Monthly Archives: July 2011

Bow Down to the Gown

Your wedding gown looks most stunning when you’re in it. Duh.

But, before you slip on/tie up/button down your gown, your wedding dress should get its own personal photo shoot as it basks in its glory. After all, besides your husband, when it comes to the difficult act of choosing, your dress is The One.

Here’s a collection of dress shots that come from the file of “Must Have Photography.” After all, on your wedding day, you’re never fully dressed without a… dress.

Photographers:
Chelo Keyes Photography
Amanda Hein Photography
Armor & Martel
Ashleigh Taylor Photography
Callaway Gable
JBe Photography
Jen Huang Photography

  • Erica says:

    The other day, I was reading a list of things every bride should remember as she plans for her wedding. One thing I hadn’t ever thought of was to make sure you have an attractive hanger for your dress, for just this type of photo shoot! I started shopping online and found a ton of super-cute hangers on Etsy, that you can have personalized… totally ordering one!

  • Sherri says:

    I not only love looking at all the different wedding dresses, I also love seeing how they are presented and the backgrounds in the photos. It says a lot about the creativity and personality of the photographer and bride.

Real Jewish Weddings | Atlanta, GA

In 2005, Sarah walked into her first day of work after college and she would have never guessed that afternoon she would meet her future husband in her first-ever work meeting. Keith was lucky enough to be in the cube that was diagonal from Sarah so that whenever she had a work question (“How do I use Outlook??”), he was Sarah’s first stop. Work questions turned into personal ones and before they knew it, they had become friends.

Then one day Sarah got to work early so she walked further than normal to go to the “good bagel place” and picked up a bagel and lox and thought Keith would want one too. She brought one back and put it on his desk. It wasn’t until she mentioned this to one of her friends that she thought, “Huh, I don’t normally buy bagels and lox for everyone. Maybe Keith and I are more than just friends . . . ” It was not long after that when New Years 2006 came along and they were at the same party. Their midnight kiss turned quickly into a loving relationship. Keith and Sarah have a great time together cooking dinner at night, hiking, or traveling around Europe. They always find themselves laughing and based on their smiles that plastered their faces on their wedding day, we know they’re for real!

Mazel tov, Sarah and Keith!

Venue- The Westin Atlanta Perimeter North
Photographer- Mylife Photography, Catherine Park
Coordinator- A Big To Do
Florist- Edge Design
Cake- Lulu’s Bakery
Jeweler- Boone & Sons
Entertainment & Music- The Moxie Band
Dress- Maggie Sottero
Makeup Artist & Hair Stylist- Syncere Beauty
Officiant- Rabbi Elana Perry at Temple Sinai
Invitations / Stationery- The Paper Bag
Bridesmaids’ Dresses- Amsale
Ketubah- Ketubah.com

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This wedding was submitted via Two Bright Lights! The Wedding Yentas is always looking for wonderful Jewish weddings from photographers who utilize Two Bright Lights.

  • Ketubah.com says:

    Thanks, Yentas! And Mazel Tov Keith & Sarah! Your Gefen Papercut ketubah (by Ruth Stern Warzecha) looked stunning, as did the two of you! L’chaim!

  • Sarah & Keith says:

    This is great, we had so much fun and worked with a great set of vendors. We endorse each of them completely.

Pleasing Your Wedding Guests

You want your wedding to be the event of the century, right? Your guests should regroup at the following Friday’s Shabbat oneg in the temple’s banquet hall and gush about what an affair the ___stein and ___berg wedding was, yes? Your mother’s mahjong group will hardly get to the game at hand because they’re so busy yenta-ing about the celebration of her daughter’s big day, isn’t that so? Well, all this can come true with a few things to think about when it comes to making the wedding of your dreams for you and avoiding all nightmares for your guests.

The Nosh:
No doubt, if it’s a Jewish wedding, there will be food. And there won’t be a shortage of it either. But your wedding meal is not the time to be showing off your exotic palate with coconut-crusted, chili-lime sweetbreads or pan seared rabbit sausage in a balsamic reduction. Sure, you may impress people with your adventurous taste buds all 364 other days of the year, but for one meal, give your guests something they expect: a tasty dish that’s in the realm of chicken, fish, pasta, or beef. People have been attending weddings for eons and there’s a level of expectation of what the food will be like. Make sure your caterer is excellent, of course, but it’s also not a time to be experimenting with animal parts or foreign sauces. If you want to spice up your menu with some fancy-shmancy delicacies, include them as hors d’ oeuvres in the cocktail hour so that guests have the option to wait for more predictable food come dinner time.

