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Wedding Speeches – Roles, Hints and Tips

Wedding Speeches – Roles, Hints and Tips

Traditions at weddings are what you make them. After all it is your day and no one else’s. 

Here is an outline of what is considered a modern order of speeches. I’ll outline each one, the role and some tips. Remember though, it is your choice whom you have speak at your wedding.

That is, if you decide on any at all. See Wedding Speeches Should I or Shouldn’t I?


  • Master of ceremonies
  • Father / Mother of the bride
  • Father / Mother of the Groom
  • Groom
  • Bride
  • Maid / Matron of honour
  • Best Man

Wedding Speech Roles

The Master Of Ceremonies (MC)

You’re the ‘MAN’ , male or female, you are it. You’re the one running the show. You’ll be the first to speak and its your job to make sure everyone knows whats going on.

This may even mean liaising with the venue manager and other vendors such as the Photographer. No one likes surprises. Timelines are important. You should have a run sheet provided by the venue to coordinate meals and other moments

Your first job is to introduce yourself and your relationship with the bride and groom. Keep in mind that you want everyone to have an amazing time. Welcome the guests and tell the guests of any health and safety items the venue may have.

You’ll then prepare the guests for the arrival of the bridal party and introduce them as they enter the venue.

Using your run sheet, you will be able to see when speeches begin. Introduce each speaker and thank them for speaking.

You also get the job of announcing the meals, cutting of the cake, first dance, bouquet toss and garter toss.

Your last job is to wrap things up and farewell the newlyweds.

Father / Mother Of The Bride

Everyone knows daughters are Daddy’s little girls and there is usually not a dry eye in the house. Needless to say, your speech will be many anecdotes about your little girl.

You will be also welcoming  your son-in-law into your family (try to be nice). Its important here to acknowledge his family too.

If your partner is not speaking don’t forget you’re saying this on their behalf too.

Your main roles are to thank the guests , especially those that have travelled far. If there has been a financial contribution other than your own this is a good time to thank them.

Finally a toast to the bride and groom.

Of course don’t forget the Dad jokes that we all love.

Father / Mother Of The Groom

You will be welcoming  your daughter-in-law into your family . Its important here to acknowledge her family and thank them for speaking.

If your partner is not speaking don’t forget you’re saying this on their behalf too.

Your main role is to praise your son, its that easy. Often you will compliment the bride and groom as a couple and finish with a toast.

The Groom

The grooms job is of course, to sing the praises of his new wife (actual singing optional)! It is important to thank all of the appropriate people who have helped bring your day together.

Don’t forget, make sure you thank the previous speakers such as parents. Generally you’ll be a bit nervous about the pending best man speech.

If your wife is not speaking make sure you offer thanks on her behalf too. Make sure you tell an affectionate story of how you met and fell in love. A nice touch is giving your wife her own toast. Be genuine and speak from your heart.

Thank your groomsmen / best man and finally thank and toast the bridesmaids.

The Bride

It is important to thank all of the appropriate people who have helped bring your day together.  Lets face it, you may also be doing that as a result of your husband forgetting to. Or you may have your own special thanks to give such as your bridesmaids.

You may have a different version of how you met and fell in love. Be genuine and speak from your heart.

Thank your groomsmen / best man and finally thank and toast the bridesmaids.

Maid / Matron of Honour

Your role is complimenting and thanking the bride. This is a great opportunity to make them laugh and tell stories about your friendship.

Offer your congratulations and toast the bride and groom.

The Best Man

The best man is the last on the speeches list. Often the most memorable, when done well.

Remember though that you want to be tasteful in your delivery of the war stories about your best friend.

As with any of the speeches make sure you’re genuine and sincere. A balance of sincerity and humour is a winning formula. If you feel that enough thanks hasn’t been giving to previous speakers feel free to give them a mention.

You get the privilege of reading any messages from absent friends. READ THEM FIRST so you’re not left red faced if they are inappropriate for your audience.

Offer your congratulations and toast the bride and groom.

