23Mar

In the Land of the Rising Sun: Japan Ketubah

In the Land of the Rising Sun: Japan Ketubah

What makes Japan stand out so much, and the reason it’s so close to our hearts over at This Is Not a Ketubah is the fact that it is a perfect blend of the traditional and the modern – just like our ketubahs. While we combine modern art and traditional ketubah significance into one, Japan has managed to preserve its rich tradition, history, and culture despite the fact that they’re one of the most urban, modern, advanced countries. It’s safe to say that Japan did not let its soul get consumed or overshadowed by technological inventions and modern innovations, which must be their single most important accomplishment.

From a tourist point of view, it would really be hard to name all the attractions and breathtaking sights Japan offers, so we’ll try to limit this short review to just a few that we found absolutely fascinating. First and foremost, we must mention Mount Fuji, the highest volcano in Japan, which is considered one of the most prominent symbols of this country. Fuji is, in fact, one of the Three Holy Mountains in Japan, the other two being Mount Tate and Mount Haku. What makes Fuji stand out is the untouched nature that surrounds it, including mesmerizing lakes.

If you’re fascinated by Japanese architecture, you certainly wouldn’t want to miss a tour of the Tokyo Skytree – the single tallest tower in all of the world! How tall is the tallest? Well, in this case, precisely 634 meters. And yes, it includes two observation decks for tourists to experience a panoramic view of the capital of Japan.

We’ve already mentioned how Japan is the leader in technology and modernization, which they’ve proven through their fascinating railway network. Only in Japan will you get the opportunity to ride a Shinkansen train that can reach the speed of over 300 km/h! Yes, this is the reason why you can get to various places in Japan rather quickly.

Shinto Shrines and Buddist Temples represent the very essence of Japan and its tradition. These places of worship can be seen throughout the country, as they’re truly an integral part of the life of Japanese people. Either for aesthetic or religious reasons – these temples certainly deserve a spot on your Japan bucket list.

The Fuji Blossoms ketubah portrays the part of Japan that has nothing to do with technology and science, but is just as fascinating. As we’ve already mentioned, Mount Fuji is a Japanese landmark known all around the world for its indescribable nature. This Japan-inspired ketubah piece is a perfect choice for couples who are in love with Japanese nature and culture.


20Mar

The Land of Ice and History: Russia Ketubah

The Land of Ice and History: Russia Ketubah

What is the first thought or a mental image that crosses your mind when Russia is mentioned? Is it the breathtaking architecture, the world-famous literature, the cruel climate in some of the parts of Russia, or their rich history and tradition? Yes, Russia is a story that cannot be told in a few words, but today we’re going to try to present some of its most remarkable symbols. Whether Russia is high on your bucket list, or you’ve already fallen in love with it, we’re quite positive you’ll enjoy this brief about it, as well as our Russia-inspired ketubah collection.

How big is Russia? Instead of talking about the territory, perhaps the best way to describe its magnitude is by pointing out the fact that Russia encompasses jaw-dropping 11 time zones, from Kaliningrad (UTC+2), all the way to Kamchatka (UTC+12). The country of Russia has a population of 144.5 million people, which is yet another testimony of its grandeur. An interesting piece of information regarding Russian time zones is that people living in Kaliningrad are able to watch the President’s New Year address to the nation 9 hours before the New Year arrives since that’s when the President is addressing those in Kamchatka.

Besides many other things, Russia is famous for its breathtaking landscapes, including the Kola Peninsula where mesmerizing northern lights can be experienced, Blue Lake which requires a permit to be visited, as well as the uninhabited Siberian Barguzin Valley. When it comes to monumental facilities, when in Russia one should not miss the opportunity to visit the Russian Museum of St. Petersburg, the National Museum where 2000-years-old gold jewelry is displayed, the Catherine Palace, as well as the Yusupov Palace. If you’re a fan of Russian literature, you’ll certainly have the Dostoevsky House Museum, the Anna Akhmatova Museum, as well as Lermontov Museum, marked on your map.

Russia is largely a Christian Orthodox country, and the home to many fascinating religious facilities, including St Basil’s Cathedral, the Transfiguration Monastery, as well as Grand Choral Synagogue which stands as a testimony of the great role Jewish people had in St. Petersburg. Speaking of the Jewish heritage in Russia, Jewish Museum & Centre of Tolerance is yet another historical and cultural landmark, while also being one of the most visited museums in Russia.

