“It’s like rai-ayy-ann on your wedding day…” Alanis Morissette famously sang. And it’s not ironic, it actually doesn’t matter one jot! This wedding proves that, for one, you’ll end up with some incredible pictures (today’s images are by the awesome June Cochran). I’m talking happy guests dancing in the rain, colourful umbrellas adorning the ceremony, and a whole heap of merriness and creativity totally untroubled (hell, even enhanced!) by the showers.
Shoshana and Sam mixed Jewish tradition and boho chic together effortlessly, and handcrafted so many thoughtful details for their W Day. They are also testament to the fact that wedspiration can strike anywhere: their colour scheme was inspired by coffee packaging they came across at their local grocery store!
As will as bringing their own creative talents into play, they called upon family and friends to play a very central part, both in the lead-up to the wedding, and on the day itself. As Shoshana puts it (and I SO agree with her) “Ask for help… people really want to be a part of your celebration so don’t be afraid to assign tasks.”
And doesn’t Shoshana look beautiful? Her French lace Sarah Seven dress is divine and I love how she’s accessorised her look with fresh flowers in her hair — she looks sensational.
Tragically, Sam’s grandmother died a few days before the wedding but the couple knew even before the event that she wasn’t in a position to travel. So they chose a beautiful white latticed blanket that belonged to her as their chuppah covering. Sam told me, ” I was extremely close with my grandmother, so it was very meaningful to have a tangible token from her with us. And that it was covering us during our ceremony was even more poignant.”
This detail is so very special and an illustration of exactly why I started Smashing The Glass — to inspire you with the most beautiful, creative and symbolic ways to personalise your Jewish (or Jew-ish) wedding from start to finish. Shoshana and Sam’s W Day has it in bucketfuls. Take it away you two!
how we met
Shoshana, the Bride: Sam and I met in graduate school at NYU while studying Food Systems. We actually had a mutual friend in common (that lived in Colorado) that told me to look for Sam in one of my classes. I spotted him, eventually introduced myself, became friends for about 6 months and then started dating. Much more to the story than that but that’s the simple story!
our wedding in a nutshell
When I chose the colours for the wedding I wasn’t sure how they were going to play out – in other words I didn’t have a vision for what items I wanted to be coral or blue. A personal passion and hobby of mine is creating shibori textiles – japanese indigo dip-dying techniques. So, I decided to do a huge DIY project and made 22 nine-foot table runners. Sam was a huge help and it was a bonding experience for us. I’ve even started selling them since then.
On another note, Sam’s 98 year old grandmother passed away four days before the event. In the Jewish tradition, a funeral can wait until after a joyous occasion, so the wedding went on as planned, and flew to Massachusetts right after for the funeral. It was incredibly sad and certainly changed the initial tone of things, but she was celebrated throughout the weekend. We even had to change out mini-moon from the mountain of Colorado to the beaches of Cape Cod. When families come together to support one another through joy and difficult, it all works out well in the end.
We got married at the River Bend in Lyons, Colorado. It’s a small mountain town along a beautiful river. We wanted a summer wedding near water and this was the best water venue we could find in a land-locked state. It was a perfect setting.
Besides envisioning an outdoor wedding, the two things we wanted were good food and good music. The rest came about organically. Our colours were inspired by a coffee package we came across at the grocery store. We used a wedding planner, Julie Lundy, for some of the coordination, but majority of it we did ourselves, along with our families.
Our friend, Sarah from MPH Design who is a graphic designer offered to design the invitations as a wedding gift to us. She and I are both inspired by Indian textile prints, so she used that as the basis for the design.
A Sarah Seven dress
I had no idea what I wanted in a wedding dress before I started looking, so it took me awhile to narrow things down. Ultimately, the last place I visited ended up having “the one”. Sarah Seven, in San Francisco, which is where we lived at the time, is where I bought it, and the style was “Helene”. It was the only style I kept coming back to in my head so I just followed my intuition and it turned out beautiful.
I wore fresh flowers in my hair, a pair of rose gold “rose” studs given to me by my Aunt Esther, and a bracelet gifted to me by my Mother-in-Law, Joyce. I wore my mother’s veil during the badeken ceremony, but I didn’t wear it down the aisle — too traditional for me. I also wore a belt on my dress which I bought from Sarah Seven.
I hardly ever wear heels so my wedding wasn’t going to be the exception. I found a coral pair of wedges from Sole Society that were perfect for the occasion. It poured rain at our wedding so the shoes were trashed by the end and I tossed them!
hair+ make up
I feel privileged to have worked with two of the best hair and make-up styles in the area — Beth Walker for make-up and Ashley Smith for hair. I don’t wear a lot of make-up so I knew I wanted a natural look with a pop of colour on my lips. And for hair I wanted a low, side bun look which Ashley nailed on the first try!
