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Volume 5.4 Summer 2010 5770


• Inspiration • Insight • Information • Ideas •Shopping

In this issue:

The Significance of the Chuppah Vocabulary for the Bridal Bound: Key Terms to Know When Selecting Your Gown 4 Basic Steps for Daily Summer Beauty Ms. Maven: Where and How to Shop Wisely Challah - Food for the Soul Delightful Dairy Dishes

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Vol.5 no. 4

From the publisher: The Pesach 2010 online issue was such a success that I decided to make this issue in the same format. Note that you can still see the Pesach issue, as well as PDFs of the print issues going back to a year at http://kallahmagazine. com The new format offers an advantage over the PDFs in that it does not require downloading and allows the links to function. When you see links in the articles that offer more information, a click will take you there. The gmach listings that had been included in the print issues in the past are not included in the online issues because you can just click on the Directory page and scroll down for the most up to date gmach listings for New York and New Jersey. The link is included under the Table of Contents at the right for your convenience. Also see for apparel, makeup, sheitels, and other hair coverings. Another page of interst is JewishWedding.html which indexes articles on the meaning behind the rituals of the Jewish wedding. For the practical issues of the wedding, see the articles and index at Additional links are listed at Please let the advertisers know that you saw their ad in this special issue. This could not be free for you without their support.

Table of Contents Torah Insight

The Significance of the Chuppah Challah -- Food for the Soul by Rabbi Chaim Brown

2 18

Advice 4 Basic Steps for Daily Summer Beauty by Ariella Brown Ms. Maven Responds Where and How to Shop Wisely

9 11

Features Vocabulary for the Bridal Bound: Key Terms to Know When Selecting Your Gown 6 Kallah in the Kitchen: Delightful Dairy Dishes by Ariella Brown 21 Gmach listings online at

Stay in the loop with updates at

Wishing a wonderful summer,.

Ariella Brown P.S. You can follow me at

You can also read my posts at, and

Kallah Magazine is published by Write Way Productions at 52 Columbia Avenue, Cedarhurst, NY 11516 For more information, email or call 516-791-3904 during business hours. ©2010 Kallah Magazine and Write Way Productions. All rights reserved. Kallah Magazine reserves the right to print and edit submissions, including stories, articles, and letters in part or in full unless specifically requested otherwise. No articles, photographs, artwork, or other material in this publication -– both in print and web form – may be reproduced in any manner without explicit permission of the publisher. Kallah Magazine is not responsible for typographical errors or accuracy of advertisers’ claims.


The Significance of the Chuppah The chuppah [wedding canopy] is the quintessential symbol of the Jewish wedding. The traditions associated with it allude to the history of the Jewish people, the Torah, and the values that form the basis of the marriage. The chuppah, with its sheltering roof, represents the home the couple enter into together upon marriage. The chuppah can be set up just about anywhere. Many prefer to have it outside. Because that is often impractical, though, many wedding halls have skylights over the chuppah, so that even an indoor one may be under the stars. Some use a chuppah formed by a tallith or other cloth held spread over four poles. The poles may be held by four people or mounted in place. That practice of draping a cloth is consistent with the view of chuppah being constituted by draping an article of clothing, which may also form a component of the bedeken ceremony. (See x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner~y2009m10d22-Aspectsof-the-Jewish-wedding--the-bedeken) When the chuppah used is a permanent structure, it is often decorated with floral arrangements. I haven’t seen an authoritative source referring to placing flowers on the chuppah, but it would fit with the wedding ceremony’s evocation of the experience of Israel at Mount Sinai. Our Sages learn from the verse vayithyatzvus bethachtith hahar (Exodus 19:17) describing the people of Israel as encamped at the foot of the mountain that they were , in fact , under the

mountain: chapa aleyhem har kegigis [G-d held the mountain over their heads like a roof or canopy] (Tractate Shabbath 88a). Though the mountain was located in the desert, it is said to have miraculously bloomed with grass and flowers when it was honored as the place where the Torah was given. This Midrash, which I’ve found ascribed to Medrash Talpiyos Os Dodoim , is often quoted as the explanation for the custom of decorating the home and synagogue with flowers on the holiday of Shavuouth. But it is possible that decorating our chuppahs with flowers reminds us of the blossoming Mount Sinai at the wedding, as well. We see other evocations of the event at Mount Sinai in the procession to the chuppah. Traditionally, candles are held by the parents of the couple while walking down the aisle. (To safeguard them from blowing out, they may be enclosed in hurricane lamps.) The candles are a reminder of the giving of the Torah at Sinai, which was accompanied by the sounds of thunder and flashes of light. The verse in Song of Songs that mentions “yom chasunaso” [his wedding day] is also taken as a reference to the celebration of the bond between G-d and his people enacted on the day the Torah was given. For an index of articles on the varied aspects of the Jewish wedding, see For other relevant divrei Torah, see:

