So you’ve been asked to stand by your best friend on her big day. We can only imagine how exciting it is to celebrate one of your closest loved ones. But with the title of maid of honor comes great responsibility. From planning the bachelorette party to helping with the bridal shower, the bride trusts you to help her ease some of the wedding planning stress. It’s a lot of pressure! Especially when it comes time for the maid of honor speech.
Whether you’re not a big fan of public speaking or you just want to make sure it’s perfect, we’ve created the ultimate guide to maid of honor speech writing–so you can spend more time planning the perfect bachelorette party outfits and less time worrying about what to say.
Tips For Writing and Reading Your Maid of Honor Speech
Before you even begin to write your maid of honor speech, take time to brainstorm. Jot down memories, ideas, and feelings that you have for a few minutes. It doesn’t need to be in the form of a speech. In fact, it can be a quick bullet-point list. You’ll be able to form it all into a speech later. Right now, all you’re worrying about is brain-dumping everything you may potentially want to touch on in your speech.
Keep It Positive & Leave the Past in the Past
While brainstorming (and writing, for that matter), it’s important to remember to leave the past in the past. This means no joking about exes, wild nights out that could be perceived as embarrassing, and other taboo topics (such as sex, negativity about marriage, etc.).
Don’t Focus on Yourself
You may be the one giving the speech, but it’s crucial to tell your stories in a way that highlights the bride rather than yourself. While you will be briefly introducing yourself, you should focus on the newlyweds. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with talking about something memorable the couple did for you, as it showcases their character.
Avoid Inside Jokes
Inside jokes are inside jokes for a reason–you two are the only ones who understand them. If you have to give wedding guests context, it’s probably best to avoid mentioning it altogether. When you joke, keep it lighthearted.
Practice, Practice, Practice
Just as you would practice any other speech in school or work, recite your speech as much as possible. For some, it may be useful to record yourself practicing it so you can take note of your speed, how the jokes will land, and how you look when giving it. Physical presence can make quite the difference, after all. And don’t be afraid to ask other friends for help.
It may be tempting to have a few drinks or two before giving your speech to loosen the nerves. However, you run the risk of drinking too much and slurring your words or forgetting what to say. Becoming sloppy can be detrimental to your friendship with the bride, so it’s better to be safe than sorry.
MOH Speech FAQs
Does the MOH Have to Give a Speech?
Public speaking isn’t for everyone. If you get asked to give a speech, and it stresses you out, vocalize your concern. Most people are incredibly understanding and would never want to put you in a situation where you feel uncomfortable. There are also other avenues aside from a speech–such as a song, dance, or presentation–to showcase your love for the couple.
What if There are Multiple Maids of Honor?
You’ll want to keep it short no matter how many speeches in an evening. But this is especially true if there are multiple maids of honor. Review your speech with the other maid of honor, if possible, to ensure they’re not too similar. Though, the chances of this happening are slim since you both have entirely different experiences and memories with the couple. If you’re close with the other MOH and giving a speech makes you nervous, you could also organize a joint speech that allows you to bounce jokes off one another and takes some of the pressure off.
How Long Should Your Speech Be?
How many times have you gone to a wedding only for the speeches to drag on? Let’s face it, anything longer than a few minutes seems to drag on. The sweet spot timing-wise is anywhere between two to five minutes. This provides ample time to speak about the couple’s love story, tell a joke or two, and finish with encouraging words.
How Should You End It?
There’s nothing quite like ending on a joke before you ask for a cheers. This will get guests laughing one last time before making a toast to the happy couple.
Maid of Honor Speech Outline
Start your speech by introducing yourself to guests and explaining your relationship with the bride and/or the couple. While you may know many of them, there will also likely be people you’ve yet to meet.
A Word of Thanks
Once you’ve introduced yourself, thank the couple and anyone you deem deserves a thank you (such as the newlyweds’ parents or anyone else who may have contributed to paying for the wedding) for allowing you to be a part of their special day.
This is when you share your favorite memory, joke, or sentiment that will make guests laugh, cry, etc. This could be the story about how you two met, how she came gushing to you when she met the love of her life, etc. Don’t be afraid to get sentimental or bring in some humor. It makes the speech that much more memorable (while also keeping guests entertained).
If you have a favorite quote, poem, reading, etc., now is the time to read it. Share some encouraging words for the couple and their new future together.
End the speech with one last joke or emotional sentiment before asking guests to raise their glasses in a toast for the happy couple.
Maid of Honor Speech Jokes & One-Liners
Need a little help writing the speech? Consider using some of these examples and tailoring them to your couple! Or include some of these one-liners that are sure to get everyone laughing.
“I met the groom’s parents earlier, and they told me to cut some inappropriate stories out, so nothing about ex-girlfriends…” (drop an index card)…. “alcohol…” (drop another index card) …. “the police….” (drop another index card)…”
“There comes a time in everyone’s life when they meet their one true love, their soulmates. The person that’s going to love them and cherish them for the rest of their life. And that moment came for [Bride’s Name]…[dramatic effect pause] When she met me 25 years ago.”
“Everyone says this is meant to be the best day of your life, but I know it isn’t. It’s the best day of your life SO FAR because I know you have so many more amazing days to come together.”
“I know I’m not supposed to speak for more than 45 minutes, so I’m just going to apologize now for going over a little.”
“The best thing about being in love is hearing someone say ‘I love you’ for the first time…but the second best thing is hearing them say it again after they already know everything about you.”
“All those among you who know the bride will know that she is a wonderful and caring person. She deserves a good partner. Thank God *insert partner’s name* married her before she found one.”
“I can only say in my defense that [Bride] and I share a common sense of humor, so if this speech isn’t funny, blame her.”
“Here’s to the health of the happy pair; may good luck follow them everywhere; And may each day of wedded bliss be always as sweet and joyous as this.”
Now that you’re ready to rock your maid of honor speech, it’s time to think about what you’re going to wear. With the mismatched trend taking the wedding industry by storm, now is the perfect time to stand out. That’s why we’ve rounded up four standout styles to help make you shine.
If you’ve already got your dress picked out and it’s time to think about planning the bachelorette party, check out these 11 unique destinations that you’ve probably never thought of. And of course, you can’t forget these party essentials to take the celebration to the next level.