Quick q's: Wording on Engagement Invitations – Names & Hosts (help!)

posted 2 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 2
Member
1570 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

If both parents are hosting I would say Mr and Mrs MOB and Mr and MRs MOG invite you to a [party, cocktail party, BBQ, whatever] to celebrate the engagement of Joanne and Mike.   I would go with whatever name Mike wants, but recognize that nicknames connote a less formal party.

Post # 3
Member
1649 posts
Bumble bee

Whoever is the hostess of any party, including this one, may choose whether to have a formal party or an informal party. She would use formal names on a formal invitation, and informal names on an informal invitation. An engagement party — and for that matter, a wedding — can quite properly be either one.

Now, when you say both parents are hosting, what do you mean? Are they paying for the room and the catering? Paying is not the same as hosting. Hosting means making the decisions and taking the final responsibility for the safety, comfort and entertainment of the guests. The “final responsibility” properly rests with just a single hostess — the buck cannot stop in two different places. A nice way to resolve this, is for one lady to be the hostess along with her husband (if she has one) and for the other lady to be one of her guests of honour. If it were your mother acting as hostess, a formal invitation would read

Mr and Mrs Father Bride<br />request the pleasure of the company of<br />Mr and Mrs Guest<br />to meet <br />Mr and Mrs Father Groom<br />Mr Danseur Groom<br />Ballerina <br />on Saturday the thirty-second of June &tc

the equivalent proper informal invitation would read:

Dear Jane and John,<br />I am having a little affair on June thirty-second to celebrate Ballerina’s engagement, and to introduce her fiance, Danseur Groom, and his parents, Lydia and Foxtrot Groom, to our circle of friends. Tom and I do hope you can join us, at the Centre Street Legion, at eight o’clock.<br />yours sincerely,<br />Mary

Equally informally, if your mother has a visiting card with her name engraved on it, or engraved informal notes with her name on them, then she just writes above her name

To meet Mr and Mrs Father Groom<br />Mr Danseur Groom<br />Ballerina

above her name on the card (or on the inside of the informal note) and the details of the party under her name (or on the inside of the informal note).

If you have actually managed to find a way to make one buck stop in two places, and the mothers actually are going to co-host somehow equally, then you would adapt the proper formal wording by moving the other parents’ names up to the top of the invitation, so:

Mr and Mrs Father Bride<br />Mr and Mrs Father Groom<br />request the pleasure of the company of<br />Mr and Mrs Guest &tc

You would adapt the informal invitation by listing all four names instead of the initial “I”, and mentioning “we” instead of “Tom and I”, so your mother would send to her circle of friends:

Dear Jane and John,<br />Mr and Mrs Father Groom, and Tom and I are having a little affair on June thirty-second to celebrate the  engagement of our children Ballerina Bride and Danseur Groom, and introduce our family and friend to one anothers. We do hope you can join us, at the Centre Street Legion, at eight o’clock.<br />yours sincerely,<br />Mary

Danseur’s mother would write similar notes to her circle of friends, swapping around the names so that your parents get their full formal names, and she refers to herself and her husband by their informal names.

 

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