Image by Cam Grove Photography via Lucy and Stew’s Great Ocean Road Wedding

Happy Friday brides and grooms!

I trust your wedding planning is going smoothly and you are ticking off your to do lists and organising everything from chalk board artists to sugar crafting fairies!
If you are in need of any suppliers, services or products please feel free to ask! My networks are wide and varied and I would love an opportunity to connect you with other like minded people who I know love what they do and show it in their goods and services.

This month I have launched my “pits and peaks” series. A regular email blast out discussing the upsides and downsides of common wedding considerations, events and situations.

Today I wanted to share with you some wedding speeches help. Traditionally the father of the bride is the 1st in the speech giving order and his time in the spotlight can be humbling, hilarious or horrendous. The following guide may be of help to your “Dads” or in fact anyone giving a speech. Please feel free to share.

Image by Christine Lim via Elise and Denan’s Quirky Backyard Wedding

The pitfalls – Dad will most likely be nervous, rather emotional, perhaps besieged by a dose of stage fright or be slightly under the weather (or table in some cases!). Some men are reserved and of few words and some literally don’t know when to stop. If you notice any of these signs, my peak proposals are; offer support by way of physical comfort – hold hands or hug while he’s speaking, make a joke to lighten up the tension or choose a more informal approach to speeches and just pass the microphone around to anyone who would like to say something. We did this at our wedding and both of us agree that it was a real highlight – almost 80 people spoke, just a few sentences each however we experienced some of the most heartfelt and moving sentiments, wishes and reflections and created a memory that will last forever in our minds and hearts.

Wedding Speeches Help Guide

A great speech is well thought out, practiced, organised and approximately 3-7 minutes in length. True and heart-felt stories are always well received. Be yourself, share your emotion, pepper us with humour and above all enjoy!

1. Try and learn your speech: You don’t need to know it by heart, however read it over and over again in the lead-up to the wedding so that it’s familiar. You’ll feel much more confident and relaxed.

2. Make copies: Make several copies of your speech and give them to friends. Many people panic about losing their speech – if you have a few copies, this won’t be an issue.

3. Take your time: The slower and clearer your speech, the better it will be received. And don’t be afraid to pause for effect after a joke or after you say something you want the audience to appreciate.

4. Watch your drink: Have one or two drinks beforehand to calm the nerves, however no more.

5. Animate: Using your hands to help explain things will make you feel more confident and relaxed. Practice any jokes to ensure their delivery results in laughter for the right reasons.

Some more tips:

  • A nice way to settle your nerves and ease into your speech is to say a few impromptu words about the wedding day so far and how perfect everything has been. If you have some funny stories from the lead up to the wedding, or the early part of the wedding day itself, you can also include them at the start of the speech.
  • Welcome the parents of the groom and relatives and friends from both sides.
  • Compliment the bride on her appearance and relate stories from her childhood and family life to the guests. This is the crucial part of your father of the bride speech. It’s not often you get to discuss your daughter’s many qualities and achievements, so make the most of it and indulge yourself. Make sure you compliment her; tell her how wonderful she looks and how proud you are of her.
  • Try to talk a little about your daughter’s early years, perhaps tell a funny story or two about when she was growing up. Feel free to tease her about some of the things she has done however be kind and don’t say anything that you know will really embarrass her.
  • Welcome the groom into your family. Express your happiness at the connection between the two families that the marriage will bring. Anecdotes that work well in father of the bride speeches include your first encounter with the groom, the first time you realised your daughter was in love, and your reaction to their engagement. Depending on your relationship with your new son-in-law it’s fine to poke fun at him a little, and to joke about what he is letting himself in for in marrying your daughter. It may be that you don’t entirely approve of the groom, but the father of the bride speech is certainly not the time to express that. Keep your speech positive and focus on how your new son-in-law makes your daughter happy.
  • In good humour offer words of wisdom and advice to the happy couple for the start of their married life together perhaps referring to the speech your father-in-law gave at your wedding.
  • Thank everyone who has helped organize the wedding including friends and family who played a vital role, DIY projects the bride or groom took on and all suppliers including the celebrant, wedding planner, florist, venue, photography, cake, make-up artist etc
  • Propose a toast to the bride and groom.

If you’re still having trouble with the format, another idea is to have your MC ask your Dad a series of questions which in turn would act as his speech in an unconventional way.

A father’s handwritten letter read by someone other than your father is another beautiful experience.

If your Dad has passed away or is not an integral part of your life perhaps you would like to consider some alternatives; a reading or poem, a film montage of all the greatest lines from mutually favourite movies, ask your Mum, your brother, a grandparent or an Uncle or your new in-laws to make the speech instead or give it yourself!

Here’s what my daughter Brittany read at my wedding as written by my Dad, now you can see where my writing flair originates! To pre-frame, Brittany is 23 now and got married to Sam almost 5 years ago under a lovely old tree in the heat of the Kyogle outback, a small country town in NSW. The “someone” by my Dad’s side was my Mum who passed away prior to Brit’s wedding yet is very much a living part of our lives to this day. My Dad is still hopelessly in love with my Mum and every night toasts her photo on the mantle sharing his thoughts on his day with a lit candle, freshly picked flowers and a swig of port.

Now a while back I walked a bride
Up an aisle laid on grass
And when I gave her to her love
Came the moments that would last

For as I sat back with the others
Beneath that huge, old tree
Waves of happiness and love just flowed
For all to feel and see

And people were affected
No more than the Mother of the bride
Who while sharing all her daughters day
Got swept up in the tide

For later on between the hugs and giving Gav a kiss
She whispered in my ear these words
“Pop, I’m gunna get me some of this!”
And knowing when her minds made up
And she decided who to have
I thought; “well this won’t take to long”

And I feared for poor old Gav
And sure enough here today
With her own love by her side
Her dream came true and she became
The sweet, young, blushing bride

For all the joys she shared with others
That day beneath the tree
Has done a big full circle
For today she walked those steps with me

And when I gave her to her Gav
And watched them holding hands
And listened to their loving words
As they exchanged their wedding bands
I knew their cup of joy was full
Right to the very brim

Cause he’d just married her
And she’d just married him
And while all of this was going on
There was someone by my side
Who had such a loving, radiant smile

Seeing her Jacie-Lee become a bride

And I knew her heart was full of joy
And we’d talk about this day
When next our minds and thoughts entwine
As that’s become our way.

And finally, ditching speeches altogether is always an option – just enjoy each others’ company, mingle and celebrate your newlywed status.

Swirl divider3 Vendors Favourites Jacie Whitfield

Ms Gingham says: Thanks for the great ideas Jacie!

Jacie of Your Bridesmaid Celebrant Services says: My business philosophy is simple; be original, personable, give exceptional service, great value for money and joy. I adore anything homemade, handmade, bespoke, artesian, useful, brimming with creativity and that which is crafted so obviously from love, talent and thoughtfulness.