With the World Cup kicking off today, even I can’t escape thinking about the the so-called beautiful game right now. It’s fair to say I’m not a huge fan, but if you happen to be a footie fanatic, and your partner shares your passion, I’ve come up with loads of fun ideas for a football-themed wedding.
Football inspired weddings are a little bit tongue-in-cheek so you can have a whole lot of fun with this theme. How about walking down the aisle to the ‘Match of the Day‘ theme tune for starters?! Incorporate your team’s colours into your and your groom’s accessories, and you don’t have to dress your bridesmaids in football tops — you could again simply have them wear shawls and shoes in your team colours.
If you can manage to hold your ceremony at a football stadium (this Jewish wedding was held at Old Trafford, the home of Manchester United!) there will be unlimited candid photo opps, but remember that at any venue, you can set up your wedding photos to be done in “team shot” style
Hire a table football game, create football ticket invitations, have a football wedding cake, use red and yellow cards as place settings, have flower arrangements in football boots, use football scarves as favours and decorations, name your tables after some of your favourite players, have a football themed table plan… and the fun doesn’t have to stop there!
Tell me about if you have a football or sporty themed wedding planned — I’d love to hear all about it in the comments section below!
Good question! Many wonderful traditions come together in a Jewish Wedding Ceremony and each one symbolises the beauty of the relationship of a husband and wife, as well as their obligations to each other and the Jewish people. Here’s my guide to everything you need to know.
[ Image: Natasha & Jez’s wedding by Susan Stripling ]
1. Signing of the Ketubah
To start with we have two short, but very important, rituals. The first is the signing of the ketubah. The ketubah is an ancient document — a marriage contract of sorts — that specifies the groom’s commitments to the bride. It is signed by two appointed Jewish witnesses, who must not be blood-related family members to the bride and groom.
Ketubot are often beautiful pieces of artwork that can be framed and displayed in the home.
[ Image: Jessica & Pete’s ketubah designed by Jennifer Raichman, by Jonas Seaman ]
The second is called the badeken and it happens straight after the ketubah signing. It’s a short but meaningful ritual where the groom covers the bride’s face with her veil. It’s a custom that derives from the biblical account of Jacob’s first marriage, when he was deceived to marry the heavily veiled Leah instead of Rachel, his intended bride. I’ve heard that some egalitarian couples are now balancing this tradition by having the bride place a kippah (yarmulke) on her bridegroom’s head too!
The badeken is often emotionally charged as the bride and groom may not have seen each other for 24 hours or longer (as much as 7 days) until this moment.
[ Image: My badeken at my wedding to Jeremy by Earthy Photography ]
Now it’s time for the wedding party to enter the main ceremony area where all the guests are seated. They make their way towards the focal point of the ceremony – a canopy held up by four poles known as the the chuppah.
The chuppah represents the shelter and privacy of the home that the bride and groom will create following their marriage. The home is central in Jewish life — it is the place where we grow up, learn to share and love, and from which we also secure our independence. You will see that the bride and groom stand at the centre of it, and the walls are formed by those closest to them. Just as the walls of our home protect us from the elements, offering warmth and security, so too the ‘walls’ of the chuppah — that is our families and friends — provide support and strength with their love.
The bride follows the groom towards the chuppah, and both are usually escorted by their respective sets of parents.
The custom of the bride circling the bridegroom seven times has been interpreted as the symbolic building of a wall of love around the relationship of the bride and groom. Seven represents the most sacred of all numbers in Judaism and also symbolises the wholeness and completeness that they cannot attain separately.
Again, some more modern couples choose to update this ritual by circling around each other three times and then a final figure of eight. Chelm and Jake did this in their fabulously personal Jewish wedding.
[ Image: Hugo Burnand ]
Nicki Macfarlane is best known for designing the fairytale bridesmaid and flower girl dresses for that wedding. Yes the W-day of the century, that of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. She’s also the woman behind Poppy Delevigne’s flower girl and page boy creations from her wedding last week to James Cook, as well as a whole host of other fabulous society and celebrity weddings.
I met Nicki a couple of months ago when I was also fortunate enough to see her exquisite designs up close and personal. Since then I’ve quizzed her about how she was chosen for Kate and William’s big day, how she developed her business from zero to 60 (pretty much immediately!) and how she lets off steam…
This afternoon we are off to Thailand! I’m not exaggerating when I say that this wedding totally and utterly takes my breath away. The incredible natural scenery, the use of light, the feeling of warmth and joy that radiates from Hilary Cam’s delicious imagery… it’s all so very stylish yet wonderfully informal.
Gabby’s bridal style and her mermaid-esque colour palette of turquoise,navy, purple and lime green are a dream, and there are lots of lovely personal touches to be inspired by too. My favourite is that at each table the couple placed an extra two chairs so that they could actually sit and eat or drink up close and personal with everyone of their guests. I’ve not heard of that before and I think it’s a really lovely idea.
Gabby and Gareth met over 13 years ago at a house party in Sydney, Australia. She was on holiday from South Africa and they both new as soon as they set eyes on each other that they had met their match. Gabby says. “Gareth always tells me as soon as he saw me walk through the door he knew I was the one. I went back to South Africa and we kept in contact until I eventually immigrated a year later.”
Why not pour yourself a cup of Asian tea and savour this gorgeous W-day… oh and if you’re a destination bride-to-be, make sure you take in Gabby’s excellent device right at the end.
A ‘HOLIDAY’ VENUE AND A SENSE OF RELAXATION
Our wedding was at the Katathani Beach Resort in Phuket Thailand. We chose this destination for a few reasons. One being we both are originally from South Africa and still have lots of family and friends there. We also have family and friends in the UK, US and Israel. We wanted to be able to not only share our magical day with them but thought it would be an amazing opportunity to get people together who haven’t seen each other in years and have a holiday at the same time.
We wanted it to be relaxed like the beautiful surroundings and in terms of a colour scheme I took inspiration from my bridesmaids dresses (turquoise,navy, purple and lime green)