Wedding Toasts - Presentation Tips
If you are preparing to offer a wedding toast at someone’s upcoming nuptials, here are 10 essential guidelines for presenting a great wedding toast:
1. Wedding toasts are not wedding speeches. Keep your toast short and to the point, usually no more than one to two minutes.
2. Before toasting, give the guests time to refill their glasses.
3. When you’re ready to make your toast stand up so people can see you. It’s customary to tap on your glass with a spoon to get everybody’s attention. Customarily, the only person(s) who remain seated are the one’s who are being toasted.
4. Hold your glass in your right hand when proposing the toast. Raise the glass toward the person you are toasting when you are finished.
5. After a toast, it is customary for everyone to clink glasses before sipping. People will follow your lead - show them when to clink their glasses and when to drink.
6. Keep the toast tasteful and appropriate for the audience. Humor is good, humiliation is not. Remember there are usually older people (grandparents) and children present.
7. Speak slowly, clearly and loud enough for all to hear you. Work on your volume. People that are intimidated by public speaking often won’t project their voices. So if you are a bit self-conscious about this event you will appear more confident by adding volume to your speaking voice. Try reading your speech into a corner. The sound will bounce back off the walls and give you an idea of the confidence level in your voice.
8. Use a microphone if given one. Hold the microphone around the middle and keep it a few inches from your lips and an inch or so lower than your mouth. Try not to let it descend because no one will be able to hear you. Try not to hold it too close to your lips or you will get a popping sound when you say your P's.
9. As you’re making your toast, look around the room at the guests. As you conclude be sure to make eye contact with the bride and groom, or the person to whom you are presenting the toast.
10. Practice your toast before the wedding. Make sure you know what you are going to say and if need be create an index card with the main points of your speech. Writing it down again will help you remember what to say and the index card will be handy while you are giving the speech.
Wedding toasts are part of the celebration! Keep it upbeat and try not to become too emotional. Your words should give people something to be cheerful about!
Note: If you are not a drinker it is fine to drink from a glass of water or other nonalcoholic beverage when toasting.