Laura & Tony’s Home-Grown Garden Party Wedding

January 9, 2017

Laura and Tony met after college while bartending at Veterans Terrace for a bit of extra money. When the two got engaged, it was on Tony’s birthday. That night, Tony cooked a romantic dinner for Laura. After, he asked Laura to close her eyes. “When I opened them, there was a small white box in front of me – but it wasn’t a ring box,” Laura says. Inside the box was a bracelet she had wanted. “In typical Tony fashion, he had to mess with me a little. While I was looking at the bracelet, he got down on one knee and finally popped the question!”

Tony and Laura planned a highly personalized wedding on Laura’s parents’ property in a 7,800-square-foot tent (from All Star Rentals). The ceremony took place under a tree that had been planted in honor of Laura’s late grandfathers. The wedding’s theme: an elegant garden party with heaps of heritage.

Laura prepped for the big day with trips to the Lake Geneva Bridal Showcase and Veterans Terrace Bridal Show, and she found her dress at Christy’s Bon Bon Belle. “For the décor, I was willing to incorporate a rustic feel,” Laura says, “but I didn’t want to do the stereotypical burlap. I had to find ways to make the wedding feel outdoors and appropriate without also being too country for our tastes.”

Laura also wanted her and Tony’s families to play a big part in the day. “This was one of my favorite parts of the wedding – how much our heritage was included in even the small details. For example, I was wearing my mom’s pearls and my grandmother’s anniversary ring. I also had my great-great-grandmother’s pin and my grandmother’s cross incorporated into my bouquet.”

Both Tony and Laura were raised Catholic, so their ceremony included some traditional Catholic elements, but was also reflected them as a couple. “We wrote our vows together and did them as a back-and-forth, playing off one another. As a unity ceremony, we planted a crabapple tree. My brother had grown our tree from one planted on my parents’ property, which had been grown from a tree planted on my grandfather’s property. It was like a grandchild tree – a very special way to have my grandparents there in spirit!”

After the outdoor ceremony, the party moved to the spacious tent, which Laura, Tony, and their friends and family had lovingly decorated in the days leading up to the wedding. “We spent several hours hanging about 150 paper lanterns in the tent, along with stringing lights along the trees and the windmill on my parents’ property. Combined with the string lights in the tent, the candles, and the uplighting from our DJ, the mood was just beautiful. Plus we lucked out with a stunning sunset!” C. Mae Design expertly captured the stunning scene in pictures.

Tony and Laura tackled many DIY projects to create an unforgettable and unique ambiance. “What about our wedding day wasn’t DIY?” Laura jokes. Tony made wooden cedar boxes for the tabe centerpieces, designed every printed piece from the invites to the favor labels, and handmade his groomsmen gifts: wooden six-pack holders with built-in bottle openers. Laura and her coworkers collected glass jars in the months before the wedding, then she and Tony turned them into 200+ jarred candles. Laura also made all of the chalkboard signs.

Food and drinks certainly followed Laura and Tony’s personalized theme. For appetizers, there was a popcorn bar, plus Laura’s dad smoked two huge salmon that Tony’s dad had caught on Lake Michigan. For the main course, Laura’s parents’ neighbor home-smoked pork and beef. “He brought over his giant smoker at about 8:00 in the morning,” Laura says. “He had the property smelling delicious all day. This same neighbor also grows some of the best sweet corn in Wisconsin.” Laura’s parents and neighbors cut over 200 ears of corn the week before the wedding, which the caterer served as part of the buffet.

Dessert was chosen in honor of Tony and Laura’s grandparents. “When we think of our grandparents, we think of dessert. We did a dessert bar with eight desserts – one to represent each grandparent.” Tony’s grandparents were kringle, Nestle crunch bars, strawberry rhubarb pie, and sugar cookies. Laura’s were Krispy Creme donut holes, peanut butter chocolate chip cookies, pineapple upside down cake cupcakes, and mini banana cream pies. Of the eight desserts, four were homemade by Laura, Tony, and their families.

Looking back, Laura recalls her favorite moment: “As cheesy as it sounds, it was marrying my best friend. While I was nervous about everything related to the wedding, the one thing I was never nervous about was walking down the aisle to become Mrs. Weiler. Tony is truly my perfect counterpart in every way. He’s calm when I’m anxious, patient when I’m crazy, and quiet when I’m loud. Promising forever on a gorgeous August afternoon at the place where I grew up, that was more special than I could ever have imagined.”

Bridal shows~Lake Geneva Bridal Showcase Veterans Terrace Bridal Show
Invitations (all printing)~designed by Tony (Groom) and printed at Nobius Press
Rehearsal Dinner~Kelly’s Bleachers ,Wind Lake, WI
Ceremony & Reception Location~Parent’s Home in Wind Lake, WI
Caterer~Stowell’s Catering
Cake Designer/Dessert Cake~Gooseberries
Music/Entertainment~Mike Early’s Pro Sound 
Transportation~Badger Bus  (Bridal Party)
Photographer~C.Mae Design
Wedding Dress Designer~Maggie Sottero
Bridal Salon~Christy’s Bon Bon Belle
Formalwear~Men’s Wearhouse
Party Rental Company (linens, tents, chairs etc.)~All Star Rentals 
Vintage Event Rentals~FH Event Design (lighting trellis behind head table)
Bathroom Trailer Rental~Bucky’s Portal Restrooms 
Bartending~Drink Inc.


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