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Planning Your Mother of the Bride Speech

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Traditionally, wedding speeches fell upon the fathers of the bride and groom, but as we’re all modern souls here, we say, “To heck with tradition!”.

More and more brides are welcoming a mother of the bride speech, as often, it’s the mama bears who have the best marriage advice – not to mention a funny anecdote or two!

If you’re planning on saying a few words at your daughter’s wedding, here’s how to get started.

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Planning Your Mother of the Bride Speech

Standing up in a room full of people and delivering a speech (even if the bubbly has already begun to flow) can be daunting, but with a little pointer here and there, you’ll be on your way to having the wedding crowd in the palm of your hand!

Read More: Speech Order At A Wedding: Who, What, & When? (+ Tips)

Mother of the Bride Speeches Funny

Weddings are celebratory affairs and the speeches shouldn’t be approached with a sombre mind, irrespective of your own personal views on marriage, and some of the best speeches are the ones injected with humour.

From sharing your hilarious stories of your child’s antics, to imparting marriage-related wisdom, to inspiring a tear or two with a moving tribute, your speech should at least raise one chuckle!

Here are some amusing points you can include to make the crowd (and your daughter) giggle.

Do:

  • Enlighten everyone with a nickname you have/had for your daughter.
  • Make her blush by revealing her childhood crush.
  • Share her weirdest/most annoying habit.
  • Tell a story from her childhood that will have everyone in fits of giggles.
  • Enlighten everyone about when the now-groom first entered the picture and if there are any funny stories around that (awkward introductions, etc.).
  • Share a funny tale or two from your own experience with marriage.

Don’t:

  • Share anything too personal/embarrassing. It’s your daughter’s special day and she should feel amazing through every step of it.
  • Include humour that exceeds the boundaries of lighthearted jibes. No one wants to be the butt of the joke.
  • Include anecdotes involving exes; this might not be welcomed.
  • Be cynicle. Not everyone has great experiences with marriage, but that shouldn’t be included within the speech, however well-meaning.
  • Say anything that you wouldn’t want said at your own wedding.

Short Mother of the Bride Speeches

No one likes to sit through a Shakespearean-length monologue – especially when everyone’s dying to tuck into the delicious wedding feast, so short really is sweet.

When planning a speech of a shorter nature, keep it focused on three or four points:

  • Introduction of who you are and thank the guests for attending.
  • Some kind words about your daughter/how thrilled you are for her upcoming marriage.
  • An amusing story – who was her first celebrity crush and how do they compare to her partner (for example)?
  • Closing remarks: another quick thank you, raise a glass, etc.
newhall estate scotland wedding of samantha and jamie

Photography by Wildling Weddings at Newhall State

Mother of the Bride Toast

Most weddings feature more than one speech, so it’s important that the speakers liaise with each other beforehand to agree on who is going to be the last speech-giver, AKA, the one who will raise a toast.

The toast is arguably the most important part of any wedding speech, so choose your words wisely and in a way that will make everyone excited to raise their glass in honour of the newlyweds.

The closing remarks should be centered around the toast, so you can include a few amusing words of wisdom or a heartfelt tribute before asking the crowd to raise a glass.

Mother of the Bride Speech - Top Tips

The mother of the bride speech at any wedding is often memorable, but it’s important to make sure it’s memorable in a good way. Here are a few ways to make sure yours is a hit:

Be confident - even if you have to fake it!

Most of us struggle with public speaking and the bigger the crowd, the more nerve-wracking it can be.

While confidence may not come naturally to all of us, the good old ‘fake it until you make it’ approach can certainly take the edge off, and will make it more enjoyable for the guests too – because nothing makes guests’ butts pucker more than listening to a speech by a nervous, sweaty, word-stumbling wreck! 

Take a deep breath and channel your inner Michelle Obama. You’ve got this!

Snap snap!

Make sure the photographer or videographer takes pictures throughout the speeches; these can be some of the most memorable and moving moments.

Slow and steady wins the race

While it can be tempting to rush through a speech to get it over with – avoid it at all costs! Not only will motoring through your speech enhance the likelihood of tripping over your words, which will likely get you flustered, but it will give the impression that you don’t want to speak at the wedding. Speak slowly and clearly, and remember to breathe!

Write it down

There’s no shame in reading from a piece of paper. Even if you memorise your speech, it’s possible that the effects of having all eyes on you (not to mention a drink or two in your system) may draw a blank in your mind, so keep your speech with you. It can also be wise to type it out to make it easier to read.

Make eye contact

A good speech is as visually engaging as it is audibly. Don’t bury your face in your speech notes – look up at the crowd and make them feel included. This may seem daunting, but you’ll be pleasantly surprised to know that every face you look at will be smiling, and welcoming of your words.

Factor in emotions

Weddings are emotional affairs and it’s likely you may be overcome while reciting your heartfelt words. Having a Kleenex to hand may come in handy, and don’t be afraid to take a moment or two to compose yourself. And we’ll say it again – remember to breathe!

Incorporate humour

The best speeches have the crowd laughing and crying, so as well as including a few moving words, which will likely get everyone a little misty-eyed, include humour too.

Nothing kills a festive mood like a dull speech, and humourless speeches are often dull!

Liaise with the other speech-givers beforehand

As well as deciding who will be the toast-giver, it’s wise for all speakers to run their speeches by each other in advance of the wedding to make sure no one is stealing anyone’s thunder! 

If nothing else, the crowd won’t appreciate a bunch of repetitive speeches while tummies are rumbling and everyone is anticipating the wedding meal.

Do your research

If you’re stumped as to what to include within the speech, why not look to the bride’s friends or spouse for inspiration? Chances are, they’ll have more than a handful of witty tales that could be great wedding speech fodder.

Be proud but not boastful

Yes, you want to celebrate your fabulous daughter and how much pride she brings you, but does the crowd really need to know about every single primary school rosette she won or her IQ level? We doubt it!

Include the inlaws

A huge part of getting married is welcoming new people into the family, and a mother of the bride speech – or any wedding speech – should include a nod to the inlaws. This can be officially embracing them into the clan or a thanksgiving if they helped with the wedding, etc. 

Don’t ramble!

While you may be brimming with fabulous ideas for your speech, know when to reign it in! Remember, there are other people who are set to give speeches, and the speeches as a whole shouldn’t drag on. They should be a small intermission between the festivities to show love and gratitude – not an Oscar-worthy affair thanking everyone under the sun!

FAQs

Always kickstart the mother of the bride speech by introducing yourself and thanking everyone for coming. 

Even if you know most of the guests, an introduction is a strong way to open. After this, you can base the rest of your speech on whether you want to make it funny, moving, or somewhere in-between.

When writing a wedding speech, you have flexibility to include whatever you want: quotes, anecdotes, poems, bits of marriage advice, and so on. 

The bottom line of any wedding speech is that it is supposed to pay tribute to your daughter on her wedding day, as well as welcoming the groom into the family.

Whether funny, cheeky, or moving, a wedding speech should always be a declaration of love, as well as well-wishes for the happy couple’s future life together.

While it’s not traditionally on the mother of the bride to deliver a wedding speech, more and more modern mums are choosing to say a few words on their daughter’s big day.

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