A final word

Speeches are often complicated by separation or death and they can heighten people’s emotions. Always do what is right by the bride and groom as it is their day. If there is an elephant in the room, its best to point it out and discussed before the day.

Wedding Speeches – Should I or Shouldn’t I?

Wedding Speeches – Should I or Shouldn’t I?


Best Man Wedding SpeechDoes the idea of 100 people looking at you behind a lectern paralyse you with fear? Yes? Then you’re also wondering should you be speaking at your wedding?

As with many modern wedding traditions it is what you make of it. There is no one telling you , you have to do it. If the idea of making a speech makes you feel uncomfortable and anxious, then would it be the best idea for you to do it?

Would it take your thoughts away from other special moments throughout of the day? Could you enjoy your ceremony if you’re thinking about tanking in your speech? If it created this much angst for you, you could always have someone speak on your behalf. Someone you trust such as your partner or friends.

You may feel more comfortable taking people you wish to thank aside at your reception. This may work better for them also if praising them in front of everyone would make them uncomfortable.

For many reasons though, if you can move past this fear it’s an ideal time to speak. You will never get a better opportunity to show your heart felt appreciation for someone in your life. Much planning goes into a wedding and you have called upon many people to be part of your day. There is no better time for you to say thank you.

As a photographer, the speeches can be a fabulous time to capture laughter, sentiment and tears. These are the main reasons why I love my job, being able to capture raw unguarded moments. The real love that people show for each other, in my view, is priceless.

"Best" Best Man Speech

Here is a summary of some pros and cons. Ultimately , after all your consideration, it comes down to one simple statement, which is, Do you actually want to speak?

If the answer no, then ask, “If I didn’t would I have regrets?”

Either way its your choice!


  • With structured speeches run by the MC you reduce the chance of people speaking if you don’t want them to.
  • There will never be a better time to show your appreciation.
  • Letting someone speak may be a great honour for them if they have not been otherwise included.
  • You give others an insight into your story / life and appreciate the commitment you’ve made to each other.


  • Crippled by the thought of public speaking? You will be out of your comfort zone and it can impact the feeling of the day.
  • Things can go south very quickly if a person giving the speech puts there foot in it. We’ve all seen the Wedding Singer.
  • Speeches can drag on if you don’t have structure. Choose your MC wisely.


If you have made the decision that you want to have speeches click here for the list of who you may want to speak.

Wedding Anniversary Ideas

One of the best ideas I have seen from a wedding was at Jason & Renee’s wedding at Riverlife on the Brisbane river. They provided 8 Bottles in a stand and each was labeled for a significant milestone of their marriage. Guests were able to write messages and place them into the bottles for the years to come. It’s a beautiful touch. Below are a description of those wedding anniversary milestones and a few gift ideas.

1st Anniversary

The first Anniversary is symbolised by Paper and the flower of choice are Carnations.

Some gift ideas.  A printed photo of your wedding day;  A newspaper from your wedding date; A gift voucher ; Tickets are paper..  take your partner to the movies or a show.

Our favourite would be a love letter from the heart, it costs you nothing but is priceless.

2nd Anniversary

The 2nd anniversary is Cotton and the flowers of choice are Cosmon (Type of sunflower)

Some gift ideas for your 2nd Anniversary. Go clothes shopping ; New Sheets ; For some fun fairy floss (cotton candy) ; Photos are also printed on a cotton medium called rag.

Our favourite would be a framed embroidered keepsake of your favourite inspirational quote

3rd Anniversary

Your Third Wedding Anniversary is Leather and the flower choice are Fuchsias.

Some gift ideas; A Wallet; Leather Photo frame; a leather bracelet (like Pandora) ; new shoes ; leather everything! Its a pretty easy year this one.

Our favourite would be to think outside of the box and get something fluffy on the end of a leather lead & collar . Everyone loves puppies.

4th Anniversary

Your Fourth Anniversary is Linen and your flowers are Geraniums

Some gift ideas, and this one is a tough one to be creative. Some new cushions; New bed linen is an obvious one; Some cool linen clothes for a beach holiday

Our favourite would be a linen bound photo album

5th Anniversary

Fifth Wedding Anniversary is wood and your flowers are daisies

Could there be an easier year . Our gift ides , a weekend in a log cabin; photo frames ; new furniture ; something delicious from an oak barrel

Our favourite would be to buy a tree and plant it together.

