She said yes! So what’s next?
Announcing your engagement is one of the most exciting parts of planning a wedding. Once the news is out, you can rest assured it will travel fast! Just as important as who to tell is when to tell them. It’s important to tell key family members first; you don’t want them to find out from a third party. The groom-to-be may have already spoken to the bride’s father to seek permission, in which case the announcement may not come as a complete surprise to this side of the family. Regardless of whether or not this traditional route was followed, you will need to ensure immediate family are informed first. A telephone call is probably the best way to balance ease of communication and giving a personal touch to proceedings whilst guaranteeing everyone finds out at roughly the same time.
Speak to as many of your close friends and family as possible. If you are aware of a particular family member or friend that might be hurt if they found out from anyone else, then make sure it is them you tell the good news to first within that particular group. You’d be surprised how a little bit of consideration at this very early stage can have a positive impact with family and friends as you venture forward with planning your wedding.
Once the news is announced to the key people, the grapevine will take care of much of the rest. However, a text, a Tweet or a Facebook announcement is a good way of confirming the news to your wider circle of friends and family. Don’t be surprised when you are bombarded by everyone wanting to hear about the ins and outs of the proposal and, of course, your plans for the wedding itself. This is a fantastic time of shared excitement but can be a little overwhelming when faced with a myriad of questions regarding aspects of the wedding that you haven’t even considered yet! Marquees and buttonholes can wait, for now.
Once the word is out, informally, it is at this time you should consider a more formal announcement.
Traditionally, the father of the bride would make arrangements to announce the engagement in the local paper or a national broadsheet only, that is, if the mother and father of the bride are hosting the wedding reception. Otherwise the couple may wish to take care of this themselves.
Here is an example of a traditional engagement announcement:
Mr F Taylor and Miss R Johnston
The engagement is announced between Frederick, eldest son of Mr and Mrs George Taylor of Highgate, London, and Rebecca, youngest daughter of Mr and Mrs Thomas Johnston of Highgate, London.
For divorced parents, the name and address of each parent is clearly spelt out. If either parent is widowed then only the name and address of the surviving parent is used.
From a phone call to parents to a Tweet to followers, this infant stage in your journey towards planning your wedding lays down an important precedent of what is to come and what can be expected. The manner in which your engagement is announced will set the perfect tone and feel-good factor for the coming weeks and months leading up to the wedding day itself.