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Summer 2010 / 5770


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Vocabulary for the Bridal Bound: Key Terms to Know When Selecting Your Gown Selecting a wedding gown depends on your personal taste and It is not flattering for women with full hips. your figure. Some cuts are more flattering for straight figures and some for fuller ones. Consider which silhouettes, waist style, and Empire waist: This style is a high waist; fabric is gathered under cut would look best on your figure. Then think about additional the bust, then falls in an A-line. dress details, such as the sleeve and the train. Give some thought This can be flattering to both slim and fuller figures, as it emphasizes to your choice of fabric, as well. Whites vary from the color of the bust and de-emphasizes the hip. Be aware, though, that this snow to warm ivory and rosy rum tones. style is sometimes associated with maternity The whisper of color in white may bring This ball gown features a basque waist dresses, particularly is the part below the and bell sleeves out your own natural skin tone better waist is gathered in a way that it puffs out.  than plain white. This can be avoided by keeping a slim with a skirt that does not flare out too Test color effect by holding the fabric markedly. next to your face. It’s also a good idea   to scrunch the fabric to see if it wrinkles Mermaid:  This gown is fitted from too easily. If it does, your dress will the top through to just above the knees, need a pressing mid-wedding, and it is at which point, it poufs out into the unlikely that you will be able to get it mermaid’s tail with puffed out fabric on done. Try on your gown for both fit the lower part of the skirt.  A very similar and comfort. Don’t just twirl in front style -- the fishtail -- dress is flatter at the of the mirror; walk, sit down , and bend front but flares at the back and sides. in it. This style shows an hourglass figure to advantage, but its tight fit can be unflattering to a more generously Gown styles fit for a princess proportioned figure, and you won’t or a mermaid have much wriggle room.  The hips are particularly accentuated.  Ball gown: a gathered, full skirt, often   topped by the bodice style described next. a fishtail silhouette Basque waist:  The hem of the bodice comes to a point above a gathered, full skirt. It’s a fitted style that shows off your waist and adds some dress structure required for fuller figures. empire waist But, depending on how the skirt poufs out, it can accentuate the width of full hips.   Bias cut: Fabric is cut on the diagonal to skims curves. Such a cut may be preferred by petite women who want to avoid the little girl look of a puffed skirt and can carry off a slinky 1930’s style evening gown look. It won’t work for women who need extra support or who don’t want to reveal so much through their dresses.  Also, you won’t have very much room to maneuver while dancing.   Column:  Like the bias cut, it hugs the figure, but with a straight weft and vertical seams. It is flattering for slim women, both tall and petite.


white on white princess cut gown with 3/4 bell sleeves

you have several sleeve options to choose from:

3/4 poet sleeve

Bell: This sleeve is fitted at the upper arm and flares out at the wrist, often extends over the hand. A variation is the Butterfly, in which the ends of the sleeves are actually connected behind the back. Bishop: A full sleeve gathered on a band. Fitted: A long sleeve that extends to the wrist, fitted tightly all the way, a flattering choice for small, slender arms. Fingertip: A long sleeve that covers the arm all the way to the fingertips. Same caution as for bell sleeve applies. surplice bodice with 3/4 fitted sleeves

Princess cut: This styles dress is seamed with darts from bust to hips into an hourglass shape, a slimming effect that can also give the illusion of extra height. If you want a shaped look without the gathered skirt, this could work well for you, especially if you have want shape for curves without clinginess.  But this style may not flatter a flat figure.    Surplice: The surplice bodice is created by the cross-wrapping of fabric in either the front or back. This could work well if your want something not too close to the body. But watch out that the extra fabric does not add bulk where you don’t want it.

What’s up your sleeve?

While the standard wedding gown skips sleeves altogether, sleeves actually do more than cover your arms, they add another touch of style to the gown. If you are having a gown made or altering one,

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4 Basic Steps for Daily Summer Beauty by Ariella Brown Every bride wishes to look her best for her wedding. In preparation, many diet, exercise, and consult makeup artists. Some will also try to get tan because they believe that they will look better in a white gown with darker skin. Don’t do something you will regret because of your mistaken assumption of beauty. You will only see the harmful effects years later, but by then, it is too late. Too much sun exposure can lead to premature wrinkling and skin cancer. It won’t necessarily be the malignant form, but it still would require removal and many follow up visits to the doctor. Anyone can look wonderful in white; the key is finding the right shade of it to flatter your complexion. Shades of whites are discussed in “Vocabulary for the Bridal Bound: Key Terms to Know When Selecting Your Gown” in this issue. To look beautiful this summer and for many summers to come, follow these 4 basic steps. Step 1: An Ounce of Prevention A daily dab of sunscreen will save you from many more ounces of wrinkle reducers later, and, more importantly, reduce your risk of skin cancer. Even if you do not plan to lie on the beach, simply walking on a sunny sidewalk exposes you face to ultra-violet rays.  While you may like the tanning effect, you won’t like the burn or the long-term damage to skin caused by such exposure,

especially for those who are naturally fair. So begin your daily beauty routine with sunscreen.  You can find sunscreen protection built into facial moisturizers and foundation creams, so it will take you only one step to get your basic layer and essential protection.  Look for SPF of 15 or higher.    For the look of sun-kissed color without harmful UV rays, apply a bronzer that is not too dark for your complexion; for added protection, look for one with built in SPF (sun protection factor).

