Emily Law, a design lead, and Brice Gumpel, CEO of the app Seated, first met in high school at Flintridge Preparatory School in Los Angeles. “During sophomore year, Brice and I sat next to each other in biology class,” she remembers. “I think we received the lowest grades either of us had ever received, since neither of us was ever paying attention.”
After years together, Brice surprised Emily with a proposal at the two-star Michelin restaurant Blue Hill at Stone Barns. He had convinced her they were there to celebrate his father’s birthday, and Brice mentioned that his business partner had set up a tour before lunch. In the barn tasting room, he got down on one knee “and was so nervous that he forgot everything he was going to say,” Emily shares.
Once engaged, the couple started planning for a grand destination wedding in Lake Como, but their dream venue had always been the Rosewood Castiglion del Bosco in Tuscany, founded by the Ferragamo family. The two reasons they hadn’t booked their number one location was that they wanted to work with The Lake Como Wedding Planner and they couldn’t make it work with their budget and large guest list. However, after cancelling two dates in Lake Como, Emily and Brice decided to significantly downsize due to Covid and realized they could finally get married at Castiglion del Bosco. Emily adds, “Even better, we realized our original wedding planners were game to help us move to this new location.”
One of the many reasons the two chose this venue was because of the unparalleled service. “We are so thankful to the staff and our dear friend Claudia Chimenti for handling everything from placing everyone in their rooms, figuring out lunch for my bridesmaids, [and] organizing a doctor to come on property for our guests’ covid tests,” Emily shares.
Another reason to say yes to this particular spot was because Emily and Brice’s favorite grapes, Sangiovese, are grown there, and the property is a premier producer of Brunello di Montalcino.
The welcome dinner was hosted at the brand new Borgo Suites, and after the ceremony at the castle ruins—which date back to 1100 AD—the reception was set up at Villa Gauggiole. “I loved the classical and intricate decor in the villa we were going to get married in on Lake Como—Villa Pizzo—and we ended up bringing that vibe to our greenhouse tent in Tuscany with printed checkered flooring,” Emily describes. “Our palette for the whole weekend had muted pink, light blue, gold, and sage green. For linens and such, we focused on light blue.”
“When I was younger, I always envisioned a massively long, family-style table, where our guests would share pasta family-style,” Emily says. “What we got for our welcome event was even better.” To bring all the people from their many walks of life together, Emily wore a vintage Chanel minidress from Happy Isles, styled by Over The Moon’s Anny Choi, who also curated most of Emily’s wedding wardrobe. Anny accessorized the dress with vintage lace Manolos from TheRealReal and Jennifer Behr’s Gracie bobby pins. “Anny was amazing to work with—so responsive and nailed all my looks for the weekend.”
The bride and her friend Sarah Elizabeth Woodall also designed all the welcome dinner menus, as well as the invitation suite. And during the meal, a band from Élan Artists played live music with a local Italian singer to perfect the Tuscan ambiance.
To say, “I do,” in, Emily chose Reem Acra’s “Open Your Heart” gown and a matching veil. “I loved the T-shirt fit on the top, and the hand embroidery was breathtaking and unlike any of the other details I had seen on any other dress,” she shares. To complete her bridal look, she wore Italian drop diamond earrings from Sarosi by Timeless Gems and Manolo Blahnik mules. Emily’s “something blue” was a hand-engraved aquamarine and sapphire ring, gifted by her mother and also from Sarosi. And her “something borrowed” was a Chinese gold bangle that her mother received on her own wedding day from Emily’s father’s mother.
On the morning-of, the bride got ready with her party and glam team in Refine x Riley Sheehey’s Carolyn slip dress and matching headband. “Kelly Dawn did a great job just accentuating the color of my skin and didn’t overdo my eye makeup,” Emily gushes. And Luke Pluke Rose perfected her romantic up-do.
Bridesmaids looked beautiful in champagne silk dresses from Fame and Partners. “I think in hindsight, I would have wanted to play on the light blue theme of the wedding, and I should have let them choose their own style rather them all being the same cut,” Emily admits.
Brice looked handsome in a Brunello Cucinelli navy tuxedo, Tom Ford shirt and shoes, and Ralph Lauren bowtie. His grandfather had gifted Brice’s father cufflinks with his initials on them a while back, and the groom sweetly wore them down the aisle.
On September 5, 2021, Emily walked with her father down the aisle, lined with colorful gypsophila and lilies. “It is a Japanese tradition to fold 1000 cranes so you’re granted happiness and eternal luck,” the bride explains. “My grandmother folded them for my parents’ wedding, and my mother folded them for a couple of friends. For our wedding, my brother’s girlfriend, my mom, and I folded the colorful origami cranes that our planners strung in trees at the entrance of our wedding ceremony.”
For the flowers that lined the aisle and adorned the altar, “I knew I wanted an explosion of saturation that resembled paintings from the Dutch masters,” the bride says. Kiana Underwood from Tulipina outdid herself.
Emily and Brice shared personal vows. “They were a combo of silly and serious, and Brice is an absolute psychopath who memorized all of his,” Emily jokes. Their officiant, Fabio Albonico, put the printed words in a Castiglion del Bosco wine box to save for their five-year anniversary. “We are supposed to open the box, read our vows, drink the wine, then replace it with a new bottle and do it again for our 10th anniversary.”
Once announced as husband and wife, the newlyweds walked back up the aisle to “Love on Top,” played by their string quartet. “Brice and I walked to say hi to everyone, and we saw a line of all of our friends and family, and every single person was crying—even the burliest of Brice’s groomsmen,” Emily remembers. “It was one of the sweetest sights that we will never forget.”
Cocktail hour began with drinks cheekily named after key family members. For example, the espresso martini was re-named “The Merry Merry Merrily,” as Brice’s mother, Merrily, loves coffee. And the entire beer and wine list was referred to as “Drinks That Make Kyle Sick” because Emily’s brother tends to be ill when he consumes alcohol.
“Taking inspiration from historic Italian stone floors and color palettes often found in old villas, we created a dining room outdoors,” Emily says of the greenhouse reception space. A focal point of the design was the laser-cut wood chandeliers that hung overhead. “The unique shapes made them more of a sculptural decoration rather than just a light fitting.” On the dining tables, Laboratorio Paravicini’s Bloom plates centered each place setting, and hand-dyed silk ribbons from Silk & Willow ran along the length of the tabletop with lilies, ranunculus, dahlias, carnations, delphiniums, gladiolus, garden roses, and tulips.
For the reception’s first course, Emily asked for a simple pici pasta with a plain tomato sauce and pecorino romano. “It was a five-year-old child’s dinner of choice as well as mine!” the bride exclaims. The multi-course delicious seated meal was followed by a massive fruit tart with a creme filling in place of a wedding cake. “Brice was so excited and maybe hyped on adrenaline that when it was time for the cake cutting, he enthusiastically stabbed our wedding tart, while everyone cheered around us.”
On the checkered floor, the 15-piece band got everyone out of their seats. The new Mr. and Mrs. Gumpel had their first dance to “Crazy Love” by Van Morrison. And after the reception, the after-party kicked off with a deejay and a saxophone player. Emily changed into a vintage feathered Lanvin dress from Happy Isles and Dolce & Gabbana flats. And the revelry continued through the wee hours of the next day—the best way to ring in the beginning of married life.