Monthly Archives: July 2013

Jewish Wedding Royalty

Ever been told you’re acting like a Jewish American Princess? (But you really DID need to have the new Louis bag!)

One great perk to getting married: It’s OK to be a Jewish princess. In fact, on your wedding day, you’re a real and true queen!

Did you know that on the day of your wedding, the couple is considered royalty? It’s true! Finally, your chance to be Kate Middleton!

So here’s how this breaks down: A Jewish wedding is a sacred event. It’s basically like the couple’s own personal Yom Kippur day; there’s spiritual atonement, forgiveness, and that whole turning-over-a-new-leaf feeling as you start a brand new life. All sins from before are forgiven and since the vows the couple take bind them together, they take on a new life and everything begins fresh and they start over, with all past transgressions null and void. Good deal, right? Just like a new baby, the lovebirds have no track record or file of wrong doings, and they are truly righteous. Because of this, Jewish law actually mandates — MANDATES! — that the couple be treated like royalty. Aw sucks, do we have to? YES!

This royal treatment goes on from three days before the wedding until one week after. A girl could get used to this.

A traditional bride will spend time with the other women of the wedding before the chuppah ceremony. She receives her guests while sitting in her own kind of throne. As they celebrate her and sing to her, she relaxes in comfort in a large and ornate chair. Sometimes it’s even decorated with ribbons and flowers. This is a special way to acknowledge that the bride is the queen and that she is to stand out as such.

Kim Fox Photography

Kim Fox Photography

Meanwhile, in a man cave far, far away that I always picture to be laden with maroon leather-bound books and the smell of dark beer wafting in the air is a groom and his loyal subjects who treat him like a king. They sing and dance and cheer. They might even be reading Torah. They do really fancy, Jewishy things because — on this day, a wedding — everything is sacred.

Later, at the reception, the finest food is served for the couple’s kingdom and the guests entertain and dance for them during merrymaking. It’s spirited. It’s rambunctious. It’s a par-tay! All the guests want to be sure that the newlyweds are having the time of their lives as they are the ones to be treated like royalty.

And those famous chairs that the newlyweds go up in? That’s no coinkidink. That’s not the doing of a wedding DJ who also likes skydiving. When the couple goes up in the chairs, their guests are raising joy. Literally. They are saying that the individuals who, moments before, united as one are royalty and no one can reach their level of joy. The guests are thrilled to look up at the faces of truly righteous people. It’s like they are sitting on pedestals made with pogo sticks, going up an down, above the crowd, all to the festive soundtrack of music and cheering.

Kim Fox Photography

Kim Fox Photography

So, Kings and Queens-to-be, you may feel like a slave to your wedding day as you work hard to make it all that you want it to be. But just remember, no matter how traditional or mainstream your Jewish wedding day is, YOU are the beautiful Queen and you must enjoy your reign!

  • M says:

    I get what you’re trying to say. Still, it’s offensive to see the JAP stereotype in your post. You shouldn’t condone it just because it fits the theme of “Jewish Royalty.”

  • Kristina says:

    I think this isn’t saying it’s ok to be a JAP and I didn’t get any negative or insulting messages from it. I think the main point is that we should embrace the tradittions of Jewish weddings, which is that the bride and groom are like royalty. I am marrying into a Jewish family and never knew this. I like it and think it’s sweet and another raeson why I want to convert when I have the time.

  • Jaimie says:

    get a sense of humor! not everything is about stereotypes.

    xx

{Real Jewish Weddings} New Orleans, LA

Jeremy and Rose were both students at Tulane Law School in the Spring of 2008 and met while Rose was interviewing for an internship at Jeremy’s law firm and it should be illegal how cute their story is! The first night Rose and Jeremy hung out, they stayed up until 6 a.m. talking. On their second date, Jeremy invited Rose to his apartment to watch a movie. The movie he had rented for them to watch was Across the Universe – not knowing that Rose was (and is) a huge Beatles fan. Because of that date, Rose and Jeremy decided that their first dance as a married couple should be to the song “Across the Universe” and they also chose “I want to Hold Your Hand” as their recessional song at the end of their ceremony.

