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Happy Tuesday lovely People,

We have a gorgeous traditional Jewish wedding with a 1930’s vibe to share with you all today, captured beautifully by Sharon Kahana and sent all the way from Israel.

Before you read any further, take a look at this link that explains the meaning behind each ritual of a traditional Jewish Wedding.  I have been completely captured by the way the beauty of the relationship of husband and wife is conveyed. From the Badeken (veiling of the bride) that symbolizes that love is not based on physical appearances but rather on the soul and character of the person you are marrying and the Chuppah (the canopy) that symbolizes the home the couple will build together – there is alot that can be learnt by the Jewish approach to marriage.

Chloe and Joseph wanted to create the perfect balance between a wedding that was both significant to their religion and spiritual but also in a stunning location that would be personal, intimate and relaxed for their 15 guests. Where better to achieve this balance than an Olive Grove in the Holy City of Jerusalem itself, followed by what can only be described as a mouth-watering meal at the capitals 2nd most popular restaurant, Spoons.

With simple decor, a sleek wedding dress and a modest bouquet of white flowers, this wedding ticks a lot of our ‘sometimes less is more’ boxes.

Chloe tells us all about it….

‘Screw that!’ I’m going to propose to him….

It was me who did the proposing. I was supposed to let him know when I had made up my mind so that he could go and buy a ring etc. But I thought ‘screw that!’ I’m going to propose to him. So, after talking it over with a few friends I decided to design a plate with “will you marry me?” written on it so that I could surprise him with my proposal. It was a bank holiday and I said that I would make him a nice dinner and asked if he fancied something special in particular. Egg and chips was what he replied… He wanted egg and chips! Ok, so I made him egg and chips. I managed to cook and get it all on the plate before he saw and laid the table and set everything up nicely. Because we were both in a fun and silly mood I managed to get away with taking photos throughout the meal without him even getting suspicious! He ate his meal while I basically stared at his plate as he gradually uncovered the message, waiting for him to notice it. He got all the way to the end of the meal before he finally looked down and saw, peeping out from under the last smear of ketchup, my proposal. He looked up with an excited but cautious smile and asked “is this for real?” “yes” I said, “oh my god, yes!” was his reply.

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Small, Intimate and Personal….

I feel that our only real idea was to have such a small wedding and to have it in Jerusalem. All the style and look came from just the choice of locations. We decided to keep it really small because we were both honest about what we wanted from the day and what would make it special and memorable for us. Once we decided to keep things small, intimate and personal, Joseph suggested that we actually have our wedding in Jerusalem. As religious Jews there isn’t much that could make it more special than getting married in the Holy Land. It is a Jewish ideal to get married outside, with the wedding canopy under the open sky, and so this guided us to look for restaurants that had outdoor spaces where the ceremony could be held. When we found Spoons on trip adviser it seemed perfect. Rated the 2nd best place to eat in Jerusalem, it had a roof terrace and a courtyard as well as being exquisitely decorated and situated in a remarkably beautiful location, just outside the old city. Once we got in touch with Hila everything else about our day opened up for us. She was remarkable, and knowing the area better than either of us, she suggested the olive grove and arranged for the synagogue to be open for us to use for the ceremony.

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Soft Melodies….

We had one acoustic guitarist playing beautiful soft melodies at various points during the ceremony and one singer that accompanied the prayers. They were both wonderful. After the meal Joseph’s mum, who has a phenomenal voice, sang a couple of songs that she had learnt for the wedding. She sang unaccompanied, just at the table, but it was just amazing and everyone was blown away. It was so touching.

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Stunning Home, Superb Food….

The reception and dinner was held at an amazing venue called Spoons. In the living room of her beautiful home in Yemin Moshe, a breath-taking, historic neighbourhood, owner, host, chef and designer Hila Solomon literally made our wedding. The food was superb and made from the freshest of ingredients.

The menu was as follows:

Hand held bowl of cold gazpacho and warm Jerusalem artichoke soup
 
First course
Endive Salad with pear and citrus dressing served individually then… 
Whole cauliflower baked for 4 hours – Spoons signature dish
Chargrilled aubergine with tehina
Figs filled with chicken and poached in tamarind sauce.
 
Amuse Gueule basil sorbet and arak vodka shot
 
Main Course
Slow cooked lamb with saffron and apricots
Mallard with figs and port reduction with polenta  
Vegetarian dish of tofu and bok choy with wild mushrooms and black garlic
 
Dessert
Chocolate and raspberry parfait with sorbet 
 

Middle-Eastern Rustic Pieces….

Hila’s house is beautifully styled and the only added decorations for the wedding were the flowers and candles on the table.  Her house is furnished with beautiful, carefully selected and arranged, middle-eastern, rustic pieces against white walls that really show them off. Everything was just beautiful as it was. Because we wanted it to feel very relaxed and informal, we chose and used all the spaces pretty much as they came. We felt everything was pretty stunning enough as it was and didn’t want to detract from it with added decoration. With the gentle natural light, the warm breeze and the smell of the lush summer flowers growing all around us, it really wasn’t necessary.

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Favourite Moment…

There is a section of the ceremony where the groom veils the bride, and then they both receive blessings from each of their parents. I was sat on a bench, encircled by family, in a beautiful olive grove overlooking the old city walls of the Jewish spiritual homeland. The guitarist was playing a sweet melody and my father put his hand on my head and blessed me. Under my veil I just started gushing, it was so emotional.

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Any advice?

My advice would be to do what you want to do not what you feel you should do. Also don’t get too worked up about every detail. Planning everything can be really stressful and emotionally draining and when you look back at it all afterwards, some things that seemed really important at the time actually end up not being that important. So do yourself a favour and chill out a bit.

The Line Up

Photographer: Sharon Kahana
Ceremony Venue: Old Ashkenazi Synagogue, Yemin Moshe, Jerusalem, Israel
Chuppah: Olive grove, Yemin Moshe, Jerusalem, Israel
Reception Venue: Spoons
Brides Dress: Ghost
Brides Veil: Handmade from Camden Market
Bride’s Hair: Father of The Bride
Groom: Suit – Topman
Flowers: DIY
Caterers: Spoons
 

Thank you so much to Chloe and Joseph for sharing your gorgeous wedding with us. I loved reading your story and that profiterole cake looked immense!

We will be blogging more international weddings in the up and coming months so watch this space! Next up – Mexico!

Big Love

Laura xxx

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