So, you just got engaged (congrats!) and you’re absolutely bursting to tell everyone you know. Before you start shouting from the proverbial rooftops (or, you know, on Snapchat), stop and take a deep breath. “It gets tempting to tell the whole world,” acknowledges Kimberly Lee, co-founder of Luxe Proposals, a proposal planning concierge that services Vancouver and Toronto. She suggests taking a bit of time to savour the moment and celebrate with just your fiancé(e). “Make sure you reserve some time to soak in the engagement before announcing it to everyone.”
Once you’ve composed yourself, here are some points to consider on how to get the word out.
Who to tell first…
“Always tell your immediate family first. Mom and Dad should be your number one,” advises Diana Pires, creative director of Truly Yours Planning, a Toronto-based wedding and proposal planning company. Siblings and close extended family come next, followed by best friends.
One caveat: If you or your partner has any children—either together or from a previous relationship—tell them before anyone else. As members of your growing family, it’s essential that they feel included in the decision.
…and how to tell them
The best methods of sharing the news? In person, by video chat (such as Skype or FaceTime), or by phone, in that order. “We live in an age where it is easier to post on social media and change your Facebook status from ‘in a relationship’ to ‘engaged,’” says Lee. “It may be a little retro for some to pick up the phone and share the news, but I think it’s a lot more meaningful than a text with confetti and ring emojis.”
The question of bridesmaids
When sharing the news with your friends, resist the urge to start appointing bridemaids right away. Even if you’ve known since the age of six that you want your sister and your ride-or-die friend since kindergarten to be your co-maids-of-honour, wait until you have a few planning details in place before bringing others into things. There are many factors to consider in selecting your bridal party, so hold off until the initial excitement of getting engaged has passed before making any decisions you can’t take back later. (Plus, delaying your ask will give you a chance to craft the perfect bridesmaid proposal).
Social sharing dos and don’ts
Before making your engagement Facebook official, check in with your partner to make 100 percent sure you’ve both shared the news directly with your VIPs. Trust us: If your future granny-in-law finds out about her favourite grandchild’s impending nuptials from a hastily-posted status update because you each thought the other had called her, she’ll never let you live it down.
When choosing the perfect Instagram photo, Lee advocates for making the announcement with a photo of you and your fiancé(e). “The obligatory ring selfie can wait. Keep the focus on you and your partner.” If you happened to have a photographer secretly capture your proposal, posting one of these shots is an obvious choice, but a quick snap of the two of you in the moment or an old favourite photo will also do. For the caption, short, sweet, and sincere is best; skip the clichéd Beyoncé lyric quote or sappy retelling of your “personal love story.” Lastly, be wary of over-sharing: “Share it in one single post,” advises Pires.
Details to keep to yourself
It’s advisable to keep any planning details, such as the wedding date and location, off of social media, to avoid offending—or tempting—the uninvited. (We’re not saying wedding crashers are a thing, but why risk it?)
When it comes to the ring, you’re certainly welcome to gush about how much you love your new piece of jewellery— just be selective what else you share. “If [it] has significance, like if it was passed down from generations, do share that!” encourages Lee. Beyond that, don’t delve into too many details, she says: “There’s no need to specify how many carats your ring is, how much it cost or where it was purchased from.”
Kicking off the celebrations
An engagement party is a fantastic way to start your wedding celebrations. It’s important to know that anyone invited to the engagement party will expect to be invited to the wedding too, cautions Pires, so choose your guest list wisely. “The guest list for an engagement party is mainly those who are closest and most important to you. Don’t make the mistake of inviting guests you don’t want at your wedding.” A familiar gathering of immediate family, closest friends and your bridal party will make for a more intimate fête than a block party bash, anyway.