Step 2: Use Your Head A summer wardrobe calls for a broad brimmed hat; it could be made of straw, fabric, or even woven paper in any color you like. It is a must-have even for women who normally wear wigs. (Wig hair – even the most expensive kind -- gets oxidized and dried out by the sun, and unlike one’s own hair, it cannot replenish itself) A hat will also keep you cooler while it keeps the sun off your face and prevents it from beating down on your head. For real protection, you should wear a broad-brimmed hat rather than a baseball cap. A cap offers very limited protection because it does not cover the tops of the ears, the sides of the face, or the neck at all. These areas are prone to sunburn, especially if you are out during peak sunlight hours that extend all the way from 10 in the morning to 4 in the afternoon in the summer. And how many of us can just stay inside for 6 hours smack in the middle of the day? Another summer accessory to consider is a pair of sun glasses that assures it


eye color. Opt for a waterproof formula for your mascara and eyeliner if you are planning on swimming or activities that are conducive to perspiration.

Step 4: Add Healthy Color A hint of color gives your face a healthy glow, but achieving it through a tan is not a healthy choice. While it’s true that those with fair skin can look pale, that is easily rectified with a bit of blush. To determine the shade of blush that would look most natural on you, match the color your face takes on when you exercise.   Find the right spot for your blush by smiling and then applying it to the apple of your cheek and back toward the center of your ear.  Don’t try to spread the color below that point.  Too low a blush line will make your face appear wider than it actually is. offer 100% UV protection. Before you make your purchase, try the pair on for fit and to ascertain that the lenses are not too light. You should not be able to see your eyes through them when you look at your reflection. With a smart choice of hat and sunglasses, you will look glamorous while avoiding sunburn.

Step 3: The Eyes Have It When you take off your sunglasses, your eyes should be ready to face the world.  People are naturally drawn to the eyes in a person’s face, so it deserves some of your attention, too. If you are fortunate enough to have truly thick, dark lashes, then you can skip mascara and just highlight your eyes with a touch of eyeliner or eyeshadow if you wish.  But for those of us who are not blessed with thick, long, dark lashes, mascara is the form of makeup we hold to be most essential.  While black mascara is the almost universal choice, if your hair is blond or red, you may consider a brown or “soft” black for a more natural look than that produced by an intense black.  If you want more intense color, you can experiment with mascaras with a hint of purple or green to bring out your


For natural looking lips, choose a shade that is just a bit deeper than your lips’ natural color. The lipstick alone gives your lips some measure of sun protection, but you can layer it over a sunblock for lips or look for a lipstick with built in SPF.    If the color looked fine in the tube, but not on you, don’t toss it out right away.  There may be a remedy.   Lighten too dark lipstick with a pale tinted gloss.  Darken a too light lipstick by using a brown-tinted lip pencil to line and serve as a foundation color on your lips.  But be sure that the darker color of the lipliner does not show create an outline that is darkly distinct from the rest of your lip color. You can also opt for a light touch of glamour by just applying lip gloss or a lightly tinted gloss.  For a highlighting effect that makes your lips look fuller, place a light dab of gloss just in the center of your lips.

For more beauty tips, for makeup and sheitels, see Select among vendors listed  

Kallah Magazine

Summer 2010 / 5770


Ms. Maven Responds: Where and How to Shop Wisely Dear Ms. Maven, I just became a kallah and feel overwhelmed by all I need to get to set up my first apartment. We don’t have a lot to spend and probably won’t be there for more than a year or two so I want to keep things as simple as possible. My mother suggests I could register for what I want so that I can get it bought for me as wedding gifts. My married friends warn me, though, not to rely on getting all I register for. They say that only a few people check the registry and so they won’t necessarily buy what I pick and it is quite likely that I won’t get all the things I need that way. To get started on shopping, my mother started taking me around to the “heimish” stores. One in our neighborhood advertised a special on “kallah packages.” The saleslady eagerly brought out sets of bedding and tablecloths that were several hundred dollars each. When I asked if there was anything less expensive, she said she would check, but immediately walked over to another customer and never came back to me. With all I have to do in the next couple of months, I don’t want to waste time or money. What do you advise? -Kallah in a Quandary

Ms. Maven Responds: Mazel tov to you. May you merit to build a bayis ne’eman beYisrael. As you prepare to furnish that bayis, though you will have a lot of shopping to do. Even if you intend to start out with just the basics and are willing to put off on the formal living room and dining, there is still quite a lot of stuff you need to properly equip your kitchen, bedroom, and bathroom. And, what your friends tell you is true. You cannot rely on your wedding guests to take care of it all by buying just what you register for. So what you do? What should you not do? And where should you go? What to do: Prepare, organize, and keep all your receipts. Make a list of everything you really need, from pots to pillows,

