Tag Archives: weddings

Our Top 7 Jewish Wedding Planning Articles

Jewish wedding New York park ivory silk chuppah

Planning your Jewish wedding? Start here, with our top 7 Jewish wedding planning posts:

1. 7 Ways to Decorate a Wedding Huppah

2. Our 100 Favorite Backyard Wedding Themes

3. 21 Things Rabbis Wish Wedding Coordinators and Couples Knew About Planning a Jewish Wedding (Huppahs.com)

Free printable wedding favor card4. 7 Tips for Designing Stylish Long Tablescapes on a Budget

5. Kosher-fied Royal Wedding Hors d’Oeurve Reception Menu with Recipes

6. What do the Jewish bride and groom wear?

7. Free printable charity favor cards (Huppahs.com)

And if you’re thinking about making your own huppah, take a look at Sew Jewish, a collection of 18 Jewish sewing patterns and projects. It comes out soon…and includes instructions for sewing a huppah canopy! Get details at SewJewish.com…

Sew Jewish Book Huppah

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For Wedding Planning Sanity, Limit Your Options


Kelly Faircloth over at Jezebel, who got married a month ago, recommends limiting the number of options you consider when making wedding planning decisions:

…Do not let yourself get bogged down in any single decision. I spent weeks scouring New York City for wedding shoes and a hair comb. My mistake was ever considering more than five options in the first place.

(Video: Bridesmaids trailer via YouTube)

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Save $3K on Your Wedding: Do Your Own Social Media #weddings #socialmedia

If, as you set up your wedding website and mull over your wedding hashtag, the social media tasks on your wedding planning list seem like they’re taking up too much of your time, you should know that by doing this all yourself, you’re saving $3,000. That’s the price W Hotels in New York puts on your work, and they’re happy to take those social media tasks off your hands for just that fee.

W Hotels now offers their wedding clients the services of a Social Media Concierge who will set up your wedding website, create a hashtag and encourage your guests to use it, and post Vine videos for you. They’ll manage your Pinterest boards. They will even live tweet your wedding.

Create Vine videos of my wedding? Maybe. Take over my Pinterest boards? Never.

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Make a Rainbow Cupcake in a Jar

Cake and mason jars — two wedding staples that come together to create a lot of fun. You can find recipes for different flavors of jar cupcakes around, but Sarah Jill offers one of the most colorful and simple versions. Six-ounce mason jars would yield a nice serving size for a backyard wedding. Thanks, Sarah Jill!

sarah.jill.

  •  one box of ready-to-bake cake mix (or your own cupcake mix)
  • a few old jars
  • a variety of food colouring
  • squirty cream
  • rainbow sprinkles

preheat oven to 350 degrees. thoroughly wash and dry the inside of each jar. spray the inside of each jar thoroughly with nonstick cooking spray. set aside.

scoop about 1/2 cups of cake batter into five small bowls. it doesn’t have to be perfect, don’t panic if you get a little more of less of one color than another.  tint each bowl of cake batter with the food colouring until very vibrant.

spoon about 3 tablespoons of the purple batter into the bottom of each jar.  spoon equal amounts of turquoise batter, then green, yellow, and pink.  place the jars in a shallow baking dish, add about 1/4inch in water in the baking dish. place the baking dish in the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes.

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Don’t Forget Your Trousseau (?)

wedding trousseau list
Thought you’d like to see the list of trousseau items you’d probably pick up if you got married in 1960. Hats, gloves, formal wrap — Yes, I can see the gals of Mad Men opening a suitcase with just these items.

The list comes from the 1960 brochure of wedding tips from Miss America’s Wedding Invitation Line. You can see their recommendations for what to wear to your wedding here.

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You Say Macaron, I Say Macaroon – Chocolate Cherry Macaroon

macaroon recipes

For lots of folks a wedding isn’t a wedding without a display stand stacked with macaroons, those tasty meringue cookies popularized by the French – and which they call macarons. But if you’re having a Jewish wedding, how about serving your guests a distinctly Jewish macaroon? After all, macaroons enjoy an exalted status in the canon of Jewish confections, perfected by generations of Jewish home bakers for the Passover holiday.

