Challah Back: The Challah Aficionado’s Ketubah!

Challah Back: It may just be the oldest “Too Cool for Jew School” joke in the book, but we couldn’t resist! It’s no secret that Jewish life cycle events are dictated by all sorts of traditional foods, from your Bubbe’s kitchen to your new apartment in the City. But whether you’re more of the Sephardi type who prefers to eat rice on Passover or more of a Gefilte Fishy Jew, some things are universal among the Tribe.

For starters: The love of our people’s bread Challah! Braided golden and crisp (throw some raisins in, too!), the Challah has long spoken to the Jewish people as a symbol of our tradition, culture, and identity. Confidently holding down Shabbat dinners and the most delicious french-toast you’ve ever had on Sunday morning, it is much more than just bread for Friday Night. It’s an identity.

Check out this incredible shot, posted by the great ladies over at The Wedding Yentas. Featuring some beautiful photography of Jewish and Interfaith weddings, the Yentas have a great site! We couldn’t help but snag this picture of a Challah so big, it doesn’t even fit inside the frame!

Did the shtetl ever see a Challah this big? Probably not! Even so, we absolutely love the blending of traditional with the modern, and we strive to make all our collective’s Ketubot match both the ancient customs of our people together with the modern bride & groom!

If you love Challah, then why not get creative with your Ketubah, and think about a design inspired by the flaky, golden, delicious-with-chicken feeling of Challah! Alright, maybe we’re going a bit overboard. But there is definitely something to be said about ‘breaking bread’ an important part of your wedding day!

Thanks to Heidi Ryder for these great shots!

Team Ketubah


Rustic Ketubah Inpiration? Bring It On!

Weddings come in all shapes and sizes, from uptown to downtown, inside to outside! Lately Team Ketubah saw some incredible pictures of autumn weddings, and we couldn’t resist but take a minute to think about how much Team Ketubah can get into the outdoor wedding, and letting our imaginations run wild for an incredible Ketubah to match!

Rustic and outdoor weddings have a few major benefits on their side, like the beauty of natural light, open air, and the comfy feel of wooden and rustic items spread throughout the wedding! Whether thinking colorful and creative or more subdued and relaxed tones, we are firm believers that the modern Ketubah should fit the wedding and the couple totally! Weddings are more customizable than ever, and a Ketubah that matches your rustic theme can give your wedding the unity and beauty that we hope you’ll find in your marriage!

From wood trimmings to antique centerpieces, rustic weddings offer more than just a clever way to re-use your favorite old-time designs, but a way of blending the old and new together. Calling on ancient traditions and customs of our parents in new and inventive ways is one of the reasons Team Ketubah started our collective! Re-mixing the traditional Orthodox custom of the marriage contract with modern day love, from progressive, same-sex, and interfaith Ketubot, This Is Not a Ketubah is all about creating a beautiful marriage contract for the one you love!

So no matter your taste, our team of artists can’t wait to work with you and your fiance(e) to create a Jewish centerpiece of your new home. Because signing a Ketubah is about so much more than when the ink dries. It’s about the love you feel for each other, now and forever!

Thanks to Pretty Little Weddings and Tonya Joy Photography for her incredible picture!


The Eddie-Murphy-Head-Truck-ish Ketubah!

This Is Not a Ketubah is proud to present our latest Ketubah endeavor: our tribute to the man, the myth, the legend: EDDIE MURPHY. Like all our Ketubot, the Eddie Murphy’s Head on a Truck-ish Ketubah is available with Orthodox, Conservative, Progressive, Humanist or Same-Sex Ketubah text in both English and Hebrew.

The Eddie Murphy Ketubah Could Be Yours!

Just kidding! But it does look like we’re about three years late on the uptake of the most hilarious thing we’ve seen in a long, long time. I think I speak for all of us when I say: The Eddy Murphie Truck Head is downright inspiring.

