How To Write A Legendary Best Man speech

Being named the Best Man makes you feel legendary; but that feeling goes away when you realise you've got to give the speech. You are the wedding reception main event after the father of the bride and the groom have spoken, telling stories of your past experiences with the stag and trying to be as funny (yet as family friendly) as possible.

I won't lie, you're in a tricky situation; but we've got your back. Here are some quick pro tips on how to write an epic Best Man's speech.

What's the perfect length of a speech?

We've taken a look at the good, the bad and the ugly of best man's speeches. It's best to keep yours short?¦but not too short! The sweet spot is about five-seven minutes.

That gives the father of the bride breathing room to drag it out a bit while getting mushy about his daughter, and means your speech won't come across as long and boring.

Remember the structure

Struggling on where to begin? Every Best Man's speech follows a pretty set structure:

  • The Thank You: Pass your thanks along to the groom for his kind words, the father of the bride for saying his piece and to the rest of the wedding party for attending the event.
  • Messages: Anybody not turning up? You'll be reading the messages in their absence.
  • The Roast: This is what people have come to see. It's a fine art, as you should lay into the stag, but to a limit. We'll go into this later on down.
  • The Toast: End your speech with'?¦and now ladies and gentlemen, please be upstanding and raise your glasses to Mr & Mrs XYZ.' You could go for a more informal route, but it's a wedding. Don't mess too much with the formula!

After that, walk away with your head held high. You've just nailed the speech, so enjoy your moment and hit the bar for plenty of drinks.

But what do I start with!?

First of all: calm down. It's good to be nervous, but if you're stressed it will show in your speech! Simply introduce yourself. Yes, it's that simple.

Chances are, beyond the wedding party, not many people will know you properly. So just simply start with some kind of observation about your nerves (use it to your benefit) and then roll into'for those that don't know me my name's XXX and I've known XYZ since?¦'

Groom Roasting 101

This is the most exciting (and most difficult) part of a best man's speech to write. We'll walk you through a four step plan:

  • Talk to the groom. Don't sit in silence worried about what you can and can't say. It is okay to ask him what is out of bounds in the toast. Chances are he doesn't want you talking about his ex Mrs. Learn the limits through having a chat with him.
  • Don't swear. It's not big and not clever. Likelihood is you've got a wide age range in the audience, so don't swear!
  • Keep it light. The same goes for the gags you use during the roasting. There's a difference between what you'd say in front of the bride's parents and to your mates down the local boozer. So always ask a simple question:'would the bride find this funny?' If the answer is no, then don't say it!
  • Don't forget the bride. You'd be surprised at how many Best Man speeches forget to talk about the key other half of any marriage: the bride! Include her, compliment her, don't roast her so much but get her involved in the banter.

The best and the worst of best man speeches

We've scoured the internet for the best and the worst of best man speeches, and we can boil it down to two videos to highlight the golden rules above.

Best Practice

Worst practice

So there you have it, a quick guide to the Best Man's speech. Feel free to tweet us @OffLimitsStag, or post on Facebook if you're looking for more advice from us or take a look at the Stag Weekends site for everything you need to plan the ultimate stag do for your best mate!

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Date Posted: Tuesday 13th October 2015

Author: Jim Alexander

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