Post # 1
Hey Bee’s, wondering if any of you are doing this, or have been to a wedding where this was done…?
My rabbi wants FIand I to sign our ketubah before the wedding. Which means FI would have to see me before I walk down the aisle, which I’m a bit upset about. Then the ketubah will be displayed during the ceremony. After the ceremony he wants us to have the Yichud time. So I asked how everyone is coralled again to do pictures after that, and he suggests I do those before the ceremony too. I guess this time-wise is not the way I planned on my wedding going. What do you all think? Please note this is a conservative rabbi, and we chose him because my family’s rabbi wouldn’t marry us because FI’s mom isn’t jewish, so we got a recommendation for this one.
One other thing..my cousins did not have to have pictures or the ketubah signig first, were interfaith marriages, (we were both raised Jewish) and I think had a more reform rabbi.
thoughts..? Just kinda bummed about the “surprise” factor. thank you!
Post # 3
That is pretty much standard at Jewish weddings. If you are really upset you could each sign the ketubah separately so you don’t see eachother, and you can do pictures during cocktail hour. If you do choose to see eachother first, just have a first look so it is special and can be documented.
Post # 4
Very standard. We did our first look privately with our photographer then we walked into the ketubah signing room and did that and the bedeken. I liked doing it that way becasue we didn’t waste cocktail hour taking pictures and we could eat! I found it very relaxing and calm and it was a nice moment to be with our close close families while we did it.
Post # 5
We did this too. I was ok with it though b/c I liked the idea of a private first look and some alone time with my husband. Also, we ended up doing pictures before and still needed the cocktail hour for more pictures, and if we had just waited until after we wouldn’t have had all the pictures we wanted.
I’ve heard of people signing the ketubah seperately, and I even had a friend who wore a different dress for the ketubah signing to keep her husband surprised. She actually told him that her dress was going to be hot pink with purple dots on it, and had something made to go over her dress so he thought that was her actual dress. Then when she walked down the aisle, he was very surprised to see her in a beautiful white gown.
Post # 6
Yes, the pictures, then Ketubah signing, then ceremony timeline is pretty standard for Jewish weddings. The great part about it is that you get to spend cocktail hour with your guests instead of taking bridal party pictures!
P.S. The Yichud is only around 15 minutes (but can be as long or as short as you want it to), so if you really wanted to do pictures after, it’s still possible. But believe me, after all the insanity before your ceremony, the Yichud time will be one of your most cherished moments!
Post # 7
We did this too, and I also wasn’t thrilled about it but my rabbi gave us a few choices for how to do it so that it was still really special (he was reform since we are interfaith). I really liked the way chose:
First, we kept it really small and only had our immediate families and the bridal party attend this part of our day. They led him in while I was in another room and they faced him away so that he couldn’t see me coming. When I came out from the room and caught a glimpse of him (his back), the tears came in full force. Our immediate family were gathered closely so that they made up the aisle that I walked down, and when I reached him the rabbi asked him to turn around and see the woman he was about to marry. This ended up being one of the most emotionally powerful moments of our entire day and I loved that we shared it with only the people closest to us. Afterwards we all walked over to our ceremony location together where the rest of our guests had already gathered. Walking down the ceremony aisle I was relaxed, happy, and in a really peaceful frame of mind, and I think a lot of that had to do with having our ketubah/bedeken first.
Try talking to your rabbi about it – you may be able to give you some options. Mine told me that almost every couple is upset at first when they realize they will see each other before the ceremony, so I am sure your rabbi has heard it before.
Post # 8
I am not Jewish but my FI is and I have been to 2 Jewish weddings. The schedule you describe seems pretty standard for Jewish weddings. I know it may seem like a bummer since you had your own dreams in your mind of how you wanted your wedding to be, but I think you can definitely see some positive with it.
One of the other posters mentioned a great idea of signing the ketubah in another dress.
As far as not having the pictures right after the ceremony, I remember talking to a bride about Yichud, she said it was such a special and emotional moment for the two of them to be together and alone from the rest of the hubbub for those few minutes right after becoming husband and wife.
