Inside Bridal Gown Designer Justin Alexander's Destination Wedding at a Castle in Italy

Have you ever wondered what the fashion looks like when a wedding dress designer gets married? When Justin Warshaw, the CEO and creative director of t

Have you ever wondered what the fashion looks like when a wedding dress designer gets married? When Justin Warshaw, the CEO and creative director of the renowned Justin Alexander brand, wed Kelsey Turchi, a tech sales professional, in Italy, the fashion wasn’t the only memorable part of the celebration. A picturesque venue, bespoke details and elegant colors work harmoniously together to ensure the event was one for the memory books. "We really wanted to lean into the natural beauty, history and character of the castle, as well as Italian traditions," explains the couple. "Our wedding theme can be described as The Garden of Love." 

One of the couple's favorite moments from the wedding day actually came before the ceremony even took place. "We awoke to heavy fog and rain on our wedding day. It was unseasonably cold and rainy during our wedding week which added a lot of stress. We kept telling ourselves that we would get lucky and have a window to do the ceremony outside, and that’s literally what happened. The sky parted for our first look and stayed sunny through our ceremony. That time together during the first look was a memorable highlight because from then on the night became a blur, and we truly enjoyed every second! We had been reminded by friends and family to savor every second and we really did."

While epic fashion wasn't the only highlight of Justin and Kelsey's destination wedding, the attire on deck was certainly memorable and next-level. Kelsey wore three different Justin Alexander wedding dresses for the big day and managed to keep the selections a secret from Justin. "All my looks were a surprise to Justin as we both wanted it that way," says Kelsey. "It was a huge adjustment for me, typically designing the bride’s look, to be surprised by what Kelsey would wear down the aisle. But I returned the surprise by sneakily having handwritten embroidered notes added to her ceremony dress and veil," says Justin. "I was not involved in any of Kelsey’s fittings to ensure each final look would be seen for the first time on the wedding day."

"For the wedding ceremony, I wore a custom Justin Alexander Signature gown with long sleeves, deep-V in the front and back, hand-placed beaded lace and exposed boning. I wanted something that was timeless, yet modern and fit well with the charm of the castle. I’m so happy with how the dress turned out! The most special surprise was the hand-placed embroidery throughout the dress in Justin’s handwriting."

For her second look, which Kelsey wore during dinner and the first dance, Kelsey chose "a modified Bobbie dress from the Justin Alexander Signature SS23 collection. We actually had a different dress designed for my second look, but I stopped into the SS23 shoot and knew I had to try on the Bobbie once I saw it. Justin designed this dress himself and it’s his favorite design, so I was very proud to be the first bride to wear the Bobbie."

For her third look, Kelsey shares that "once the dance party was in motion, I snuck away and slipped into a short, custom Justin Alexander Signature dress. I loved the halter neckline, low back, exposed bodice and sparkle on this dress! The perfect dancing dress!"

As for Justin, you're probably wondering who the designer tapped for his own big-day look? The groom wore a Ralph Lauren tuxedo with an ivory shawl jacket. Later in the evening, he swapped into a black Ralph Lauren jacket and Jordan 1 Retro High Travis Scott Mocha sneakers, which were a wedding gift from Kelsey. 

The couple chose to pen their own vows for the wedding ceremony. Justin told Kelsey that "my love for you grows each and every day. Being with you makes me complete, and being away from you makes me realize how much I need you in my life. I love you!” For her vows, Kelsey shared that she "knew from the moment I met you that you were special. While our paths didn’t cross again for a year, something deep in my soul knew you had a place in my life. I’m so thankful that your place is significant.”

Given that the wedding took place in Italy, it was only natural that the couple highlight the region when it came to their catering menu. "Truffle pasta was a must and it was our second course," says the couple. "We stuck with Tuscan tradition with two pasta courses, followed by a balsamic filet. We also chose the traditional millefoglie wedding cake that we helped make with the chef for our guests." 

It was also paramount to Justin and Kelsey that their wedding be packed with meaning. To that end, they skipped paper invitations in favor of digital invites and donated the money they saved to VOW for Girls, a charity that seeks to end child marriage around the world. 

See the Latest Wedding Dress Designs From Justin Alexander

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Bride in Viktor & Rolf Dress for Welcome Party
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Bride Getting Ready in Justin Alexander Wedding Dress
Groom in Ralph Lauren Tuxedo for Castle Wedding
Bride in Justin Alexander Wedding Dress at Castle Wedding
Castle Wedding Ceremony at Castello di Celsa in Italy
Custom Embroidery on Wedding Dress Sleeve
Bride and Groom Kiss During Castle Wedding Ceremony
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Fireworks at Castle Wedding in Italy
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