by Linda DiProperzio
Public speaking doesn’t come easily to everyone—even when you’re giving a speech at a happy occasion. In addition to standing up in front of dozens (or even hundreds) of people, you also want to make sure the toast is meaningful and memorable. And of course, those words will be videotaped for prosperity. Don’t worry, though, because we’re going to walk you through the process!
Who Gives the Wedding Speech?
The most common people asked (or expected) to give a speech at the wedding include the best man, maid/matron of honor and the newlyweds’ parents. Of course, the couple can ask anyone they choose to say a few words on the happy day.
What is the Process For Writing a Wedding Speech?
Before you start the actual writing, jot down some notes to help figure out what you want to include. An appropriate joke, a happy memory, a wish for the couple, etc. You can also create an outline to help you organize your thoughts and the flow of your wedding speech before you start putting it all together.
How Long is the Speech Writing Process?
Everyone works at their own speed, but this is something you don’t want to rush through. Even if the words flow quickly, you will want to run the toast by a trusted friend or family member who will give you honest feedback. Once you know you have your final version, take the time to practice saying the words out loud so you feel more comfortable on the wedding day. If you can memorize it, even better!
Tips for Writing Wedding Speeches
There are some simple rules to follow when writing your wedding speech. We asked Tanya Pushkine of The Vow Whisperer to share her top do’s and don’ts when it comes to crafting a speech for the big day.
Do plan early. You do not—we repeat, do not—want to start writing your wedding speech the night before. This is something you want to give thought to and practice a few times before the main event. Don’t make it too long. The best wedding speeches are short and sweet. While you might be tempted to tell long stories or a variety of inside jokes, that will only result in bored guests. Keep it to three minutes maximum!
Do introduce yourself. Not everyone in attendance will know who you are and why you were chosen to be the best man or maid/matron of honor. Be sure to explain the connection you have with the couple
Don’t be inappropriate. Stay away from raunchy jokes and stories (as Pushkine notes, grandma is in the room!), mentions of ex husbands or wives, past lovers or even past proposals, and long tales of drunken nights. It’s never funny to embarrass someone on their big day.
Do bring up a happy memory. Feel free to share one or two good recollections you have of the bride or groom (or of them together as a couple).
Don’t make it about you. Remember, this speech needs to be about the couple, so take every opportunity to shine a positive light on them. And if anything happened between you and one of the two or the couple, don’t take this time to apologize, recommends Pushkine.
Do focus on one or two themes. To keep the speech from getting too long, narrow your talking points down to one or two themes, such as when the couple met and everyone realized how great they are together.
Don’t joke about divorce. No one wants to hear the D-word at a wedding—no matter how funny you think the punchline is.
Do stick to the script. Write down your speech and keep it on hand so that you don’t ramble. One page or a flash card with bullet points will suffice.
Don’t get drunk. You might be tempted to take a shot (or two) before your speech to ease any public speaking jitters. But getting tipsy increases your chances of saying the wrong thing or simply slurring your words so that no one can understand you.
“The key to all is to practice out loud as much as possible,” says Pushkine. “This will help through the nerves of speaking in public. If you are truly terrified, do not accept to give a speech…it’s ok to say that you are not comfortable speaking in public.”
What Is A Wedding Speech Writer?
Even with these tips, the idea of writing this speech might still seem like mission impossible. That’s why there are professional wedding speech writers that can help with everything from a couple’s vows to giving a speech that guests will remember for all the right reasons.
Should You Hire a Wedding Speech Writer?
You have to do what makes you comfortable. If writing the speech is simply too stressful for you, then definitely look for a professional that can help you through the process. It doesn’t mean your toast will be any less special. After all, you’ll still be providing the memories and anecdotes that make up the wedding speech, as well as giving in on the big day.
How To Find the Best Wedding Speech Writer Service
When looking for any wedding vendor, it’s wise to ask for referrals. Find out if anyone in your circle has used this type of service and have any recommendations. If not, you can always search for someone on the Internet, but be sure to get referrals before you send over any payment or make a commitment to work with the writer.
We hope these tips helped and you’re ready to start writing! Watch real wedding videos on our site to get more inspo for your own wedding speeches.