Also by taking the pictures before the ceremony you can go straight to the party (and the food). I have been a BM and had pictures right after the ceremony, you’re hot, tired, and HUNGRY. Getting most of the pics done before the ceremony gets you to the cocktail hour and reception faster!
Post # 9
It’s very normal in Jewish weddings to see one another before the ceremony….he has to check under the veil to make sure it’s you and not your sister 😉
We did a first look in the lobby of the hotel, then did our Ketubah signing/took some pictures.
It was a great way to not be so nervous when walking down the aisle.
Post # 10
this is standard. we had a Bnai Noah wedding and our Orthodox Rabbi had us sign our Ketubah before the wedding as well. We also did pictures before the wedding. Our Ketubah was displayed during our ceremony and actually read by the Rabbi. DH saw me a lot before i walked down the aisle. We did a first look so that it was special.
however, I have a suggestion….you dont have to be together to sign the Ketubah. We actually signed our seperatly. DH signed infront of witnesses and Rabbi, witnesses and Rabbi brought ketubah to me and I signed and then they signed. here are som pics…
Post # 11
It’s been like this at most traditional Jewish weddings I’ve attended, and ours will be the same. We’re doing pictures during cocktail hour (after the ceremony–. We’re having a Saturday night wedding after Shabbat ends, so we won’t have time to take pictures first). We’re having the tisch and kabbalat panim first and then the guys will make their way to our room for the bedeken and ketubah signing. The bedeken (veiling) will be the first time we see each other, but all of our guests will be there too.
The not seeing each other until you walk down the aisle is not really a Jewish tradition, but I do have Jewish friends that have done it! If it’s important to you, talk to your rabbi and see if you could sign the ketubah separately. Our Rabbi said Yichud only has to be about 7 minutes, so we’ll use that time to catch our breath before we go to photos during cocktail hour…maybe you can do something similar!
Post # 12
The bit about not seeing each other before the ceremony is not traditional in Jewish weddings. Quite the opposite–traditionally, in the bedeken ceremony, the groom is the one to put the bride’s veil on before the ceremony. Ever since Jacob got duped into marrying Leah when he meant to marry Rachel, the theory has been that the groom gets to check to make sure he’s marrying the right bride.
If you nevertheless want to avoid him seeing you before the ceremony, you could talk to your rabbi about having the ketubah signing as part of the ceremony, instead of before it. But do recognize that the groom not seeing the bride before the ceremony is contrary to Jewish tradition.
Post # 13
Wow! Thank you so much everyone for all your thoughts and suggestions – I feel so much better about this. I don’t have many Jewish friends and most of my family is super reform so didn’t have much to compare to from personal experience.
Thanks also for the pictures and ideas! So interesting and helpful to see how the other weddings have been.
I am now really looking forward to how things are going to go timing wise. Thank you again for your insights!
Post # 14
@brooklyngirlie22:The ketubah signing (or bedekken–whichever one you do first) is the surprise factor! He does get to see you for the first time when he’s escorted by the groomsmen to where you are.
And what all the other bees posted about traditions are true.
Post # 15
@brooklyngirlie22: We will be having the ketubah signing and pictures taken before the ceremony. At first, like you, I was pretty bummed about having the surprise factor taken out of the moment I walk down the aisle, but I’ve actually become pretty excited about how we’re planning it. With the ketubah signing before the ceremony, we’re going to create a more intimate moment where my future hubby sees me and it will still have that surprise factor. And it will be a moment that we get to share just between us and the few people we choose to be at the ketubah signing as well.
After the ketubah signing, we will be taking pictures before the ceremony, as well as some after. We are also having our wedding after Shabbat ends on Saturday, which pushes back the time of the event, of course.
I know you may be bummed, but try to come up with some creative ideas for how you can make that moment or special, just like Artbee’s friend did!
Post # 16
@artbee:HAHAHH! I almost did this (and I’m still considering it…) but I think it’s just too much trouble to find another dress.
I might wear the dress from my um… moniker/picture thingy next to my name on here… from my e pics for the ketubah signing, but I just can’t decide. I mean, it’s not about the dress, it’s about seeing him at all, right? Maybe?
I like@Kit Kat:‘s idea to find a way to make it special for you, and then you can still really look forward to that moment.