Papercut Ketubah Design

Tel Aviv, Israel

Announcement    Find the perfect ketubah for your wedding.
Hand made with care out of the very best materials.

To get notified of new design releases:
instagram: @papercutsbyoren

If you're looking for a budget friendly ketubah that's made in the USA and has quick turnaround times you can browse through the giclee print collection at ketubahus.


Last updated on Jan 17, 2020

Find the perfect ketubah for your wedding.
Hand made with care out of the very best materials.

To get notified of new design releases:
instagram: @papercutsbyoren

If you're looking for a budget friendly ketubah that's made in the USA and has quick turnaround times you can browse through the giclee print collection at ketubahus.


362 Sales

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About PapercutsByOren

Sales 362
On Etsy since 2013

The Joy of Making Papercut Ketubot

I got started with making art a very time ago. As a child I expressed myself through drawing and by the time I graduated from college, there was no doubt I would make my living as an artist. My fine arts education was classical through and through, and after university, I studied intensively at the Art Students League of New York, where I had the pleasure of learning with some of the best art teachers in the world.

I became interested in papercutting because I was looking for a low toxicity medium to work with. Turpentine and many pigments are very harmful to be around and pretty bad for the environment, so I started by eliminating those first. As I continued to experiment with cleaner mediums, I eventually got rid of everything but the paper itself. Today I have returned to traditional oil painting using low impact materials, but my main focus remains in papercutting since all you really need is a sheet of paper and a blade. As I got further involved in the art of papercutting I learned about its rich tradition, and its link to Jewish heritage. I also started working on larger and larger works, some of which take up to three months to complete.

As my wife and I were planning our wedding, our rabbi offered us his stock ketubah. She thought we should have something nicer and asked me to design one for us, so I created something just for her. When she told me she thought other couples might want a papercut ketubah everything clicked into place. Here was an idea that would allow me to work in the medium that I had already grown to love and to fully express myself as an artist at the same time. The best part about being a ketubah artist is that it allows me to create something for to the happiest day of a couple's life. It is rewarding and worthwhile, and it's something I do with great honor and pride. Every ketubah I create is imbued with a sense of purpose and the joy I take in creating it.

Every design starts with tiny sketches. Lots and lots and lots of tiny sketches. I have books full of them, and that's where I develop my ideas and get my inspiration. When I settle on a sketch I like, I draw it and redraw it until it starts looking like something I like. I make lots of design decisions at this point, including working out the physical structure of the piece. Because in papercutting I'm carving paper out of the whole, it has to hold up when you finally lift it up. Working out the engineering of each piece is like figuring out an intricate puzzle because everything has to be connected just the right way.

The final design stage is to import the drawing into the computer where I clean up the lines and adjust the symmetry. The computer is also where I do the typesetting. Thanks to years of design experience, I'm an expert typesetter, and I make sure the text looks perfect every time. I go so far as to adjust spacing between each individual letter in fractions of a millimeter so that every word takes up exactly the right amount of space. At this point I can prepare the file for cutting. This entails reversing the image and reproducing it onto the back of the paper. The entire design becomes a series of extremely thin guidelines - so thin they're barely perceptible without excellent lighting.

Cutting the design is slow and precise work that requires patience and a steady hand. A single slip-up will ruin the entire piece. My main tools are a giant cutting pad the size of my whole work desk, a straight edge ruler, a Japanese NT cutter (more precise than an x-acto knife), and a surgical scalpel. Besides that I have a good desk lamp and a magnifying visor to save my eyesight. I make each ketubah myself in my studio. I don't send my designs out to be laser cut. Laser cutters leave jagged pixelated edges and the paper gets burned by the heat and ends up scorched permanently brown. I believe that if you're ordering directly from the artist, you should be getting something the artist made, and not something that comes out of a factory.

Shop members

  • Oren Loloi

    Owner, Maker, Designer

    I'm an artist living in Tel Aviv after making aliyah from New York City. This shop exists today thanks to my wonderful wife who originally asked me to design and create a papercut ketubah for our own wedding.

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More information

Last updated on May 19, 2022
Frequently asked questions
Will the Color of the Paper Look Exactly Like the Photos?

