kismet34: As julies1949 so rightly states, weddings follow exactly the same rules of good manners that apply to all other aspects of life. As such, there really is no rule that says “the one thing you should NEVER do is plan your own engagement party.”
What good manners really says, is that a gracious person does not overtly honour herself. You do not award yourself medals or trophies. You are not your own guest of honour when you are acting as hostess. You do not hold charitable fundraisers with yourself as the beneficiary. But what etiquette never does, is prevent hospitality, or forbid community-building celebration, or to encourage phoniness (pretention is always in bad taste.)
Now apply exactly the same rule to the various events people associate with weddings. If your father or friend choses to hold a party to celebrate your engagement, they can invite you as the guest of honour and arrange for the spotlight to be on you throughout the party. If the bride and groom choose to hold a party to celebrate their engagement, then they simply do it in such a way that they honour some or all of their guests instead of themselves. Maybe they invite their parents as guests of honour. Maybe they make a short speech about how important friends have been to them in the past, and how they intend to maintain those friendships after they are married. As long as the hosts are celebrating and honouring their guests rather than themselves, then they are being perfectly proper. Getting your friend or sister to pretend to be hosting it when you are the impetus behind the party will NOT make it more proper, but actually less so.
I am guessing that a “Stag and Drag” is the same as a “Stag and Doe”. Such events are extremely popular in rural and remote areas where there is little other entertainment. When going to a movie requires a two-hour commute, the townsfolk are extremely gratified by any local entertainment that may arise. In such communities, an engaged couple is seen as having a duty to throw a party for the entertainment of the town, and in return the townsfolk feel privileged to be able to contribute to the wedding. Small remote towns tend to be largely extended family anyway, and family are allowed to contribute to wedding costs. A bride and groom who decide knot — I mean, not — to live up to their community’s social expectations are in fact violating good etiquette. As the inimitable Samuel Wells wrote in 1887:
You must conform, to such an extent as not to annoy and give offense, to the customs, whether in dress or other matters, of the circle in which you move. This conformity is an implied condition in the social compact. It is a practical recognition of the right of others, and shows merely a proper regard for their opinions and feelings. If you can not sing in tune with the rest, or on the same key, remain silent. You may be right and the others wrong but that does not alter the case. Convince them, if you can, and bring them to your pitch, but never mar even a low accord.
If the circle in which you move, wants you to have a Stag-and-Doe, or would be gratified by you hosting an Engagement Party in their honour, then letting down your friends to make internet message-board participants happy would be in the worst possible taste.
And you can take that from an old-school etiquette afficionady who also happens to be a forever-single lady.