Writing a wedding toast is an honour that shouldn’t be taken lightly. If you’ve been asked to deliver a toast at someone’s wedding, that means that the happy couple trusts and values you enough to have you deliver a speech on one of the most important days of their lives!
Because this is such an important moment, you’ll want to be able to give the best and most heartfelt wedding toast possible. A speech with the perfect blend of funny anecdotes and genuine emotion that will leave the lucky couple—and everyone else—reaching for a handkerchief.
Who Delivers Wedding Toasts?
In a traditional wedding, the most important people in the couple’s lives are asked to give wedding toasts. This is usually the best man, the maid of honour, and the father of the bride and mother of the groom.
The parents usually start off the weddings toasts at the reception, but depending on the program, the best man or maid of honour can go first. The best man gives a toast to the groom, the maid of honour gives one for the bride, and the parents offer a wedding toast to the bride and groom, giving their blessing to the union.
Of course, wedding toasts aren’t restricted to just those people. They can include anyone the bride and groom asks, whether they’re a groomsman, bridesmaid, or not. If you’re asked to give a wedding toast, then that means that the couple holds you in a special place in their hearts, and that can put a lot of pressure on you.
But fear not! It’s fairly easy to deliver a good wedding speech. The important thing to remember is that it’s not the words themselves that count, but the sentiment of your speech.
As long as you can give the soon-to-be newlyweds a sincere wish for their lasting happiness, you really can’t go wrong!
6 Tips To Write An Amazing Wedding Toast
When writing a wedding toast, you may feel like you’re at a loss for what to say. You might be having trouble figuring out how to start or how to end your toast. To help you out, here are 6 classic tips to help you write the best wedding toast ever:
1. Kicking It Off With A Bang
There are a hundred different ways to start a wedding toast. You can open with relevant quotes from famous authors, personalities, or even a line or two from a sonnet. If the wedding party is a Christian one, you can even use a biblical verse. You keep it simple and start by congratulating the happy couple, or with a short story about the bride or groom.
The possibilities are endless, but the most important thing is to start with a strong opener that will show your personality and your connection with the couple.
2. Keep It Short
Nobody likes sitting through a wedding toast that drags on for too long. We’ve all heard of the cringey wedding toast speech that lasts for about an hour and puts everyone to sleep instead of putting them to tears. The ideal length of a good wedding toast is about three to eight minutes, ten at the absolute maximum.
Keep it short and simple. Don’t try to include your entire history with the couple, just the best parts. Remember that you’re not the only one that’s going to be giving a wedding toast, so be considerate of everyone whoever’s going next, and of course, to the rest of the wedding guests.
3. Don’t Embarrass The Newlyweds (Too Much)
Embarrassing the bride or groom is a wedding tradition that is present in nearly every wedding toast, but there’s a thin line between light, nostalgic embarrassment and hardcore shame. Whether you’re one of their best friends or a sibling, you’re bound to have at least a couple of anecdotes about the happy couple where one or both of them did something a little embarrassing.
The trick to this is not to dwell on the negative aspect of whatever they did, but instead, shift the focus onto how it made you feel, or how adorable it was, or how it showed you what kind of person they are. Keep in mind to avoid potentially painful or triggering topics, such as previous partners or hard times in their lives.
If you’re a brother, sister, or best friend of one of the newlyweds, then use old pictures if you have them! Everyone loves to laugh at their younger selves, and everyone else will laugh along with them. If you’re not sure about a certain story or picture, then it’s best to get the all-clear from the bride or groom before using it in your toast, so that you avoid causing any sore feelings.
4. Be Funny, But Meaningful
It can be tempting to treat a wedding toast like your own personal 15-minute stand-up comedy routine, but you should be careful not to overdo it. Too much humour may overshadow the real reason you’re giving the wedding toast.
It’s great to be funny, but if you have your audience in stitches the whole time, they might forget that they’re there for a very emotional and meaningful reason. Think of your toast like the wedding cake: humour is the icing on top.
Always keep in mind that you’re writing the speech for the couple, so after every funny story, let them know how happy you are for their union and how excited you are that they’re about to spend the rest of their lives together.
5. The Toast Is About The Couple, Not You
While you may have a lot of stories you want to tell, it is best to keep in mind that you’re not the one getting married, so make sure your toast is focused on the couple.
Of course, you can always find ways to connect a personal anecdote to the couple, but just don’t overdo it. Too many personal anecdotes can make your speech drag a lot and have people checking their watches.
6. Remember To End With A Toast To The Couple
Surprisingly, a lot of people forget to actually toast at the end of a wedding toast. When you’re delivering your final line, remember to raise your glass and give a hearty “cheers” to the couple.
Now, you may also be wondering how you should end your toast. There are as many ways to end a wedding toast as there is to begin one. Usually, the end of your toast is when you deliver a witty or romantic one-liner while raising your glass.
Be creative, but not too obscure. It’s fine to use quotes or lyrics as long as they have a significant impact. You’re free to make up your own, of course, but remember to tailor it to the couple.
Famous Wedding Toast Examples
If you’re still fresh out of ideas, a little research might help. Here are some of the most famous wedding toasts of all time for you to draw inspiration from. If you cry from watching them, you know that they’re good!
Julia Roberts in My Best Friend’s Wedding
Although Julia Roberts’ character tries to break up the soon-to-be-married couple in this classic romantic comedy, her wedding toast in this movie is one of the most iconic wedding toasts of all time, ever. Laden with genuine emotion and sincere happiness for the couple, this is one of the most emotional scenes in any movie, period.
2. Nick Jonas’ Speech To His Wife
Love him or hate him, Nick Jonas delivered one of the most heartfelt speeches at his own wedding, letting everyone know how much he truly valued his wife and her family and friends.
Here’s a snippet from the speech:
"It wasn't too far from here that I took Madhu (Chopra, Priyanka's mother) out for lunch and asked if I could marry her daughter. To be here with all of you, who have helped shape who she has become, means a lot to me. You have welcomed me with such open arms. So thank you for that...Tonight is about celebrating and spending some time together. My first introduction to all of you. So thank you again and thanks to Madhu for putting this together and my beautiful wife. (turning to Priyanka) I couldn't be happier being with you."
3. Prince Harry And Prince William’s Best Man Speeches To Each Other
The two royally embarrassed each other in spades, but they both expressed their happiness for each other in between in-jokes and fun made at each other’s expense. They also showed a lot of respect to each other’s respective spouses with a heartwarming welcome to the family.