and don’t forget the little things that range from can openers to corkscrews, as well as a budget allocation for each category – linens, kitchen essentials, etc. clearly set down on paper. Nearly every store that carries linen, dinnerware, or appliances offers a bridal registry, so you can go ahead and register your choices. But if you want to get started yourself, get out your list, your budget, and your wallet and start shopping. Just remember to keep all receipts in case you need to return something. Perhaps your purchases should include a file to keep both your list and receipts in order. That way you can check off what you’ve bought from your list and have the corresponding receipt available if you should need it. If you are buying in advance, there is some possibility that you will get duplicated version of what you already acquired, so you will save yourself a lot of aggravation if you buy from a store that accepts returns for a full refund rather than just store credit. If your gifts come from such a store, then you will even be able to trade them in for money you can use on anything. Unfortunately, though, many people select gifts from stores that are not quite that accommodating, and then you will be forced to select something from the store stock for exchange. That may be how people end up with $70 aprons: they need to exchange the $70 platter they had no use for and figure that the apron – while overpriced – could at least be used. But you really don’t want to do that to yourself. What not to do: Do not put yourself into a situation that will likely result in budget busting. If you consider a store overpriced, don’t register there. I once read that someone did just that with the intent of returning all gifts to the overpriced store to get the money and then buy what she wanted at a cheaper store. That approach is very wrong. It is a double whammy on gneivas da’as [deliberately misleading



others into thinking you intend to buy from them] as well as bound to miscarry. A) This plan is dishonest with respect to both your guests – who think you really have the gift in mind rather than a plan to bilk them out of their money -- and the store that is spending the time on putting together your registry in the hope of generating sales – not returns. B) Odds are that this plan will backfire, either because your guests will see that the prices are outrageous and forego shopping there or because the store will allow only store credit, so that your overpriced dishes will simply have to be exchanged for overpriced other stuff. Honesty, of course, works both way, and you should be wary of the “bait and switch” tactic. It’s designed to lure you into the store with an advertised special that sounds like an amazing deal and then to talk you into buying a more expensive version of that item. For example, a store could advertise “sets starting at just $39.” Then when you come in search of those $39 sets, the salespeople insist on first showing you the “better” options that are priced far and above $39. If you still insist on seeing the $39 sets, they may say they are currently out of stock, which should raise a red flag of false advertising. Alternatively, they may grudgingly pull one or two of those sets just to point out that the more expensive one is really the better choice for you. Now it may, in fact, be true that the $90 sets are far and above better than the $39. But you are the one who knows your budget, and you should not be pressured by sales tactics into breaking it. As the store shows itself to engage in dubious tactics, you should take your business to a place that represents its price ranges more honestly. Another thing not to do is to limit your store options. You do not only have to shop in stores that offer “kallah sets.” You can put together your own “set” based on your own preferences and budget. While some neighborhood shops actually do offer discounts off list prices of names you could recognize and compare elsewhere, some carry only “exclusive” lines, at exclusive prices and deal with you in a way that could make you feel very excluded indeed. If the saleslady gives you condescending attention after you indicate you are not looking for the luxury line and responds to


your price query by saying she has to “look it up” with a sigh that indicates you are not worthy of her time or the effort it would take her to take a few steps in her high heels, you probably should bring your business elsewhere. High prices and attitude are not a good shopping combination. While it is a commendable thing to support people in your community, that only holds if the neighborhood shop’s pricing is in line with what regular stores charge and offers comparable service and selection. If it doesn’t, go elsewhere. For example, one woman recounted that she went into one of these stores to buy a tablecloth, and found the plainest, most unimpressive one there was priced at $100, while the nice ones were upwards of $200. Though the saleswoman tried to talk her into spending more than she knew she should on the grounds that it was “for Shabbos,” this was one smart consumer. She went to Bed Bath and Beyond and bought on just as nice as the tablecloth priced $100 in the neighborhood store for just $30. If she had one of those ubiquitous 20% coupons with her, then she would have saved an additional $6 on that tablecloth. At $24, that tablecloth would have been just ¼ the price of the cheapest option at the neighborhood store and even without the coupon, it would have been less than 1/3. That’s a very significant difference. But imagine if she had bought a table that could not be accommodated by any tablecloth other than the type carried by the higher priced specialty shops; she would have had to spend the $100, right? But why would anyone buy such a size? They do, though, not for their tables but for their beds. It is popular among frum young couples to order the 48” mattress that is not quite full but too large for twin. That means that the standard sheets will not fit. So where can they buy their bedding? They can have the bedding custom made, have a full size altered to the 48” size, or buy in the small shops that carry these sizes. As these small shops face absolutely no mainstream store competition for the 48” size, they can set the prices much higher. Any of those options comes at a premium cost with limited choice. You will

