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Under the Chuppah

Monday, 11 May 2009

Chuppah (wedding canopy)

We Jews are all about taking time and space and sanctifying it. Like the Counting of the Omer.

The Counting of the Omer is the way by which we mark the transition from Liberation (at Pesach) to Revelation (at Shavu’ot.) Our Tradition approaches this 7-week period as one of partial mourning in recollection of the plague that occured during the lifetime of Rabbi Akiba. Partial in that some, but not all, of our mourning rituals are observed. No parties. No haircuts. No weddings. On the 33rd day, however, there is a lifting of the restrictions as it was on the 18th day of Iyar (which was the 33rd day of the Omer during the plague) that the plague finally broke. This day, which began at sundown this evening, is known as Lag B’Omer – the 33rd day of the Omer. Lag is not an actual word but is the pronunciation of the Hebrew letters that equal 33. Lamed (30) + Gimel (3) = LaG

In celebration of Lag B’Omer, now seems the perfect time to share a wonderful new website dedicated to helping modern Jewish brides and grooms create a meaningful Jewish wedding. What happens after Jdate works, as it has with nearly 90% of couples? This very question, and the many that followed, provided the impetus for what may very well become the premiere site for Jewish weddings. Jewish Wedding Network is the brainchild of Sara Marcus and is meant to be THE resource for Jewish bridal couples. is comprised of six key elements:

Jewish Brides Blog: Follow a select group of Jewish brides from every level of religious observance (from Unaffiliated to Orthodox) as they blog about their wedding planning from engagement to wedding day, including their search for the perfect ring and dress, hair and makeup trials, dress fittings, honeymoon planning, vendor reviews, creative wedding ideas, diy projects and tutorials, and more! Quite a number of the posts are of interest to those of us who no longer qualify as brides.

Glossary of Jewish Wedding Traditions and Customs: Everything from
AufRuf to Yichud is demystified with straightforward definitions. These definitions can be particularly helpful if you are creating a wedding program and want to explains the different elements of a Jewish wedding.

Message Boards: A community forum where readers can pose their own specific questions related to Jewish wedding planning. Brides can share experiences and ideas, support one another, offer advice and help, and learn about the elements of a Jewish wedding. Sometimes you just need to talk to someone who “gets it.”

Buy & Sell: A virtual marketplace where couples can buy and sell gently used wedding related items (wedding dresses, veils, wedding books and magazines, etc.) Listings are free. If you are concerned about your carbon footprint, using a gently-used item makes a great deal of sense.

Photo Gallery of Ketubahs and Chuppahs: Married couples are invited to submit photos of their ketubot and chuppot to what will eventually become the largest photo gallery every assembled of these Jewish wedding essentials. Sometimes seeing what others have done will spark your own imagination and let’s face it — there are not a lot of Jewish weddings gracing the pages of Martha Stewart Weddings.

Vendor Directory: Find food, florists, and favors all in one place! It doesn’t get much easier than this.

As I recently mentioned to Sara, I really wish this site had been up and running when PC and I were planning our wedding nearly 14 years ago. OK — PC wasn’t really involved in the planning…just thought it might be nice to mention him 🙂 But it’s not too late for all those brides out there who are deep in the throes of wedding-planning.

Mazal tov to Sara and to all those who will soon meet under the chuppah.

And Happy Lag B’Omer to the rest of us!

6 Comments leave one →
  1. Monday, 11 May 2009 11:57 pm

    That sounds like a cool site, I am curious to take a look at it.

  2. Tuesday, 12 May 2009 11:30 am

    Great site! Would have loved to have been able to live blog/tweet for it.

  3. Wednesday, 13 May 2009 5:21 am

    How do you know Sara? This sounds like a great resource, (as you know, i own a wedding photo and video company) and I am really trying to market to southern California so Erika and I can visit more frequently… could you forward my info to Sara? Id love to chat with her!

    Robert Shapiro

  4. Frume Sarah permalink*
    Wednesday, 13 May 2009 2:53 pm

    Jack and Susanne — it is a really great site. I especially love to read the blog entries posted by the different brides.

    Robert — the website is a clearing house for brides all over the country so I imagine that would include SoCal!!! I will definitely forward your info to her. Hope all is well with you guys.

  5. smb permalink
    Monday, 13 July 2009 4:02 pm

    I found a really nice article on the specialness of intimacty and mikva

  6. Sunday, 13 September 2009 10:52 pm

    Great post. very resourceful.

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