A reader named Claudia writes, “I have been invited to an engagement party and the invitation states ‘no gifts, your presence is our gift.’ Do I go without something, or what would be appropriate to take?”
It is never required to take a gift to an engagement party, which traditionally is an occasion for both sides of the family and their friends to meet and to toast the joy of the happy couple. In this case, the couple is underscoring that point by specifically saying “no gifts” on the invitation. You can take them at their word.
If, however, you feel you still have an urge to bring a present, keep it inexpensive and in the vein of a housewarming gift: a bottle of good wine or something fun for their new kitchen—such as a potted herb box for the windowsill.
Enjoy the party and best of luck to the happy couple!