How to Write A Heartfelt Sister Of The Groom Speech

The dos and don'ts of writing a heartfelt sister of the groom speech, according to wedding experts.
Lauren Dana Ellman - The Knot Contributor.
by
Lauren Dana
Lauren Dana Ellman - The Knot Contributor.
Lauren Dana
The Knot Contributor
  • Lauren is a contributor for The Knot covering topics such as music, cakes, venues and speeches.
  • She has been published in a wide array of lifetsyle-oriented publications including SELF and Allure.
  • Lauren is a proud graduate of Syracuse University's SI Newhouse School of Public Communication.
Updated Aug 15, 2021

Speaking at your brother's wedding is quite an honor. As the sister of the groom, your speech should be sweet and sentimental. "The sister of the groom will often speak at the rehearsal dinner, but it's also not unusual for her to speak at the wedding reception," explains Katelyn Peterson of Wedding Words, a wedding vow and speech writing service.

However, presenting the wedding toast to your brother and your new sister-in-law in front of all of your friends and family members can seem daunting, especially if you're not fond of public speaking. Fortunately, we're here to help, which is why we've reached out to wedding planners and experts to help you craft the perfect sister of the groom wedding speech. Read on for tips, tricks, templates, and examples.

How Long Should a Sister of the Groom Speech Be?

The number-one tip to crafting an A+ sister of the groom speech? Keep it short and sweet. Many wedding planners we spoke to recommend making your sister of the groom speech as brief as possible. Just take it from wedding planner Monique Banks of Monique Banks Party in Chappaqua, New York, who says the speech should be "kept to a maximum of 5 minutes."

How to Write a Sister of the Groom Speech

"I recommend sisters write from the heart," celebrity wedding and event planner David Tutera says. This advice may sound simple, but it truly is the key to crafting a memorable, sentimental, and emotional wedding speech that your brother and his new spouse are sure to appreciate on their special day.

Additionally, "Since you've known the groom most or all of your life, you likely have a ton of stories to tell," says Peterson. To help you narrow down the best, most memorable stories, "start by making bullet points of thoughts and memories," says Banks.

Remember, Peterson says: "You not only want to engage guests with your storytelling, but you also want to use each story to show something about the groom."

Sister of the Groom Speech Template

This fool-proof, 5-step speech wedding speech outline comes courtesy of Hester Parks of Park Avenue Events.

Introduce yourself. While most of the wedding guests will already know who you are, you can open your speech by greeting everyone and introducing yourself as the groom's sister.

Talk about the groom. When talking about the groom, make sure to share stories that "truly have meaning to both brother and sister," advises wedding planner Lynne Goldberg of Ms. Wedding Planner in South Florida, New York and Las Vegas. She continues, "Pick a few that illustrate the kind of brother and man the groom has become."

Talk about the bride. It's important to make your new sister-in-law or brother-in-law feel welcome. According to Peterson, you should ask yourself: What do you admire about them? Why are you grateful that they're joining your family?

Talk about the couple. According to Goldberg, this is the perfect time to talk about the first time you met your new in-law. Share what it was like to watch their love story unfold in real-time. Alternatively, "Illustrate the wonderful qualities the newlyweds share," says Goldberg.

End with a toast to the happy couple. According to Trista Croce of BTS Event Management: "You should always end the sister of the groom speech with happy thoughts and well wishes for the couples' future together."

Who does the sister of the groom thank in her speech?

"The sister of the groom should thank her brother's new spouse for making her brother so happy," Tutera says. Additionally, he says, "She can conclude with thanking everyone for being part of this special celebration of love."

How to Give a Sister of the Groom Speech

According to Goldberg, the secret to giving a great sister of the groom speech is to speak from the heart — just as if you're "telling a story to a group of friends while out to dinner."

Remember, she says: "A great sister of the groom speech will have family members and guests not only enjoying the speech but also feeling closer to the family."

