Booking venue before engagement — advice on telling family/friends the date?

posted 2 years ago in Engagement
Post # 32
364 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2019

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bobblebee :  ok I read your replies, and it sounds like the proposal is important to him. That was how my Fiance was, and we waited to announce.

There are a few things that you only get to do once, like the proposal and the wedding and so and so… he wanted it to be a special memory for both of us. It was! It was so romantic and special, when we have kids it will be a lovely story to tell them. I had such an amazing time, that we waited a few days to post it on social media, I was so happy I wanted to keep it to myself a little longer. It’s hard to explain. 

Post # 33
328 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2019

My fiance and I booked our venue before we were officially “engaged” too, and we told our close friends and family! I was actually surprised, as I expected my parents to be a little wary of starting to make plans, discuss any help they’d be giving, etc. before I had a ring on my finger. Fiance and I currently live out of state so I needed my parents to look at some venues for us. But we didn’t want to wait too long as we knew we wanted a certain date and it was at that point already less than a year away. My parents and his ended up being really excited and supportive instead of judgmental, and we only kept it to a few very close friends and people coming from out of town before we were officially engaged so we would still get the fun of the big announcement. To those we told ahead of time, we did so by saying “hey heads up- we’re planning to get married this September so make sure you keep it open :)” and it worked out just fine! Then when we did get engaged, those same people still shared our excitement about it being “officially official!” It was a little hard explaining to people why we weren’t engaged yet, as I didn’t understand myself why he hadn’t just done the proposal yet while at the same time he was confidently making wedding plans with me so clearly really intended to do so. When we put down the deposit, I was like “are you sure? because you still haven’t proposed and we’re about to put in a lot of money so I hope you mean it” lol, but he said of course and a month later proposed with a really elaborate proposal, which turned out to be why it was taking so long! 

Post # 36
229 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2020 - City, State

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bobblebee :  I am in a similar boat as you. We have a venue for March 2020 (booked and everything), but we won’t have the ring for about another month, as it’s being made across the country. We knew we wanted to get married in Spring but didn’t want to wait too long, my dad wants to pay for the wedding, and I knew venues would book up fast (especially bc my brother is still in school and my dad has a busy work schedule often years in advance–to the point that there were literally 3 days in March 2020 we could get married and they could both come, and our venue was booked for 2 of them).

So we just decided to tell the people closest to us we were engaged, and we’ve told them up front that the ring is being made because we chose it together. Perhaps we have particularly understanding families (they know we’re not exactly traditional), but no one has given us shit for doing things out of order, and no one has made me feel like my engagement isn’t legitimate without a ring. It’s the commitment that counts, the jewelry is just a symbol.

Also, you could get away with sending your save the dates at the beginning of April for an October wedding, assuming it’s not a destination wedding. 

If you’ve decided you’re getting married and you have a venue… you’re engaged. You don’t need a ring to prove it. Take some nice photos together (wear a piece of costume jewelry if it’s important to you to have a ring on in the photos), send out save the dates whenever you want, and don’t rush the special moment with the ring. That part is for you, and it doesn’t need to happen on anyone else’s timeline.

Post # 37
229 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2020 - City, State

P.S. I literally called my mom the morning my fiance bought a stone to let her know. I said “FI bought a sapphire over breakfast this morning?” She was like, “For what?”
“For an engagement ring!”
“Are you saying you’re engaged to be married?”
“Well… not exactly… but kind of?”
“To FH?”
“Yeah, were you hoping for someone else?”
“Just checking. Well, if you’re happy, I’m ridiculously happy for you.”

At that point I wasn’t as confident about the difference between having a ring and being engaged, but FH has been happy to be involved in all the planning and that makes it feel much more real. The tone of our relationship has shifted to where we FEEL engaged, and it feels very real that we’ll be together till death do us part. That’s given me the confidence to say proudly to anyone who asks that I’m engaged.

We haven’t announced anything publicly and won’t post on SM about it until there’s a ring, but all our close friends and our family know.

Post # 38
1591 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2018

You don’t need the ring to get engaged! My dad proposed to my mom without a ring, and then took her to his uncle’s shop (he was a jeweler) to pick out a ring together a few days later. They had to pick out the stone and then my great uncle made the ring, so they didn’t have it for several weeks after being “officially engaged”. 

Get engaged! Book the venue! Tell your friends! It’s all very exciting and none of them should be worried about whether the ring is on your finger or still being made.

Post # 39
1615 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2019

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bobblebee :  I didn’t tell my family I did it preengagement. If you plan to be married in the near future then you’re engaged.

Mom and dad, we are engaged!! We are hoping to get married October 2019. 

A week or two later, mom and dad, we found the perfect venue and booked it. So excited!!! Will you come check it out?

It really isn’t anybody’s business what you did why and when if you are paying. 

Now if they are paying then maybe tell them before booking. 

Post # 41
444 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2019 - York, ME

We did it that way, and I’m happy we did!  We set the date and location and told everyone that would be invited about it. We didn’t do STDs because it’s a small wedding, so we just sent texts or brought it up in conversation.  We found a venue we loved, spoke with the event coordinator on the phone, and booked it sight unseen!  We had to set our date early because I have a lot of important meetings in the summers, so if I didn’t block off my time we wouldn’t have been able to make it work.

The biggest thing that got under my skin were all the comments like “Oh, aren’t you worried about setting a date/booking a venue without being engaged?!”  Comments like this coming from my best friends…I finally had enough and told them that as far as I was concerned, being engaged means planning a wedding, and that a piece of jewelry is not more important than my actual relationship. 

I think you should just have a standard response in mind for when the comments and questions come up, but do it the way that works for you guys! Congratulations! 

Post # 42
1218 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2017

We did this too. After we decided we wanted to get married (through mutual conversations), I ended up designing my own ring. It took a while to figure out what I wanted, and then to have it made, so it wasn’t ready yet when we ended up picking our venue. My parents knew we wanted a fall wedding in my home state and they actually found our venue for us. We booked it a year ahead of the wedding, but didn’t tell anyone except our families and a few close friends, until the ring was ready and my husband did his proposal, about two months later. He proposed right before Thanksgiving break, and I took advantage of being home for the holiday to schedule dress appointments with my mom and sister. My coworkers were pretty surprised when I came back from the long weekend not only engaged, but also having set the date, selected the venue, and purchased a dress! 

If you’ve been together a while, it probably won’t be difficult for your families to understand that sometimes things happen out of order, you’re engaged but the ring is on its way. It sounds super practical to jump on the perfect venue and a date when you know there aren’t any scheduling conflicts for the people you want to be there. 

Post # 44
3827 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: April 2017 - City, State

Just be engaged. It’s fine. Dh and I got engaged with no proposal or a ring. 9 months after we got engaged, we picked out a ring together, got home with the ring, and he immediately proposed to me. It was a sweet moment just for us, and it didn’t make being engaged less special, or friends and family less excited because the ring came afterwards. No one really cares about the ring anyway, they’re just happy to see you happy.

Just explain that you’re engaged, but need more time for the thing to be completed. Planning and booking is hard enough without needlessly delaying getting things in place until things are “official “.

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