The Singles:
Be clear and specific about your single guests. Don’t leave it up to your friend to stir up the awkward conversation about bringing her boy du jour to your wedding. There should be no surprises when she gets her invitation in the mail. Either the envelope includes her beau or she comes solo. The vagueness only stresses out your single guests, makes them resent you behind your back, or cooks up a negative feeling toward your wedding day. Be upfront and honest from the get-go. It might be equally difficult for you to address prior to sending out the invitation, but at least it will save both of you some hurt feelings later on.

Music of the Night:
There’s no doubt you want your wedding reception to be the party of the year, but that doesn’t mean your music man has to blast the bass super loud the whole time. Make sure that when you’re interviewing your DJ or band you ask about music volumes and the appropriate times to play different genres of music. Typically, softer music should be played during cocktail hour, as the guests gather in the reception hall before your entrance, and salad and dinner time. Aunt Ruth and Uncle Irv already have a hard enough time hearing as it is — oy vey! — and you don’t want them to have to fight the music in order to have a conversation. Guests become frustrated when they can’t hear over the loud music, and the last thing you want is a room of kvetching Jews. The whole night should not be up on full volume, especially during the natural points of catching up and how-do-you-dos. When it comes to specific dance breaks, however, turn it up and rock out!

Don’t Get Lost:
If you’re getting married in a location or venue that’s hard to find, make sure you provide maps and signage. If the parking is far from the final destination, leave arrows and guides along the way. If your venue is off the beaten path in a rustic area, great, I’m sure it’s gorgeous, but most likely, GPS won’t be able to get your guests there (and that’s assuming that Aunt Ruth and Uncle Irv even know how to work the GPS machine thing-a-ma-bobber). So get crafty or outsource, but either way, you do not want your guests to get lost on the way to your wedding. Again, “kvetch” should not be the verb of the day.

Have Fun:
Happy couple equals happy guests. Your wedding day is not your time to flip out, have a bridezilla moment (that was for the planning), whine, or throw a tantrum. You’ve seen those TV shows. You mock those ridiculous girls. Don’t be one of them. If you’re having fun and truly enjoying every part of your day from getting ready to getting going, then so, too, will your guests. Imagine how awkward it would be for them to see the bride and groom angry or annoyed on what should be the happiest day of their lives. So stay positive, embrace every kind of situation, and plaster your smile on your face and your guests will continue to rave about your wedding day for years and mahjong tournaments to come.

Gorgeous Giveaway: Heartfelt Hamsas

Keep on reading to find out how YOU can be a winner of the grand prize: A shopping spree with one talented etsy artist! Also, all entries receive a free shipping on any order. So, everyone wins!

Yesterday, you got the scoop about Hamsas and the beautiful creations by Lea Joelle Handmade and today is the start of a giveaway that goes through the weekend!

Lea Joelle Handmade Hamsas make great wedding favors, as previously discussed, and can be featured in other ways at your wedding, too! Little Hamsa tags are so super cute on wish trees! Wish trees are like 3D guestbooks. Your friends and family members can write messages on the Hamsas that are customized for your wedding and hang them up on a tree with hooks. This is a great souvenir for you as the bride and groom, and also looks beautiful as part of your wedding decor.

Or, bring the Hamsa directly into your home. After all, the hand symbolizes love and protection, and who wouldn’t want a loving and protected home and marriage? You can commission Lea Joelle Handmade to create something special for you!

Can’t stop gushing about Lea Joelle Handmade and the delicate work Jenni does on all her Hamsas!

Now it’s your turn to gush when you win a gift certificate to shop til your heart’s content!

Just visit Lea Joelle Handmade, browse through the samples of Hamsas she showcases to get an idea of her work, and leave a comment here about what you’d want on your dream Hamsa! Get creative. There are no wrong answers. Enter by Sunday night at 11:59 p.m. and the winner will be announced on Monday on Facebook. You do not need to be Jewish or a bride in order to win! GOOD LUCK!

  • Erica says:

    Great hamsas! I would like sunflowers on my hamsa – they’re bright and cheery!

  • Sharon says:

    I love how you can personalize them. They are so versatile to use for wedding favors or gifts.

  • Jen says:

    On my hamsah i would have a peacock theme because those are my colors — purple, green blue, and silver.

  • Lisa says:

    You already created my dream hamsa…OWLS!!! Love them! Second choice would be dogs! THX!!

  • Trish says:

    Can you make hamsas with butterflies? They are my good luck charm. My daughter loves them and so did my mother.