10th Anniversary

Your tenth anniversary is Tin or aluminium and your flowers are Daffodils

That doesn’t sound too exciting and the thought of someone receiving a ‘can’ of something could lead to divorce. It’s a good thing that in modern times you can celebrate the first decade with diamonds. Who needs an excuse , diamonds it is!

Some tenth wedding anniversary ideas. Jewelry; ornaments ; keepsakes.

Our best gift idea would be if you were the type to keep all the little things that were meaningful from your years together. Ticket stubs from date nights, brochures from trips away, etc and keep them in a little tin to give. You say stalker , I say romantic. If you can’t pull that off diamonds it is !!



15th Anniversary

Your 15th Wedding Anniversary is Glass or Crystal and your flowers are Roses

Some gift ideas, although this one is obvious with so many choices. Crystal champagne glasses and some great champagne ; Photo frames; some glass etching; a beautiful vase full of roses; new sunglasses.

Our pick would have to be a classic watch, although technically this is for your 31st , I like the idea of the glass face.

20th Anniversary

Your twentieth anniversary is China and your flowers are Day Lilies

Some gift ideas,  The obvious china dinning pieces ; If you take someone out for chinese you may be spending your 21st alone unless you’re being literal and planned a trip to China

Our Favourite gift idea would be a beautiful degustation dinner in the best restaurant , keep that china coming and make it delicious

Choosing A Brisbane Wedding Photographer

Choosing a wedding photographer can be both a daunting and an intimidating task. There are so many available for you to choose from. So what separates them from each other?  This list of questions will continue to grow the more you think about it but here are a few questions to help you make your decision.

Choosing A Wedding Photographer

Choosing A Wedding Photographer for YOU

Above all else you will want your photographer to capture the essence of your wedding day without exception. This of course is the number one purpose of you hiring a photographer. The majority of my brides become emotional after we present their final products to them. They are able to re-live those moments again and again. Sometimes the day goes so fast for couples that they see parts of their day consciously for the first time.

So lets think about that for a second, it’s your wedding day. It’s not like hiring any other service as part of your day.



In my mind that person would need to be someone who I felt comfortable to be around all day. Someone who was helpful & sincere in all situations.

How do you feel around them when you first meet them?

Do you feel comfortable and relaxed?

When you get closer to making a decision of who to go with there may not be much difference in price or product. The number one thing you need to consider is how much of a rapport do I have with the photographer.

Read more about Oakman Photography and lets have discuss your day without obligation.

Choosing A Wedding PhotographerQuestions you should be asking your photographer

  • Here a some questions you should have answered before booking your wedding photographer. The best time to do this is during your first meeting with them.


  • Are you the person who will be photographing my wedding? Sometimes studios subcontract to different photographers. Know who is shooting your wedding!


  • What experience & qualifications do they have? Have they done any weddings that are a similar style and size? Are the venues familiar to them? You will get a feel for them here if they are the right person for you.


  • Are they a member of any professional photographers associations ? These associations will have a codes of conduct for its members to abide by. They support the photographers, and most importantly support the consumer as well. See more on our About Us page


  • Have you shot a wedding at my ceremony and reception venue? If not, do you plan to check it out in advance? What pre-planning they perform before each wedding? Ensure they check out the venues/locations before hand.


  • How old is the portfolio you are seeing? Is this their own recent work?


  • How  long before I receive my photos? This can vary from each studio but its important to make sure they meet your expectations.


  • If I want digital images what resolution will they be? What you receive can depend on what packages you may have chosen with your photographer. A question to ask yourself is what you would do with them if you got them?


  • Do you have a backup camera? How do you ensure the backing up of my photos during the day?


  • What will you receive from them at the end of the wedding? Are they good value for money?


  • Do you have a backup plan for yourself if you’re ill or incapacitated?


  • Contact Oakman Photography and we can answer these and any more questions without obligation.
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