Every screen displays colors a bit differently. Because of this it is impossible to accurately show the exact shade of a color. There are various factors that affect the way a particular color looks in real life. Ambient light will make paper appear lighter or darker depending on the time of day, and different light bulbs emit different color casts, which affect the look of colors. The color charts are meant to give a general idea of the colors available. The exact shade may vary significantly from what you see on the screen. If color accuracy is important to you, make sure to ask that I do not include a backing layer so that you can mount the white papercut on a backing of your choi

Care instructions

Because of it’s UV rays, sunlight is the enemy of anything you want to keep for a long time. I use fade resistant materials and inks, but nothing can withstand direct sunlight for years at a time. You should display your ketubah on a wall that doesn’t get a lot of direct sunlight. If you want an added layer of protection, you should ask for Anti-UV glass when you have it framed. Also beware of moisture. Don't get the ketubah wet, as water will destroy it. Don't hang it anywhere that can expose your ketubah to steam or condensation.

You will want to use a high quality archival pen when signing. Choose one that uses pigment ink and that specifies that it is “lightfast” or “fade resistant”. I recommend Sakura Micron pens.

Will the ketubah arrive ready to display?

Your ketubah will ship flat in protective packaging so there is no need to flatten it. To display it at the wedding I taking your ketubah to a custom framing shop before the wedding so they can mount it for display inside a frame. You will pick your frame, which your framer will temporarily cover with plexiglass or mylar to make sure nothing happens to the ketubah during the wedding. Make sure your ketubah is mounted on a non-buffered archival mat. You want it to be 100% acid free. After the wedding you can take it back to the framing shop to be sealed.

How Long Before the Wedding Should I Order A Ketubah?

Don’t wait until the last minute. Making a ketubah is an involved process. We will need to gather information and communicate back and forth with your rabbi or officiant until the text is approved. Because of this you should allow enough time before the wedding to account for approval, production, and shipping.

Turnaround time after final approval is two weeks plus the time it takes for delivery. I recommend ordering several months ahead of time. This is mainly for peace of mind.

For couples who need faster service there are options even as close as two weeks before the wedding!

Can You Fill In Our Ketubah?

Absolutely! I can fill in any ketubah text. Orthodox or Conservative ketubah text proofs will have to be checked and approved by your rabbi. In case you or your rabbi require an alternative text version, you can send me an editable file in txt, rtf, or MS Word. You are also more than welcome to provide your own text as well. Note that PDF and JPEG files are not acceptable formats as they are image files.

If we send you a text of our own, will you translate it from English to Hebrew?

Abolutely. There is an add-on charge of for translation services. Please look for the appropriate listing for translation services and add it to your shopping cart before your purchase. The translation listing can also be added on separately at a later time if you prefer.

Is the Text Handwritten Calligraphy or Printed?

The text is gicleè printed using the highest quality digital technology.

While the paper-cutting is handmade, I do not offer handwritten text at this time.

Can I Get My Text In A Color Other Than Black or Gray?

I do not recommend using any color for your text other than black or gray. It is possible to get your text in a different color, but the most chemically stable color (even among lightfast inks) is black or gray, which is made with pure carbon pigment. Other colors are not as reliably stable and may fade over time either due to chemical instability or lightfastness issues. I'm not saying that they will definitely fade, as the inks are rated lightfast and are meant to last for many years, but it is a risk that you have to be willing to accept. If you understand this and still want your text in a different color, specify so in a message and I will accommodate your request.

What Kind of Paper Do You Use?

I use fine art paper from the Fabriano mill in Italy. Fabriano was founded in the year 1264 in the eponymous city in Italy and is the oldest paper mill in the world. Fabriano paper has been used historically by the such illustrious figures as Giambattista Bodoni, Michelangelo and Beethoven. This paper has a high cotton content, is Acid Free, produced with pure E.C.F. pulp (Elemental Chlorine Free), and is F.S.C. certified from forests responsibly managed respectful of environmental, social and economic standards. In accordance to ISO 9706 'LONG LIFE' regulations, this paper is guaranteed to have long permanence in time and highly lightfast colors.