Rose and Jeremy wanted to have a traditional Conservative Jewish Wedding. Since Rose is born and raised in New Orleans, Jeremy’s mother is originally from New Orleans, and Rose and Jeremy reside in New Orleans, they also wanted to incorporate as many traditional New Orleans wedding elements as possible. To achieve both goals, Rose and Jeremy’s wedding included the following:

Jewish: Rose and Jeremy chose to get married on Saturday, June 23, the second-longest day of the year. Therefore, the bride and groom walked down the aisle at 9:30 p.m., one hour after sunset (and Shabbos). The wedding ceremony was preceded by a cocktail reception in the beautiful Waldorf-Astoria Ballroom. The cocktail reception began at 8:30 p.m. – a few minutes after sunset. Once the Rabbi arrived, Rose, Jeremy, their immediate family members and the wedding party had the Bedecken and Ketubah signing while the wedding guests enjoyed the cocktail reception. Immediately following the wedding ceremony, the curtains surrounding the Chuppah opened and the wedding guests found their seats for the wedding reception. The newlyweds spent that time in Yichud. Rose’s grandparents said Ha’motzi and then Rose and Jeremy made their entrance to the USC (Rose’s Alma Mater) fight song. The beginning of the reception also had an exciting, acrobatic, and lengthy Hora!

New Orleans: Rose and Jeremy had a groom’s cake, cake pulls in the actual wedding cake, a second line with umbrellas and handkerchiefs, and a “cocktail reception”-style wedding reception.

Sharing the special day with family, including and especially Rose’s three grandparents. Rose’s grandfather, Zeidy, who was 96, sang “Chozzan Kallah Mazel Tov” (a Yiddish wedding song) to the Bride and Groom under the Chuppah at the conclusion of the wedding ceremony (it was a surprise).

Rose and Jeremy selected special music for their wedding ceremony. Rose’s maternal grandparents walked down the aisle to their song “Always” by Irving Berlin, Zeidy, Rose’s paternal grandfather, who is a Holocaust survivor, walked down the aisle to a Yiddish wedding song “Chosson Kallah Mazal Tov,” the bridesmaids walked down the aisle to “Canon D” by Pachelbel, and Rose walked down the aisle, flanked by her parents, to the song they walked down the aisle to at their wedding, “Sabbath Prayer” from Fiddler on the Roof. As mentioned before, Rose and Jeremy recessed to the Beatles song “I Want to Hold Your Hand.”

Around 2 a.m., after Jeremy and Rose’s exit in a “bubble tunnel” with bubbles blown from mini-wedding cakes, Jeremy and Rose joined at least 20 or so of their wedding guests at the Goldmine Saloon (a late-night bar in the French Quarter) after their wedding reception, and partied with them well into the next morning.

Mazel tov, Rose and Jeremy!

New Orleans Jewish Wedding

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Photographer: Oscar Rajo
Band: Deacon John & The Ivories
Ceremony Music: Harry Hardin
Florist: Urban Earth
Cake: Royal Cakery
Dress: Pronovias
Bridesmaid Dresses: Amsale
Shoes: Angela Nuran (cobalt)
Officiant: Rabbi Ethan Linden
Invitations/Stationery/Programs: Scriptura
Groom’s Tuxedo: George Bass
Groomsmen’s Tuxedos: Perlis
Ketubah: ketubah.com

  • M says:

    I get what you’re trying to say. Still, it’s offensive to see the JAP stereotype in your post. You shouldn’t condone it just because it fits the theme of “Jewish Royalty.”

Wedding Reception Sweetheart Tables

You know how you have, like, 23897921 things to decide for your wedding? How’d you like one more?

“Where will you two be seated during your wedding reception?”

That question will lead you to consider a sweetheart table, a family table, a wedding party table, a periodic table of elements… Ok, hopefully not that last one (ew, I don’t do science). I don’t think there’s really a WRONG choice because I think all of the options have tons of pros and zero cons. But if you held up a box of fresh Scotchmallows in exchange for a decision on this subject, I would have to say that out of all of the options, I am a fan of the sweetheart table.

Why am I in favor of sweetheart tables?

