WEDDINGS & Simchas

The wedding canopy is symbolic of the  bride and groom's home, under which the the marriage is completed. Israel's The Judaica Centre is the centre for all your wedding needs. You can register with us to make gift giving easier, order your personalized Kippot, and rent a chuppah and much more. We carry a wide selection of ketubbot from traditional to modern.
Contact your personal shopper about ordering kippot, ketubot and much more for your Jewish wedding .

ISRAEL'S The Judaica Centre offers a stunning and wide range of giftware designed by Israeli & American Jewish artists: Browse Israel's Judaica Artists selection

  • All About Jewish Weddings









    A Jewish wedding is full of joyful, rich rituals. Every moment of the Jewish wedding is full of symbolism and tradition. The religious significance of all its markers-a Chuppah (literally, “wedding canopy”), glass breaking, etc. - is deep and inspiring. A couple wishing to include these rituals and wanting to be married in a Jewish way is one that enriches its own marriage with depth and spirituality.Back_to_top_of_page 


    Mazal Tov, You’re Engaged!

    You are now Chattan (literally, “groom”) and Kallah (literally, “bride”)! From this point until one year after the wedding, you have special status in Judaism.
    Once a couple decides to marry, the excitement and confusion begins. Whether you have a year or a month to prepare for your wedding, it can be a whirlwind. During the engagement period, a couple plans a wedding that will suit them and incorporate Jewish traditions as desired. The Chattan and Kallah should begin investigating not only dates, times and places, but rites, rituals and religion. Being aware and well-read about these allows for meaningful decision-making and incorporation of appropriate rituals. We carry a lovely host of books about marriage and traditions to help a couple learn everything there is to know about weddings. Our tip sheet below can help to get you organized.
    While fun and full of new experiences, the planning of a wedding can get a little bit tough. A spiritual guide, whether a rabbi or teacher, can be important to have. They answer questions, coach you and inspire you. In Judaism, an engaged couple is obligated to learn about what a Jewish marriage is and how to conduct oneself within a marriage. In Orthodoxy, this is extremely important, and a rabbi will not marry a couple if they have not gone to Marriage Classes. In other denominations, the officiating rabbi must meet with the couple and discuss the marriage process and laws with them.Back_to_top_of_page 


    Important Judaica to buy before the wedding:

    • Engagement form (Tenaim)

    • Ketubah (marriage contract)

    • Chuppah (wedding canopy)

    • Havdalah candles for escorting the couple to the Chuppah

    • Ring for the Kallah ( the Chattan if he so choses)

    • Kiddush cup for the Chuppah kiddush

    • Tallit for the Chattan

    • Kittel (white robe) for the Chattan

    • Glass for breaking

    • Kippot for guests

    • Benchers for after-meal blessings Back_to_top_of_page 


    The Wedding Day

    The big day has arrived and the couple is full of excitement, nervousness and awe. An outline of the wedding day festivities is as follows:


    Depending on the demoninations of the bride and groom certain protocol is followed. In the case of orthodox couples the bride and groom receive guests separately. For the Conservative, Reform, and Reconstructionist couples receive guests together.If separate, the bride receives guests at her Kabbalat Panim (literally, “receiving guests”), usually seated on a chair and surrounded by family and a Shomeret. The groom’s reception is usually held at a table and is called the Tish (Yiddish for “table”).


    At the Chattan’s Tish, the Tenaim (engagement contract) is signed and the mother of the Kallah and the mother of the Chattan break a plate to bind the contract. It is after this that the Ketubah is checked, and signed. The Ketubah is the wedding contract between Chattan and Kallah. It details a groom’s obligations to his wife and pertinent information such as date, time and location of the ceremony. In modern times, we make the Ketubah a beautiful symbol of our love for each other by decorating and ensuring the aesthetic beauty of the document. Jewish artists have flooded the world with their talent and have produced amazing artwork in Ketubah form. Many Ketubot are mostly complete, leaving room for the names, date, time and witnesses. Israel's The Judaica Centre carry a large selection of Ketubot. In addition, Israel's Judaica offers  calligraphy  services to complete your ketubah.


    The Chattan then makes his way to his Kallah. He usually is flanked by his parents, and is accompanied by the rabbi and other guests. He comes to where the Kallah is sitting and (In Orthodox tradition) covers her face with her veil. According to the Torah, Rebecca covered her face as she approached Isaac before meeting and marrying him. From his book Made in Heaven Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan notes that: "It is a standard of modesty that brides keep to this day."   


    The groom then moves to a different room as guests proceed to the Chuppah and to their seats. The groom receives his kittel (white robe) and tallit and the procession begins. Borrowing from modern secular culture, some may wish to include a wedding party and procession in their wedding. It is at this point that the party and family members make their way to the Chuppah. The groom is escorted by his parents, and the bride arrives, escorted by her parents.