Kallah Magazine

Summer 2010 / 5770

likely find that the 48” size bedding costs more than the full size, even though it requires less fabric. Remember: to be forewarned is to be forearmed. And we certainly could use four arms rather than a mere two to handle all the shopping. Where to go: You could literally let your fingers do the walking by browsing online and checking out what stores with solid reputations for value and customer service have on offer. The internet is a great place to start your search to get an idea of what is available, read reviews, and compare prices. Sometimes the best price for an item will be found online. Just beware that shipping charges don’t knock out all the savings. For example, if you find an iron online for $20 that sells in your store for $25, don’t hit the “Buy Now” button until you’ve calculated everything. If the shipping is $7, you are actually out $2. However, if you find enough items selling below store price to qualify for free shipping or just enough to assure that you are saving more on the total purchase than the shipping cost you, than it may be worth it. The only thing you have to still consider before hitting that button is the return policy. What are your options if you need to return the iron? Do you have to pay shipping charges or will they pick up the tab for that? That can, certainly, make a difference. Internet and store combinations: Many stores, like Target, Kohl’s, and Wal-Mart offer their wares both online and in brick and mortar locations, though some items are “online exclusives.” The advantage of such a setup is that you can browse online, check what’s on sale and then either buy with a click of the mouse, which may pay when there is a special low or no shipping charge, or by scooting over to your local store. Another advantage of this is that you can usually return goods purchased online to a store and get credited on the spot, so that you do not have to go to a post office or UPS center to ship it back and bear the charge until all is sorted out. When you shop for your linens, you can compare prices online. You will find a wide variety of “bed in a bag” options, ranging from $40 to $150, on average. Those sets usually include the quilts, which make them a much better buy than the sets that include only sheets and pillowcases for $50-$80 you see offered “on special” in some linen stores. You could even buy something called a “room in a bag,” a set that includes valances, window

panels, window tiebacks, and decorative pillows, in addition to the usual sheets, pillowcases, bedskirt, shams, and comforter. You can save even more by using coupon. Get on the stores’ mailing lists, and they will send you coupons regularly. Keep them even after they expire because most Bed Bath and Beyond stores will still honor them. Keep your receipts in case of return; you can get your money back and can even ask for a reissue of the coupon used on the purchase of the returned item when you keep the receipt. Kohl’s typically offers free shipping on a purchase of $75 or more and sometimes offer $1.99 shipping specials. If you get one of the Kohl’s store credit cards, you will receive coupon cards good for 15-30% off your total purchase on a regular basis. So if you have to buy your own Cuisinart good processor or Kitchen-Aid mixer because your guest opted for decorative rather than useful gifts, you can watch for a sale of 40% off and then add on your store coupon for extra savings. Kohl’s also allows no hassle returns at its stores for purchases online. Keep your receipts, though, because without them you will only be credited for the lowest selling price of the item you are returning. As for Target and Wal-Mart, they both have low price guarantee policies and fairly generous terms for returns that include items purchased on their site. Wal-Mart also offers inexpensive shipping options or free site-to-store shipping. Target often offers free shipping on a $50 minimum purchase. The bottom line is this: You want to minimize your aggravation and maximize your results. Shop wisely by planning your purchases, keeping your receipts, and bestowing your business only on stores that offer you: selection, savings, and courteous customer service. And while you can certainly listen to advice, you must, ultimately, have confidence in making your own decisions. Don’t be talked into anything that goes against your better judgment, and if you do your homework on this, you can be assured that your judgment is sound.

Find more advice from Ms. Maven and others online. Advice categories include general advice, dating and dngagement advice, and Shalom Bayis Advice. Links to all 3 can be found on the home page of http:// or on the general advice page at



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Kallah Magazine

Summer 2010 / 5770

Vocabulary for the Bridal Bound continued from p. 6

Juliet: the sleeve is fitted tightly on the arm with a little pouf at the shoulder, a Renaissance look. Leg-of-mutton: full puff at the shoulder, fitted from the just above the elbow down to the wrist. A variation of this is called a Gibson. Long pointed: fitted sleeve ending in a point of lace or fabric on the hand.

‘puddle’ of the fabric. A chapel length train is usually around a yard in length. A cathedral train can stretch out for two yards or more. An extended or grand cathedral or monarch train descends 4 yards or more from the waist.

A watteau train is attached to the gown at mid-back. Poet: This is considered a Romantic look with long sleeves that   flare out from the far arm, often with pleats. While a train can look impressive as you sail down the aisle or pose for photos with it draped down some steps, it can add a great Puff: Pouf at shoulder that can appear on any length sleeve. deal of weight to your dress and will impede your movement.  Even a relatively short Three-quarter: covers train will get in your way watteau brush length train on a natural white gown the elbow but does not while dancing. If it is not reach the wrist. This overly long or heavy, a sleeve style can make loop can be made that arms look longer, which goes over your wrist, may be something you allowing you to hold the wish for, or not. If you train out of the way while have a bracelet you want dancing. The easiest to show over your arm, train to manage after rather than over a sleeve, the chuppah and photo this may be the one to session is a detachable opt for. one that can be removed altogether. If it does not .. come off, there should be Train options: a system of fastenings to from dusters to allow it to be hooked up monarchs into a bustle. Do note two things: you will The brush, sweep or need help from others to duster train is the get the dress bustled and shortest; each of the you want to be sure that it names signify that the is set in an attractive way. hem of the dress is When trying on a dress extended enough to just with a train, be sure you sweep over the floor. It is like the way the back of a good choice for a gown the dress looks both with with a slim silhouette. the train and without it or with the train bustled up. A puddle train is often   found teamed up with a Another option to fishtail or column dress consider is to achieve in a lighter fabric. It is the sweeping train effect round in shape and begins achieved by a long veil at the sides of the skirt to that is removed after the make it appear that the chuppah.  bride is standing in a



this white bouquet is made up of pure white, cream, and champagne hued flowers

In selecting the color, be sure you see a swatch of the actual fabric to be used in the shade you want. Colors can look different in different fabrics, depending on their sheen and sheerness.  As white doesn’t necessarily mean the color of snow – be sure to choose the shade that is most flattering to your complexion. The shade may also take on different nuances depending on the fabric of the gown. bias cut gown in ivory with puddle train

