Your daughter’s wedding day is fast approaching, and with it, the responsibility of giving the father of the bride’s speech. You want your speech to make her as proud of you as you are of her. But where do you begin?
First of all, it’s good to be clear about what is expected of a good father of the bride’s speech. There are three main things you should do in your speech:
1. Play the role of Wedding Host
2. Speak lovingly about the bride
3. Welcome the groom into the family
Play the role of Wedding Host
It doesn’t matter if you haven’t paid for everything; you are the bride’s father, one of the two people who has known the bride all her life. The little girl you brought up, watched taking her first steps and helped to grow… is getting married! That is one hell of a transformation, and one that you are almost uniquely qualified to talk about. This is why you are the host of the wedding.
In your role as host:
- Welcome the guests, thank them for coming to share in your daughter’s big day, especially those who have made particular sacrifices to be there.
- Mention those who are not able to attend.
- Make a point of welcoming the groom’s family and any specific contributions they have made to the organisation of the wedding
Speak lovingly about the bride
This is the main part of the speech, in which you talk about your daughter’s character, and how it has developed in the different stages of her life. While the one key message of your speech is how proud you are of her, don’t over-egg it; an over sentimental speech will lose its emotional impact.
- Bear in mind that if the bride’s mother is not speaking herself, your speech is on behalf of the both of you. Talk to her and make sure her sentiments are reflected
- Talk to other close friends and members of the family. Your speech should be delivered from your point of view, but will be enriched by other people’s reflections and input.
- Think about key moments in your daughter’s life: the day she was born, her first day at school; the day she passed her driving test.
- How did she react to going to school for the first time, passing her driving test, or other significant moments in her life?
- What are her most notable characteristics? What stories can you think of that illustrate these character traits?
- What has she shown real passion for, even if she later changed her mind? Was she a staunch vegetarian for three weeks? Was she a mad Boyzone fan before she suddenly decided she was a Goth?
- What has she done that has made you most proud?
- What lessons have you learned from her?
Welcome the groom into the family
- When did you first meet the groom?
- What were your first impressions?
- How does his taste (in anything – music, clothes, cars, music, football etc) differ from yours?
- When did you first think that he was the one to win your daughter’s heart?
- What changes did you notice in your daughter when she met the groom?
- What is it about him that you most like?
- What makes you confident he will be a good husband to your daughter?
Additional elements of your father of the bride speech
Offer words of advice
The advice can be sincere, gained from your own experience, it can be profound, derived from a wise quotation, or it can be something silly.
Propose a toast
It is traditional for the father of the bride to propose a toast at the end of his speech. My advice would be to make this simple: “Ladies and gentlemen: The bride and groom”
You should now have a rough outline of your speech. What now?
Having an outline to your speech is a great start. Use the time between now and the wedding to refine the speech and practise it as much as you can. The big day will be here before you know it.
The next step
Book your free telephone consultation about your father of the bride speech via the contact form, get in touch via email or just give us a call. Together we will assess your needs and make a plan
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