Being asked to speak at any wedding is an honor. But to be asked to give a beautiful speech on your brother’s wedding day is pretty special. Especially after all that hair-pulling, name-calling, and general teasing you’ve endured over the last 20 years! Anyone would have thought he hated your guts! Turns out, your baby brother thinks you’re important enough to deliver a sister of the groom wedding speech on his big day.
Traditionally, there were no sister of the groom wedding speeches, or any women speaking at all during a reception! But fortunately, the trend has changed, and now every family member is welcome to offer a toast to the happy couple. And we’re so pleased your wonderful brother is embracing that trend.
The relationship between a brother and a sister is unique. Because nobody really knows you better than your sibling! Depending on how you grew up, your bro would have shared so many firsts with you. First steps, first words, first romance! And all of that was done together.
You may not be as close now as you were back then. Or maybe these days you and him are as thick as thieves. No matter how close your relationship is today, the bond you share is rare, and your sister of the groom wedding speech is the perfect time to celebrate it!
Not sure where to start? Don’t worry. We’re going to put a sisterly arm around your shoulder, and guide you through how to craft the perfect speech. Whether you want it to be funny, emotional, or a subtle blend of the two, it’ll be a breeze after reading this guide.
Sister of the Groom Wedding Speech: How to Nail Your Toast
Start jotting down all the embarrassing stories you can think of, it’s time to dish the dirt on that handsome groom!
How Long Should the Sister of the Groom Wedding Speech Be?
The length of your speech will depend on your role in the wedding. If you are attending as the sister of the groom, you do not have an official role. Therefore, your involvement in the toasts is an addition, on top of the other members of the wedding party who traditionally speak. i.e., father of the bride, best man, and so on.
If you are invited as the sister of the groom, we would suggest giving a speech of 5 minutes or less. Wedding guests tend to have relatively short attention spans when it comes to speeches. Mainly due to the free champagne always on offer and the knowledge that lots of food is on the way! So if you try to speak for longer than that, the crowd may grow weary.
Alternatively, if you’re the ‘best man’, and his sister, you are part of the official wedding speech program, and can therefore speak for longer. In this case, we would recommend a speech roughly 10 minutes long. That should allow you enough time to share some beautiful stories, and check off a few embarrassing moments, or crazy scrapes your brother has got himself into over the years!
Whichever role you play in the wedding, run over the length and content of your speech with the groom, just to make sure you’re on the same page. Don’t tell him everything that’s included in your entire speech though, as we want to give him a few surprises!
Sister of the Groom Speech Template
As the sister of the groom, there are no set rules, or points you should hit during your wedding speech. However, it’s good to have a general structure in place, and a few etiquette markers in mind when drafting your toast, as that’ll help guide the flow of your speech, and keep guests on your side!
Welcome the Wedding Guests & Introduce Yourself
We’re sure everyone already knows the groom’s beautiful sister, but there could be a handful of guests unsure of who you are. Regardless, it’s polite to introduce yourself, and warmly welcome everyone to the event.
If you’re the third or fourth person to speak, don’t go too hard on the welcoming part, as that will have been covered already by the other speakers.
A Little Joke
Whether you want the overall tone of your toast to be funny or not. It’s a wise idea to try to break the ice early and warm your guests up with a little joke.
If being funny doesn’t come naturally to you, don’t force it. But it is a good tactic to come up with something that’ll raise a smile from the off, as your guests will be much more willing to listen to the rest of your toast.
Share Some Stories About Your Brother
Now’s the time to come up with some cute, funny, or cringe-worthy moments from your shared past. Feel free to share moments that embarrass him, but don’t dwell too hard on times he’d rather forget. Try to also contribute to the love in the room, and share some stories that show just how amazing he is too!
Try to create a blend of both witty and loving within your entire speech, as that will help to stop your toast from feeling too much like a roast! Just remember this isn’t your favorite comedy movie, and you’re not Tina Fey. Not every line has to be a gag or hilarious anecdote.
Show Some Love For His Spouse
Avoid tired clichés, and speak from the heart about how happy your brother’s partner makes you, and him. Whether that’s his beautiful bride or handsome groom, let them know, sincerely, that you’re delighted they’re a part of the family now.
It’s also worth pointing out how good they are for your brother, and what a perfect match they are.
