Erica and David had their Fall garden wedding and reception at Glen Errol Estate on September 13th. I love that Jewish weddings are so rich in tradition, so I thought this would be the perfect post to talk about some of those traditions. Erica and David were fortunate to have Erica's Aunt cater their wedding- she really went all out for them. As guests arrived, they were greeted with champagne and hors d'oeuvres and were able to mingle with friends and family for a bit. Just before the ceremony began, Erica and David signed the ketubah, which is the Hebrew marriage "contract" that the couple will hang in their home as a reminder of their comittment to one another. The ceremony then took place outside under a beautiful birchwood chuppah- a marriage canopy that symbolizes the home the bride and groom will build together. The chuppah is typically open on all sides as a symbol of hospitality to their family and friends. As the ceremony progressed, the Rabbi said a blessing over a glass of wine. This ritual of sanctification- with blessings recited over a cup of wine- is known as kiddush. Erica and David then both drank from the kiddush cup. As the ceremony came to a close, David broke the wedding glass as everyone proclaimed "mazel tov," which literally means "good fortune" in Hebrew, but is often used to mean "Congratulations." Guests then enjoyed cocktails and more hors d'oeuvres until both Erica and David's Uncles blessed the challah bread before dinner. Erica's Mother made the Challah and the family was so excited because they all say she makes the best challah! Everyone then enjoyed 2 elaborate buffets of a variety of food and a huge dessert display prepared by Erica's Grandmother. Family and friends then danced the night away including dancing the hora when the bride and groom are raised up in chairs as their guests join hands and dance in a circle around the couple. Guests enjoyed a candy bar on their way out and as I was cleaning up for the night, I noticed that one of the guests is a dentist and had left several of his cards on the candy bar- hilarious. What a lovely day full of special traditions and family touches. Thank you so much to Shannon Belletti for these beautiful images and for always being a pleaure to work with!