Dan Cohen explicates fifty variations of the cookie in his newly released cook book, The Macaroon Bible.

Among the macaroon recipes included: cappuccino, salted caramel, and chocolate cherry. Most of the recipes are dairy, with one vegan/parve alternative.

And macaroons are freezable, a make-ahead bonus for small, self-catered weddings. Ooh la la.

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Our New Favorite DIY Wedding Project: Ribbon Favor Bags


Here’s a DIY wedding project that packs a big punch. Favor bags made from fabric ribbon beat out plain organza bags hands down, and they’re easy to whip up. When you incorporate them into your table setting, they double as decorations for your tablescape. And, OK, we’re extra partial to this fab idea because it comes from our new sister site, Sew Jewish. Get the instructions.

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A Tip for Using Ribbons on Your Wedding Huppah

ribbons for wedding chuppah

Once you cut ribbon, the threads at the end can fray and look messy. Packing up the ribbon to get it to your wedding venue and tying the ribbon to your huppah can make the fraying worse. That’s not a fun look for your wedding. But you can prevent stray threads and keep your ribbons looking neat by sealing the ends with liquid fray check, which you can find it at fabric and craft stores.

After cutting the end of the ribbon neatly, apply fray check and let it dry. After it’s dry, trim the ribbon again to leave a strip of fray check that is no more than about 1/8″ (3mm) wide.

More tips for decorating your huppah with ribbons here.

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Who Can Hold the Huppah Poles?

Anyone can hold a huppah pole. There’s no Jewish law on this. Unless your wedding officiant limits who can hold the huppah poles, or your community has strong expectations that you want to meet, you can choose anyone you want.

For my own wedding, for example, which was an Orthodox ceremony, we had both men and women holding poles. Some of the huppah bearers were Jewish and some were not Jewish. In fact, asking someone who is not Jewish to hold a huppah pole can be a great way to include them in your wedding if your officiant requires that the other roles in the ceremony, such as reciting a blessing, be done only be someone who is Jewish.

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Planning a Restaurant Wedding? A Hand-held Huppah Is a Flexible Space Saver

East River Bar Brooklyn New York NY

This season at Huppahs.com we’re shipping an unprecedented number of wedding huppah rentals directly to restaurants. For couples planning small weddings, restaurants make great wedding venues. Decorating needs are minimal, and the caterer is already on site.

But space can be limited. If you’re using a huppah, you don’t want one that takes up valuable dance floor space and you don’t want to hold up the party while a crew dismantles it.

As I wrote recently on Twitter, for a small venue like a restaurant a hand-held huppah makes the perfect solution. It can be moved in and out of the ceremony space quickly and easily. Having people hold the huppah poles enhances the sense of intimacy of a small wedding. And for especially intimate spaces, Huppahs.com offers the option of short, 7-foot poles, which are a great alternative to generally taller, stand-alone huppahs.

Visit Huppahs.com’s website to check huppah availability for your wedding date.

Hat tip to Joe and Alanna for sharing the photo of their wedding reception at the East River Bar in Brooklyn, New York.

(Photo: Jacob Arthur)

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New! Wedding Huppah Canopies Now Available to Rent Without Poles

Simple elegant huppah
Well, this is big news! Huppahs.com now makes two of its popular wedding huppah canopies available to rent without poles. Perfect if you already have poles and are looking for a beautiful, high-quality canopy.

The Simplicity Canopy, pictured above, is fashioned from a high-quality bridal satin. The fabric’s subtle sheen and substantial hand create a simply elegant canopy that works wonderfully in any wedding venue.

Rent Ivory Silk Huppah CanopyThe Ivory Silk Canopy, shown in detail at the right, has the refined texture characteristic of 100% dupioni silk. The light ivory color cultivates a warm sophistication.

Get more details and find out if these canopies are available for your wedding date at Huppahs.com.

(Photo: Jason Weil for Huppahs.com. Location: Woodend Nature Sanctuary, Audubon Naturalist Society; Chevy Chase, Maryland)

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It Must Be Love: Boho Chic and the Shot Luge Together at Last

Love ice sculpture Max Zuleta
Love has finally brought together two wedding trends that were destined to fall into each others arms: boho chic and shot luges. My ice sculptor brother put me on to the current popularity of the iconic Love sculpture as a shot luge for weddings, and this version was created by Max Zuleta, a member of the Chicago-based ice sculpture collective Art Below Zero.

