Our Best Wedding Toast Tips
By DJ Cam Reeve
Have you been asked to offer a toast at a family member or close friend’s wedding? It can seem like a daunting task! After all, being handed the microphone on one of the most important days in a couple’s life is no small honor. The internet is full of examples, both tear-jerking and nausea-inducing, of wedding toasts. In this short article, we’ll share our time-tested wedding toast tips for offering a wedding toast that is personal, powerful, and perfectly timed.
Wedding Toast Tips - The Right Length
If you take nothing away from this article except for one thing, let it be this; the perfect toast is the perfect length. To nail it, you only need to be aware of what NOT to do. You don’t want to be remembered for the length of your toast, as that means it was most likely too short or too long.
Everyone is familiar with that one uncle who barrels on in one, unending run-on sentence. Don’t be that guy. Rehearse your toast and aim to be in the neighborhood of 2-5 minutes. We’ve found this to be the perfect length to grab everyone’s attention and hold it until the last sentence. If your toast is shorter that’s fine, as the alternative (going longer than 5 minutes) is rarely a successful endeavor.
We feel like this should be self-explanatory, but we are going to get it out there anyway – be appropriate with your storytelling. Listen, we get it, everyone wants their chance to share some funny story about the bride or groom that no one else knows. But, at the end of the day, a few chuckles for you should never come at the expense of the couple feeling awkward or embarrassed.
Take a few moments to put yourself in their shoes and consider if you would want the same story to be told about you. Also, consider that you aren’t simply sharing this story with a group of close friends – the couple’s family, from small children to more traditionally-minded grandparents – may be in attendance. When in doubt, it never hurts to ask the couple if the story is OK to share.
Alcohol Before Toasts? Not The Best Idea
With many weddings having a cocktail hour before dinner, you’ll likely have had some alcohol before your moment to speak arrives. Even if you plan to absolutely turn up once the party starts, we’d highly recommend holding off on the majority of your drinking until after your toast. Do you know what kind of toasts wind up on the internet for people to cringe at? The drunk ones.
Standing in Front of a Mic
When it’s your turn to give a toast, you’ll most likely walk up to the dance floor or front of the room and be given a microphone. If the microphone is on a stand, this part is easy! The DJ or emcee should quickly adjust the microphone to sit at the level of your mouth if not don't be afraid to take a moment and try to get it the right height. Simply step up to the microphone so that your mouth is only a few inches away.
Speak loudly and clearly in your normal voice. Don’t worry if it seems too loud – the DJ can easily bring down the level if they need to. It’s much easier to bring the volume down than to try and compensate for someone who is whispering or standing away from a microphone! If it is not on a stand hold the microphone close to (and pointing at) your mouth; don’t let it drop to your chest.
Let’s be real – we can give you all the tips in the world, but sometimes you step in front of the mic your nerves take over and your vision narrows to a tunnel. Regardless of what happens, try and remain aware of the room around you. Recognize the cues on the couple’s faces and the audience. Glance at the DJ from time to time. All these people should be able to hint as to whether your toast is going well, dragging on, or whether you’re too soft.
Don't Forget to Smile 😜
Most importantly, be in the moment and enjoy the chance to celebrate these very important people in your life! Being chosen to offer a toast is an honor, and the couple is no doubt grateful for your willingness to be a part of their special day. Smile, tell a joke, focus on their love story, and be yourself, but be respectful to the people you are celebrating.