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Wedding Invitations

What Time Do You Put on a Wedding Invite?

Whose name should be placed first on the wedding invitation? Here is the answer you are looking for!

UPDATED ON December 08, 2023
Wedding Invitations

Three Ideas for Unique Wedding Invitations

I absolutely love a good wedding.  It’s not only the bride and groom who look forward to the big day – it’s also their guests

UPDATED ON December 08, 2023

Engagement Party Themes

Engagement Party Themes - Thumbnail
Celebrate your engagement in style with an unforgettable party! Whether you're matching your engagement party to your wedding theme or going for something a little different, there's no shortage of ideas to inspire you. So, here are some of our favourite engagement party themes.

Engagement Party Themes


A rustic theme is the perfect choice for a boho couple. Earthy tones and natural details are timeless and beautiful. Engagement Party Themes - Rustic Festoon Lights & Mason Jars Invitation Featured Design: 'Rustic Festoon Lights & Mason Jars' Think woodland whimsy, lace, and foliage for your decorations. You can also add in some festoon lights to keep the celebrations going into the evening. Engagement Party Themes - Lights4Fun Festoon Lighting Source: Lights4Fun


If you're planning a modern wedding, a subtle and minimalist engagement party could be the perfect teaser. Look for stylish clean lines and bold colours. Also, don't forget the chic typography invitations... Engagement Party Themes - Diamond Ring Typography Featured Design: 'Diamond Ring Typography' Muted colours combined with greenery will give your party decorations a fresh atmosphere. Add a simple twist on the classic guest book to create a lovely memento of your engagement party with a personalised signing print. Engagement Party Themes - Heart Guest Signing Board Featured Design: 'Heart Guest Signing Board'

Art Deco

Great Gatsby themed parties with art deco styling are on-trend for all sorts of special occasions. We think this glamorous theme is the perfect choice for a engagement party, too! Engagement Party Themes - Art Deco Rose Gold Featured Design: 'Art Deco Rose Gold' Roaring 20's accessories, like vintage typewriters and glitzy decorations, will give your venue the perfect vibe. Also, mix in cocktails and fancy o'dourves for a night to remember. These geometric rose gold plates have a gorgeous art deco vibe! Engagement Party Themes - Ginger Ray Plates Source: Ginger Ray


Do you both love photography? Or are you the kind of couple that can spend hours with a scrapbook? Then make memories the theme of the day. This versatile theme lets you add in your own personal touches when it comes to food and entertainment. You can simply fill the day with all your favourite things. Engagement Party Themes - Chalkboard Photo Booth Featured Design: 'Chalkboard Photo Booth' Guests will love seeing snaps of your journey as a couple, so pull out those proposal shots! It's a cute way to look back on how far you've come - and to look ahead to the future. Make some great memories for the future with stylish photo-booths and an old-school Polaroid camera for guests to use. Engagement Party Themes - Hello May Source: Hello May
You’re Engaged – Congratulations! So What’s Next?

You’re Engaged – Congratulations! So What’s Next?

The love of your life proposed. You said “YES!” Congratulations on your engagement. It’s such an exciting time, but before you get carried away with wedding planning, (and start spending every spare moment pouring over wedding blogs and feeding your Pinterest addiction) here are three great tips to ensure your engagement gets off to the best possible beginning.

Start off on the Same Wavelength

This is the time to sit down with your partner and have a serious discussion about what you both want from your wedding day. You’ll want to talk about when you want to get married, themes and locations, numbers of guests and, of course, how much you are willing to spend. Money may not be the most romantic subject, but it’s important that you both have realistic expectations and ideas of what you can and cannot afford. Do talk to your families as well – they may have very different ideas and it’s much better to talk things through now rather than cause problems later.

