I’ve never been to a Jewish wedding, but celebrations like Shira and Irzik’s make me hope I can one day. Look at all that joy! The couple were married in November (on the bride’s birthday!) in Old Jaffa, Israel. Their wedding theme was mostly influenced by the bride’s dress, made by Israeli brand Shimka. The vintage inspired cut and fabrics sent their wedding in a rustic yet elegant direction.
“My beautiful dress and the venue were both with a vintage and romantic vibe to them, so we wanted to keep that theme in the wedding design,” explained the bride. “We mixed it with some subtle quirky and alternative vibes. My groom designed the wedding logo to put on the stationery.”
It was OKCupid and a mutual love of antiques that brought Ingrid and Johnny together. And even though the pair of them are known for having ‘booming personalities’ they decided to have a quieter day than their guests expected.
The bride said, “My whole life, I was a black sheep. Johnny has always been unique, as well. A lot of our guests expected to see a big, extravagant fashion bomb as our wedding décor. After a few people made comments about what they were expecting, I decided we had to have a calm, romantic day that really focused on us. Our colours were plum and blush and our mood words were ‘vintage’ and ‘romantic. Our wedding was unique because it was fully a representation of our love story.”
Rock n Roll Bride is all about body positivity and inclusivity, so Ingrid’s wedding planning journey is extra amazing. “I’ve been in the Rock n Roll Bride Facebook group since the moment I got engaged. During my whole planning process, one of the questions I based my decisions off of was ‘Would this be something Rock n Roll Bride would publish?’ I was a fat Jewish bride (US size 28), and I found that many vendors had never worked with a happy fat bride before (or a Jewish one!) Photographers don’t feature fat brides on their websites and, even when asked, many of them had never photographed a bride anywhere near my size. Many of our vendors were learning along with us, which made all our planning that much more exciting (as well as stressful…).”
Emyli and Matt’s Denver wedding was rustic and romantic, understated and unbelievably pretty. Inspired by the mountains and an open bar, they brought slick style to the gorgeous wildness for their guests, drawing on their love of the outdoors, motocross, and Emyli’s Jewish traditions for a celebration with serious flair.
Emyli walked down the aisle in a beautiful backless halterneck Sarah Seven dress (and gorgeous lilac hair that’s total #hairgoals) to Hans Zimmer’s You’re So Cool. “Looking back, I wish I’d walked slower down the aisle but I was too excited!” she says. “The sun came out just for our ceremony underneath a chuppah on the Strawberry Creek Ranch lawn and it was perfect. Our small dog, Sarah, fell asleep during the ceremony – in spite of us trying to keep it super short and sweet – so I guess it was a little boring!”
Glasgow-born Naomi met Jenn in Washington DC, connecting instantly. A transatlantic-sized long-distance relationship led to moving in together and eventually to their elegant and fusion wedding day.
Naomi said, “Jenn has been planning and re-planning her future wedding since she was young, whereas I had not thought about weddings until I met her. We tried to explore options together and make sure it was an event that was an expression of both of us, individually and together. The day turned out to be a sort of Jewish/ Scottish fusion. Jenn is a Jewish American and I’m non-religious and Scottish, so we had a Jewish ceremony with a bagpiper out front and danced the Hora and Scottish ceilidh dances. About half our guests were from the UK or Europe and the other half were from the US. I don’t know if there has ever been another Jewish/ Scottish queer wedding, but there certainly hasn’t been one like ours! We also really personalised everything and made many non-traditional choices.”
The couple had an egalitarian Jewish ceremony with no theme, as such, saying, “We just wanted it to be colourful, joyous, and meaningful. We didn’t narrow ourselves to specific colours, and we chose wildflowers and vintage elements to give ourselves the opportunity to get crafty and artistic. Traditionally, both partners are walked down the aisle by both parents. We created a T-shaped aisle and walked to the middle with our parents, then walked the rest of the way to the Chuppah, just the two of us. We had been meeting with our officiant, Cantor Segal, for about a year beforehand and had selected all the language that was used. Cantor Segal asked us to each write love letters to each other and send them to her. During the ceremony, she read parts of the letters, which she and her husband had written into a dialogue. Until that moment, we had no idea what the other had written. After the ceremony, we had a private moment called a Yichud where we read each other’s full letters.”
Alicia and Simon were inspired by Connie’s wedding in The Godfather and Dolce & Gabbana shop windows for their wedding. They were married on New Year’s Eve and wanted a day that featured great food and lots of fun.
“Having the wedding on New Year’s Eve meant they pretty much everyone was in party mood and there was a really nice, jovial, fun atmosphere from start to finish”, the bride began. “The traditional Jewish dancing definitely helped kick things off as well though!”
