It’s only natural to feel a pang of nervousness when you’re asked to give a wedding toast. We agree this is no easy feat—it’s hard to know where to begin and what to say. We want to help you calm your wedding toast jitters, so we’ve created a step-by-step template for you. All you have to do is replace the examples with your own stories! Consider it your guide to giving the best speech ever.
Make sure you introduce yourself to the crowd. Not everybody is going to know who you are, so it’s good to clarify right off the bat. It’s also a good idea to note how and when you met the bride or groom to give guests some context.
Ex) Jessica and I met freshman year of college when we lived in the same dorm. We’ve been best friends ever since!
Recall the first time they met
Were you there when the couple was first introduced? Did you introduce them? Do you remember what the bride or groom first said to you after they met? Work their first interaction into your speech or what you remember thinking when you heard about them for the first time. Did your friend seem excited? Nervous? Did they get off on the wrong foot? A trip down memory lane is a nice way to segue into your toast.
Ex) After Jessica and Neil went on their first date, Jess came home and told me that Neil was a Yankees fan. I remember thinking, “Oh boy, this should be interesting,” since Jessica is a Red Sox fan. But hey, they made it work!
Tell a story (or two)
Think about a memory you two have together and tie it into the wedding day somehow. Was your friend extra competitive during sports in college? Did the two of you play pranks on each other when you were younger? Did he or she get grounded for something really funny in high school? Once you have something in mind, try to connect it to the bride and groom’s future together or what it says about their marriage.
Ex) Jessica always took competitions really seriously in college, even if they were just for fun. I remember avoiding her during Greek Week, she was so into it. Just warning you, Neil, that Jessica is a fierce competitor so be prepared to lose every argument.
Don’t be afraid to really tell the bride or groom how you feel about them. If you’ve been best friends since childhood, let them know all the ways they’ve influenced you. If you met in college, talk about their great qualities and what a special friend they are to you. If there’s ever a time to be sappy, now’s the time. They’ll surely appreciate the kind words.
Ex) Jessica was always there for me. Whether I needed a shoulder to cry on or a couch to sleep on, I knew I could count on her. I know she’ll be an amazing wife to Neil.
Talk about what a great match they are
As a close friend or sibling of the bride or groom, chances are you’ll honestly be able to speak on how they influence and complement each other. Did the bride become a neat freak after meeting the groom? Or did the groom develop a strong love for romantic comedies once they started dating? Small things like that are cute to note, but don’t forget to mention the big things like how happy they make each other, or how they’ve both become better people since getting together.
Ex) I’ve never seen Jessica so happy as she is when she’s with Neil. He makes her laugh when she’s sad, he calms her down when she’s frustrated, and most of all he loves her just for being her.
Wrap it up
Congrats! You’re almost finished. As you near the end of the toast, wish them both the best on their journey together, raise your glass (and encourage guests to do the same) and cheers to their future.
Ex) Cheers to the newlyweds! I wish them a lifetime of happiness!