Let me set the scene: imagine you are cruising down 287 (actually lets be real: when was the last time anyone ‘cruised’ on the Tappan-Zee? Never.), painfully dreading the moment when you will transfer onto the Beast that is the Jersey Turnpike. You casually look in your rear-view mirror only to see it taken up by AN ENORMOUS REPLICA OF EDDIE MURPHY’S HEAD.

You don’t know what to do—laugh? Cry? Choke in disbelief? Call your Dad in Ft. Lauderdale to remince about your favorite movie, Trading Spaces? Snap a picture with your iPhone? You can’t decide. You are an emotional wreck of joy, excitement, and the awesome-ness that is, behold, the Eddie Murphy Head Truck.

What does This Is Not A Ketubah have to do with this picture besides a slight obsession with the head-truck (but not actually Eddie Murphy himself)? The truth is, more than meets the eye. For some couples, movies are the core of their relationship. Some member of our collective have watched another Harry Potter with their girlfriend every Thursday for the last three months. Others have had Hebrew Hammer marathons for days on end.

Ok, so movies are important. But what speaks to us most was the thrilling emotion, creativity, and bold moves of whatever PR firm decided to commission the idea of the Edde-Murphy-Head-Truck. We commend their funky, dare we say artsy?—clever marketing, brightening the day of the thousands, perhaps millions of lives they touched. One day, This Is Not A Ketubah aspires to be as great as the Eddie Murphy Head Truck.

Hey, a guy can dream, right?

Team Ketubah


Our Ketubot Party Hard. Just Like Your Reception.

There are few things we like better than really exciting, rollicking, make-you-dance-like-its your-Bar-Mitzvah-reception wedding parties… and that’s even before the bar opens. Sure, any one can party. But not everyone has the opportunity to party when surrounded by all of their loved ones, celebrating the most special day of their lives.

Our Ketubot Part Hard. Sometimes in Tents.

As part of our inspiration to discover the types of Ketubot that couples want for their awesome weddings, I like to check out wedding photography and blogs, and then report back to our team design meetings. The more we know about modern couples, the more we know about what they think is awesome!

For instance, I never thought I’d know so much about the prevalence of translucent wedding tents. Or that deep purple is the go-to color for winter weddings. Hey, you live and you learn, right?

Of course, more than learning the nuts-and-bolts of the modern wedding is the opportunity to stumble upon inspiring picture of people having the time of their life at a wedding. Not just having fun, sipping on champagne, and talking to Safta. But shoes-off, party like its 1999 fun! The pictures like this one by Mesravotit’s Photography elicit all the emotions weddings should!

If a wedding can elicit that much emotion, Team Ketubah asks: why cant a Ketubah?! In the Jewish tradition, Ketubahs have always been accompanied by traditional parties—loads of dancing, klezmer, and nosh! Maybe your great-grandmother once told you about her wedding in the shtetl days? Those people knew how to party!

This Is Not A Ketubah wants to preserve these values with a few modern twists. Weddings should be about pure joy and bliss, and your Ketubah should be a way to remember them forever! From the warm colors of our latest Rothko to the otherworldliness of our brand-new gorgeous Chagall, to our whimsical Scottish Terrier Ketubah… we design our Ketubot to make the most of your simcha!

So no matter who you’re getting hitched to, we hope your wedding is as awesome as the one above—and invite Team Ketubah along!

Thanks to Manuel Meszarovits Blog for the awesome photography.


Ketubah, Shakira, and Gut Shabbos!

This Is Not a Ketubah is all about blending creativity and tradition. Each week before Shabbat we like to have a fun brainstorm with all our team members about all things awesome, artsy, inspired by design, what my Bubbe might call ‘hip’ and of course Jewish! Lately, one this has been on our minds- we’re halfway through Elul, which means Rosh Hashanah is right around the corner!

