Maid of Honor Speech Guidelines

Follow these tips to deliver a memorable, heartfelt speech or toast

By Julie Hampton

maid of honor giving speech
Photo by Jen Huang PhotographyBookmark and Share

Being chosen as the maid of honor is a real privilege -- until you realize you need to give a toast in front of a large crowd. At that point even the most confident maid of honor can get a touch of the nerves. Take heart though: A few simple tips will make your toast a memorable moment for your audience -- and stress-free for you.

  • What You Need to Know
  • It's never a bad idea for the bride and maid of honor to talk about what the bride's expectations are for the speech.
  • The bride doesn't have to approve every word, but she does know her guests and family and will be able to tell you about what will work.
Writing a speech

Step 1:

The most important thing to remember is prepare your speech well in advance. Under no circumstances should you come to the wedding unprepared. If you're concerned about forgetting your toast or speech, use cue cards. Maid of honor speeches can last from 20 seconds to two minutes so write a toast that will do justice to the time limit. No matter what the time length is, make sure your speech is classy and professional.

Step 2:

The evening before the wedding, ask the bride for the time line. Understand when it will be your turn to give the speech. Ask if you will be speaking first or following another speaker or toast, such as the best man. Communicate with other members of the wedding party that are giving speeches so that everyone involved is aware when it is their turn to address the bride and groom.

Step 3:

Introduce yourself to the wedding party and guests when starting your speech; family members or out-of-town friends may not know who you are. Give your thanks to the bride and groom for including you in the wedding ceremony. Speak loudly and clearly or use a microphone if your voice is soft or if you don't think it will carry throughout a crowded room.

Step 4:

Tell the audience your name and how you met the bride. Tell a short story about the first time you met; the story can be humorous or serious or a mix of both. Remember to not include anything that would embarrass the bride, groom or elders present.

Step 5:

Bestow words of advice and well wishes onto the married couple. Add appropriate personal information about the bride, such as a quirky habit she has that the groom must now live with forever.

Step 6:

Raise your glass and congratulate the happy couple. Take a sip from the glass before placing the glass back on the table and being seated.

  • Tips & Warnings
  • Keep the focus of the speech on the bride and groom not on you or your relationship with the bride.
  • Use anecdotes and memories to paint a picture of the bride and her personality not just for a laugh.

About the Author

Julie Hampton is a regular contributor to DexKnows.

Planning Reminder:

4 bridesmaids figurines

All dressed up

If you're having a formal wedding, you may want to go with the tried-and-true matching bridesmaids dresses. Or opt to give your bridesmaids wiggle room (in more ways than one) but with parameters. Select a color, and bridesmaids can choose or have dresses made to suit their figures.

View your wedding checklist!


Wedding Glossary


A dress style with a narrow fit that is ankle-length and hugs the bust, waist and hips.

View the Full Weddings Glossary
Sign Up

Already have an account? Log In

Log In with your Facebook account.
We’ll never post without your permission.

Create a DexKnows account:

At least 6 characters
By clicking Sign Up, you agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. You'll receive the DexKnows Tips email newsletter as well as email updates about your account.

Please share the issue you encountered with our search

I am a(n):


Please check at least one issue checkbox.