The sculpture is a cool riff on on the pop art image created by Robert Indiana and adopted as a symbol of the bohemian, hippie culture in the 1960s. The shot luge, I think, is a more contemporary development. They make a great couple, no?

Here’s the version of Robert Indiana’s Love sculpture in New York:

LOVE sculpture New York

A popular post: Oh, Martha Stewart, THIS is an ice bar

(Photos: Ice sculpture: Max Zuleta, Art Below Zero | Love sculpture by Robert Indiana: B Hu Totya derivative work [Public domain] via Wikimedia Commons)

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Strawberry Cupcakes Sweeten a Summer Wedding (Recipe)

strawberry cupcake
Have you ever noticed that when you cut a strawberry in half it looks like a heart? That alone should earn strawberries a place in your summer wedding menu. Then there’s the flavor. Kudos to my daughters for figuring out that you can infuse cupcakes with that sweet summery goodness by simply adding a cup of pureed fresh strawberries to boxed vanilla cake mix batter. Then they adapted another recipe to come up with the strawberry glaze.

Take a look at that cupcake: perfect for a shabby chic, farm, or picnic theme, or any summer backyard wedding reception.

Strawberry Cupcake Glaze Recipe

Enough for 24 cupcakes

1¼ cup (2 ½ sticks) butter, softened
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
¼ cup strawberry puree
5 cups powdered sugar

Blend the first three ingredients together in a large bowl. Gradually add the sugar while mixing the glaze.

Here’s another cupcake recipe: Chili Chocolate Cupcakes to Spice up Your Dessert Buffet

(Cupcake: Agnes and Clara. Photo: Clara)

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Bet You’ve Never Heard of these Jewish Wedding Customs

barley

In honour of the bridal pair an old Persian custom was followed in Talmudic times, and nuts and wheat were cast about the path in which they strode. Barley was sown in a flower vase a few days before the wedding as an emblem of fertility, and was thrown over the young couple, as in modern times.

Modern times? Well, if that’s not any modern times you’re familiar with, that’s because these descriptions of nearly forgotten Jewish wedding customs were written circa 1896, by Israel Abrahams for his book, Jewish Life in the Middle Ages. Thanks, Mr. Abrahams.

What do the Jewish bride and groom wear?

(Photo: From this week’s barley harvest, the first ever at 4 Pines Farm)

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The Trojans’ Helmets Are Shot Luges

Walk-in ice bar at Damenti's Restaurant, Mountain Top, Pennsylvania

The craft of bartending has come into its own, and Martha Stewart endorsed jello shots for weddings. It’s shaping up to be the summer of love and the summer of serious libations. So let’s get this wedding reception started. What we need: ice carvings. Like the Trojans flanking the ice bar in the photo. My brother Bill carved them for a charity event last year. The helmets are shot luges.

(Photo: Bill Bywater)

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Summer, Time for Our Blissful Backyard Wedding Punch

Summer Bliss Wedding Punch with Watermelon and Gin
It’s summertime! Woo hoo! Which means it’s time to bust out our favorite Summer Bliss Wedding Punch. Never have watermelon and gin tasted so cool and refreshing. Find the recipe here. Find our instructions for the table garland decorations at DIY Weddings Magazine.

Hey, Joe, any watermelon in that backyard farm?

(Photo: Jason Weil for Huppahs.com)

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Huppahs Aren’t Just for Jewish Weddings Anymore

Lace Huppah from Huppahs.com Rentals
Non-Jewish couples who use huppahs for their weddings are part of a growing trend, says Ted Merwin in the New York Jewish Week.

Party planner Sojourner Auguste explains:

It is “fairly common” for non-Jewish couples to use a chupah, or chupah-like structure, as part of the “décor” for the wedding ceremony. For these couples, she said, “The wedding canopy still represents a sacred space where they exchange vows.” But Christians want something beyond the standard floral arrangements that flank the altar. “By using a chupah,” Soujourner said, “they elevate their ceremony and make it special.”

