You’re completely slaying your maid of honor duties. You organized an epic bachelorette party; you’ve learned how to bustle a Watteau (after you learned what the word even means); and now you’re prepping to deliver a standing-ovation-worthy toast. Need some pointers to hit it out of the park? Here are six parts of a maid of honor speech that are sure to make your bride laugh, cry and feel all the feels.

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The 411 on How You Know the Bride
As soon as you take the mic, every guest in the house is wondering who you are. So introduce yourself up top and explain how you know the bride. You can be as straightforward as: “Hi everybody. I’m Hannah, and I’ve known Marnie since our first day of orientation at Oberlin.”

A Short, Specific Story About the Bride Back in the Day
Save the long-winded platonic-ish love letter for the card. Instead, pick a story that’s easy to tell, to the point and, most importantly, true. Don’t worry about being funny—the humor will come from the specificity in your story (like explaining the tacky jeans with butterfly patches Marnie paid $250 for and still doesn’t have the heart to give away). And, not that we have to tell you, but stay away from topics that might embarrass the bride in front of her family, e.g., ex-boyfriends, secrets she’s told you, etc.

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A Memory About the Groom
You could go on and on about your best friend, but this day is about her as one half of a couple. So share an anecdote about getting to the know the groom and how happy he makes your friend: “I knew this bearded dude was the real deal when I heard them harmonize ‘Bet on Me’ during karaoke.”

A Visual (If Possible)
Not only does a visual keep your audience captive, but it also shows your BFF that you put the extra effort into your speech. Whether it’s a blown-up photo of her in said butterfly jeans or the email she sent you with subject line: “I think I found the one <3…” it’s a simple way of adding some depth to your story without adding on too much time on.

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A Final Toast
You waxed poetic about the past, now it’s time to ask everyone to raise their glasses and cheers to something in the couple’s future. This is the part in your speech when you have free rein to be as cheesy as you want. And if you want everyone tearing up, try to circle it back to something you already referenced: “Let’s raise a glass to a future full of love, gorgeous harmonies and butterflies.”

A 4-Minute (or Under) Time-Stamp
The toasts are important, but let’s face it: Everybody wants to hit the dance floor and the bar. So practice and time your speech at home—do not, we repeat, do not wing it. The most thoughtful maid of honor speech you can deliver is one that you took time to write and edit. We’ll drink to that. 

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