Not many people have entered the southern BBQ dive bar Brother Jimmy’s in New York City and left with their British soulmate, but that’s what happened to Jen Gummere, the founder of JG Gift Guide, in 2014. While the infamous Murray Hill institution is now closed, Jen and Samuel Smith have been together ever since. Five years after that first meeting, he romantically proposed at Soho Farmhouse and asked her to spend the rest of their lives together.
Originally, the couple wanted to marry in a garden in Sam’s native country of England, but the pandemic soon derailed those plans. Instead, they began considering more local, stateside options and landed on Napa, California. “With good weather most of the year and stunning scenery, we decided it was the perfect place to get married,” Jen adds. They had frequented Silverado Resort several times and fell in love with the Grove. They had always intended on a garden wedding, and the Grove offered them exactly that. They sent out Julie King Studio invitations and enlisted Janine Licare Photography to capture the wedding on camera.
When Jen went dress shopping at Jin Wang in San Francisco, California, she envisioned a bridal look that would be timeless and romantic. It only took one visit to find her dream gown, a Carolina Herrera number with a matching veil. She completed her ceremony outfit with ivory Jimmy Choos and an ASHA by Ashley McCormick clutch. To ensure all of her bridesmaids felt just as beautiful and comfortable, she let them pick their own floral gowns. Artists by Sherrie Long perfected Jen’s beauty look.
On May 14, 2022, guests gathered in the Grove, surrounded by the property’s stately oak trees. The bride traversed John James Design’s larkspur-lined aisle with her parents beside her. The ceremony was family-filled with Sam’s sister, Abi, as the officiant and his mother and father and Jen’s mother as speakers. “We loved having everyone involved throughout the day,” Jen confides. “The show-stealer, however, was definitely our niece, Matilda, who was the most adorable flower girl.”
The newlyweds joined guests for a steak and halibut dinner and cut into their Studio Cake Design confection. Jen’s father and sisters, Sam’s brother, and Sam himself delivered touching toasts before the Blue Breeze Band led the guests into a night of dancing. The bride and groom shared a first dance to “Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You.”
Ahead of the after-party at their hotel, Jen changed into an Alexia María dress and Manolo Blahnik heels. This proved to be a flawless outfit for the evening’s many espresso martinis, photo booth shots, and Champagne tower. The hotel didn’t have coffee to make espresso martinis, so Jen and Sam adapted. They brought in an espresso truck for guests to place their caffeine order and then take their java right to the hotel bar. Jen confirms, “This was a huge hit!”