Weddings are a very serious matter in Judaism. It is a great reason for rejoicing with your family members and your surrounding community. However, when it comes to the subject of gifts some planning is required. Fortunately, these days there are many suitable gift types to choose from. The following article will provide some information on Jewish weddings and gifts intended for them.
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What Are the 5 Rituals of a Jewish Wedding?
Jewish weddings include many steps and rituals traditionally performed. Some of the primary ones include the following:
Meaning “Reception” in Hebrew, Kabbalat Panim refers to the special reception by the groom and the bride of the guests. This occurs after an entire week when the couple did not see or meet each other. In an analogy to a king and a queen, the bride will sit on a “throne” to greet her guests. The groom is surrounded by guests who sing for him and raise a toast in his honor.
Chuppah refers to the canopy under which the wedding ceremony itself takes place. This canopy is wide open from all sides and is representative of the wedding of Abraham and Sara. They had their tent open, including all those who wish to be present in an act of unconditional hospitality. The bride and the groom are escorted by their sets of parents to the canopy.
Kiddushin is a ritual in which two cups of wine are handed to the couple with accompanying blessings by the rabbi. After the blessings, the couple drinks from their respective cups. Wine is representative of joy in Jewish tradition and is important for the Kiddush ritual performed during Shabbat meals. This shows the sanctification of man and woman to each other.
The Ketubah is a form of a marriage contract signed at the Chuppah. It is read from an original Aramaic text and emphasizes the responsibilities of the husband towards his wife. This document is signed by two witnesses and is legally binding. It is kept by the wife through her entire marriage and is considered her property.
As part of the last rituals of the Chuppah itself, a glass is placed on the floor. Afterward, the groom smashes it with his foot. This symbolizes the sadness at the destruction of both Jewish Temples in Jerusalem and stresses the bonds the couple share with the Jewish people. Later, great joy and celebration ensue. The order of the breaking of the glass differs among different Jewish backgrounds.
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What Do You Wear to an Israeli Wedding?
The term “Israeli Wedding” is quite general and can encompass many different types of events. As already mentioned, Israeli society is very varied and contains multiple different ethnicities and religious beliefs. Naturally, though, each category brings its unique take on the event. This is expressed in the field of dress codes for a wedding as well.
Israelis are relatively laid – back people and this can be seen in terms of clothing just as well. At secular weddings, it’s not uncommon to see young men dress up in t – shirts, button – down shirts, jeans, and no tie. Women might prefer a simpler short cocktail dress, as opposed to a gown commonly seen in many other societies. Formality is out the window there.
This however is not necessarily the case for religious weddings. Since Jewish tradition emphasizes modesty while choosing what to wear, this is no exception for wedding occasions. Men in a religious wedding will generally wear suits with a tie or shirts with long sleeves. Women will mostly wear dresses that cover their elbows and knees and are without slits.
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What is the Average Cost of a Wedding in Israel?
Weddings are a big deal in Israeli culture, both in religious and non – religious communities. This means that in many cases no expense is too high for the event since it’s not about to repeat itself. Not only on the wedding itself, but also on a shiny diamond ring for the proposal. Occasionally the result of this attitude is a very grandiose event that can get very pricey for the couple. There are however alternative weddings which can cost much less.
The cost of a wedding can vary tremendously depending on the event’s components. Location plays a huge role in determining the final price, with prices being lower in the south and north compared to the center. Meal quality and quantity for each guest is also a big factor, with some ordering special chefs for the event. The number of guests is another major factor too.
Overall, the average price for a wedding in Israel can usually mount up to 120,000 NIS to around 250,000 NIS, depending on location and number of guests. This of course does not consider the option of inviting singers and performers especially for the event. Such a privilege could cost a few tens of thousands of NIS more.
Do You Give Gifts at Jewish Weddings?
Gifts are a very integral part of almost all Jewish weddings, be they religious or not. The Jewish Wedding Gifts come in various shapes and forms but can differ according to the couple’s ethnic background and religious beliefs. Another factor would be the couple’s country of origin; Jews in Israel do not necessarily have the same customs for gifts as the ones living in America or elsewhere.
For secular Jews, any sort of gift would be welcomed with open arms. Newly-wed couples always need every possession they might be able to receive because they might have a whole house to furnish. Money, however, is widely accepted and is a very common wedding gift. This is viable in cases where the guests do not know the couple that well. Between common wedding gifts for the house we can see Personalized Home Signs, Kitchen Accessories and much more.
For religious couples, the story might be a little different. Since weddings are greatly celebrated in Judaism they are deeply connected to the religion. Items with Jewish symbolism are happily accepted among many couples, like Mezuzah Cases for the new home. Gifting money is still accepted and is an option. Traditionally the given sum is an increment of 18, which signifies the word chai (alive). One excellent option can be a Chai Jewelry
What Do You Give for an Israeli Wedding?
As with many weddings of different kinds of religions or ethnicities, usually, the couple prefers receiving items needed for their home. These items are usually functional and important for various tasks around the house, such as various Home Accessories. As mentioned earlier, these could be items used during Jewish rituals and traditions. These are a part of what’s called “Judaica”.
Items with ritualistic functionality in Jewish homes include Sterling Silver Candlesticks. These are widely used to light candles to signify the start of Shabbat. Another common item to give at weddings would be Hanukkah Menorahs, used during the holiday for lighting candles. More items include a Siddur, (a daily prayer book) and a cover for Challah. (Jewish bread baked for Shabbat)
But not all gifts necessarily have a religious connotation. Any couple would gladly accept new silverware and plates or various kitchen utensils such as Stylish Salt and Pepper Shakers for their daily use and needs during meals. However, the gifted items do not have to be functional; the bride would be happy to receive Jewish Necklaces and rings.
All the better if they have Jewish spiritual significance.
A Shop for All Your Wedding Gift Needs
Wedding gifts hold their place just as highly with Israelis and Jews as any other group. One must choose their gifts carefully for the couple to be satisfied with them. The Israeli Center of Judaica caters to all your needs in this respect.
From candlesticks and menorahs to jewels and Jewish Art Prints, our selection of Jewish items and utensils is more than enough to meet with the demand. Each of our products is produced in high quality and is sure to inspire awe among its receivers. Be it a Jewish wedding, a Bar Mitzvah, or no special event, the Israeli Center of Judaica can set you up with the best gifts available.
Hello, my name is Benny Abraham and I am the Founder of The Israeli Center of Judaica. I created this boutique marketplace website out of love and a strong desire to help small and medium-sized Israeli artists who don't have much exposure and who mainly want to focus on their art creation.
We offer unique art and Judaica made with passion and love to bring the beauty of Israeli and Jewish art to your homes. We focus on producing various unique products and use and combine materials and designs not seen elsewhere.
In the past, I worked as a silversmith specializing in sterling silver judaica. After many years working as a silversmith, I decided to follow my dream of opening a marketplace for all things Israeli Judaica and founded the Israeli Center of Judaica.