There’s not much we love more than seeing a couple combined their diverse backgrounds into one unforgettable day. So naturally we’re all about the beautiful Israeli-British-Indian wedding of Hannah, who runs a dog-training and dog-assisted therapy business, and Amir, who works in security.
Using flowers, décor, music, a blue and gold color scheme – see the bride’s stunning Indian-style wedding dress, which she chose as a reflection of the new culture she’d be adopting with her marriage – and even a pre-wedding Jewish-Indian henna ceremony, these two crafted a truly one-of-a-kind day bringing together all the most beautiful elements of their cultures.
And they couldn’t have done it without their amazing wedding planner, Smashing The Glass Recommended Vendor Victoria Rosen. In the bride’s own words:
Employing a wedding planner helped enormously to relieve the stress. Vicki proved us with suppliers and recommendations that I almost certainly would not have been able to find myself. I made sure that all details were in place before the big day itself so that I could just enjoy every moment without worrying about a thing!
Hannah and Amir’s venue, Pichonka, really highlighted the natural beauty of the couple’s current home country, Israel, with their outdoor chuppah held on a balcony that jutted out over the breathtaking Judean Hills. Check out Rehovot Studios’s beautiful photos and video.
We also love that Hannah and Amir went all out to ensure their wedding was accessible and enjoyable for all of their guests – both the many English-speakers who flew in from abroad, as well as the Israelis. They made sure they found a fully bilingual rabbi to conduct their ceremony so that all of the guests were able to follow along, and providing a wedding program explaining the various Jewish traditions for those unfamiliar.
There’s so much more to say, but we’ll leave the rest to the bride…
How we met
Hannah, the bride: We met online via a dating website.
An Outdoor Wedding
I chose Pichonka as our venue because of its stunning, yet natural and intimate setting, as well as its location (relatively easy to reach from both the centre and south).
A Multicultural Wedding
I used Victoria Rosen as my wedding planner from start to finish including the day itself. I wanted a wedding that touched on the three cultures that my husband and I represent (Israeli, British/European and Indian). We hinted at all three via the flowers, Indian-style wedding dress and accessories and music. We had a dress colour scheme of blue and gold.
I designed and made the invites myself using a simple, floral pattern I found online. I wanted to input some of my own creativity into the planning process. I sent the invites virtually as opposed to via mail, in a bid to be more eco-friendly.
Hair + Makeup
I have very curly hair and have always wanted a Grecian-style up-do which is what I had. My makeup focused mainly on bringing out my eyes with golds and a touch of blue to mirror my dress.
An Indian Dress
I bought the dress from an Indian shop in London which imports beautiful authentic materials and styles from India. I converted a two-piece Indian lehenga skirt and top into a one-piece dress, accompanied by a matching veil. I loved the colours (blue, gold and cream). I wanted a non-traditional dress that I felt better reflected me as well as the new culture (Indian) that I would be adopting by marrying my husband and becoming a part of his extended family.
I had a veil with a matching blue/gold trim and matching Indian bangles all bought from the same shop as my dress. I also wore a delicate gold necklace and teardrop gold earrings which were both gifts. I bought a simple, gold leaf-style hair clip from a local shop in Israel.
In the end, I wore some medium-heeled pale pink sandals that I already owned instead of the higher heels that I ordered for comfort reasons. The shoes were not in any case visible under my long skirt.
The handsome groom
My husband had a petrol blue suit and matching tie to compliment my dress, bought from Celio in Israel.
Our little nieces were informal bridesmaids. They wore blue-gold dresses bought from the same shop as my wedding dress from and held a miniature version of my bouquet.
The position of the chuppah (on a white, wood panelled balcony that jutted out over the Judean Hills) really spoke for itself. So as to make the most of the stunning view from the balcony, we opted for a simple, wooden pole supported chuppah which was then draped in a white sheet and decorated with some white and dusty pink flower bouquets.
We really liked the design of the ketubah provided by Zohar and so felt no need to get a ketubah especially made for the occasion. We wanted a traditional Jewish ceremony, conducted by a young, modern rabbi who was approachable and bi-lingual – it was important to us that he spoke both Hebrew and English so that all of our guests could understand what was going on.
We had a significant number of guests who flew in from abroad from English-speaking countries as well as a large number of native Israeli guests. We provided overseas guests with a brief written explanation of the wedding ceremony in English so that those less familiar with Jewish weddings could understand the process.
Our music choice
We wanted something a little alternative that would suit a day wedding atmosphere and so chose a 6-member live instrumental band who upon our request, played a mixture of musical genres from Klezmer to Israeli so as to reflect the mixture of cultures present at the wedding. Traditional chuppah songs including ‘Sameach Tesamach’, ‘Kol Sasson Kol Simcha’ and ‘Boi Cala’ accompanied us from the badeken through to the chuppah. My husband also sang me a traditional Indian-Jewish song, as I proceeded towards the chuppah.
I wanted a relatively simple floral scheme that blended in with the stunning natural scenery that surrounded the venue. Therefore, we opted for a single medium-size pot of begonias or petunias in a variety of colours, each housed in a ceramic pot and wrapped in a ribbon. A pot was placed as the centre-piece on each table and guests were invited to take the flowers home with them after the wedding as a both a gift and a way to limit waste. These, in addition to the previously-mentioned flower arrangement that adorned the chuppah, I carried a a white and pink bouquet.
We chose Rehovot Studios as they offered a conclusive package which offered two photographers as well as two videographers who could ensure that both me and my husband were pictured separately before the ceremony as well as together afterwards. The package also included a drone which would be able to capture the magnificent views surrounding our venue from above.
Catering was provided by the venue (kosher, meat) but we made sure that the menu was inclusive, so as to cater for those with special dietary requirements such as vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free. We did not have a cake.
We felt no need to provide entertainment additional to the band as we wished to keep to a fairly low-key day wedding. The venue and surrounding views helped contribute to a light and happy atmosphere that needed no extras!
In addition to the floral arrangements which guests were invited to take home with them, as it was a Friday day wedding, we provide mini-challot which were beautifully arranged in a vintage suitcase and given to each guest as they left the venue. We also gave colourful mini-hamsot to our overseas guests (obtained through our flower designer) as a thank you for travelling so far to celebrate with us.
Our wedding was actually a series of celebrations starting with a traditional Jewish-Indian henna ceremony, to the wedding itself, to a Shabbat Chatan and finally, to a special dinner and tour around Jerusalem for our overseas guests. We wanted to spend as much quality time as possible with our families and friends who had travelled from both near and far to celebrate with us. We asked both of our fathers to make a short speech during the wedding itself.
We stayed in a lovely zimmer for the weekend a short while after the wedding and then took an extended trip touring around the UK over the summer.
Advice to couples currently planning their wedding
Employing a wedding planner helped enormously with the planning and organisation and in general, to relieve the stress. Vicki proved us with suppliers and recommendations that I almost certainly would not have been able to find myself. I made sure that all details were in place before the big day itself so that I could just enjoy every moment without worrying about a thing!
Hannah & Amir’s little white book
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