The right white for you Pure white: the whitest of whites is only possible to achieve in synthetic fabrics that can take the process that leaves the suggestion of a clean blue undertone to the fabric. The stark white color often compliments is most flattering on women with darker complexions. Those with lighter complexions look better in softer whites. Natural white is also sometimes referred to as “diamond” or “silk,” the whitest shade possible for silk and other natural fibers. In photographs, this shade will be indistinguishable from stark white. Cream may either be a natural white or a slightly darker shade that is usually called “eggshell” or “ivory.” Ivory is a popular choice for brides today, but do hold a swatch next to your face to be sure it is the shade you want. Ivory generally has a yellow undertone, which can flatter fair complexions, but can also make some look sallow.

For an index of wedding planning articles, including a guide to fabrics, laces, and veil options, as well as tips for handling invitations, guest lists, photography, catering, a schedule of what to do when, and more, see While white still prevails as the bridal color, some of today’s wedding gowns feature accents of color in the trim and on the sash.   For gown and other gmachs, see the Directory. Champagne a pink undertone for an off-white shade that can lend a rosy effect to your complexion. You can look at fabrics of a light “rum,” a color that is also very popular now for the gowns of the sisters and mothers of the bride and groom.


Kallah Magazine

Summer 2010 / 5770

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Challah – Food for the Soul by Rabbi Chaim Brown “B-reishis,” “ In the beginning…”, which marks the start of creation, is interpreted by Chazal as a hint to the mitzvah of separating challah, which the Torah calls “reishis arisoseichem,” the first dough. The concept of “reishis” -- first -- used with respect to challah is not to be taken in the sense of chronological sequence, like the first one to finish a race, but in the sense of logical hierarchy, a first cause or first order of business necessary before other matters can be attended to. Before creation could proceed, there had to be a mitzvah of challah. One of the keys to appreciating the significance of hafrashas challah lies understanding the context in which the command first appears. After the return of the spies and their discouraging report, the Jewish people were told their punishment of having to undergo a 40 year sojourn in the desert. Immediately afterwards, the Torah commands the mitzvah of challah, which could only be performed in the land of Israel. On one level, this commandment intimates a consolation that, although deferred, the dream of entering the land of Israel remained the ultimate destiny of the Jewish people. However, there is also a lesson inherent in the mitzvah of challah itself that serves as a response to the spies. Maharal contrasts the mitzvah of bikkurim, which is also referred to in the Torah as reishis, with the mitvah of hafrashas challah. The mitzvah of bikkurim entails separating new fruit while the fruit is in its pristine state, untouched by man’s hand, and bringing that fruit to the kohein in the Bais haMikdash. Bikkurim is an acknowledgement of the kedusha inherent in the natural bounty given by Hashem. Although the Torah gives us no specific date for the episode of the spies, we are told that this story occurred in the days of bikkurei anavim, the blossoming of the first grapes. The concept of bikkurim relates to the way of life that the spies wished to preserve, that is the way of life experienced by the Jews in the desert where mann fell from the sky, water from a miraculous well of water, and protection from the Divine clouds that revealed Hashem’s presence. These wonders sustained life without the normal means of human effort, but they were to cease upon the Israelites’ entrance into their destined homeland. The Jewish people would be forced from Hashem’s overt protection into the heat of war, forced to deal with the necessity of taming and farming the land, and challenged to build a kingdom surrounded


by enemies. The spies could appreciate the holiness of bikkurim, the pristine gifts of Hashem’s benevolence, but they could not comprehend how the barren wilderness of the land of Israel could be transformed as well into a makom kadosh, a holy place. They lacked the perspective of hafrashas challah, separating challah, which can take place only after wheat has been turned to flour, mixed with water and yeast to make dough, and kneaded by human hands. Sanctity is not found only in an idyllic cocoon of holiness separated from the world, but is to be found even within the challenges and daily efforts of life that the Torah itself demands we engage in for the betterment of the world and our surroundings. That is the sanctity epitomized by the mitzvah of hafrashas challah.

