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Capturing the “Pre-Vows” Traditions of the …


Different cultures have their own traditions and imagery presented in their rituals. Such is the case with Jewish weddings. In these weddings, there are many aspects that clearly and uniquely depict the heritage of the culture. However, when we view such a marriage there will be a tendency to only look at the proverbial “big picture” of the wedding. That is, we often look at the exchange of vows and the bride and groom’s acceptance of them to form a matrimonial union. Such a narrow perspective is unfortunate since there are many other components to the wedding that are well worth paying attention to. Many of these components occur prior to the exchange of vows. And, yes, these “pre wedding” aspects can make for excellent subject matter to be photographed and placed in Jewish wedding picture frames. As such, these “pre-matrimonial vows traditions” deserve a closer look.

There are several elements of the Jewish wedding tradition that center on the week prior to the marriage. Specifically, the bride and groom will not see each other for the entire seven days. The purpose of this is to build a great deal of anticipation for the actual event. Then when the wedding day arrives, the bride and groom do not see one another until a short time prior to the beginning of the wedding. This means there is no contact in the morning or day of the wedding. In fact, when the bride and groom first enter the synagogue where the wedding is to take place, they will enter separately and great their guests individually. This ritual is known as the Kabbalat Panim and it creates an opportunity for a number of unique wedding photographs that would make perfect memorials once placed inside a themed Judaica wedding picture frame.

When the bride and groom are brought together, two more immediate events take place. The first involves the guests surrounding the bride and groom at their “throne”. (Much of the imagery here is to represent the bride and groom as a king and queen which is symbolic of the ancient Hebrew civilization.) The guests will then toast the couple in anticipation of their eventual union.

Then, another ritual from the Ashkenazi tradition may take place. This is when the mothers of the bride and groom join together and break a plate in honor of the wedding. Why would the symbolism of a broken plate be integrated into the wedding ceremony? Partially it is to add a sense of seriousness to the proceedings. And, more importantly, it is to show that only something as “mere” as a plate can be easily broken. A marriage, however, is much stronger and will not break under such minor pressure. As such, capturing images of the broken plates in quality Jewish wedding picture frames can present a very powerful image.

As one can see, there is much that occurs during the very early stages of the wedding ceremony. Of course, these aspects of the wedding are captured for posterity via the wedding photographer. However, we will often look at these photos in a manner that is somewhat cursory and opt not to prominently display them in memorials to the wedding. This is unfortunate as these depictions can often make amazing pictorial displays. They also convey the profound cultural heritage associated with the event. That is why photographing the entirety of the wedding is important. And, of course, placing the photos in several carefully-chosen Judaica wedding picture frames will present the photos in the proper manner.

kathy page seeks to help home and business owners decorate their spaces innovatively using picture frames and albums to express their own style and creativity. come visit to see the delightful jewish wedding picture frames and many other great possibilities for distinctive and artistic frames and albums.

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Listed: August 25, 2009 4:38 pm