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Pre-Wedding Toast Jitters

Apr08

Public speaking takes a lot of skill, and guts. More often then not you’ll find the maid of honor or best man at weddings with sweat on their brow, or a case of the hand shakes. When prepping for maid of honor toasts, maid of honor poems, or a best man speech, keep the following wedding toast tips for de-stressing in mind.

1. Positive Thinking: This has a bigger impact on your performance than you may be aware of. Many self-help guru’s and public speaking coaches emphasize the importance of giving yourself positive pep talks leading up to your speech. If you tell yourself that you’re going to do a great job, then chances are you actually will.

2. Talk Therapy: This is an exercise that is great for the moments leading up to your speech. This exercise entails that you ask yourself simple questions and answer them. Some of the questions you could ask are, “How am I feeling?” or “What kind of mood am I in?”. Asking and answering these questions will alleviate tension and allow you to relax before you take the microphone.

3. Connect with Your Environment: Throughout the reception, prior to your speech, make eye contact and smile with the other guests. Get to know some of the guests you haven’t met and say hi to the guests you do know. This will allow you to feel as though you know those around you, and will make you feel safe and calm.

4. Deep Breathing: This is an age-old technique that works. If you can, find a quiet space to sit and breath. If you have a difficult time breathing slowly then count to five as you inhale and then exhale. If you aren’t able to find a quiet space, then feel free to practice deep breathing in your chair as you wait to be called to the microphone.

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Wedding Toast Etiquette: Rules and Expectations

Jul29

Wedding toasts are one of your reception’s most exciting traditions. While the rules are not set in stone, in general, the Best Man toasts first, followed by the Maid or Matron of Honor, then the Parents of the Bride, and, optionally, the Parents of the Groom. After everyone is finished, the couple should give their thanks to the crowd.

If your parents are hosting the affair, it’s not required that the grooms’ parents speak, and if it’s going to be the source of contention, it’s smarter to avoid it. “It’s really up to you as a couple,” says Danielle Bobish of Curtain Up Events in New York City. “Sometimes just your dad speaks and Mom stands by his side.”

In today’s world, more couples are paying for weddings themselves. When that’s the case, you are perfectly entitled to give one toast together, and leave it at that. Bobish suggests that you wait until everyone is seated before you start the toasts, and to spread them out. “If you’re having a three-course meal, the Best Man and Maid of Honor can toast during the first course, and so on.”

If you’re worried about excessive toasts, or uncalled-for announcements, tell the band leader or DJ. They are under no requirement to hand the microphone over to anyone, let alone a drunken reveler. Should that happen, allow the person to speak for a few minutes then have someone graciously take the microphone from him.

Advise your guests to keep toasts to a minimum of five minutes, and tell them to rehearse. Nerves creep up when you least expect it. It’s perfectly fine to write the toast on a note card. While it’s fine to make jokes during a toast, anything raunchy should be left to a more appropriate occasion, such as a bachelor party. This is your wedding celebration, not your wedding roast.


Champagne Substitutes for Your Wedding Reception

Dec03

Some people think that insisting on "real Champagne" is the only way to go.  Others think that all sparkling wine is "real Champagne," and that those who say otherwise are just being snobs.

They're both wrong.

The truth is that only sparkling wines from the region of Champagne are real Champagnes, in part because they have distinctive characteristics (just as Scotch only comes from Scotland, Burgundy only comes from Burgundy, etc.).

But it's also true that there is a huge variety of delicious sparklings wines from around the world that may be ideal for your wedding toast.  “Sparkling wines have improved tremendously in the last two generations,” says Jon Rollo, owner of Greenleaf Gourmet Chopshop in Beverly Hills. “The style is different, the goal is the same.”

With that in mind, we just posted a new article about Champagne subsititutes for your wedding reception.

More and more couples are opting for sparkling wine at their weddings. Part of the switch is economic—sparkling wines are less expensive—and part is simply a matter of taste. California sparkling wines have taken a cue from their Napa wine counterparts, and a whole new crop of wonderful bubbly is rising up from all over the world.

Check out the full article here.


Planning Your Cocktail Hour

Aug18

We just posted a new article about planning the cocktail hour of your reception.

There are several advantages of incorporating a cocktail hour into your reception: they give your guests a chance to loosen up and meet friends and relatives that they haven’t yet been acquainted with, and to catch up with old pals. Should you be having a formal dinner, guests will have time to relax after your ceremony, and before being seated again.

Check it out!


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