March 4th, 2017, a day that I’ll forever remember. It was that evening that Louis got down on one knee (in the snow, at -32°C!) and asked me to spend the rest of my life by his side. I said YES, of course! (I’ll tell you more the proposal in a new blog post soon.)
To celebrate our engagement, Louis and I decided to organize a brunch with our families and close friends.
Why An Engagement Brunch?
The idea of celebrate our engagement came from the desire to bring our families together at least once before the wedding. There are few occasions when we can have the most important people in our lives all in one place.
Although it was a small event, we wanted to make the occasion memorable for our guests while avoiding to spend too much. So, we decided to add our personal touch, the DIY way!
In my opinion, it’s by adding tiny details that we make the whole thing unique. First, we chose to make our brunch invitations ourselves. To add a personal touch to our stationery, we collaborated with Epson Canada who provided us with a ET-3600 Series printer , ink as well as glossy and thicker paper.
For the invitation design, we first looked for a template on Etsy. There are so many choices on this platform, I highly recommend it! We wanted a simple design with floral patterns, and easy to edit on the computer. We chose this design from the SwellAndGrand store.
We customized it by integrating our names and the brunch details. It was so easy to do and it saved us lot of time and money. You just need to know how to use Word (PC) or Pages (MAC) and you’re good to go. We printed two invitations per page, so we simply had to cut them with a paper cutter.
We used the same template to create our menus, we just adjusted the format. We printed the menus on the glossy paper, which added a touch of sparkle to the design and enhanced the colours.
The thicker paper that we got from Epson was finally used for the place cards.
We visited different halls in the Montreal area that could accommodate us. After completing our guest list and receiving all the RSVPs, we were 65 people. We finally chose the Sinclair Restaurant at the Saint-Sulpice Hotel in the Old Montreal, which offered a very interesting brunch menu that suits every taste. With its natural light, high ceiling and terrace, that place was perfect for us!
In terms of decor, we went to florist Florale, located in Boucherville, for our center pieces and head table bouquet. We also asked for extra eucalyptus branches to put a leaf on each plate. A small detail that added colour to our tables.
To add ambiance to the party, we invited Carter & The Boomers to perform during the meal. We just love that group! The guests really enjoyed the musical performance, some even got up to dance.
To thank our guests, we gave a small succulent plant to each of them with a “Save The Date” label attached to it, so they don’t forget our wedding date! We also offered mini-Nutella jars with almond “confetti”.
Did you know? For an engagement, tradition wants that confetti are green and that there are 5 of them to symbolize 5 wishes: fertility, happiness, prosperity, health and longevity.
We spent a whole evening cutting up the little tulle bags for the confetti, and attaching them to the Nutella jars. The result was great, but for the wedding, we’ll buy bags that are already made. Lesson learned!
Our wedding photographer, Lisa Renault, was also there for our engagement brunch. It allowed us to take pictures with all of our guests, knowing that we probably won’t have time for it on our wedding day. It also allowed us to be more comfortable with our photographer before the wedding.
We printed out the photos on our Epson printer to make an album and we gave some photos to our family. These are precious memories!
If you are wondering, I found my engagement dress at the 1861 Boutique in Montreal. As soon as I tried it on, I knew it was THE perfect dress for our engagement brunch. Louis wore a suit from Zara.
Organizing the brunch definitely gave us a taste of what awaits us for the wedding. We spent a lot of time taking pictures and making sure our guests were happy. It was great, but we had the worst headache after because we did not get time to eat!
We will certainly take more time to enjoy the present moment at our wedding. Preparation is going smoothly, everything is really coming together!
Until next time!