The Babushkas ketubah is a proud representative of our Russia-inspired ketubah collection, as it features perhaps the most prominent symbol of the Russian culture. And being that our ketubah designs celebrate love, this design incorporates two Babushka dolls as a representation of the unity of marriage.


15Mar

Our Guide to Understanding the World: Map Ketubah

Our Guide to Understanding the World: Map Ketubah

Do you prefer to go through life without a map, following your own intuition, or are you the organized type that would never throw caution to the wind? There are people who need to have a clearly organized plan, a well-thought-out strategy – no matter what they’re dealing with. On the other hand, there are those who would never trust the guidelines more than their own gut, and who have no fear of the unexpected. Needless to say, having a map will may not always lead in the right direction, while disobeying all the rules, on the other hand, does not necessarily mean that fortune will favor the brave.

Those familiar with cartography, the science and art of creating maps, are probably fascinated with the concept and idea behind them. The oldest maps mankind has discovered date back from 2300 B.C., and they’re preserved on clay tablets. It was later, in ancient Greece, that cartography was further developed and truly regarded as a science. The medieval period in Europe brought a strong religious influence which was manifested through maps, as well. Understandably, the maps of this period were hand-drawn and crafted, which limited their distribution significantly.

The Renaissance brought a remarkable historical change once printing was invented, which affected the production and distribution of maps, among many other aspects. The first printed maps were developed on carved wooden blocks until engraved copper plates appeared in the 16th century. Maps were slowly taking different shapes and forms, such as globes which represented a true revolution in cartography. Throughout history, the accuracy of maps, especially geographical accuracy, was the factor that required the most work and dedication. In the 1970s, geographic information systems were developed, which truly elevated the process of maps developing on a whole new level.

Even today, it is hard for people to truly understand maps. While some may perceive maps as true representations of the world around us, that assumption is completely false. Maps are only “devices” used to understand the world, constructed based on basic assumptions.

The World Ketubah is one of the most enchanting map ketubah designs we offer. This design features dramatic contrast between the plain white background and the bold representation of the map of the world. The color scheme is luxurious and vivid, while the mixed patterns in the map design represent the modern art touch every single of our ketubah design entails. Our map ketubah designs are perfect for couples who enjoy traveling, adventure, and exploring the world together.


24Feb

Crystallized Energy: Ketubah with Crystals

Crystallized Energy: Ketubah with Crystals

When crystals are mentioned, there are usually two groups of people: the first one which associates them strictly with beauty and elegance, and the other group which thinks of them as strong symbols with healing properties. Nevertheless, crystals are always admired and desired, regardless of the connotations attributed to them. Nowadays, the knowledge and information about many kinds of crystals are widely accessible, which allows for the overall expansion of their popularity. Today, we will touch upon some of the most intriguing types of crystals and their potential beneficial properties.

Before we dive into the actual types, it is important to say that crystals have been around for thousands of years, and they have been worshiped by ancient civilizations including the Egyptians and Aztecs. Throughout the history of these civilizations, crystals have been used in different aspects, including cosmetics, jewelry, amulets, as well as statues.

So, why is it that people purchase crystals and enjoy surrounding themselves with different kinds, except for the obvious aesthetic factor? Well, it is believed that crystals have specific energetic vibrations, similar to our bodies, where they can modulate our own energies and help us in transforming the negative into positive. Apparently, crystals are meant to release tension, allow for a continuous flow of energy, and remove spiritual blockages.

One of the most popular crystals is Amethyst is a stone of spirituality and enhanced intuition, believed to provide soothing energy and restful sleep. Also, due to its mesmerizing purple color, it is one of the most common choices when it comes to purchasing crystals. Blue Quartz is also one of the commonly chosen crystals, due to its calming and harmonious properties. While Celestite is believed to promote uplifting and inspiring energy, Citrine is associated with courage, hope, and self-esteem. Clear Quartz is also one of the most beautiful pieces, believed to support a clear thought process, and is often used in meditation.