The mann that nourished the Jews was imbued with spiritual effect, as Chazal say, “lo nitna Torah elah l’ochlei haman” --the Torah was given only to those who ate mann. Nevertheless, the food produced in the land of Israel through the labor and toil of the farmer engendered a greater sense of appreciation for Hashem. The mann that nourished the Jews was imbued with spiritual effect, as Chazal say, “lo nitna Torah elah l’ochlei haman” --the Torah was given only to those who ate mann. Nevertheless, the food produced in the land of Israel through the labor and toil of the farmer engendered a greater sense of appreciation for Hashem. R’ Tzadok HaKohein (Tzidkas haTzadik #247 ) points out that the first bracha of birchas hamazon, [Grace after meals] which Moshe instituted in the desert, addresses Hashem in third-person, while the second bracha, which was instituted by Yehoshua after entering the land, addresses Hashem in second-person. Precisely because of its great spirituality, the mann created a sense of distance. Indeed, the halacha for saying the beracha on bread calls for holding it with all ten figures to remind us of the ten steps

Kallah Magazine

Summer 2010 / 5770

from digging to baking that are entailed in preparing bread. Thus our creative work in preparing this staple of our lives parallels the ten ma’amaros [expressions] that were the steps employed by Hashem in creating the world. Whereas the mann was a temporary oasis of food found only in the desert, hafrashas challah is something we relate to as a permanent part of our “normal” routine of toiling for our own bread. Because it applies even to our mundane lives, demonstrating that by transforming the world we reveal its inherent holiness, hafrashas challah and the toil for our own bread engenders an even greater closeness and appreciation for Hashem’s immanent presence. Just as challah applies to the same physical volume of food as the mann, it has equal if not greater spiritual “volume” and potential to implant the same holiness in life as the mann. The advantage of the result of human effort over the raw natural product is proven by Rabbi Akivah in his debate with the Roman leader, Turnus Rufus. The Roman asks, “Whose handiwork is greater, man’s or G-d’s? It obviously must be G-d’s, so why do you do bris milah and attempt to change the body from the way it was created?” Rabbi Akiva unequivocally responds that man’s work is greater. He demonstrates his point by bringing the Roman a loaf of bread and asking if he would rather eat that than a bundle of raw wheat. The Ohr HaChaim is troubled by this Midrash. There is a tangible superiority of bread to wheat, yet what tangible superiority is there to performing the mitzvah of bris milah? Perhaps the answer is that R’ Akiva never intended to demonstrate the obvious physical superiority of bread to wheat. R’ Akiva’s point was that despite the need for man’s effort and involvement to bring it about, we give greater thanks to Hashem for a loaf of bread than for a bundle of raw wheat – there is a spiritual superiority engendered by the actions and involvement of man, not only a physical one. The Roman only saw Hashem’s presence in the bikkurim state of pristine natural beauty, while R’ Akiva taught that Hashem’s presence is all the more so found in hafrashas challah, in the loaves we participate in creating. Hafrashas challah is one of the three mitzvos particular for women that evoke the three miracles that recurred weekly for our matriarch Sarah, which in turn continued for Rivka: candles remained burning from one erev Shabbos to the next, the dough was blessed so it was never consumed, and a cloud enveloped her tent at all times. There is also a parallel between these miracles and vessels of the Mishkan: the candles correspond to the menorah, the dough to the shulchan and the loaves which stood upon it, and

the cloud to the smoke of the altar. The Mishkan represents the idea of holiness imposed by Hashem revealing his presence – no human could enter the inner chambers of the Bais HaMikdash, because like the fruits of bikkurim, the holiness of this space is divorced from man’s efforts and labor. The miracles of Sarah’s tent and the mitzvos they correspond to represent kedusha marked by man’s efforts. Lighting Shabbos candles is done after we complete six days of work and stand ready to mark Shabbos as kadosh; hafrashas challah from dough marks the kedusha of earthly matter and that which we consume by separating off a piece for the kohein; taharas hamishpacha sanctifies the act of procreation. The tent of Sarah and Rivka was itself a Mishkan, not created by the command of Hashem imposed upon them, but created by their own engagement in the world in a way that demonstrated Hashem’s presence even in the mundane.

The world was not created as a place for man’s soul to be demoted from the pristine holiness of Heaven, but to demonstrate that even in the base physical world which surrounds us there is hidden the immanent presence of G-d. “B-reishis,” the beginning of Creation, is only possible if we have the perspective of the mitzvah of hafrashas challah, called “reishis arisoseichem.” The toil and effort of humanity on earth ultimately can reveal great spiritual gain which we would never achieve if we stop at the point of offering the pristine first fruits as bikkurim. The world was not created as a place for man’s soul to be demoted from the pristine holiness of Heaven, but to demonstrate that even in the base physical world which surrounds us there is hidden the immanent presence of G-d. We alter the natural state of wheat by grinding it into flour then kneading it with water and yeast to form the dough that is baked into the bread that is obviously preferable to raw grain. Likewise, we toil to improve our own natural states to achieve spiritual elevation. In taking off the dough for the mitzvah of hafrashas challah, we demonstrate that our actions are not just intent on preparing food for our bodies, but in preparing sustenance for our souls.