Give Thanks to Your Parents
Literally, neither of you would be here without them. And depending on your relationship, and their involvement in the wedding, they deserve to be honored, and teased a little bit!
Maybe share something funny that you and your brother did during your childhood that you shouldn’t have. Something they never found out about. That’ll create a great, honest reaction in them! Or think about how, when you were kids, they proved what amazing people they are.
Shine the light on your parents for the moment, and let them know how important they are to both of you.
A Few Wise Words
You’ll look like the cleverest person in the room if you can round off your speech to the assembled wedding guests with a sage piece of advice. Something that links back to a thought, or anecdote you mentioned before. Or you could share a wise piece of advice about marriage that your parents gave you when you tied the knot.
Attempt to end in a way that fits thematically within the context of your speech, and leaves your guests flushed with understanding for how much your brother deserves this wonderful wedding day.
Wedding Speech Tips for the Sister of the Groom
You’ve got the basic outline for your entire speech, now’s the time to fill in the gaps with love, meaning, and a few jokes!
Stick to a Theme
Any good story, like any good, meaningful speech, has a theme. Something that connects all of your random thoughts, anecdotes, and advice together. A commonality, or narrative, that makes the toast feel whole.
Sticking to the outline above is the easiest way to achieve this, but you also need to remember the tone. You can’t fill the entire speech with zingers, or pithy one-liners and expect 250 guests to still be listening after 10 minutes. You need light and shade if you want people to remember your moment in the spotlight. The most memorable speeches blend carefully crafted gags, with moments of reflection and sincere happiness.
Gather Ideas from the Family
You may suffer from poor memory or have forgotten some of the wildest or sweetest parts of your childhood, but your family won’t.
Just because this is a sister of the groom speech, it doesn’t mean you can’t receive help. We’re confident that those around you will be more than happy to share some fun moments from your past that may have slipped your mind. And those stories will make the perfect fire to lightly roast your brother with!
Try Not to Offend
If you intend to tell a few racy anecdotes, or naughty jokes during your toast, think twice. There’s nothing more embarrassing than a joke dying, or worse, offending the majority of the guests. You’ll feel terrible, and the moment you were excited for most, will be remembered for all the wrong reasons.
In general, steer clear of politics, religion, cultural differences, exes with bad blood, and anything that might upset your brother and his new spouse. It’s just not worth it.
Practice Like Crazy
Those with confidence might find it tempting to just wing their speech, without going over it properly beforehand. They, typically, crash and burn. Only highly experienced professional speakers or comedians could get away with not practicing. But even they wouldn’t attempt it!
Once you’ve written a draft of your speech, read it out loud, several times. Only by doing this will you know actually how long it is. While reading the speech, make note of your pauses for breath, and try to factor that into your delivery.
Then, once you’re happy with the tone and the length, read it to someone, or a group of people you trust. That will help you work out where to add pauses for laughter, and whether your jokes are actually funny! Pauses for applause should also be considered, as talking over it sounds awkward, and a waste of your carefully crafted lines.
Remember to Breathe
If you suffer from nerves or anxiety, or suddenly find yourself getting nervous in the heat of the moment, take some deep breaths. Before it’s your turn to speak, concentrate on your breathing. Not on what you’re going to say, or how many of the assorted guests will be looking at you up there. Just breathe from the stomach, slowly, and deliberately. That will calm you down and help you focus.
As part of your practice for this speech, you’ve factored in pauses for laughter and applause. But you may also find it useful to remind yourself to breathe too. Just a little note on your flashcards telling you to take your time, and breathe in between words and sentences.
Without that little reminder, you may end up racing through your beautiful speech without taking a breath, which will certainly harm your delivery.
Try to Keep it Together
We understand that it’s an emotional day and that being included in the wedding speech program offers a touching way to show your brother just how much you love him. But if you can’t stop from crying, or the words just won’t come out because you’re so emotional. The whole sentiment of the moment will be lost.
It is inevitable that you will shed a few happy tears during the day, and possibly while delivering your speech. But try not to let yourself go further than that.
The best way to keep it together when delivering your speech is to follow our advice above and practice. The more you practice, the more your toast will flow. By rehearsing heavily before the wedding, you won’t be reaching for words that trigger emotions while delivering the speech. They’ll already be there, on the tip of your tongue, without the need for too much reflection.