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A chupa is not always a talis: other cloths are used also. But we do find that something used for one mitzva should be used for another (e.g. Nit'e Gavriel, Arbaas Haminim, chapter 61, paragraph 2), which may explain why people use a talis for a chupa. Another reason may be that it's a readily accessible large square cloth that doesn't look inappropriate.
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