Meon Valley Marriott Hotel wedding photography of the Groom and wedding party laughing during the wedding speeches

When Should The Wedding Speeches Take Place?

Blog Article, Wedding Advice

When should we do the wedding speeches?

As a wedding photographer one of the things I often notice that wedding couples often can’t decide upon is when to do the wedding speeches.  Then, of course, it’s also one of those things that some couples never really think about – not realising there are actually pros and cons on when to do the speeches.

So here are my views and tips on when to have the wedding speeches during the wedding day – solely from myview as an experienced and professional wedding photographer.

1. Before the wedding breakfast.

Rowton Castle Wedding Photography of the groom laughing out loud, during the speeches in the Cardeston Suite

This is becoming increasingly popular. Undertaking the wedding speeches and toasts before anyone starts eating often means those who are doing the speeches can get them done and then enjoy the wedding breakfast without the nerves and apprehension of a speech to come. After all, you’ve put a lot of thought into the menu and paid a lot of money for it and this approach ensures everyone gets to enjoy it.  The downside of doing the speeches first is that it does give an impression of getting them out of the way – that they’re something to be rushed and done before the important issue of eating starts!  The other problem is that often guests are still a bit more formal and introverted at the start – so they can be a harder crowd to play to!

2. After the wedding breakfast.

Harlestone Village Institute wedding photography of the bride and groom being toasted by the guests during the wedding speeches

This is the traditional and widely accepted time. Food has been eaten, drink has been quaffed and now it’s time to enjoy and be entertained by the wedding speeches. Well, except for those about to stand up and do the speeches – who most probably have been dreading it all the way through the wedding breakfast and haven’t enjoyed the food and drink like everyone else.  But, equally, because drinks have been flowing, the guests are more warmed up and maybe more receptive to a good speech. Of course, the other side of the coin is that they are a little too warmed up and more likely to get a bit too interactive with the speeches.  But still, it’s the traditional time of the day that your guests will expect the speeches to be done.

3. During the wedding breakfast.

Holiday Inn Brighton wedding photography of best man making his speech during the wedding ceremony, caught on a mobile phone

As a wedding photographer this is the one I am seeing a little more these days. Couples are now doing the speeches inbetween the main course and the dessert – almost as a happy medium between the two approaches above. I guess this allows those doing the speeches to enjoy some of the meal without the thought of a speech hanging over them and guests have been partially fed and knocked back a few. I’ve even heard of weddings where a speech has been done inbetween each of the courses! Of course, the downside here is it does draw out the wedding breakfast for your wedding guests and, if the speeches do ramble on, they can end up waiting an age for their next course.

Ultimately though there is no right or wrong way really. It’s simply about choice and what suits you both best for what is your wedding day.  The important thing is just to remember you do have the choice and to think it through.

Are you looking for a wedding photojournalist?

If you are getting married and would like a wedding photographer who will approach you wedding day in a natural, candid and unobtrusive way then I would love to talk with you about your wedding plans.  Please do give me a call on 07920 422144 or send me a message here and I’ll be delighted to get back to you.


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