I love love.  We at OohBox love love.  I’m assuming you reading this love love (or at least like love).  What better symbol of the promise of love everlasting than the giving of an engagement ring?

But do you need to give an engagement gift to the happy pair?  And if so, what do you actually get for them?

The tradition of an engagement stretches back to ancient times, where the bride would replace a plaited rush band every year and wear it around their finger.  As time wore on, this rush band changed to an iron band and then into more and more precious metals.  It was a symbol of the promise made between two people that they would eventually marry.  While marriage isn’t something that is totally set in stone for two (or more) people to be together, getting engaged is still an important part of our culture.

Back in th’olden days, an engagement period was used for the groom and the bride’s father to hash out a marriage contract, and for the bride to prepare to leave their parental home to go and live with their husband.  An engagement, or betrothal, was a formal thing, and wasn’t to be entered into lightly, so it was usually seen as basically being already committed to the other person.

And sometimes this is enough for people; getting engaged is a sure sign of their commitment and therefore there’s not really a need to get married.  So in some cases an engagement party is the equivalent of a wedding.

Sometimes a long engagement is what people decide to do, being engaged for years and years, to save up for the wedding, raise a family, or even to just decide whether they want to or not.  Now that lovers can live together before marriage, the need to marry quickly isn’t as prevalent.

So do you actually need to get your friends an engagement present?  Not necessarily.  Sometimes they’ll request something, or a contribution to something, sometimes not.  If they’re planning on getting married it might be worth waiting until the wedding day to get them something.  However, a little nod and congratulations can be a really lovely way of letting them know you’re thinking of them!

OK, so if you’ve decided to get them something, what do you get them?  Are they already living together?  Have they got a date for the big day?  These are some things you might want to think about when deciding what to get.

For me, I don’t think you can go wrong with something that reminds them of the commitment they have made.  Mr & Mrs or Bride & Groom to be mugs are a really sweet nod to their relationship.  A countdown set is lovely and worthy of many an Instagram post, and you can’t go wrong with a fancy tipple set to mark the day!  Or to really mark the occasion, a photo frame could be a gorgeous way for your pals to commemorate their love for one another.

Whatever you decide, if you are looking for inspiration, check out our Romance Collection, we have beautiful gift sets that will set hearts racing!