“Food was a huge part of our wedding and being able to choose specialists for each individual item and course was really important to us. We used The Raw Kitchen who specialise in amazing vegan food so we had them cater the sides and vegetables, El Asador is the king of Argentinian BBQ so we had him create some special beef chorizo, ribs and spatchcock and Pasta Addiction make their own handmade pasta and sauces so this was an absolute necessity from the beginning. Our desserts were all from people we know and love in Perth, who customised our favourite sweets for the evening. Our antipasti table was a work of art and tasted as good as it looked, created by Styled Notion.”
Zlil and Yosi met when they were both in the Israeli army ten years ago. Their wedding was held in Tel Aviv. The fashion designer bride helped design her own wedding dress. “Our wedding was light and urban”, she explained, “Most of our guests were young, and our friends.”
“The inspiration was to plan something fun, happy and easy-going. We both wanted a small wedding but for it to feel like one big party. We found ourselves surrounded by beautiful and loving people. Our main goal was to have a nice summer wedding, five minutes walk from our home.”
“In Israel the tradition is to have a reception first, then ceremony and then dinner”, she continued. “However we decided to invite everyone to dinner first, then do the ceremony and then a big party with late night food and desserts. It was awesome and people were very excited that it was different.”
I am an ENORMOUS Back to the Future fan, so when I saw Yael and Magen’s wedding, which took place on October 21st 2015 (hands up if you know the significance of this date!) I was so excited to share it.
The Jewish wedding was held in Jerusalem. “Getting married in Jerusalem was a big deal for me”, began the bride. “Jerusalem is where I was born and grew up and where Magen and I first met and lived throughout most of our mutual lives together. Our dream was to marry in a basketball court in town (like in the prom from the film…), but it didn’t work out. We ended up getting married in a venue inside the University in which we both studied. That was cool.”
“Our wedding date wasn’t random”, she continued, “October 21st 2015 was celebrated around the world as ‘Back to the Future day’, the day in which Marty McFly arrives to the future in the most brilliant trilogy ever – Back to the Future. As huge fans of the film we knew a chance like this can only come once in a lifetime and did everything in our power to make it happen.
While others around the world partied that day mostly by watching the film, we were getting married in a Back to the Future themed wedding!”
Talia and Indra wanted to reflect both their backgrounds in their wedding, Jewish and Hindu. They were married at Wit Hotel in Chicago and had a ceremony with both Hindu and Jewish elements.
“We wanted the wedding to be bright and vibrant, aka as colorful as possible,” said the bride. “So our color scheme was so pinks, teals, blues, greens, purples, you name it! Good food and drinks was also a biggie for us. The food was inspired by all of our favorite dishes from our travels, while the craft beers (Dirty Bastard, Zombie Dust, Edmund Fitzgerald and Sofie) had a local Midwestern theme.”
Shimrit and Liron planned their Jewish wedding in Tel Aviv in just a month. Because of the short time frame they ignored a lot of traditions and forgot about having lots of extra details. They kept things simple and affordable.
“The inspiration for the wedding was the good old weddings, before weddings became tacky and cheesy and brides and grooms lost proportions”, wrote the bride. “The guests said that they felt like they were sent back in time. I think we managed to create a good combination between the vintage feeling, oldies songs, light mood, simplicity, Israeli and the respect we gave to the ceremony. It didn’t feel fake, it felt authentic and ours. I think it’s rare to be at a wedding that really reflects the couple’s vibe.”
“We did a lot ourselves including the table centrepieces, the table numbers, the flowers and candy arrangements”, she continued. “My wedding dress was inspired by the 1920s and was made from ivory velvet, French silver-cream lace and decorated with lots of pearls and Swarovski stones. I designed and made it myself as well as all of the bridesmaid’s dresses (six adults and three flower girls!) I also made the bow ties for the boys.”
Masha and Lenya are prolific skiers and so wanted this mutual love to be reflected in their Israeli wedding. The day took place at Villa Dalia, in Moshav Ora on the outskirts of Jerusalem. There was free-flowing alcohol and sports references throughout.
“The inspiration was our craziness with several things including Lenya’s love of alcohol and football and my love of skiing and music!” began the bride. “The design of the day was unique.”
“We used the famous vintage alpine ski poster from Chamonix, France as our main design theme. We got one of these posters, dressed the couple into the wedding clothes and added a football theme. This print was used almost in every little part including the invitations and favours.”
Mor and Amnon were married at a nature reserve between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. The location helped to set their theme of ‘concrete and nature’. “We didn’t want to decorate the place too much because the forest around was everything,” began Mor. “We wanted people to come and enjoy nature, but to have the concrete floor to dance on too!”
“We thought a lot about the concept because my parents are very religious. We originally planned to do the ceremony in Amnon’s parents’ backyard in Jerusalem and then do a rooftop party for just the young people in south Tel Aviv. But then we decided that it would be much better overall to include everybody in everything. In the end there were ultra religious people dancing with young hipsters and it was amazing!”