So You Are Giving a Wedding Toast
The Bride and Groom have given you a great honor. Delivering a wedding toast means that you are one of their closest friends. It also means that your words will play a major role in their wedding film. We use the toasts to help tell the story of the wedding day. This means you will be a centerpiece in the film that they watch for the rest of their lives... no pressure. :)
We have seen many wedding toasts over the years - some good, some bad - but we want to help make yours excellent. Here are a few tips to help you with your toast.
1. Have a Plan
Do not try to “wing it”. We have seen countless people attempt to give toasts without a plan. Nine times out of ten it does not end well. This is especially true if you get nervous. You should always have a plan. Toasts should be written with an introduction, a body and a conclusion.
2. Use Stories
Stories are a great way to calm nerves and gain the attention of your audience. Every great wedding toast has a story. “The first time she talked about him she said…”, “I kept hearing these stories about this girl…”, “I know they are perfect for each other because this happened…” the possibilities are literally endless. Choose wisely.
3. Be Succinct
Wedding toasts should not be drawn out. Remember, your audience is ready to eat, drink and/or dance, so they might not be to excited if you filibuster the reception and hold up the food service. A good speech is somewhere between two and four minutes. Do your best to stay on topic, and you will not lose your audience.
4. Be original
You do not have to google anything. Some people look for “cookie cutter” toasts online, but you don’t need it. Just be honest. Talk about why you and the bride/groom are such good friends. Something genuine is always better than something copied.
5. Practice and Rehearse
Planning an excellent toast and delivering an excellent toast are two different things. In order to deliver a great toast you should practice and rehearse it at least few times before the wedding day. You don’t need to memorize it, but you also don’t want to read the whole toast off of notecards. Find a balance.
6. Keep the Drinks to a minimum
Let’s make no mistake, the partying is inevitable, but the last thing you want to do is show up as the drunk person who gave a horrible wedding toast. Drinking is fine. Actually, it is encouraged… after you deliver an excellent toast. Try to keep it to a two drink max before the speech, some people might need to cut that to one drink.
7. Do not embarrass the Bride and Groom
We cannot stress this enough. Do not embarrass the Bride and Groom. Don’t try to make them look bad. Don’t try to have fun at their expense. Don’t tell stories about their exes. Try to stay away from stories about bodily functions. It would be a shame to embarrass the bride and groom in front of their loved ones. If you think it might be offensive, or hurt someone's feelings, then it probably is not worth the risk.
Take a few minutes to look at some of the speeches in our previous films.