Jewish Weddings

DIY chuppah

Hi all! I almost never post over on this board, but I figured this would be the best place for chuppah questions! My fiance and I are planning on building our own chuppah for our wedding later this year, and I was hoping some of you with some experience could help. 

Firstly, and I know this sounds like a stupid question, but how did you transport yours to your venue? I'm guessing the best way would either be to bring it in unassembled and finish it there, or to rent or find somebody with a truck to transport it. I probably answered my own question there, but I was looking for more experience on which way was better. I am thinking assembling it there will kind of be a pain, although my venue may let us do that the night before at the rehearsal, which might work out just fine. 

My other questions is about requirements. I know that all four sides need to be 'open' as in, not a solid wall and I know the fabric should be attached to the top, but I was thinking about hanging little flowers on strings or strips of fabric or ribbon to the back side to make a cute backdrop, but I wasn't sure if that would still be keeping it open? These are some examples of what I mean:

Would I be better off leaving the back plain, or maybe tying any decorations off to the side (like a curtain would be tied back)? Anything else I should know about building one? Thanks in advance!
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Re: DIY chuppah

  • 2dBride2dBride member
    2500 Comments Fourth Anniversary 5 Love Its Combo Breaker
    edited January 2013
    We had to transport our chuppah from our home in Maryland to our ceremony in Massachusetts, and then back to Maryland again.  We built it on the frame of a portable popup gazebo in order to make both the transportation and set-up easy.  Folded up, it looked like this:

    But set up, it looked like this:

    Instructions can be found at this link.

    Even if you're not doing that, I think most people do the assembly at the venue.  Even if you had a truck to bring the whole assembled chuppah to the venue, carrying it from the truck to where you wanted it set up would likely be more of a pain than doing the final assembly there.  Here are some possibilities for DIY chuppot:

    • • This one relies on putting each of the four poles into PVC pipe set into a flowerpot partly filled with concrete for stability.
    • • This one is based on using a lattice for the ceiling, which stabilizes the whole structure so as to make support for the bottoms of the poles unnecessary.
    • • This one has a wooden frame at the top, held up by lattices at each of the corners.
    • This one is similar to the preceding, but has a backdrop similar to what you are talking about.
    • • This one is based on birch poles put into umbrella stands.
    • • This one is not free-standing, and would need to be held by four people during the ceremony.  However, it uses bungee cords to attach the four corners of a tallit to the four poles, so that the fabric of the tallit won't get torn if the pole-carriers aren't perfectly in sync.

    As far as the backdrop, I'd talk to your officiant.  A chuppah is a tradition rather than a requirement of Jewish law, and different officiants interpret the tradition differently.  Obviously, you don't want to find out at the last moment that your officiant has an objection to the chuppah you have chosen.
  • edited April 2013
    Does anyone have a chuppah that I could rent for my daughters wedding Labor Day Weekend.  The wedding is in Bergen County, NJ.

    please e-mail me at [email protected].

    Thanks so much
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