What’s in a Wedding Speech?

Let’s be real, wedding speeches are stressful. It can feel SO exciting to be asked to stand by your best friend on her big day, but then the reality of the responsibility sets in–you’re expected to write and read a speech. Are you sweating yet?

The writing process can be long and frustrating, and finally, on the wedding day, you stand in front of a crowd of people (many of whom you may not even know) and you’re expected to deliver something that is funny, heartwarming, and unique. Sure, for some people this process is easy, but for the rest (majority) of people, it can feel like the 10th circle of hell.

So what makes a good speech? Here’s my advice: keep it simple and remember basic etiquette.

First of all, a wedding speech should be short and succinct. We’ve all been at the wedding where someone rambles on for over 10 minutes about odd stories and inside jokes that no one understands—it’s not a good time. Instead, try to keep your speech under 4 minutes (2-3 minutes is ideal).

Why should you avoid inside jokes? While a small reference to an inside joke can add a special connection for you and your friend, a speech littered with them can leave the audience confused and uninterested.

Begin your speech by introducing yourself and thanking your friend for having you be a part of their celebration. Also consider thanking the bridal party for their help planning events (if they did so) and it is traditional etiquette to thank the parents.

Next, share one memory (or two maximum) about you and the bride/groom and don’t just reference an inside joke! If you’re stuck for a memory, consider qualities you might admire about the bride/groom and think of a time they best showed this quality.

You’ll also want to share something about the couple’s relationship (i.e. a sweet story, how they met, how you knew they were in love, their shared interests, etc.)

Finally, don’t forget to congratulate the couple! Finish your speech by raising your glass to toast the couple, inviting the rest of the guests to do so with you.

It’s my belief that wedding speeches are not a time to roast the couple! Funny speeches are completely acceptable and can be a lot of fun but the jokes should feel natural and should not be used to insult the couple. Jokes in the speech should keep it fun, playful, and positive–not hurtful or demeaning (do I really have to explain that, though?).

If you’re still feeling like this task is unbearable then consider hiring a professional to help you write your speech! Check out my custom speeches by clicking here.


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Hello! My name is Britney and I am a writer specializing in life writing.

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