The Crystal Dance ketubah is a beautiful piece representing the enchanting, magical beauty of crystals, and it also belongs to the category of our abstract ketubah designs. If you’re a fan of crystals, and you enjoy modern abstract art, this is without a doubt a ketubah design that will take your breath away. Also, keep in mind that all our ketubah designs blend the modern into the traditional, as we’re never disregarding the original ketubah symbolism. For more ketubah designs, make sure to visit our online gallery.


18Feb

Eternal Love and Happiness: Ketubah with Cranes

Eternal Love and Happiness: Ketubah with Cranes

When it comes to symbolism, cranes seem to be largely present in various cultures and traditions, especially in Asia, having a predominantly positive connotation. The Korean, Japanese, and Chinese traditions, in particular, include cranes on many levels, especially when it comes to prosperity, happiness, and inner strength – which seem to be the main associations. Cranes sure do stand out from other bird species in many ways, especially when it comes to height, as they’re the tallest flying bird species in the world and they can be up to 5.9 feet tall! Cranes are also easily recognized due to their grace, elegance, and uniqueness.

In Japanese tradition, cranes belong to the group of holy creatures, which says a lot about their cultural significance in this country. A specific species of cranes known as the Japanese crane, or the Red-crowned crane, is a prominent symbol of longevity, fidelity, as well as good fortune. Furthermore, cranes are largely present in Japanese traditional paper-folding art commonly known as origami, which also stands as a symbol of longevity and prosperity, especially when gifted to the newlyweds. As a matter of fact, cranes are very much a part of the traditional wedding decoration, as they’re monogamous, thus symbolizing eternal love and loyalty.

In Chinese history, cranes were common symbols of important officials, and only chosen individuals could wear them. Cranes are also very much incorporated in Chinese art, which can be seen in many paintings portraying cranes in their gracious flight. Furthermore, cranes are often portrayed with pine trees, which is a symbolic combination which stands for prolonged life.

Even though cranes dominate the Japanese and Chinese cultures, their symbolism can also be recognized in other traditions all around the world, as well. For instance, Romans and Greeks thought cranes to be symbols of light and spring. On the other hand, the Native Americans felt strongly about the cranes representing leadership, good fortune, and good luck. Some records of the crane symbolism in the Native American folklore even associate it with peacemaking, while in Africa some believed cranes to symbolize wisdom.

The Paper Cranes ketubah is also a part of our paper ketubah category, honoring the Japanese art of origami. This particular cranes ketubah is inspired by the Japanese wedding tradition, which often incorporates cranes as symbols of longevity, good fortune, and as we’ve mentioned previously – monogamous love. Make sure to check out our online gallery of ketubah with cranes.


06Feb

The Rainbow-Colored Perspective: Kaleidoscope Ketubah

The Rainbow-Colored Perspective: Kaleidoscope Ketubah

How many times have you wished that you could see the world from a different perspective, or through someone else’s eyes? As much as the world can seem like a gloomy, uninspiring place at moments, you can rest assured that seeing it through a kaleidoscope will change the mood instantly. There is just something dreamy, almost ethereal in kaleidoscopes and the way they create a more colorful, vivid, thrilling reality. Even though a kaleidoscope may seem like a children’s toy, it is indeed something we can learn a lot from when it comes to embracing a different, more positive outlook on life.

If you aren’t familiar with the topic (which we highly doubt), a kaleidoscope is a tool, typically a toy, usually consisting of three rectangular mirrors positioned in a particular way which creates a colorful illusion. These mirrors of a kaleidoscope are set at a 60-degree angle in relation to each other, which results in a colorful explosion of different shapes and forms we see through the glass. Even though the effect kaleidoscope creates is generally considered to be a purely optical illusion, many people believe that our subconscious plays a big role in this process. What this means is that the illusion we witness while looking through a kaleidoscope may reflect our inner desires, wishes, and imagination,  which is why it is believed that a single kaleidoscope can create different illusions for different people.

By rotating the wheels of the kaleidoscope, the mirrors are turning, creating an alluring, enchanting dance of colorful shapes and objects, which is truly therapeutic for many people. From a more philosophical perspective, we could view the vision a kaleidoscope provides for us as a unique lesson about life. As the wheels of life continue to spin, and the objects in our lives tend to change colors and shapes, there is beauty in every single combination.