Throw an Engagement Party

Okay, that’s the serious bit out the way – now it’s time to celebrate. So, why not throw an engagement party, particularly if the wedding is likely to be a year or more away? An engagement party can be as grand or informal as you wish. Traditionally, this was hosted by the bride-to-be’s parents, but these days anything goes. Many couples organise the event themselves, and it’s good practice for planning your wedding on a much smaller scale. First off, choose your party style – is it going to be formal or informal, a massive knees-up or an intimate soiree? Will you want to reflect your wedding style (if you’ve chosen one) or your personal interests? Once you’ve decided on your type of party, put together a guest list and sort out the date and venue. Holding the party at either your own or your parents’ house will save you money to put towards your wedding day. But if this isn’t practical then look for hotels, restaurants, and other venues where you can host – sports and social clubs often have function rooms which can be hired very reasonably. With the practicalities sorted, it’s time to send out your invitations. Our personalised engagement party invitations come in a wide range of styles – from bling to rustic - so you are bound to find one you love. Engagement 1 Featured Designs: 'Heart Glitter Pattern' and 'Vintage Country Charm' These days, gifts are not expected at engagement parties, but you may well find that many people do bring along something. Have a space where people can leave gifts discretely so that those who haven’t don’t feel awkward. Leave opening them until after the event and make sure you send a thank you card. Our ready to write cards are ideal! Engagement 2 Featured Designs: 'Hand In Marriage', 'Champagne Hearts', and 'Gold Glitter Pattern - Table Confetti'

Book an Engagement Photoshoot

Apart from having some wonderful, relaxed photographs of yourselves, an engagement photoshoot helps you get to know your photographer – and lets them to get to know you. So your wedding photos will be even better! It’s a great way to get used to being photographed before the big day and you’ll have some wonderful memories.
How to...Stick to Your Budget

How to...Stick to Your Budget

Whenever you start to plan a celebration, one of the first things you are advised to do is set a budget. We all know that setting a budget is one thing – sticking to it is another thing all together! But, you can do it. Here are just a few ways you can make sure you keep control of the pennies, without compromising on quality. 1. Prioritise what you HAVE to have at the party. Write a list of the must haves – this will include: venue, food, drink, invitations and may include entertainment, decor, new clothes. Then write a list of would like to haves, such as a photographer, fireworks etc. Focus on prices for the must-haves. Once you have finalised a price for the necessities, you can see whether you have any money left for the rest. 2. The date – think about when you are going to have the celebration. For an occasion that is not time specific eg wedding or christening, you will get much better value for money in the winter. For a birthday or anniversary, obviously time-specific, some venues may be cheaper if you book midweek or in the afternoon. 3. Venue – village and community halls are very cheap to hire and many venues, such as sports clubs are free if you use their bar. If you want to go to a hotel, have a look at their all inclusive packages. 4. Food – many venues are quite happy for you to self cater for parties. In my own family we do this frequently and we always end up with a complete excess of gorgeous food – everyone likes to show off their speciality dish. You may also have someone who loves icing cakes – perhaps they could do that as a present for the event. 5. Drink – If you are buying a sparkling wine for the event, see if you can buy it on a return basis if you don’t use it all. Make up some cocktails (and mocktails) using soda water as part of the mixture. Guests do not necessarily expect free drink for the whole event, just let them know there will be a cash bar. 6. Other supplies – for other suppliers it really is worth shopping around. Many suppliers will have a tiered price structure, ranging from “bargain” to “premium” service and occasional sales and offers to make your pound go further. Here at The Card Gallery we have a permanent selection of affordable stationery collections plus frequent sales If you have got a budget for a specific service, tell the potential supplier up front. Ask them what they can do for £x amount – being up front with your budget means you are not wasting yours and their time. You can buy some fabulous party clothes on line, but a little tip from a dressmaker friend: buy at least one size too big, because it is always easier (and cheaper) to make the dress smaller than to expand it. When you are organising any celebration, remember that people want to enjoy themselves. Parties are a great way to catch up with family and friends and that is far more important than how much money you spend. You can have as much fun under a gazebo in the park as you can at a 4 star hotel.
How to plan an Engagement Party

