Wedding Help!

I am sure that some of you readers out there have been married more than once, or have attended second weddings. We plan on having a small wedding – no more than 60 people maximum. We don’t want a circus, just a day that is about our two families uniting, a day that is about the KoD and QoH decalring their love for each other in front of G-d. That being said it is still a wedding and I am still a bride and still need new shoes. But seriously, I am looking for ideas on how to have a lovely wedding that’s about US, that keeps cost down, that keeps the celebration intimate but special and respectful.


I want to wear a dress, not necessarily a gown, but something simple and elegant. No veil, no tiara. Do I need to carry a bouquet? What way would you involve the kids in the ceremony? Any and all advice is welcome.


23 responses to “Wedding Help!

  1. No veil?? Really??? Just seems like a Kallah needs a veil.

    I love that the kids will be walking down the aisle. That is perfect. I would also have them under the chuppah with you and KoD to symbolize your expanded home.

  2. rabbi said someone will put the veil on me under the chuppah. someone other than KoD….interesting. i dont want to wear a veil, but i guess for chuppah i will.

    its gonna have to be a huge chuppah to fit us and the seven kids under it…maybe they can help hold it up?

  3. for the dress i’m sure you can find something not so expensive maybe even something that is not necesarily tzniut but can be altered. (if you need help shopping you can get my number from Tovit altough i’m sure she would be your fist choice to take with) About the “Shoe” get something comfy. I don’t think you need a bouqet.

  4. Please check with the Rabbi about children attending their parent’s Chupah. My understanding is that the kids don’t go to the Chupah, but enjoy all the other wedding festivities. Mazal Tov!

  5. Naftali – i checked with a bunch of different rabbis. there is no halachah against it. i also checked with some psychologists too, who actually recommended that the boys be there for the chupah. its only if its felt that the kids wont be able to handle it emotionally that they are not there at the chupah.

    Miri – thanks for the advice. i am still thinking about the bouquet, if i dont carry one then what do i do with my hands walking to the chupah?

  6. What time of year are you having the wedding? If it’s warmer weather, a lot of state parks have places you can reserve/rent for really cheap (we rented a picnic pavilion in our local state park for $85 for the whole day, and it seats up to 80 people in the picnic tables there). If you are outside in the spring you generally don’t need to decorate the place with flowers and stuff, since they are already there. 🙂

    Buffet style is always less expensive then a sit down meal. You don’t even need to have a huge meal at all- we are thinking of having a meal of appetizers/hors dourves and then dessert. You might want to have a ceremony followed by dessert or something (and indicate that on the invitations). Instead of a band you can have a playlist on a stereo hooked up to an ipod. (I’ve heard of weddings where they skipped the dancing and instead everyone played boardgames with each other). Instead of flowers for a centerpieces, you can fill mason jars with water or sand or water+floating fake berries of some kind and then float candles on top. Instead of a huge crazy shmorgesboard (sp?) have a small spread of those fancy chips (you know the ones, they’re like all different colors), cut up veggies and sauce of some kind.

    I’ve also found a lot of neat decoratey/jewelery/veil stuff on (which is an online marketplace for people to sell handmade things).

    This person makes really cool felt and button bouquets that are a fraction of the price of real flowers, look awesome, and last forever here is a picture of some of her custom felt bouquets

    This person makes really cool crown things that you can wear instead of a veil (they have feathers and flowers and things).

    If you do a search for pretty much any type of crafty thing you would want it will probably be on that website. 🙂

    Oh also, I know you’re probably not going to be an ‘offbeat bride’ but occasionally has good tips for money saving stuff. Also the craigslist wedding forum is very useful- they have a lot of people selling their slightly used wedding supplies, and most people there are doing their wedding with a small budget and give really good advice.

  7. First of all, I just wanted to wish you a Mazal Tov. I am a friend of SuperRaizy and have been lurking around/reading your blog for a while now (and enjoying it!).
    If you don’t want a bouquet of any sort, you might just carry a tehillim down the aisle and daven while you go. I’ve seen first-timers do just that in addition to the bouquet.
    It’s just a suggestion, and it might help you with your “what to do with your hands” dilemma.

  8. Eden – wow you have certainly done your homework. venue and food is all taken care of already. we are getting married in february in the midst of the frozen winter, coldest month of the year up here. and me, NOT an offbeat bride? how could you possibly know that ;-)!!