Three reasons:

  • You have your own personal home base. You won’t be sitting much anyway, but when you are, it’ll be nice to have a little turf you can call your own. Your guests who want to offer you mazels and hugs know where to find you to have an intimate chat sometime between the salad and the entree. This takes some of the pressure off of you to have to get up and make the rounds in a small amount of time. People can come to you and they won’t mind.
  • You’ll have another opportunity to extend your style. Props like “Mr.” & “Mrs.” signs, decked out chairs, or flower arrangements can furnish your sweetheart table, thereby making it a vehicle to tie in your theme, color scheme, or any additional design concepts.
  • You get the best seat in the house! Normally, sweetheart tables are placed in front of the dance floor and in a position where you can look out and see all your guests surrounding you. If you are at a long banquet table with your bridal party, the placement of the table is not as flexible as a small, intimate table for two. Having the best seat in the reception hall is ideal during speeches, watching special dances, and generally taking it all in. You’ll be the focus of the reception area and why shouldn’t you be?

Photo by Orange Girl Photographs

However, it is important to make your sweetheart table tasteful. Setting it apart from the rest of the tables is fine; those few, subtle touches that declare the table special and unique to the bride and groom is totally acceptable. On the flip side, decking it out in gaudy drapery or an over abundance of flowers that make you look like Tarzan and Jane in the jungle is not the way to go.

Bottomline: The sweetheart table should complement the main tables, not appear to be out of place or swallow you up in the general world of your wedding reception ambiance.

Okay, I’m just going to leave it at that.

Moving on…

While it’s nice to have the home base of a sweetheart table, that also doesn’t take you off the hook of doing the right thing and making the rounds to see your guests. At a time that feels right for you (this is usually at some point during the salad or entree), you should really make sure you visit the tables to say hello and thanks to your guests. They will think you are both a lovely couple: a gracious bride and a mensch of a groom. The concept of you home base is to give you a semi-private place to enjoy each other’s company as newlyweds, but you should definitely not ignore your guests altogether.

Needs ideas for sweetheart table design? Look below for some sweet eye candy!

Stacy & Drew by Rosie Hernandez Photography

Desiree & Richard by Heidi Ryder Photography

Jackie & Danny by Photography by Verdi

Erica & Adi by Duke Photography

Jaynee & Sean by Mi Belle Photography

Serene & Mike by Ashleigh Taylor Photography

Naomi & Andrew by Phototerra

  • Craig says:

    Alzi-aaamaknformation found, problem solved, thanks!

{Real Jewish Weddings} Dallas, TX

Elizabeth and Michael’s meeting was truly b’shert. They weren’t looking for love and ended up meeting at the most romantic of places: Michael’s cousin’s bris. They were both shy and quiet, so a family member introduced them and Michael got Elizabeth’s number and she waited for his call. After waiting a week, and not hearing from him, she found him on her cousin’s Facebook. She sent him a message to wish him a Happy Passover. A day later, Michael called Elizabeth and set up a date. Unfortunately, Elizabeth’s brother came in town last minute and Elizabeth had to break their date. They ended up rescheduling it and realized at that time, their lives had been intertwined all along through their siblings and high school. They even grew up 5 minutes from each other, but it took a bris to finally bring them together.

Michael and Elizabeth had a lot of obstacles and drama while planning their wedding. So on their wedding day, they felt like a huge weight had been lifted off their shoulders. They truly enjoyed and celebrated their love for each other on their wedding day. Elizabeth got the princess wedding she had always wanted. They loved the symbolism and tributes shown to their families. At their sign-in table, they had pictures of their grandparents at each of their weddings. Their sign-in book consisted of their engagement pictures. Elizabeth also had picture frames attached to her bridal bouquet of her Zada (of blessed memory) and of her 97 year old grandparents (Saba and Sapta) who could not travel to Dallas from Israel. She carried her great-great aunt’s and her Sapta’s handkerchief with her. She had a sixpence in her shoe for good luck that her mother had given her. Elizabeth and Michael had a traditional Bedekken and Ketubah signing which included their loved ones. During their ceremony, they paid special tribute to Elizabeth’s Zada and her Israeli grandparents. Her Sapta’s tablecloth was used on the table under the chuppah and her Saba’s Tallis was used when the rabbi blessed them. The wine cups used during the ceremony had special meaning as well; one was a gift to Michael’s great-grandfather, for whom he was named, from his grandchildren. The other was given to Elizabeth by her brother and sister-in-law after a trip to Israel. During the reception, as table numbers, they had pictures of themselves at the age of the correlating table number. Their personal touches stood out. It was everything they wanted and more. They even left in a Cinderella horse drawn carriage to end the perfect night. Now they are living happily ever after.

