Real Talk – Whether it’s a heartfelt tribute, the perfect roast, or (we’re just going to say it) a total bomb, our favorite part of weddings is the toasts. So, what are some important things to consider when it comes to those speeches? Choose what you want, and who you want. Here are some guidelines to help you decide what works for you:
Welcome Toast (if any, 1 is recommended; 2 max): Traditionally given by the Father of the Bride (uber traditionally to welcome “his” guests to his daughter’s wedding). Most commonly now I still see this given by the Father of the Bride or some other VIP family representative. Typically if you want parents to speak at the wedding, this is the time. Bride’s family rep first, followed by the groom’s. In same sex couples – you decide!
Blessing // Grace (if any, generally 1-2 depending on your faith): Whether it’s blessing the challah or your minister saying grace before the meal, the structure of this varies depending on your faith and/or culture. If you are interested in having some sort of blessing but unsure who would give it, consider having the welcome toaster essentially “add-on” the blessing at the end of their speech.
The Main Toasts (2 recommended): We generally recommend that you limit this to your Maid of Honor and your Best Man. Of course this isn’t always possible, but if you do decide to add more speakers than that, note that it can really begin to eat up into your reception time (you are paying big bucks for that band to just be on standby!).
Thank You Speech from the Couple (1): We actually really love when couples want to say a few words of gratitude. This can be super short (and super sweet!) while still being a really meaningful touch for guests.
Speech Length: It’s important to give your toasters some guidelines around length. We recommend 2-4 minutes per speech. You’d be surprised how long that actually is – and also how difficult it can be for people to keep it that length! Rest assured that when we build out your timeline, we build in some buffer to accommodate your long-winded brother-in-law.
When Do Speeches Happen: Every timeline is different and we will work closely with you to ensure that yours perfectly reflects your event as we get closer to the final stretch. We often recommend scheduling the welcome toast/blessing directly after the couple takes their seats for dinner and the remaining toasts to take place after all entrees are served and dinner is winding down. You can take a look at the Sample Timeline on your Google Spreadsheet for a more detailed example.