    Eees – thanks for your wishes. i like the tehillim idea. of course i could just hold my boys hands as i walk down the aisle…

  9. Ha, well I have a ‘wedding stuff’ bookmarked folder so I just posted all my links from there. 🙂 And I’m also planning my wedding, on a budget of around $1000, and have had 5 months so far to look for all this stuff! 🙂

    If you have the food and the venue, what else specifically do you need ideas for? It helped me to try and come up with a list of everything I need to think about (like: photography, food, decorations, venue, invitations, guest list, dress, music, his clothes, ceremony, rings, etc), and then work on the list one thing at a time. 🙂

  10. oh and also- instead of a bouquet, you can carry one long stemmed flower (like a cala lily, or a lily of any kind). I also like the idea of holding your kids hands (are they going to be walking you down the aisle?)

  11. one thing i want is ideas on something special to give to all 7 kids as a symbol of our families unifying. if they were all girls it would be easy – a ring, necklace or something like that. but there are 5 boys to consider too, btw ages of 6 and 13.

    i dont want to wear a gown, but a lovely simple dress, that doesnt need much work to tzniusify it. i dont want to pay a photographer to be there for the whole thing, but how do i figure out how many hours i need him for? i want pix of the ceremony, and family portraits.

    we are not doing benschers or any other wedding keepsakes. invitations will be by email, music – not sure still, rings – got that covered i think, honeymoon – working on that…..

    yes the boys are walking me to the chupah – they are so psyched to be part of OUR wedding. they love the idea of giving me away.

  12. Clairey the Fairy

    Hi doll! One of my fave things about having a winter wedding was having candles. There is apparently a minhag (possibily Sephardi) about walking to the Chuppah following candles, so that you are walking into light. The intention was that I follow three friends who were carrying candles! I got it into my head that they would be walking backwards so I was following the light! But that was quite a big ask in the end – and probably again fire regulations. Perhaps all the kids could do something with candles or some other kind of light?

  13. oooh clairey – i like the idea, have to call the venue dude and ask him if we could do that….

  14. these are all such great suggestions. i think it would be really neat to have them share the holding of the chuppah together (i’m not sure they’re all old enough?) and make reference to them as foundational to you. itmight sound a little cheesy, but you could do some kind of candle=lighting ceremony that the kids participate in – to bring the families together or (perhaps even more “offbeat”) a “sand ceremony” where each kid and each of you pour colored sand into a glass jar. makes pretty layers and then is a visual representation of your family’s “blendedness”….there are actually websites that sell “kits” for doing this. (slightly safer than candles, maybe)

    i look forward to reading all the planning…

  15. phyllis – that sounds so great, the sand thing. and i love cheesy 😉

  16. Back to the whole veil issue – why do you have to have one? I’ve never been married, but when I do tie the knot, I don’t want to be veiled. I know the whole bedecken ritual, but I don’t like the idea of going into my marriage with anything but my eyes wide open.

  17. SF – it is said that G-d’s shechina shines out of a bride’s face and that makes it hard for the guests to look at her, therefore she wears a veil.

    i would be interested to hear other interpretations.

  18. found this on

    Why Does the Bride Wear a Veil?

    The bride’s veil and bouquet are of greater antiquity than her white gown. Her veil, which was yellow in ancient Greece and red in ancient Rome, usually shrouded her from head to foot, and has since the earliest of times, denoted the subordination of a woman to man. The thicker the veil, the more traditional the implication of wearing it.

    According to tradition, it is considered bad luck for the bride to be seen by the groom before the ceremony. As a matter of fact, in the old days of marriage by purchase, the couple rarely saw each other at all, with courtship being of more recent historical emergence.

    The lifting of the veil at the end of the ceremony symbolizes male dominance. If the bride takes the initiative in lifting it, thereby presenting herself to him, she is showing more independence.

    Veils came into vogue in the United States when Nelly Curtis wore a veil at her wedding to George Washington’s aid, Major Lawrence Lewis. Major Lewis saw his bride to be standing behind a filmy curtain and commented to her how beautiful she appeared. She then decided to veil herself for their ceremony.

  19. and from
    Michelangelo’s famous sculpture of Moses depicts him as having horns coming out of his head. Do you know why?

    The horned Moses is an old inaccuracy, which originates in a Greek mistranslation of a verse in the Hebrew Bible. After coming down from Mount Sinai, Moses is described as having rays of divine light beaming from his face. But being that the word for “beaming” and “horns” have the same letters in Hebrew, an old Greek translation mistakenly rendered this verse, “And Moses had horns.” Based on this, many medieval artworks depicted a horned Moses, most famously Michelangelo’s sculpture.

