Wedding Speeches – A Checklist

After my own dad didn’t mention me, or my new husband for that matter, in his Father of the Bride speech, I wanted to put together a few bullet points of things that definitely should be mentioned in wedding speeches.  From my own experience (and as a regular wedding goer), I hope I can help to point the men in your life down the right path.  This is by no means a formal etiquette guide, but gents should use this as a basic starting point; a checklist to keep everyone happy!  (Including the bride!) 

In my opinion, your wedding should reflect you as a couple, there should be no rules per say, but the below is the traditional order that wedding speeches usually run – along with my key points for each speech:  

Wedding Breakfast


Father of the Bride
•    Thank everyone for coming
•    Mention how beautiful your daughter looks
•    Mention how proud you are of your daughter
•    Welcome the groom to the family
•    Compliment the groom (perhaps for looking after your daughter)
•    Explain why the bride and groom are well suited
•    Thank everyone for coming again and wish them a great evening
•    Congratulate the happy couple


•    Thank everyone for coming
•    Thank both sets of parents for their help and support
•    Mention your new in-laws, and how they welcomed you into the family
•    Say thank you for any special efforts (perhaps a homemade cake, or wedding DIY help)
•    Mention how beautiful the bride is
•    Compliment the bride
•    Thank the bride for organising such a brilliant wedding


Best Man
•    Introduce yourself – not everyone will know who you are
•    Mention how beautiful the bridesmaid(s) look
•    Mention how you know the groom
•    Mention how lucky the groom is to have the bride
•    Wish everyone a great day


•    Announce the wedding breakfast opening/closing
•    Say any personal thank yous (only those that have not been mentioned already)
•    Toast the day and wish the bride and groom every happiness together

Insert anecdotes to all speeches as necessary – but keep them short and sweet.

Props are also fun but keep them relevant – they should be big enough so that everyone can see them from afar, but small enough that the venue doesn’t have to accommodate them separately. 

That said, to keep things more relaxed, we got our speeches out the way before our meal in the bar area of our reception venue, then followed the traditional order thereafter.  This meant it was a bit more chilled and there was free movement for people to nip to the toilet or for a cigarette should the speeches go on a bit.  This also meant all the gents in the wedding party could completely relax come dinner, and the party started immediately! 

We also asked the Father of the Groom to give a short toast before we started our meal, as we wanted to include the whole family – I thought it quite unfair that, traditionally, only the Father of the Bride should speak (although of course traditionally this was because the Father of Bride was footing the bill for the wedding). 

Whatever you do, be gracious, thankful, and go easy on the booze until the speeches are out the way.  

P.S.  I’ve been shortlisted for a Wedding Blog Award!!  I’m beyond excited!  Don’t forget to vote me for Best Rising Starhere!  (Voting closes 30th September.)  Thanks so much!!  xx 

Further reading:  

10 Things Not to Include in a Speech; by Condé Nast’s Brides Magazine: 

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