Diego and I have been to a lot of weddings, a lot! But we have never seen wedding guests party as much as the guests at Julie and Yaniv’s Jewish wedding at The Avenue Banquet Hall in Toronto.
From the first moment we arrived to capture Julie and Yaniv getting ready for their big day, we immediately felt the upbeat and festive mood. Julie’s bridal party and family, who were getting ready at The Men's Hairstylist, Julie’s dad’s hair shop, were chipper and chatting away, while Yaniv entered his sister’s home with a beaming smile that made it very clear that he was so stoked to be getting married to Julie that day! His groomsmen also arrived shortly after, with loud and excited congratulatory hugs.
Once the boys finished getting ready, they made their way to the barber shop for Julie and Yaniv’s first look. While normally couples want it to be a very private and intimate moment, Julie and Yaniv had their entire bridal party and family around them, and there wasn’t a dry eye anywhere in sight once Yaniv laid his eyes on Julie, who was absolutely stunning in her Best for Brides wedding dress.
Before heading to The Avenue Banquet Hall for the Jewish ceremony and reception, we stopped by Glendon College for the bridal party and couple portraits. It was such a hot and sunny day, but Julie and Yaniv and their bridal party were phenomenal, patient, and so much fun! Glendon College is absolutely stunning for wedding photos, so no wonder we had to wait our turn while other bridal parties finished their photos at Glendon College as well.
At The Avenue Banquet Hall, preparations were underway for the Jewish ceremony. Before the ceremony started, Julie and Yaniv were joined by their immediate family and closest friends for the signing of the Ketubah. A Ketubah is a special agreement that outlines the rights and responsibilities of the groom to the bride. It is a key part of any traditional Jewish marriage. Nowadays, the agreement outlined in a Ketubah is symbolic and is not enforced by North American Jewish couples.
Julie and Yaniv’s wedding ceremony was held under the traditional Jewish chuppah, which is a canopy under which the bride and groom stand during the wedding ceremony. It symbolizes the home that the couple will build together. Julie and Yaniv’s closest family members joined them under the chuppah, and while it was quite snug, it made for a very beautiful and intimate ceremony, full of tradition and emotion. And no Jewish ceremony would have been complete without the breaking of a glass. While there are many meanings and stories behind why a glass is broken during a Jewish wedding ceremony, my favourite explanation is that the fragility of the glass is a representation of the fragility of human relationships, and since even the strongest love can disintegrate, a glass is broken so that the marriage never breaks. So beautiful! And to top off the moment, when Yaniv broke the class, fireworks erupted as everyone shouted Mazal Tov! And with that, the party begun!
While normally the dancing and partying doesn’t start until after the last course is served, the first course was barely on the table when guests started to fill up the dance floor thanks to the amazing band and MC from The Party Crew. Within minutes the dance floor was jam packed as the guests danced around Julie and Yaniv, lifted them up on chairs, and threw them up into the air. The amazing energy of both Julie and Yaniv and all their guests was absolutely phenomenal and continued throughout the entire night. Everyone from the little kids to the oldest little ladies were dancing and celebrating, and us amongst them. While some photographers shy away from the dance floor, Diego and I cannot resist a good party, so thank you, Julie and Yaniv, for having us be a part of your celebrations!! Mazal Tov!