  • Lea Joelle Handmade says:

    These are great ideas and all are doable! My mother special requested a butterfly hamsa at my wedding :) Looking forward to hearing more ideas!

  • Angie D says:

    My dream Hamsa would be like the blue bird amongst the trees one. Gorgeous!

  • D Rienstra says:

    love the Hamsa look, been thinking this would be a great gift for upcoming wedding for a friend.

    Donna

  • Erin says:

    I would probably say owls since they are my favorite! :)

  • alissa says:

    I would put birds

  • Danielle says:

    How about hearts! Love and good luck?! Seems like a good combo.

  • Allie says:

    decor for a baby’s room too. little animals or colorful flowers or boy stuff.

  • Vanessa says:

    Make the hamsah like a picture frame with a wedge to put a photo inside. that’s probably a lot of work though, huh? LOL

  • Megan says:

    I love these! My ideal Hamsa would be a soft green color with navy writing. It would have two icons/pictures on it that we are using in our wedding. One is the hebrew word ahava written in a square and the other is love written in a square similar to the sculpture in Philadelphia. Our chuppah has ahava written this way on it and our programs have both icons/pictures and since we are having an interfaith wedding I just love the symbolism.

  • Gabrielle says:

    I would love to see a modern-like designed tree with the roots intertwining on the bottom. It would be beautiful if somewhere on the Hamsa it read: “My beloved is mine and I am my beloved’s” in Hebrew and English (it was on my wedding invitation!).

  • Jerise says:

    My dream hamsa! it would be in shades of green and have an intricate tree and leaves all over it, and hidden somewhere within them “ahava” in the lettering on the last picture above (the one with the couple’s photo).

    LOVE Lea Joelle’s hamsas, and have a small one on my door already! she rocks!

Hamsa Haven

A current trend that’s not only popping up in Jewish communities, but also in the secular world, has a great deal of symbolism and beauty: The Hamsa. Have you seen it? Looks like a hand. So what’s the big deal? One way a Hamsa has been described:

In using the Hamsa, an energy of peace prevails in all beings simply because the power of the hand radiates the cosmic connection between the hand of action and the heart of peace, which is a muchly needed positive force in the world right now. Many people place the Hamsa above their doorways, wear the symbol on chains, or draw it on their possessions. The sacred nature of this symbol is that is sends a message of love and protection to all beings.

Love and protection, huh? Can’t go wrong there, especially when it comes to marriage. And in a wedding, since all things are beautiful, artistic Hamsas could be an appropriate addition to round out the theme of your day.

Cue Lea Joelle Handmade, the artist behind beautifully decorated Hamsas that can take on the role of wall hanging, key chain, and even cell phone tag! Yes, Hamsas can be everywhere, and Jenni Goodman, Hamsa decorator extraordinaire, creates whimsical pieces that are hand crafted and made with love.

Lea Joelle Handmade was started in 2010 by Jenni, a crafty bride-to-be with too many ideas and a love for Judaica! She specializes in personalized and customized Judaica for weddings, bar and mitzvahs and other special occasions. Her goal is to make your event unique by creating favors, gifts and decor you can’t find anywhere else! The artsy Brooklynite ensures that her clients are satisfied with her Hamsas that can be custom-made, using the finest materials and colors.

Hamsas by Lea Joelle Handmade would be fabulous wedding favors! One of the hardest decisions to make is settling on a wedding favor that is unique (because, well, you are!), inexpensive (because everyone gets one!), and nicer than a tzchochke (because no one wants their favors to end up in the kitchen clutter drawer). These Hamsas fit the bill for a desirable favor, and because there is so much flexibility, you, the bride, are in charge of how it looks in the end!

Plus, who doesn’t like a double whammy? Wedding favors like Hamsa key chains can also be used as “escort cards” for reception tables. Carry out the theme and save money? Yes, please and l’chaim to that!

There are many styles and designs to choose from, but the most important thing is to create the design you want for your special occasion! She incorporates your wedding colors and themes to make your favors just the way you want them. Each Hamsa can be personalized on the back with the couple’s name and wedding date. Her Hamsa favors are her true love because it is a way for the host of each party to give their guests a gift that is a meaningful symbol of good luck, protection, and love.

Make sure to visit Jenni’s magical world of Hamsas on her etsy page and “like” Lea Joelle Handmade on Facebook! And definitely check back tomorrow because Thursday Thrills is going to thrill you with an awesome giveaway opportunity from Lea Joelle Handmade!

  • Stewart says:

    I’d like to see Jewish ballplayers. Like Sandy Koufax. Or Jewish rockers like Gene Simmons.