The usual protocol for a wedding toast is pretty conventional. At a wedding reception, the father of the bride, in his role as host, regularly offers the first toast, thanking the guests for attending, offering tasteful remembrances of the bride’s childhood, and wishing the newlyweds a happy life together. The father’s role is as host but it’s also symbolic: he is giving his daughter away to her new husband.
History of Toasting at Weddings
Toasting at weddings has a long upstanding history dating back to the Greeks in the sixth Century B.C. When there was a gathering, the Greeks would pour the wine from a common pitcher. The host would drink from his glass first to ensure his guests that there was no poison placed into the wine. Back then, the Greeks would spike the drinks of their enemies to ensure silence and even use to prevent a messy divorce! This was later picked up by the Romans but for different reasons, about one hundred years later.
Order of Traditional Toasts
The first toast is always to the bride and is done by the best man, friend or close relative. The second toast is done by the best man to the bride and groom. The third toast will be the groom’s response to the person or people who made the toast before him, a few words to his new wife should be said and a thanks to the parents and the bridesmaids. The second to last toast is the best man, and he will thank the groom on behalf of the bridesmaids and then the bridesmaids himself. The last wedding toast to be given is from the father of the bride. He thanks everyone on behalf of himself and his wife and will indicate that the party can begin.
Non-traditional Wedding Toast
With weddings becoming more modern and unconventional, there are less rules to take into consideration and your wedding should reflect your personal preferences. A non-traditional toast starts with the best man (or best woman!) making a speech to the guests and the wedding party. Then the bride or groom (or both) may want to say a few words. The bride may want to thank all the guests for coming or read out some words or a reading. After this, there is no set order in which anyone can speak. Some weddings open up the floor so any guest has the chance to speak. Though, be warned, this can go on for a while so have a time limit for the speeches to end.
Tips for Giving a Great Toast
When it comes to acknowledging the bride and groom with a toast, make sure that all the glasses of the guests are filled and then fill yours last before making the toast. The proper order of the pouring will always start with the bride, then the groom, then the maid of honour, then all parents of the bride and groom, and the best man receives his last.
Hold the glass in the right hand and extend it straight out from the right shoulder. This is a gesture done to show that you come in friendship and peace. Tempting as it is, it’s best to leave the jokes to the actual speech; this is the moment where you should invite all the guests to direct their love and friendship to the happy couple. “Please join me in wishing the happy new couple many wonderful years to come, To the bride and groom.” At that point, the first sip should be taken. People usually opt for wine, champagne or prosecco to toast the happy couple.
Pic c/o theplunge.com