Both my sons have proposed to their fiancees within a month of each other. They will have some of the same people for groomsmen. Is it acceptable for me to throw an engagement party for them together?
They think it's a great idea but I am not sure what is correct. I appreciate any guidance.
Advice from the Engagement Experts Team
What a blessing to have two sons engaged! Without any hesitation we recommend one party.
If you have separate parties, you run several risks.
Since you can't predict the outcome, if one party turns out more "fun", for whatever is in the air that night, your other son might feel slighted. Also, since some of the guests are to be at both weddings, sometimes too many engagement and wedding events exhaust the guests, and you get a higher drop off rate.
Since both sons agree to a joint party (and even think it's a great idea), half the battle is over. A joint party packs more of a punch, separate events can dilute one's importance over the other.
Frankly, some of the guests involved in both weddings might get confused about which party is which, which set of parents belong to which girl, which family is which--you get the idea...
Being a guest can actually be hard sometimes. With two parties you would be in essence asking people to have two different outfits (besides the ones they'll already need for the two weddings)—two of everything that surrounds attending a party—hostess gift, babysitters, transportation, etc.
Make it easier on yourself, your sons, their friends and everyone else by having a joint party.
You can still follow proper etiquette, make the party as formal or as informal as you like, and enjoy the fact that a double engagement party will be unique and special, and a great opportunity for a really festive event.
Here are a few things we would like you to keep in mind...
Although the party is a joint one make sure to still define and separate things.
During the party, make sure you have separate toasts, and recognize each bride's parents at specific and different times. Time them well so that the second set doesn't feel slighted by the fact that they weren't toasted first.
If the event is seated, we suggest placing one son and his party on your left, and the other son and his respective party on your right. If it's a non-seated cocktail party, offer different colored name tags to identify the parties.
Make it fun! Play up the double-thing! Make it even more special than it already is... Our minds are spinning with clever ideas for this particular engagement party. Feel free to write us and we will send some thoughts.