The Kaleidoscope ketubah is a proud representative of our kaleidoscope-inspired collection of ketubah designs. Just as the name itself implies, this ketubah design portrays a vision through the stained glass of a kaleidoscope, capturing its vividness, texture, and the perfect mixture of bold, eye-catching colors. If you’re a fan of kaleidoscopes, as well as colorful, daring modern art in combination with traditional elements, such as the ketubah writing, we can definitely see you gravitating towards this one. To check out our kaleidoscope-inspired ketubah collection in its entirety, make sure to visit our online gallery.


29Jan

How a Man Conquered the Sky: Flying Ketubah

How a Man Conquered the Sky: Flying Ketubah

What is it about flying that has fascinated mankind since the beginning of time? Is it a fact that it is an activity we’re unable to perform on our own, unlike other living creatures, or is it the simple fascination with being high up in the sky, away from all the troubles and hardships? Either way, it is safe to say that humans have worked hard to reach the heights – literally, and today we have several flying options, as well as adrenaline sports and challenges which call for a great deal of courage. On the other hand, the human obsession with flying may have stemmed from their love for birds, these magnificent creatures that conquered the sky.

Back in the day, flying wasn’t nearly as accessible as today. Quite the contrary, it seemed that people could only dream about it and envision themselves in the sky without a proper plan. Even those who had what seemed to be a well-thought-out plan would fail in executing it. Before anyone could even imagine flying on an airplane, people would construct man-carrying kites that have massively been utilized in China. Other forms of aircraft, including hot air balloons and airships, were developed later as more innovative means of flying which can be regarded as more rational attempts at functional flying machinery.

In 1903, history was made when flying was made possible by the legendary Wright brothers who successfully performed the first-ever controlled, powered flight. From that point on, the development of the flying industry could not be stopped, and all of a sudden a dream became reality. In the 1950s, people witnessed the first-ever commercial jet airliner, the de Havilland DH 106 Comet, which marked a turning point in the history of flying. However, the ambition of mankind when it comes to flying would not stop there. It was in the 1980s that the first reusable Space Shuttle was launched into space, completely revolutionizing the idea of human existence and capabilities. Later on, in the 1990s, NASA performed the first-ever exploration of another planet – Mars. What could be next? We can only imagine, as there seem to be fewer limits than ever when it comes to a man’s dream to fly.

The Flying into the Dusk ketubah captures flying in a most romantic, sensual manner – by portraying two white birds in a harmonious flight. Their unity and ability to reach the heights while flying together symbolizes the love and commitment between two people joined in a sacred unity of marriage.


20Jan

Spain’s Dynamic Metropolis: Madrid Ketubah

Spain’s Dynamic Metropolis: Madrid Ketubah

When talking about Madrid, we can choose to be superficial and talk strictly about its incredible aesthetics and breathtaking sights, but Madrid is certainly much more than that. Although its beauty is undeniable, there is so much more to the capital of Spain than just its “looks”. Madrid, also known as Villa y Corte, is the home to over 3 million inhabitants, and the third-largest city in the European Union, rich in history, culture, tradition, events, and sports manifestations.

Turbulent historical events have certainly shaped Madrid into the complex city it is today. Its infrastructure and architecture are deeply influenced by the Muslims and the first records of settlement on the location of modern Madrid dates from the Muslim age. Later on, it was Christians who took over the very center of the city. It is the mixture of all these cultures that created the city of Madrid as we know it today. When it comes to important sights and buildings in Madrid, we certainly have to mention the Zarzuela Palace – the official residence of the King of Spain, as well as the Moncloa Palace – the official meeting place of the Council of Ministers.

Architecture might be one of the main reasons for many people to add Madrid to their dream destinations bucket list. When in Madrid, you should make an extensive list of important sights in order not to miss any of these wonderful locations you can only witness here. On this list, you shouldn’t forget sights including the Buen Retiro Palace, the church of Monserrat, and the Bridge of Toledo. If you’re a fan of the French architectural movement, you will enjoy buildings such as St. Michael’s Basilica, as well as the Church of Santa Barbara. When it comes to the Madrilenian architecture of the 19th and the 20th century, it is important to mention authors such as Narciso Pascual y Colomer, Francisco de Cubas, as well as Antonio Palacios.

Metro de Madrid ketubah design is a perfect representative of our modern ketubah style, as it features a Madrid subway plan in a bold, artistic manner. What our customers appreciate the most when it comes to our ketubah designs is our ability to combine the traditional ketubah style with the modern art we proudly represent. Therefore, this Madrid ketubah marries the urban aspect of Madrid, one of the largest European cities, with the traditional ketubah writing, creating a unique piece.