    The Torah continues to say that Moses’ face was so bright with holiness, no one dared look at him. He had to wear a veil whenever he spoke to the people in order to filter the divine glare.1

    This is also why a bride wears a veil. The souls of both bride and groom are in an elevated state under the Chuppah (marriage canopy), as they are about to unite as one. In the bride, this elevated state is more revealed. She radiates a special holiness; the divine presence (“Shechinah”), the feminine aspect of G-d, shines through the face of the bride.

    This light is so intense that it must be veiled, just as the light emanating from Moses’ face had to be covered. Holiness needs privacy.

    Those moments under the Chuppah are potent, and the thoughts and prayers of bride and groom at that time have extra power, for there is a divine aura surrounding them. Your day is coming soon. Make sure to soak in and utilize every holy second.

  20. Hadassah, how about an elegant cream-coloured, off-white suit that you can wear again at a future simcha. Classy, but practical. I’m sure you could find something in a satiny or shimmery material.
    As well, do you ever wear a hat, or just a sheitel or fall? If you do wear a hat, you can also find something like a small pillbox hat and add small veil (or do you go for the whole opaque, can’t see a thing through it type of veil?)
    When my sister-in-law married, she carried a single calla lilly with a white ribbon wrapped around it; I don’t even recall if it was real or artificial, but it was very elegant, and at the time her long hair was wrapped in a white, jewelled snood. It was gorgeous.

  21. if i am to wear a veil it will be very thin and see through – i like the idea of a veil on a hat – got to think that thru a little more.

    pearl – you have some great ideas. thank you.

  22. I think you should come down to NY to look at Gemachs for a nice simple tzniut gown, I’d LOVE to do that with you! wink, wink. I’m sure KoD could find you the names of a few Gemachs right in Monsey if you don’t have the time for a trip to Brooklyn.
    If you don’t wanna wear a veil, then don’t. I did wear one for the pictures and chuppah and promptly took it off for the dancing. My light veil was decoration, and under the chuppah a “bullet proof” dektichel was put on me. This was a request of my mother-in-law’s. I complied by getting a piece of lace for the job, so it wasn’t totally “bullet proof” as some of the others I have seen. My mother saw it and laughed so hard! It reminded her of a bird in a cage.
    I’m a bit surprised you DON’T want a tiara!? (I can see you being a classic bride, not a cheesy one, so I can’t actually see you, the day of, with a tiara)

    I would opt to have your sheitel made into an “up-do” though maybe with some flowers?

    Silk flowers are an inexpensive alternative to real. Perhaps just having a small bouquet of real flowers for yourself, and the rest silk would be an option.

    I like the candle idea, too.
    Perhaps the sand idea could take place during the reception?

    Hey, if I thought my chuppah was a circus with my mom, mom-in-law, new brother-in- laws, all the rabbeim and ourselves, then 7 kids will be a piece of cake!

  23. Dress wise – you don’t have to do the whole big gown thing unless you want to. There are plenty of tzniut dresses out there that are perfect for 2nd weddings. The bodice of mine was beaded with sequins like most wedding dresses are but the bottom was a tea length chiffon rather than a big frou-frou dress with train.

    I didn’t want to do the veil. But then there is the whole bedeken thing. So in sticking with tradition, I did the veil with no tiara (a tiara is so not me and would have made me feel stupid)…it was very sheer so I could see instead of having to be lead to the chuppah. (However…it was still hard to get my bearings while wearing it!)

    I did flowers but then again, I wanted them. I am trying to remember how I carried them though since I was escorted to the chuppah by LO and my father. (And LO had a mini bouquet too!)

    We were going to walk in with candles but PHD’s mom is 93 and sometimes not the steadiest of walkers, so we opted against that but we used them in the ceremony and the Rabbi spoke of the Baal Shem Tov’s metaphor of the flames as souls as we lit one candle with our two candles – uniting our souls as one. It was lovely.

    I know you are worried about the numbers because you want to keep it small. You may recall that I wanted no more than a minyan and ended up with more than 3 minyans! We narrowed a much larger list down by only inviting close family and people from our shul who we are very close to. We are friendly with almost all the families at our shul (almost 200 of them) and no one was offended that we kept our invites to a bare minimum.

    Geez – I could keep goin on and on since it was so recent but this is long enough. Call me or e-mail me if you want and we can talk more!

    (Can I just say ANOTHER TIME how happy I am for you!)

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