What does Rosh Hashanah mean for a bunch of artists living and working in Buenos Aires? For one, just as Fall is setting in for New York Jews, summer is on its way for those of us living below the equator. With sunny weather means more time outside–and therefore more inspired, colorful Ketubot. Making creative, custom Ketubahs isn’t just our passion, its our obsession.

Beyond warm weather, preparing for Rosh Hashanah also means figuring out a way to de-crystalize the honey in the bottle and pour it on some apple! One of us (well, me) has found a new tradition: singing the Waka Waka Rosh Hashanah song!

Check out this awesome video we found by the Fountainheads of Ein Prat Academy for Leadership in Israel! Nothing brings a little high-holiday excitement like singing Jews. Especially when there’s a shofar involved. Even better when its in Israel.


We love this video for all of the reasons we love making awesome Ketubot. From recognizing different types of Jewish families to using the style of something typically non-Jewish (or maybe Shakira is, in fact Jewish?!?!), we get it. Its creative, fun, and doesn’t mind shaking up tradition while sticking to it. In fact, we imagine that any member of this incredible group were to marry another program participant, our Ketubot would be an excellent match for their ball-throwing, Star-Wars imitating antics.

Who says modern art has to be about super-trendy elite design all the time. We’d love to eat some apples and honey with them!


Team Ketubah


In The Making: Celtic Ketubah!





Lately we’ve been surprised by the number of requests and searches for a Celtic Ketubah-—and super excited about putting our creativity together to channel this new type of art!  As a bunch of Jews growing up Celtic art was something beautiful and intriguing, but not quite the meat-and-potatoes of our culture (pun intended!)

Sure, our team strives to work in the great modern masters like Chagall, Klimt, Mondrian, and Lichtenstein.  But to us, creating colorful Ketubot doesn’t mean just European masters – it means listening to what our friends and clients tell us they are looking for.  We’re so glad we asked!

We’re lucky to work with couples who share their own exciting recent inspiration: Book of Kells.  An interfaith couple of Jewish and Irish/Scottish decent, they idea of a Celtic Ketubah made perfect sense.  With our egalitarian interfaith text option, they’ll have a Ketubah that is 100% a union of their values, backgrounds, and affection. Imagine a custom Ketubah just as awesome as the couple who requested it!

Of course that is the This Is Not a Ketubah: to create the best, most beautiful, colorful Ketubah designs that couples can deeply connect with.  The blending of tradition with today.

In fact, a little bit of research shows that this modern idea isn’t so far removed from the past.  Check out the two pics below—one a sample from the Book of Kells, another from among the oldest intact Ketubot ever discovered.  Maybe ancient Jews and ancient Irish weren’t too different after all.  Or maybe its just me?


In any case, our art team is hard at work (and a fair amount of heated conversation deep) in creating a Celtic Ketubah to post to the This Is Not a Ketubah Gallery!  Our hope is that Irish-American-Jewish couples will find the Celtic Ketubah as an affirmation of their identity.

As with all of our Ketubot, we look forward to seeing the Ketubah hung on the happy couple’s wall as a testament to their union, and maybe even one day for their children to marvel at!

Team Ketubah

Photo credits to the Jewish Resource Library/Library of Congress and Matt Stone Blog!


Text Talk with Team Ketubah!

Last week, we talked about making some changes to www.ThisIsNotaKetubah.com site to make sure that every visitor could tell what This Is Not a Ketubah is about.  From explaining more about our range of Ketubah texts to how we can work with couples to include their own original vows, we want to make sure your Ketubah is 100% about the couples we serve.

You might notice that we don’t have any text examples post on the ‘Our Text’ page.  Why is this?  First, we thought it would be information overload to see mountains of text, and a lot of clicking, which we generally don’t like—who likes endless clicks?

Second, we rather speak with couples directly to learn more about their background before we recommend a text.  While some couples might know right off the bat they looking for an Orthodox text, they may not know about the option of a Lieberman Clause.