From event planner Melisa Imberman:

Non-Jews who use a chupah, she said, are often thinking about how their wedding pictures will look “They may not know what it’s called or be aware that it’s a Jewish concept,” she said. “They see a picture of a wedding arch in a magazine or on a website, and they notice that it frames the bride and groom, creating a focal point for the ceremony.”

It makes sense. With so many couples getting married in non-traditional spaces like parks, museums, and bistros, a huppah is a way to make a ceremony space feel special and look pretty.

(Photo: Jason Weil for Huppahs.com)

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Why Most Couples Spend Way Less Than the Average Wedding Cost

bride and groom
You don’t need to be involved with wedding planning very long before you run into quotes for the average wedding cost, which these days hovers around $27,000 to $28,000. Turns out, most couples spend far less than that. As Slate’s Will Oremus explains, a small number of mega-expensive weddings skews the average upward pretty heftily. The typical American couple actually spends something like $15,000.

Oremus’ takeaway:

Once you realize that the typical American wedding costs closer to $15,000 than $30,000, it becomes that much easier to say “no” to things you don’t need and embrace the expenses that are important to you.

(Photo: By Jason Hutchens (Flickr) via Wikimedia Commons)

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“Gee, Pops, Everyone Has a Wedding Cake These Days” [Video]

Elizabeth Taylor and
That’s one of my favorite lines, at least the way I remember the line, from the 1950 movie “Father of the Bride.” The bride-to-be, played by Elizabeth Taylor, says it to her father, played by Spencer Tracy. They’re meeting with the wedding planner, and Dad is just not keeping up. You’ve probably seen the 1991 remake of the movie with Steve Martin as the father. But the original is less silly and more, well, charming.

As in the modern version, Dad ends up in the middle of planning for a wedding that is bigger than he counted on and nearly more than he can wrap his head around. But instead of the bevy of swans that trip up Steve Martin, the symbolic over-the-top extravagance here is a tiered wedding cake, which, as Elizabeth Taylor’s line seems to indicate, was a relatively new addition to the list of wedding must-haves. It’s a reminder that a lot of today’s wedding expectations arose over a fairly short span of human history, and that a lot of must-haves are things people didn’t even know they needed just a couple of generations ago.

Oh, but that wedding dress. Who would begrudge Elizabeth Taylor that dress? See it in action in the official movie trailer, below.

Here’s to fathers.

(Photo: Elizabeth Taylor and Spencer Tracy in a promotional image for the 1950 film ”Father of the Bride” by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer [public domain] via Wikimedia Commons | Video: “Father of the Bride” trailer, YouTube.)

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Awesome Wedding Dessert Pairings, Continued

Small weddings don’t need big dessert buffets, we pointed out in an earlier post of 10 great wedding cake dessert pairings. One carefully chosen food to accompany the wedding cake makes the dessert course special. Here are four more awesome wedding dessert duos:

  1. Milk Chocolate Cake & Mint Julep Ice Cream
  2. Cheesecake with Pistachio Crust & Poached Pear Half
  3. Honey-Soaked Semolina Cake & Stuffed Dates (Parve)
  4. Lemon Pound Cake & Lemon Almond Tuiles
  5. Mocha Cake & Gourmet Chocolates

flourless chocolate cake
If they’re special enough to make your small wedding guest list, they deserve an awesome dessert

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Another Budget-Friendly Alternative to an Open Bar (With Recipes)

watermelon wedding punch

Summer Bliss Wedding Punch. Source: Huppahs.com. (Photographer: Jason Weil)

This week, Bridal Guide published a great list of 5 budget-friendly alternatives to an open bar. The options involve finding inspired ways to narrow down the types of alcohol you serve at your wedding so that you can avoid the cost of stocking a full bar. Examples: Team up with a local microbrewery or serve a signature cocktail.

Here’s another option along those same lines: a wedding punch. A wedding punch isn’t just for a vintage wedding with white gloves and hats; you can also find great modern options for contemporary tastes.

Some of our favorite wedding punch recipes:

Any other suggestions? Please share in the Comment section!

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