Mazel tov, Elizabeth and Michael!

Dallas, Texas Jewish Wedding

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Ceremony and Reception site: The Adolphus Hotel
Photography: Fairy Tale Photography
Florist: Timeless Fiori
Cake: Delicious Cakes
DJ and Lighting: Bill Cody from Party Time Productions
Videographer: Lenicam Productions
Hair: Tara Hunsicker
Makeup: Makeup Artistry by Amber Compton
Wedding gown designer: Maggie Sottero
Bridesmaids Dress Designer: Mori Lee
Groom’s Attire: Paul Betenly
String Trio: Serenata Strings

Editorial Partner: Two Bright Lights

  • Aliyah says:

    Beautiful Jewish Wedding! The Ketubah they chose, “Chai Star” by Ruth Rudin is available at Ketubah.com if anyone is interested! Mazel tov!

From The Expert: Understanding Your Options for Wedding Invitations

Fla-de-Dahs is a custom design studio and a recent winner of Special Events Magazine’s coveted “Best Invitation” award. Fla-de-Dahs has been creating one-of-a-kind invitations since 2001. While our main focus is custom invitations, we also carry several unique, high quality, ready-made invitations that cannot be found anywhere else. Fla-de-Dahs produces all projects in-house to ensure that the client receives the highest level of quality with each piece being hand-crafted and supervised by an expert production team. Each project begins with a complimentary personal design consultation. Once the client chooses a design, a complete sample will be presented for the client to review and approve before production begins. Make sure to “like” Fla-de-Dahs on Facebook and if you’re a Southern California local, visit their beautiful studio.

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Before you can make your decisions about wedding invitations, you’ll probably ask yourself: which is best for you — custom, DIY, or online?

??Before we look into the question of which is right for you, first consider that the invitation you choose is the first glimpse of what people will see and know about your event. It will set the tone and is truly the “front door to you event.” Custom isn’t right for everyone, but for many, it is the choice that can assure you that your event is one not to be missed.

DIY Perks:
If you are pretty creative and crafty, then this option can be cost-saving and fun, too. You can get friends and family involved and this could end up being a fun project that can create some nice memories.
DIY Disadvantages:
Choosing paper and embellishments can be daunting for those who don’t have an eye for this type of creativity and if you simply want to save money, this is not the choice for you. Knowing which paper to choose, how to cut it, how to print on it, how to embellish it and which tools are necessary to accomplish all of this may not be worth the time for the amount of money you may save.

Choose DIY if you are creative and have the time to spend and the tools to make your own invitations.

Online Perks:
They are usually less expensive and because of the vast catalog available online, you will most likely find the style that you’re looking for. Most can be modified to incorporate your colors and some even offer minor types of embellishments.
Online Disadvantages: Because you haven’t seen it, you can’t be sure of the quality of the materials. Sometimes, the samples fall short of the image presented online. You may end up wasting some time waiting for a sample only to find that it is not the quality you were expecting. Most of the time you need to buy in groups of 25, so there may be some waste.

Choose online if you are looking for a low cost invitation that can be made fairly quickly.

Custom Perks:
Since you are creating the invitation based on your unique style and taste, your invitation will be unlike anyone else’s. No one will have seen it online, or worse, received it for another event. This allows you to create your own brand for your event and can be carried throughout with all of your wedding accessories, including programs, escort cards, etc.
Custom Disadvantages: Most often, they are more expensive.

Choose custom if you are looking for a unique invitation that captures the essence of your event that no one else will have.

The gorgeous Flah-de-Dahs Southern California studio is home to the finest papers and stylized embellishments. It’s a kid-in-a-candy-store experience to touch and see the in-house products, and below you can see some photographic samples of such delicate, detailed, and intricate custom pieces!

Custom Wedding Invitations

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