During the COVID-19 pandemic, Vogue’s goal in our coverage is to celebrate responsible wedding planning, present a love story, and shed light on the questions engaged couples are now asking.
For those planning a wedding, ensure that all applicable state and local laws, guidelines, and CDC recommendations are followed to ensure safety and reduce the risk of contracting and transmitting COVID-19.
A chance meeting over dinner in Los Angeles brought together stylist Taryn Shumway and Alex Bossi. “I was living there at the time and he was coming from Boston to design meetings,” Taryn recalls. Alex founded his – now their – brand Bossi Sportswear in 2019. “I was supposed to be meeting someone else at this dinner, but I think the rest is history now.”
Taryn had moved to New York City for a few months shortly after meeting Alex to join the costume design team for Madonna’s Madame X tour. “I knew I would have little time to see Alex during this work,” recalls Taryn. “It was my second tour with Madonna so I was aware of the workload I was taking on, but he went out of his way to come to New York and see me as often as possible. Sometimes he could only see me when he came to nightly dress rehearsals and shows. I think he saw five shows in total. I’m sure there are a lot of Madonna fans out there who would be very jealous! “
After about three months of getting to know each other, the two knew they wanted to get married. “We never officially got engaged and we never really thought about planning a wedding,” admits Taryn. “We always said we’d just wake up one day, go to the Beverly Hills Courthouse, and then have a big party. We never set a specific date either. “
But with COVID-19 restrictions in place, even planning a small wedding in the courthouse has become difficult. One day in late October they were in LA to meet and have dinner at the Sunset Tower. “Alex looked at me and said, ‘Why don’t we just do it here?’ The next morning we booked the penthouse suite – the view from the surrounding terrace is spectacular – and started the wedding preparations with a little over two weeks until the big day. “
The two currently live in Boston, where their clothing brand is made, but LA and the Sunset Tower Hotel felt like the perfect place to get married as the City of Angels was their first marriage. “We wanted an intimate and simple place with a great outside space and a great view,” says Taryn. “We timed the ceremony perfectly and said ‘yes’ as the sun went down.”
It turned out the easy part was figuring out the location. After that, wedding planning quickly became stressful. “I have a new respect for wedding planners, producers, every kind of event coordinator!” Says Taryn. “Our attention to detail was palpable throughout the wedding, which may have made the planning a little more intense. Everything was done by myself, with the help of Alex, of course. ”From fresh lavender in the bathroom to incense sticks Santa Maria Novella, Taryn and Alex wanted every detail to feel just like them, and it did.
The ceremony began on Friday, November 13th at 4:30 p.m. on the terrace of the Sunset Tower. “Friday the 13th in 2020 … the irony has not escaped us,” jokes Taryn. “Only after we had set the date did I realize that it was also my maternal great-grandmother’s birthday, which was something special.” On arrival, the guests posed for photos in front of a backdrop set up by photographer Max Bernetz and mingled outside, where everyone felt comfortable in the open air while they waited for the bride to be.
A traditional wedding dress was never an option for Taryn. She always knew she wanted to wear a look from CFDA / Fashion Fund runner-up Danielle Frankel. “Their designs are exquisite and just plain cool,” says Taryn. “I had bought one of her dresses in a different style and then my friend sent me a link to the style I ended up wearing, which happened to be called ‘Maude’ and I knew it was the right one. The halter top had a flattering shape on my shoulders and the lace detail on the pants was exquisite. Besides, it was pants! I felt so comfortable all night. It was the perfect outfit for a tomboy like me. “
Ironically, early on in the couple’s relationship, Taryn mentioned to Alex that her favorite name was Maude in case they were to have a baby one day. “He looked at me in surprise and said it was his maternal great-grandmother’s name,” recalls Taryn – which made for another happy connection. And so they decided to use one of the small diamonds Alex had for the bride’s wedding ring, which actually belonged to his great-grandmother Maude. “One is in my ring and the other will one day be saved for Baby Maude,” says Taryn.
The groom wore a Grain de Poudre Saint Laurent jacket and patent leather boots, paired with silk buttons and pleated moiré from Bossi Sportswear. There was no wedding reception, but somehow everyone in attendance seemed to have the same dress code. “I looked around at the guests and they were all wearing black,” recalls Taryn. “It was so chic – I couldn’t have planned it better myself.”
The ceremony was kept short and sweet, with the bride and groom exchanging their personal vows that they had both written. “I always smiled from ear to ear,” says Taryn. “Alex was so fidgety and kept squeezing my hand; I kept pushing it back. “
After the wedding, the newlyweds used the last light and posed for photos before toasting with champagne and french fries on the terrace. “We wanted it to feel relaxed, like you came to a cocktail party and someone happened to get married,” notes Taryn. “Even though this year will prove to be the toughest we’ve ever had, and hopefully ever will, we are so grateful that we have the silver lining to get married and start our lives together.”