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Ivory Silk Huppah
Battenburg Lace Huppah
In Judaism, a person’ wedding day is a day of renewal, a personal Yom Kippur. On the wedding day, the bride and groom’s souls are wiped clean. White is a symbol of the bride and groom’s spiritual purity. The bride wears a white wedding dress, and the groom traditionally wears a white robe called a kittel, or a tallit, a prayer shawl.
Huppahs (also spelled huppas, chuppahs, or khupas) became a part of the Jewish wedding ceremony during the Middle Ages in Europe, about the same time and place that men began covering their heads with kippot (yarmulkes). The Middle Ages sounds like a long time ago, but when you consider that Judaism’s history reaches back 5,000 years, the wedding huppah is a relatively young custom.
The earliest huppah poles were only a few feet tall. Four young men would hold the poles as they escorted the bride, who walked under the huppah, from her home to the synagogue.
The huppah serves as a visible representation of the home, both physical and spiritual, that the bride and groom will share as a married couple. Traditionally, the bride creates their shared spiritual space as she steps under the huppah and circles the groom.
A huppah (also written chuppah or huppa) has a fabric canopy held aloft by four poles or a frame with four legs. The huppah is open on all four sides, as the tent of Sarah and Abraham is said to have been because of their great hospitality.
I had to show you these photos of a very pretty evening wedding, from Surrendering to Serendipity, Gayle Harper’s blog about her travels along the Mississippi Great River Road. Serendipity indeed. While staying at the 150-year-old Nottoway Plantation she found preparations underway for this wedding and captured it on film. As dusk fell, the reception began.
Miri and Hank share a deep sense of engagement with the environment. The couple met through Habonim Dror, a youth-movement that supports making green choices. “We spent many summers at camps enjoying the beauty of nature.” Because of this, Hank and Miri strongly support environmental causes.
When it came time to make their love for each other official, they were not going to leave their love for nature behind, but they were planning to marry in the middle of January. How to have a garden wedding, surrounded by the natural environment they both love, in the middle of winter? The answer: Miri and Dan celebrated their wedding in the middle of New York’s Brooklyn Botanical Gardens, at the Palm House, which resembles a conservatory with its large pane windows on the gardens — and night sky — outside.
Carrie and Ben raised their huppah in an alpine forest in Beaver Creek, Colorado, outside of Denver. For their color scheme, they chose brown and a very refined shade of green. The natural elements in the decor, including pine cones and wildflowers, are used with restraint, so that we can appreciate their natural beauty.
In planning the wedding, the bride and groom were inspired by the local Maine woodlands and the autumn harvest, especially the apples in the local orchard. The wedding colors were moss, apple, and the hues offered up by the locally available foods and flowers.
Photos: Karen Rusten
Source: From Seedling to Sachet: Growing Your Own Wedding by Mosey.
And Check this Out:
Real Life Wedding: Hipsters Marry in their Native Environment
Their unifying approach: Set natural elements against a backdrop of stripes.
The keys to making this motif sophisticated:
Let’s break it down. Take a close look at some of the details that make Cari and Dan’s wedding decor work:
Photographer: First Comes Love Photography
Florist: Sandy Clotheir
Source: Style Unveiled
A.’s huppah, crafted by her Mom from huppah squares made by family and friends, became a way for her non-Jewish family members and friends to feel intimately connected with her wedding ceremony. Standing underneath the huppah, it felt to her like a shower of blessings and love.
Wedding photo taken by Davina + Daniel of New York and Montreal.
The conventional American term is “huppah bearers”. The classic term is unterferers, which means “supporters”.
Jews United for Justice (JUFJ) in Washington, DC held its annual award dinner last week, which makes this a good time to give a shout out for JUFJ’s event planning guide, Green & Just Celebrations. The guide goes beyond the basic buy-local green wedding tips. JUFJ helps you dig deep, so that your once-in-a-lifetime wedding purchases can be as green and just as you can make them. Among the topics covered are buying rings and negotiating the venue contract.
Most of the vendors in the buying guide are local to the Washington, DC area, but some are national organizations that you can find online. And the ideas work where ever in the world you raise your huppah.
By the way, at the award dinner, JUFJ honored four Washington, DC and Maryland area activists:
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