Alternatively, couples identifying as Reform might not know about Humanists text, which replaces emphasis on God and Jewish tradition to community and connection among individuals. Couples looking for an interfaith Ketubah may not even know where to start!

Lesbian and gay couples span the range of religious observance, and the last thing we want is a feeling of confinement to a specific text.  Rather than be limited to a list which says “you are this—therefore pick this” our approach is hands-on, sincere, and individual.

Our modern designs and colorful work is a product of the emotion that love should bring. As we speak with more and more couples about their awesome custom Ketubah, we get even more ideas. As we combine the texts we work with you to create with a background of modern masters—Chagall, Picasso, Miro, and Klimt to name just a few!

We look forward to working to make you the most beautiful Ketubah you’ve ever seen.  Be in touch!


Team Ketubah


In The Making: Marc Chagall-ish Ketubah

One of the exciting parts of working so closely with an artistic collective is the chance to see gorgeous art as it happens! From our creative brainstorming sessions to getting great new ideas from clients we chat with, it is hard to tell where the design ends and the fun begins.

Today, I’m excited to share a bit of our artistic process!  For some of our works of art, we’ve been able to capture the on-screen action.  The prints our team of artists make are not just modern in content; they’re made with the most modern graphic design software.

You can check out the “making-of” video of the quintessentially Jewish artist of the 20th century, Marc Chagall.  For me, few things are more exciting than watching a blank page with only a few lines come alive to be an engaging, stunning blend of color and emotion. We wanted to share it.

CLICK HERE TO WATCH THE VIDEO– Ketubah In The Making: Marc Chagall-ish Ketubah

Watch live streaming video from thisisnotaketubah at livestream.com

One thing that is fascinating about these videos is that they catch only what happens on-screen—we have to keep some of the magic hidden!  The artsy back-and-forth dialogue among our artists creates an energy in the room that just can’t be captured in a video.  That, plus the fact that some of the laughter and heated discussions on design perfection wasn’t picked up so well by the microphone.

Of course, this video only shows part of the artistic process.  Once couples have chosen their Ketubah, we work with them and their Rabbi or officiant to ensure that the final Ketubah text is perfect: from standard Orthodox text and inclusion of the Lieberman clause to interfaith and same sex couples. Several rounds of copy-editing to triple-counting the lines for witnesses to sign, you’re custom Ketubah is ready to ship!

So, check out the newly-uploaded Chagall-ish Ketubah.  More to come!

(Thanks to our friends at LiveStream for their awesome video platform!)


Team Ketubah


Colorful Ketubahs: What Colors Are Best For A Ketubah?

Here at Ketubah HQ, we have a few biases — especially a bias for colors.

Who wants a dull, faded Ketubah? Who wants a Ketubah with colors that match my Grandma’s Wallpaper — which, I must add, was the hippest and awesomest wallpaper anywhere, circa 1963.

One of our mottos here is: The Colorless Ketubah is dead; Long Live the Colorful Ketubah! — Okay, that might not be our motto, but it is something that I personally often think to myself.

There was once a time when it was expected that Ketubah would be traditional — no one thought of doing modern or contemporary or hip or groovy Ketubot (yes, groovy!). They were beautiful and very pretty, however.

But then, we remembered Hiddur Mitzvah — the commandment to beautify all commemorative Jewish objects. What is “beautifying”? Perhaps it is taking the most beautiful and awesome modern design and turning it into museum-quality art.

The result is a Ketubah that is not just amazing and that stands out with unique qualities, but one that you are proud to hang on your wall!

So, this implies the question of: what colors go well onto a Ketubah?

The answer is that, so long as they are well done, and so long as they magnify the beauty of the Ketubah, then it is really just up to your personal taste and preference.

The one other factor to keep in mind is that, for a Ketubah to satisfy Halacha, the text itself must be clearly legible – so the colors can’t interfere with the legibility.

What color do you want on your Ketubah?

Team Ketubah

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