Make: Hosting an Engagement Dinner

Make: Hosting an Engagement Dinner

Make: Hosting an Engagement Dinner

  • Posted by magpie
  • On June 22, 2017
  • Comments

Message from Maggie:

Mr. Magpie and I hosted a backyard engagement party last weekend for our dearest friends Adam and Annie.  Find ideas for DIY invitations and easy make ahead menu items and decor for your next party below.

DIY Invites:

  1. Create a Canva account on
  2. Begin creating a design by clicking the invitation icon.
  3. Using the layouts on the left choose the one that suits your needs.
  4. Make edits to personalize the invitation.
  5. Click download and save as a PDF for print.
  6. Print at a local print shop.  Note: In this case I was pressed for time so used FedEx online by uploading it to their site and having it printed on heavy cardstock before picking it up at a local shop.  Typically when I have more time I like to utilize  
  7. To give it a more professional look use rounded corner punch on each corner.   Note: I already owned this tool but you can pick up at a craft store for about $5.
  8. Cut burlap into the shape of hearts.
  9. Place heart on top of card and wrap with raffia and tie in a bow.
  10. Purchase envelopes.
  11. Customize envelopes using a personal address return stamp, themed postage stamps, themed rubber stamps and washi tape. Note: Besides the postage stamps, I had these items, which helped me keep costs low.  I used a Washington, DC cherry blossom themed postage stamps, a “here comes the bride” themed rubber stamp, and gold polka dot wash tape.

Make-ahead menu:


  • Chopped veggies and hummus cups: Chop veggies like peppers and carrots.  Fill cups with hummus and place vegetables on top.
  • Chips and salsa cups:  Fill cups with salsa and stack chips no top.
  • Mozzarella, tomato, basil skewers:  Skewer grape tomatoes, mozzarella balls, and basil.


  • Green salad: Toss butter lettuce with olive coating each piece of lettuce.  Then toss with balsamic coating each piece of lettuce.  Shred parmesan cheese on top and toss again.
  • Baguette
  • Smoked brisket served with a variety of sauces
  • Corn and tomato salad
  • Twice baked potatoes



  • We rented a large table and chairs from our local rental store.  Note: If you are in the DC area try Fraeger’s Just Ask Rental.
  • We got basic table linens and white napkins on Amazon.
  • I used my marquee and letter board to make custom signs.
  • I used mirrors from our wedding to create a menu board and welcome sign.
  • I framed the couple’s save the date and engagement party invitations.
  • I used gold banner flags from the Target dollar section.
  • We have bistro lights strung in our backyard and added paper lanterns we found on amazon.
  • We used our own glass wear, silverware, and plates.
  • I used the vintage forks my dad bent for our wedding as place card holders.



  • Jun 22 2017
Looks amazing! I want to eat that dinner :-)
  • Jun 22 2017
Love all the details and personal touches. Mirror sooo special. Food looks delish. Wish I could have helped. Happy bride and groom
  • Jun 23 2017
What a celebration!! Looked fabulous and you are seriously the hostess with the mostess!