Sunday, January 10, 2010

Engagement Parties

The other day I went to an engagement party and here's a quick summary. Almost all of the guests were wearing black ( men and women). A party planner was involved as there were cookies, cakes, flowers, tablecloths, etc. with the same theme/color scheme. There were quite a few beautiful flower arrangements and presents on display in the corner.

Apparently, this was not unique to this engagement party as I've attended another one a few months ago which had similar characteristics ( except there were more colorful clothing choices as it was in the summer). So there is the l'chaim for the family/close friends, the engagement party, the shower, and the wedding. Apparently, if anybody is anybody they are expected to bring ( chip in for) a gift at each step of the way.

When did this become a norm? Is there a trend to give a smaller gift at the wedding which necessitated all the gift giving prior to the happy event? Or was I living in a cave and this has been happening for ages?


SubWife said...

From what I understand, this is the norm in the non frum world. They have an engagement party, shower, bachelorette party, rehearsal dinner and finally the event itself. With the exception of the rehearsal dinner, those close to the bride/groom are expected to pony up some serious gifts/cash, in addition to fancy outfits etc. (I won't even address the notion of MUST COVER YOUR PLATE +.) If one is in the wedding party - forget about it, you are out of $1,000 easy, often double that.

In the frum world, I don't even know what the norm is. I guess it depends on the cicrles. I received only 1 engagement gift, and I didn't even expect that. I always thought that if one contributes to a shower, then one is exempt from the wedding gift, i.e. 1 gift/happy event, regardless of the number of parties they make.

For all I know, I could be in serious breach of etiquette. Btw, I still owe you the gift for your oldest. :(

Moshe said...

If I'm going to the wedding, I'll bring a wedding gift. If I'm not, I'll get something off the registry.