Make The Happy Couple Remember You Forever
As May is about to melt into June, you may begin to feel the distress surrounding summer weddings. You’ve been searching through Nordstrom’s sale rack, on the hunt for the perfect shoes to match your cocktail dress. Or perhaps the recent Royal Wedding between Prince Harry and Ms. Meghan Markle has you feeling like you need to step up your game as a party guest (I mean, hello Amal Clooney in that mustard Stella McCartney dress that has the entire internet going crazy). Or perhaps you’re like Brad Roemer with a calendar full of engagement parties, bachelor parties (some that require a plane!) and weddings–practically leaving enough time for family. There are many protocols to be followed and much money to be spent when it comes to weddings, but let’s start with the first line of attack: the whimsical engagement party.
Engagement Gift Giving At Its Best
Perhaps your favorite couple has finally sealed the deal. Your best friend got down on one knee and proposed to his girlfriend of five years. After you’ve expressed googley eyes over her Tiffany’s diamond ring one too many times, and have congratulated your best friend for this enchanting life milestone, now is the time to think gifts. If you’re not a big gift giver, then deciding what to get the soon-to-be bride and groom can be tough especially if there is no registry involved.
The Protocol for Different Types of Engagement Parties
You may be wondering what the protocol is when invited to an engagement party. Certainly, it’s not any ordinary party where you need only provide a box of beer for you and your host to enjoy. There’s a ring on the table of this one. Depending on the spectrum of formality that the host has put out, you can decipher for yourself whether a gift is necessary. For instance, if you have been notified about the party through word-of-mouth or text and have an understanding that the event will be more semi-formal, then a bottle of congratulatory champagne suffices. However, if you’ve instead received your formal invite in the mail with a return envelope that needs RSVP–likely due to the nature of the event taking place in a fancy restaurant or hall–then it’s proper etiquette to arrive bearing a gift.
Budget Wisely and Choose Carefully
A generous budget for the entire ordeal should be about $200 per person. This includes the engagement party gift, the wedding gift and any showers you would also be invited to. Women are often invited to a separate bridal shower and bachelorette shower, where a token item from the gift registry is recommended for the former and perhaps a cocktail or bottle of alcohol is more fitting for the latter. When it comes to the engagement gift, you have the opportunity to choose a more intimate gift depending on the bride and groom’s personality. The Brad Roemer design team who sometimes designs one-off weddings recommends against sticking to the gift registry if one exists. If you’re not attending an Italian wedding where cash is often preferred over a physical gift to cover the cost of the plate, then leave the gift registry choices for the special day.
A Few Exceptional Engagement Gifts
If you’re not the giving type, then here’s a little food for thought on the best practices for engagement gifts. If your best friend is a major foodie, consider buying them a luxury SMEG toaster if you wish to go big on the gifts, or else small kitchen accessories such as a waffle maker from Urban Outfitters, a refined bottle of Balsamic Vinaigrette or a minimalist copper, marble and cheese slate will do the trick. If the love bird couple seems to have everything, then you may want to opt for interior design decorations such as a colorful vase, a small eternity rose box from Venus et Fleur, or a set of customized coasters to match the two hometowns of the couple. If they’re more the artistic type, choosing a sweet wire statement bowl or sea-inspired wall decorating pieces would be unexpected but much loved.