    A Chuppah can be a freestanding one or a simple tallit, held up with poles. These poles can be decorated, as with a freestanding one. A Chuppah can also be a custom made quilt or any fabric that the couple may like. Israel The Judaica Centre offers the service of chuppah rentals. Back_to_top_of_page 


    It is a special tradition for the Kallah to walk around her Chattan seven times with her family. The number seven is significant because the earth was created in seven days. Marriage reenacts this, a creation that upon completion becomes a holy vessel. The bride and groom stand side by side as the Kiddushin blessing and the Nessuin blessing is recited. These are separate and they constitute the wedding ceremony. The first blessing sanctifies the personal relationship of a couple in marriage over wine, just like Shabbat and Holidays. The second blessing, Nessuin is recited on the ceremony itself. It is thanking G-d for giving us the opportunity to perform this commandment. After the blessings the bride and groom drink from the cup.

    The ring is given to the bride (and, if applicable, to the groom as well).


    At this point the couple is officially married. The Ketubah is then read aloud. The Seven blessings are then read and recited under the Chuppah, with friends chosen by the bride and groom, family and dignitaries. The blessings are completed and the Chattan and Kallah drink. Then comes the breaking of the glass.  The glass breaking is in remembrance of our shattered Jerusalem, our home for all Jews. We say “If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, let me forget my right arm.” Even at such a happy time, we must pray for its reconstruction. It is understood that a bride and groom have a “direct connection” to G-d on their wedding day. Their prayers hold much power.The glass is then broken and the couple is finally married! Mazal Tov!


    The couple is then escorted to a private room. The guests are welcome to eat at the reception. Photos are sometimes taken at this point. When the bride and groom are ready, they arrive at the reception and there is usually a Hora, a traditional Jewish dance. The dancing is excited, joyful and the Chattan and Kallah are usually raised on chairs to greet each other. One holds a kerchief and the other hold the other end. It is a game to hold onto this kerchief as long as possible.


    The dancing and festivities continues. The blessing over Challah is recited and the meal begins. Often, families like to make speeches or say some words while the guests are eating. After the meal, dessert and dancing, the Bircat Hamazon (after-meal blessings) are recited. The seven blessings are repeated, with the bride and groom choosing from family and friends for the recital.


    The wedding, with all of its planning and fanfare slows as the guests return home and leave the couple to their life together. In Jewish tradition, every night of the first week of marriage is a festivity. Sheva Brachot (seven blessings) occurs every night with a festive meal, usually at a different place. The seven blessings must be recited, but only with a Minyan (quorum of 10 men). This ensures a crowd every night! In some denominations of Judaism, Sheva Brachot is not observed, and the couple is free to vacation or begin their life as they choose.


    As a wedding guest, choosing a gift can be over whelming. Back_to_top_of_page 



    Great Judaica gift ideas

    • Mezuzah with parchment

    • Seder plate

    • Matzah tray

    • Honey dish

    • Menorah

    • Candlesticks

    • Kiddush Cup

    • Challah tray and knife set

    • Framed Jewish blessing

    • Tzedakah box  Back_to_top_of_page 



    Party Planning Tips

    •  Meet with rabbis who might suit your family’s spiritual philosophy, if you do not have one already.

    • Review budget and food options.

    • Choose potential dates for the party.

    • Put together a budget and wish-list for the party. Big or small? 3 guests or 300?

    • Decide on a location and date.

    • If necessary, send out “Save the date” notices to out of town guests.

    • Contact caterers (if necessary) and consider menus or special requests that you might have for the meal.

    • Book a photographer and/or videographer, if necessary.

    • Choose wedding clothes, as ordering can take time.

    • Create a guest list.

    • Choose and order invitations. Keep thank you notes in mind as well.

    • Decide on the type of music that you would like to have for the party. Would you prefer a DJ or a band, Jewish music or contemporary music, etc.? Book shortly thereafter.

    • Consider decoration options and write a wish-list.

    • If you would like, discuss options with florists and decide if flowers are a part of your simcha. If so, book a florist and order necessary arrangements.

    • Choose a Chuppah.

    • Learn about any traditions that you will want to include in the ceremony & party.

    • Find appropriate accommodations for out of town guests and, if possible, set aside blocks of rooms.

    • Address and send out invitations. Don’t forget to include any hotel information or special transportation information.

    • Decide on a baker and a wedding cake.

    • Get an approximate number of guests and follow up with guests who have not replied. Order kippot for the simcha.

    • Order benchers (blessings after meals booklets), if necessary.

    • Buy a Tallit & Kittel. It is good to buy a case for the Tallit.

    • Order benchers, if necessary.

    • Order party favors for guests, if you would like.

    • Order wine or liquor, if necessary.

    • Prepare any speeches you might want to make.

    • Get a final head count and confirm your numbers with the caterer.

    • Decide on a play list for your music.

    • Choose witnesses, seven blessing recitors, etc.

    • Create a seating plan, if necessary. Write out place cards.

    • Give seating chart to the caterer.

    • Confirm location, date and necessary payments with photographers, DJs, bands, florists, etc.

    • Spend some quiet time with family to ground everybody.

    • Relax, have fun and Shep Nachas (loosely, “beam with pride”)!

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