03Jan

Longevity and Prosperity: Origami Ketubah

Longevity and Prosperity: Origami Ketubah

Origami is a paper-folding art originating from Japan. Origami may seem like a purely aesthetic hobby, while in reality there is a lot of history and unique symbolism to it. While origami may have started as an activity that only the privileged could afford, it certainly evolved into a cultural, ceremonial, religious, and artistic notion that truly represents one of the main symbols of Japan. The meaning of the word origami is pretty straight-forward and self-explanatory, as it derives from Japanese words ori, meaning folding, and kami, meaning paper. So, what does origami really stand for today, and what were its symbolic meanings throughout history? Let’s find out.

As we said, origami is an art initiated in Japan, where the paper was brought from China in the sixth century and represented luxury at the time. Given that paper couldn’t be obtained by many, origami wasn’t an art that was widely popular right away. Instead, it was used for ceremonial and religious reasons. Later on, as paper became more attainable, the popularity of origami as a form of art grew, as well. In 1797, very first written instructions for origami folding appeared, which marked the beginning of origami popularization.

When it comes to origami motives, the most common shapes seem to be birds, flowers, and overall nature-inspired symbolism. While back in the day origami artists used to cut the sheets of paper to create the desired shape, today we can see an entirely different technique with a touch of European inspiration, where the paper is folded rather than cut.

While on the topic of origami shapes, it seems that a crane is the most commonly created origami piece. If you’re not quite familiar with the notion of crane, it is enough to say that a crane is a mystical creature that was believed to have a lifespan of a thousand years. The legend has it that the person who successfully created a thousand origami cranes would indeed live a thousand years. Therefore, origami figures, including those representing cranes, usually stand for longevity, hope, and health.

The Origami ketubah design is a true representative of how two cultures that we may perceive as diametrically different can blend into each other perfectly. The crane origami symbol dominates throughout the design, complementing the traditional ketubah text on the left. On top of it all, this origami ketubah design features a unique, bold modern art design that you’re used to seeing in all of our ketubah designs. For more origami ketubah pieces, make sure to check out our online gallery!


30Nov

Birds of a Feather: Feather Inspired Ketubah

Birds of a Feather: Feather Inspired Ketubah

We’ve all used the expression light as a feather at least once in our lives. That may be the first association to a feather – lightness, ease, simplicity, and serenity. Of course, everyone’s minds work differently and a single notion cannot have the same connotation for everyone. For some, feathers may signify extravagance, glamour, and class when associated with fashion. Some people may associate a feather with literature and the very roots of this art. Then again, others may think of their favorite bird or its historical significance. Today we’re diving into different feather symbolisms and views in various cultures and traditions, which may align with your own.

When talking about cultures and feathers, it is impossible to neglect the Native Americans and their beliefs. In their culture, a feather stands for honor, as well as a close, intimate connection between the owner of the feather, and the bird it originates from. Besides honor, in Native American tradition, a feather represents wisdom, strength, power, as well as freedom – due to the connection to bird symbolism. Feathers had to be earned among the Native Americans, as warriors would only receive one if they won a battle, or demonstrated extreme bravery in a war.

In other cultures and religions, feathers are believed to be traces of angels, and physical proofs of their existence around us. Needless to say, a feather is a firmly established symbol of freedom for many people, not only because of its relation to birds and their flight but also because of its lightness and tenderness. One of the most interesting depictions of feather symbolism comes from ancient Egypt, where, after death, a person’s heart was supposed to be weighed against a feather, in order to determine their sins. In the event that their heart weighed more than a feather, that person would be considered sinful and would not be granted the beauties of eternal life.

The Hamsa Dream ketubah features two powerful, complex symbols: the hamsa, and a dreamcatcher. This ketubah design is a lucky charm for all couples who enjoy the strong meaning behind these two symbols, given that a dreamcatcher is known to cleanse the energy and magnetically attract good vibrations. We’re also sure that those of you who enjoy bright colors and eye-catching geometrical designs will gravitate towards this feather ketubah design. For more options, make sure to head over to our online feather-inspired gallery and choose your ketubah design today!


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