For a challah recipe with directions for hafrashas challah, see See more of Rabbi Brown’s Divrei Torah on his blog at and on



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Summer 2010 / 5770

Kallah in the Kitchen: Delightful Dairy Dishes by Ariella Brown

Barbeque is what comes to mind for many people when they think of summer. But the type of foods that come to my mind as summer approaches are dairy dishes. We have the holiday of Shavuous, which calls for dairy delicacies, the highlight of which is cheesecake. Later, during the height of the summer season, we have the Nine Days, when dairy is on the menu throughout, except for Shabbos and seudos mitzvah. As people tire of the same noodles and cheese or pizza, we need a bit of inspiration for dairy options that offer a change without having to spend the entire day in the kitchen. The recipes below yield maximum results with a minimum of effort. . The cheesecake is very easy to prepare, and is just about foolproof, so long as you allow adequate chilling time before adding the topping and again before serving. Very few dishes are easier to put together than the blintz soufflé. The noodle kugel, a favorite dish in my household, could be mixed all in one bowl. The lasagna requires very little prep time because the noodles do not have to be boiled in advance. It also allows you the option of boosting the nutritional value of the dish by adding in vegetables. If you like your vegetables, try the spinach frittata. In truth, I was considering including another vegetable based dish I once made, but when I saw the number of ingredients and the number of steps, I decided to leave it out. You don’t need to overwhelm yourself with complicated recipes to prepare a delightful dairy dinner.

Cream the cream cheese. Add eggs, one at a time. Add sugar and vanilla and mix well. Pour batter into a 9-inch greased pie plate. Bake at 325 degrees for 35-40 minutes Let cool. Combine topping ingredients and pour over pie to within 1/2 inch of edge of the plate. Allow topping to firm in refrigerator at least 4 hours (overnight is best).

Dairy noodle kugel

10 oz. med. egg noodles 1/4 c. butter 2 cups (one 16 oz. container) cottage cheese 2 cups (one 16 oz. container) sour cream 2 eggs 1 tsp. salt

Crustless cheesecake

(Note that you bake this BEFORE adding the topping. Allow sufficient time to chill. Additional option: cherry pie filling or strawberries to add on top, but I always serve just the cake itself.) 1 lb. cream cheese (it works with reduced fat versions, too) 1/2 c. sugar 3 eggs 1/8 tsp. vanilla Topping 1/2 pt. sour cream (low fat works fine) 1 tsp. vanilla 3 3 tbsp. sugar

Cook and drain noodles. Place the butter in a 9”x 13”: baking pan to melt in 350 degree oven to melt it. Mix noodles with the remaining ingredients. Combine the mixture with the melted butter and bake about 1 hour until golden brown and firm.

Spinach & cheese frittata 1/4 c. butter 3 eggs 1 c. flour 1 c. milk 1 tsp. salt



1 tsp. baking powder 6- 8 oz. cheddar cheese, grated 4 c. fresh spinach, torn into pieces or the equivalent of frozen chopped spinach, thawed. Melt butter in 8” or 9” square baking dish. Beat eggs and add remaining ingredients, blend well. Pour spinach mixture over melted butter. Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 40 to 45 minutes until golden brown You can make this ahead, freeze it, and heat it before serving.

thoroughly. In mixing bowl, combine ricotta or cottage cheese, half of the shredded Mozzarella, spices and spinach. Spread a small amount of sauce on the bottom of a 13” x 9” pan; put a layer of dry (uncooked) lasagna noodles, then a layer of half of the cheese mixture, another layer of sauce, noodles, and mixture; end with a layer of noodles, and layer of sauce. Reserve some cheese to sprinkle on top. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 50 hour. Then remove the foil, sprinkle remaining shredded cheese over the top, and bake uncovered for 10 minutes.

Vegetarian lasagna

Blintz soufflé

(this easy recipe eliminate the need to fry and allows you to take credit for the blintz dish in a more dressed up version that works both as a side dish or dessert)

(This recipe eliminates the step of cooking the noodles before layering. Note if you have guest who don’t like spinach, you can substitute grated zucchini, or eliminate the vegetables altogether – the recipe still works)

12 blintzes (frozen) (cheese or fruit filled ones, or even a combination work for this recipe) 1/2 c. sugar 16 oz. sour cream 3 eggs and 2 egg whites or 4 whole eggs ¼ c. orange juice 1 tsp. vanilla

32 oz .tomato sauce 1 lb. package lasagna noodles 16 oz. ricotta or cottage cheese 8 oz. bag shredded Mozzarella 10 oz. frozen chopped spinach or grated zucchini, optional Garlic and onion powder optional

Place blintzes in a single layer in a pan. Mix remaining ingredient well and pour over the blintzes. Bake at 350 degrees for about 50 minutes until golden brown. This may be served hot or cold.

Preheat Oven to 350 degrees. If using spinach, first thaw it under warm water and strain

For additional recipes, both dairy and not, see http://


Kallah Magazine

Summer 2010 / 5770

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Kallah Magazine Summer 2010  

Wedding planning and more! The significance of the chuppah Vocabulary for the bridal bound - wedding gown terms. Delicious dairy recipes....

Kallah Magazine Summer 2010  

Wedding planning and more! The significance of the chuppah Vocabulary for the bridal bound - wedding gown terms. Delicious dairy recipes....