How to plan an Engagement Party

An engagement party is traditionally the event at which both sets of parents and their families can meet and get to know each other. In pre-social media days it was a way of announcing the engagement to the wider friend circle. Now, with many couples meeting away from their home town, it is a way to introduce your fiancé to friends and relatives. There is absolutely no need to have an engagement party at all, but if the two families live some distance apart it is a good idea to provide them with an opportunity to meet up prior to the wedding at an informal event. Of course, you could organise a party for another reason (summer BBQ, New Year’s Eve etc) and announce your engagement at that as a surprise. In this case, you should still tell both sets of parents first: it could cause offence if friends know before family or one family knows before the other - and you do not want that in the run up to your wedding! Do not hijack another family occasion. This may seem obvious, but I have seen it done – we went for a family meal for a 70th birthday and bro-in-law stood up and announced his engagement. If your engagement does coincide with another family event, chat with the host before hand to see if they would mind you announcing your engagement and offer to share costs. If you do decide to have an engagement party there are one or two things you need to bear in mind:
  • If the primary aim is for both set of parents to meet up ensure it is something they are comfortable with.
  • Make sure both sets of parents are available on the day
  • Set a date up to three months after your engagement, but not too close to the wedding – the average time between engagement and the wedding is 18 months, so you should have plenty of time
  • You would normally expect the people at your engagement party to be invited to your wedding. If this will not be the case eg if your wedding will be abroad or very small, make this clear to the party guests.
  • There will be toasts, so make sure you have some sparkling wine to celebrate with.
To organise the party you need to decide on a date, a budget and a venue. Many clubs and pubs have free room hire and rely on takings at the bar for their income. Send out your engagement party invitations about a month prior to the event. Traditionally the bride-to-be’s parents host (pay for) the party. – if this is the case, as with wedding invitations, a formal invitation needs to come from them and invite guests to a party “in honour” of Miss X and Mr Y. Most engagement parties, however, are organised by the couple and are much more informal. The invitations, therefore, need only include names of the couple, names of guests, date, time, venue and RSVP details. As always, the invitation is a good opportunity to communicate any other information. This might include food/drink information, such as “You are invited to a BBQ/posh picnic/cocktails & canapés etc.,” your policy on presents at the party and whether children are welcome. Whatever you decide upon for your engagement party, do not upstage your wedding day. Even if you want a big party an engagement party can be very informal and low budget and not outshine the Big Day itself.

Why Are Diamonds Forever?

Why Are Diamonds Forever?

In most Western cultures a diamond ring is viewed as the “must have” symbol of an engagement. Etiquette suggests that men wishing to pop the question need to buy a diamond ring, starting at around £1,500. So where does the tradition of the engagement ring come from and why are we willing to spend so much money? The ring has been a powerful symbol of “intention” since pre-history, when men would tie rings of braided grass around their mate’s wrists and ankles. Egyptians were buried wearing wire round their third finger. The Celtic claddagh ring may have evolved to symbolise love and commitment and romantic rings with clasped hands date back to the Roman Empire and signified eternity. It was one of the last Holy Roman Emperors, Maximilian I who gave the first recorded diamond engagement ring to Mary of Burgundy in 1477, but this did not become commonplace. During the nineteenth century diamond jewellery became more popular with the aristocracy and the Tiffany Setting, first designed in 1886, showed off the diamonds to maximise their brilliance. The attraction of diamonds was that they the hardest known natural substance and were very rare. This all changed with the discovery of huge diamond deposits in South Africa in 1867. With a large supply of diamonds rarity reduced and was no longer a selling point.. By the early twentieth century the South African Mines were owned by De Beers, who realised that, with an increased supply of diamonds, the only way to make money was to increase the demand. So a huge marketing campaign was launched. The most glamorous actresses on the 1930s, Ginger Rogers, Kathryn Hepburn and Bette Davis were seen on screen bedecked in diamonds. During the 1940s De Beers continued to link the diamond with glamour and “A Diamond is Forever” became their official slogan in 1947. The subsequent association with Marilyn Monroe and James Bond have firmly cemented the desirability and durability of diamonds into the psyche, making the diamond ring a tradition, particularly in the USA. There have been, and still are, plenty of alternatives to the diamond ring. The aforementioned Claddagh ring continues to be a popular Irish engagement ring. The Victorians used a wide variety of gems in their jewellery and these can still be sourced in antique sales. Silver poesy rings, inscribed with romantic words, were popular in Europe in the nineteenth century and continue to be designed today. A number of semi-precious stones are also used as engagement rings in other cultures. Jade is particularly popular in China and Vietnam as it is seen as the love stone, bringing happiness and long marriage. Turquoise is used by Native Americans to connect the partners together. In mythology aquamarine was given by Neptune to the mermaids to symbolise his eternal love and affection. Topaz was adopted by Russian czarinas as it ensures fidelity and garnet is also seen as an auspicious stone to use in an engagement ring. Whatever you choose to symbolise your engagement, we wish you happiness in both your engagement and forthcoming marriage.