and there from things we like and are sort of reimagining our wedding. So far it's good, though I know it makes my mother uncomfortable.
Recently, my cousin & close friend both offered to throw me a shower. I'm very flattered. At the same time, I would like to include FH and have the whole thing be coed. FH agrees-- we are in this together and would like to celebrate things (like showers) as a couple. We'd rather it be a fun get together with friends than a present-fest. I mentioned this to my friend & cousin and they were both fine with it, though my cousin said that showers are traditionally "more intimate" and that it being coed might ruin that

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Engagement parties  — Iowa State Daily
If it is a fancy venue, then it may be appropriate to have a black-tie event, but if it is a casual venue, it is not necessary to wear something so fancy as a ball-gown or a tuxedo.

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