Yuliya & Aron // Jewish Ceremony

Yuliya & Aron’s ceremony was straight out my dreams. They had an intimate ceremony with 40 of their closest a couple of days before their incredible wedding at Campovida. I loved the idea of bringing together cultural traditions and an intimate ceremony, not to mention a gradient salmon colored dress. There are no rules to what you can do to celebrate the person you’ve chosen and those you love. You can have one ceremony or three!

I was in tears by the end of this ceremony because of how incredibly personal and inclusive it was. Their (second) ceremony at Campovida was just as amazing and so personal to them.

I wanted to share some of the meaning and symbolism behind a lot of these traditions you will see throughout the photographs, and also because well, they’re awesome. Yuliya, Aron and their guests began the afternoon circled around the couple singing songs and blessing the couple. They are gathered around the Ketubah, and for those who don’t know - the Ketubah is a Jewish prenuptial agreement that outlines the groom’s responsibilities to his bride. When it comes to same sex marriages, many Ketubah artists are working to adjust the Ketubah text accordingly. In this case, the Ketubah text does not outline a husband’s rights and responsibilities to a wife, but serves as a symbol of a couples’ equal commitment to each other in marriage. It is interesting to note the evolution and growth of the Ketubah over time. It was once a vehicle to protect the woman in a marriage, it is now a vehicle that is embraced and created by women (many Ketubah’s are requested by female artists).

What you see the couple standing under and four of their chosen friends to hold is called the Chuppah. A chuppah has four open ‘walls’ and a covered roof to symbolize the new home they are building together. The four posts are held up by friends or family throughout the ceremony symbolizing support for the life the couple is building together.

And the breaking of the glass, a more well known tradition, yet most don’t know why we do it! There are multiple meanings to why the groom (and the bride at some weddings, let’s grow that tradition) breaks the glass but I will share my favorite one - the fragility of glass suggests the frailty of human relationships. And remembering that will always infuse us with gratitude and not take things for granted, for we know how fragile so many things in life truly are.