The handsome groom
Sam was really excited to work with a custom tailoring company for his suit. Even though they were based in Arkansas, Strong Suit did an amazing job of taking measurements over Skype and the suit was beautiful and he looked extra handsome!
We worked with Rabbi Tirzah Firestone for many months leading up to the wedding, and she was an integral part of the entire experience. Her depth of knowledge, spirituality and energy brought Sam and I together throughout the various ceremonies and rituals on our wedding day. We chose to sign a ketubah and have a small badeken in advance of the larger ceremony and it was all magical. During the big ceremony, we had a close childhood friend of mine read a poem by Pablo Neruda, as well as friends and family read the Seven Blessings. Our ketubah was from Tallulah Ketubahs.
I found some inspiration on Pinterest — both for the frame and the flowers. Our friend Tyler’s family owns a construction company and so he offered to help us build our chuppah from scratch. Sam and Tyler bought all of the materials, stained, sanded and cut the wood and Tyler put it together. We loved the chuppah so much that we donated it to the venue to use for future weddings.
Sam, the Groom: Like Shoshana said, my grandmother died a few days before the ceremony. We knew even before the event that she wasn’t in a position to travel, so my mother found a beautiful white latticed blanket that belonged to my grandmother that we wound up placing over the chuppah. I was extremely close with my grandmother, so it was very meaningful for me to have a tangible token from her with us. And that it was covering us during our ceremony was even more poignant.
Shoshana, the Bride: Our wedding venue is owned by the Lyons Farmette down the road, where we were able to source local produce and flowers for our wedding. Unfortunately, the night before the wedding a huge rainstorm came in and demolished the flowers, so our amazing florist, Helen, worked with local vendors in a pinch to select beautiful flowers for arrangements. I gave Helen some Pinterest images to work with, but she is so talented that she created stunning arrangements for everything. For the table centerpieces, my Mother-in-Law, Joyce, and I rented some eclectic pieces and Helen filled them with gorgeous flowers.
Our fabulous photographer
We interviewed several photographers and then we found June Cochran and just loved her style of photography. We hired a videographer only for the ceremony.
Catering, Wedding pies and a white wine cake
We worked closely with Chef Dale Lamb to create a menu that we loved (and we heard our guests loved, too!) Chef Lamb works one on one with his clients, and sources meat and produce locally which was important to us. He’s amazing to work with.
Food is incredibly important to both of us, personally and professionally, so we worked hard to make sure everything was top notch in this realm. We really wanted pie for dessert so we ordered a variety of delicious pies from the Long I Pie Shop. Our dear family friend, Diane of Culinary Hearts Catering, gifted us our cake. It was a white wine cake with lemon curd filling and goat cheese frosting — incredible!
We had a jazz trio during dinner and a DJ (DJ Jahsonic) for the rest of the evening. Fun fact about our DJ is that he’s the host of a world-renowned reggae radio show based here in Boulder, Colorado, so we were thrilled to let him infuse the evening with some of his tunes, along with a variety of music we asked him to play. We didn’t do photo booths or anything like that. The venue was so beautiful and the food delicious that it provided enough entertainment.
We aren’t into gimmicky things, so we wanted a favour to be simple if we were going to do it at all. Sam hand blended a spice mix and we gave out tins of that to each guest.
advice to brides and grooms currently planning their wedding
Just remember, DIY literally means you have to Do It Yourself! Keep that in mind along the way so you don’t save everything for the last minute. Ask for help, people really want to be apart of your celebration so don’t be afraid to assign tasks. That said, DIY makes it that much more special and we wouldn’t change a thing.
Shoshana & Sam’s LITTLE WHITE BOOK
Photography — June Photography
Wedding Planner — Julie Lundy
Venue — River Bend
Catering — Chef Dale Lamb
Flowers — Lyons Farmette
Bride’s dress — Sarah Seven
Bride’s shoes — Sole Society
Make up — Beth Walker
Hair — Ashley Smith
Groom’s suit — Strong Suit
Dessert pies— Longi Pie Shop
Cake — Culinary Hearts Catering
DJ — DJ Jahsonic
Bartending — Garnish Bartending
Stationery — MPH Design
Rabbi — Rabbi Tirzah Firestone
Ketubah — Tallulah Ketubahs
Shibori table runners — The Bride (firstname.lastname@example.org)