Speeches by family and friends can often go one of two ways....
1. You are so excited to hear the beautiful comments form your loved ones, the more the merrier you say!
2. (Significantly more common) You're dreading listening to what everyone has to say or dreading the fact they may go on for just far too long.
Here's what we can do to make it more bearable... it's easy... simply communicate with your speech givers!
First decide on the order, and number of toasts before the wedding.
Write it down and send the information to all the speechmakers, the MC, and wedding planner.
It might be a good idea to check in with your wedding planning team at the venue, especially if you will be needing any recommendations for timing of the food service.
Once you have decided how many speeches you are going to have, you will want to consider the length of each speech and communicate that to the speech givers. Make sure you let those giving a speech know how long they have, and kindly ask that they abide by this time length.
Keep in mind that not everyone wants to give speech, so if anyone is uncomfortable speaking in front of a large audience consider asking someone else. A" traditional" format does not need to be followed, so instead of the best man, you can always ask the maid of honour or another member of the wedding party to step in.
Now that you've decided on order, consider placement through the night.
Not everyone needs to go at once and you can stagger them into multiple groups throughout the night.
My rule of thumb is any more than 4 speeches should be split up to avoid immense boredom and empty glasses for those "let's raise our glass to the newlyweds" finishing lines.
Do try and have all the speeches finished before kicking off the dancing though.
Also consider the finishing time of your videographer if hired so they can capture this moment.
Now on to what to say.
The golden rule in the wedding industry with speeches, and one you should keep firmly in mind when writing your speech is also dubbed the Grandma Rule. If you wouldn’t say it in front of yours (or someone else’s) grandma, leave it out!
Try and steer clear of swearing if you can. It may be just how this person usually communicates but it is still a wedding after all.
You might drop the f-bomb in every other sentence when hanging out with your friends, but there could be children in your audience and those who are easily offended by this kind of language. Of course when we've had a few beverages who knows what can happen and if you have a particularly potty mouthed speech giver, consider having them on earlier in the night.
Try and remind them, it's not a rendition of everything you and they have ever experienced together. It's a congratulations on getting married speech. Of course pick a few moments to recap but in the end, ask them try to keep it pretty much what it is, a congrats.
What to cover- Usual speech givers
What the mother or father could cover
Thank guests for attending, especially those who have travelled, and those who helped to pull the day together
Talk about your daughter (or son) and share fond memories you have of them growing up
Boast about some accomplishments of theirs that have made you proud, one of which might be meeting their new spouse
Compliment your child’s new spouse
Wish them happiness in the future, maybe with some words of wisdom
What the maid of honour or best man could cover
What you love about the bride or groom
An anecdote or memory involving the bride or groom
The love story
Show the partner some love
Looking to the future
What the newlyweds could cover
Thank your guests for coming and remember those who could not be there
Share your love story from a personal view and how lucky you feel to have found one another
You might like to share a quirky story about your wedding planning and how pleased you are with how the day has panned out
Give a shout out to your new spouse and maybe share a little something about what you love most about them
A toast! To your guests, to your marriage, and to the future.
Hopefully this guide helps you a little with what you're asking your guests to chat about but if you ahve anmy questions, reach out!