A Valentine’s Day Jewish Wedding in the snow, at The Liberty Grand, Toronto, Canada

I first saw today’s wedding on photographer Assaf Friedman’s Instagram feed. I was totally smitten by Danielle and Aaron’s couple portraits in the snow, and I just knew I had to feature their entire Valentine’s Day affair on Smashing The Glass.

Danielle and Aaron are a super stylish couple with really great taste – I’m particularly loving their accessories! I’d like Danielle’s leather jacket AND her heart-shaped sunnies please. And Aaron looks dapper with his slick tux, patterned socks, and polka dot pocket square (and he wore the coolest pair of personalised Nike Hi-Tops that Danielle surprised him with too).

Aaron and Danielle chose to engrave each other’s wedding bands with a surprise inscription  and decided that neither of them would see this message until after the ceremony when they were finally man and wife. And would you believe it, they had both engraved each other’s rings with the same beautiful message! These two are meant to be together…

Read on for lots more treats, surprises, advice, tips and a really wonderful account of a truly stylish, luxe Jewish wedding.

A Valentine’s Day Jewish Wedding in the snow A Valentine’s Day Jewish Wedding in the snow
How we met

Danielle, the Bride: Aaron and I met online. We had our first date at a small craft beer bar in Toronto. On our third or fourth date, Aaron asked me if I was dating other people. At that point, we decided to be exclusive. Things moved fairly quickly and I think that after a few weeks of dating we knew that one day we would get married.

A Valentine’s Day Jewish Wedding in the snow

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STG Recommends: 8 Northumberland Avenue

I am thrilled to welcome 8 Northumberland Avenue to our Smashing Suppliers, Smashing The Glass’s handpicked selection of the best brands and services the wedding industry has to offer.

Smashing The Glass hand selects and verifies each Smashing Supplier, and can personally vouch for the fact that every one of them has the ability to turn your wedding day into something truly special.

You can find 8 Northumberland Avenue in the Venues category in the UK Smashing Suppliers.

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A dress designed by the bride, for a Jewish wedding with movie tunes and musicals, at Agadata, Israel

There is so much wonderful individuality in this gorgeous Jewish wedding that I really don’t know where to start. Dena’s wedding report is wonderful, and my goodness is she a bride that knows her own mind.. and style!

She designed and made her own dress and says it was exactly what she had imagined it would look like since she dreamt about it as a teenager… And how gorgeous is that Belgian lace veil? It’s a family heirloom bought in 1926 by Dena’s great grandmother, and has been worn by her great grandmother, grandmother, mother, aunt and even sister before her at their weddings. How very special is that?

Dena is a make-up artist and CB is an actor, and they are both very involved in community theatre in Jerusalem. To reflect their shared love of theatre, they enlisted two musician friends to play songs from the Broadway musicals, including of course the ones they had both acted in.

Then, during the ceremony they integrated many songs from the movies, my favourite examples being the groom walking down to the Gladiator theme, and both of them walking into the theme from Ghostbusters for their wedding entrance!

And a first on Smashing The Glass, Dena and CB hired a live-streamer instead of a regular videographer, so that all their family and friends (mostly abroad) who were not able to attend the wedding, would still able to take part in the celebration. I wonder if we will start to witness more and more livestreaming now that families are so often spread far and wide all over the globe?

Here is their story from the perspective of their wonderful photographer and all-round Mr Fabulous, Herschel Gutman. Herschel is one of my much-loved Smashing Suppliers and is available to shoot weddings in both the UK and Israel. I highly, highly recommend him!

How we met

Dena, the Bride: I am a make-up artist for theatrical productions and CB is an actor, and we met during his first production in Jerusalem, HMS Pinafore, a Gilbert and Sullivan operetta, in 2012.

I was making up another man and he told CB that there was a cute make-up girl that he should get his make-up done by. So he came into the make-up room and sat in my chair and that is how we met. At first we just started talking and then we started hanging out more and eventually decided to date each other. We broke up after a few months when CB decided to study acting in the US, and only got back together less than a year ago, after not being in touch at all for the three years he was gone!

It was just meant to be! Our proposal story is the sweetest thing, I think, and I loved it so much and it was perfect for us! It happened right after a show that we watched together. The producer of that show called CB up onto the stage and at first I had no idea what was going on. Then he started talking about me and about us and he then called up the cast of the recent RENT production (We started dating again during the recent production of Jerusalem’s RENT. I designed costumes for them and knew the cast well) to help him ask a question. The cast proceeded to perform Seasons Of Love, with CB singing the solo, and right afterward he got off the stage, down on one knee and proposed. By that time of course I knew what was about to happen, and he invited my best friends, my parents, and his family to be there for the proposal! It was absolutely perfect and magical!


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Best Father-of-the-Bride Speech at a Jewish Wedding Ever!

Happy Father’s Day to all our wonderful dad’s (and some of our partners too!). To celebrate this special day I wanted to share a snippet from a Father Of The Bride speech that is genuinely one of my favourite ever Jewish wedding moments.

It’s from the wedding of Vanessa and Lin and it’s a truly feel-good brilliantly executed wedding surprise, full of ‘Life’ (hope I haven’t given the game away!).

Watch it below – I promise you you will be smiling from ear to ear!

And on the subject of great surprises by fathers at weddings, here’s one of the best Father Daughter First Dance surprises I’ve EVER seen… Regular ‘dad dancing’ movers need not apply!

And finally, may I just big up my wonderful dad, Allan (below right) who performed an amazing rendition of Swell Party / Well, Did You Evah with his cousin, at my wedding. It really got the party swinging – it was definitely one of the highlights of the day. Love you dad!


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Save The Day with John Lewis

John Lewis
 has always been close to my heart, in fact to most Brits it’s pretty much an institution upon which we’ve always relied on. From picking up my first pair of knitting needles for a school project, to getting those navy, leather Mary-Jane school shoes we all wore, and in more recent years bulk-buying cotton sleep suits for my own children, John Lewis has always been there for me.

Apart from that familial reliability – and those heart-wrenching Christmas ads – the other major association most people make with John Lewis has to be the infamous you-can’t-go-wrong wedding gift list. And again, trusty JL was there for me at one of life’s most important milestones.

But what you may not realise is just how much “wedding” they actually have within those beautifully curated floors.

It really is a bridal cornucopia, an Aladdin’s cave. From occasion wear, gifts, stationery, haberdashery, decorations, fizz and make up, there’s no doubt about it – when it comes to weddings – John Lewis is ALL over it.

And because it’s so trustworthy and established, it manages to keep everybody happy. There’s something for every kind of couple, whether you’re seeking classical big day perfection or a quirkier, more offbeat feel.

John Lewis Wedding
Haberdashery / Wedding Craft

For me, where John Lewis really stands out is as THE home of haberdashery. And for those who think haberdashery is just a few different types of buttons, think again.

John Lewis has an unmatched range of ribbons, silks, embroidery, braids, fabrics, zips and, yes, buttons. But also an incredible range of wedding craft and accessories – its the place where you can pick up the floral corsages, buntings and all the add-ons to bring your big day vision to life, no matter how creative.

And they also have really cool decorative bits and pieces that can totally liven up your home long after your big day is over. How gorgeous is the East of India range? And take a look at these Rico Alphabet Decor letters – they’d be just as fab on a shelf in your hallway, as they would be placed next to a guest book at the wedding.

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