Sister of the Groom Speech Jokes

According to Ireland-based wedding planner Tara Fay, sisters of the groom "can get away with a little more humor" compared to other family wedding speeches, like mother of the bride speeches and father of the bride speeches, "as long as it is still tasteful." (But, more on that later.)

And, while Tutera typically warns against jokes in wedding speeches, he adds, "If the joke leans toward being a sweet story and not an embarrassing one, they can be fun additions."

Sister of the Groom Speech Example

Suffering from writer's block? No worries. Check out this pre-written sister of the groom speech for some much-needed insight and inspiration.

Good evening, everyone! For those of you who don't know me, I'm Alice, Gray's younger sister. I've had the absolute pleasure of growing alongside him, and I'm thrilled to be here with all of you today. Thank you all so much for coming.

And, of course, before diving into my speech, I'd be remiss not to thank our parents for the exceptional, unconditional love they have shown both of us throughout our childhood years. We would not be who we are today without you two.

When Gray asked me to prepare a speech for his wedding day, I was especially excited to see what embarrassing stories I could come up with — kidding! But, in all seriousness, I feel so grateful to have had the opportunity to watch you evolve into such an amazing man and husband.

With Gray by my side all through childhood, I was blessed with a built-in best friend. Fortunately, that hasn't changed over the years. Sure, we had our differences — sorry for the constant bickering, Mom and Dad — but in the end, we'd always come together and reunite over Saturday morning cartoons (the Flintstones were our favorite!) and Sunday night ice cream. Gray, mint chocolate chip is still the best flavor: Sorry to break it to you. As we grew older, I began to idolize Gray even more, despite the fact that he was more into his Rock Band and Guitar Hero sets than he was into me.

When I was in high school, Gray went off to college. It felt like a piece of my heart was missing. I wasn't used to being a so-called only child, and I did not enjoy it one bit. Whenever he came home on school breaks, I'd follow him around the house like a lost puppy. He wasn't interested in hearing about the latest high school drama — he was, and I quote, "too cool for that" — but he did appreciate the free car rides to his friends' homes, the beach, and the pizza shop. And I appreciated the extra time spent with him.

Gray was a typical immature college kid up until his junior year of college: All of that changed when he met Avery at a fraternity party. Things started heating up pretty seriously, and she was gearing up to meet my parents and me for the first time over winter break. It was clear my brother was smitten. He began calling me, his younger sister he previously avoided at all cost, for relationship advice!

So, remember when I said I felt my heart felt incomplete when Gray first went to college? Meeting Avery seemed to instantly cure that. Their warm demeanor and fun-loving ways made me feel whole again for the first time in two years. I knew then that they were a perfect match for each other. Since then, my relationship with Gray — and Avery — has only grown and improved. I've always wanted an older sibling, and I'm so fortunate to have found that in Avery. They already knows how loved they are by our family, but I'd still love to toast to Avery and Gray on their big day. Please join me in raising a glass to the happy couple!

How to End the Sister of the Groom Speech

"I advise sisters of the groom wrap up their speeches by welcoming their new sister-in-law to the family and express how much they look forward to all the new experiences they will have together as a family," Tutera says.

Trista Croce of BTS Event Management in Arizona agrees. "You should always end the sister of the groom speech with happy thoughts and well wishes for the couples' future together," she says.

What NOT to Say in a Sister of the Groom Speech

Skip the dirty jokes. While humor is essential to a great sister of the groom speech, Peterson advises keeping the jokes "G-rated. "You definitely don't want to make Grandma and Grandpa uncomfortable," she says.

Avoid any mention of exes. "Do not bring up past girlfriends, even if you hated them," advises Croce.

Be respectful. It goes without saying, but, on that same note, do not put down your new in-law, Croce says.

Don't embarrass the groom. "Steer clear of any stories involving sloppy stories about the groom being inebriated," Tutera says. "It's a time of celebration, and speeches should avoid making anyone feel uncomfortable!"

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