Laura & Steve’s Sterling Chalet Wedding of Elegance on a Budget

January 21, 2019

Steve and Laura met in 2013 at a local bar. “We were really good at flirting,” Laura laughs. “We didn’t officially start dating until 2015.” Steve popped the question during a Sunday spent hunting in the woods with Laura. As it got dark, Steve insisted on changing the batteries in the trail cameras, and Laura wasn’t too keen on the idea.

“We had to walk into the woods a ways. My now-husband had a headlamp on his forehead so we could see where we were going.” After changing out the trail cam batteries, Laura turned to head back to the car, waiting for Steve to walk ahead and light the way. When he didn’t come, she turned around to find him on one knee, ring in hand. “I was shaking with excitement. Although we didn’t see any deer, it was the best hunt ever!”

Laura and Steve’s wedding theme was “elegance on a budget.” They planned a September celebration with a church ceremony and a reception at the Sterling Chalet. “I fell in love with this wedding venue the moment we stepped in,” Laura says. “Heidi gave us a tour of the building and was full of great information. Through our whole wedding planning process. Heidi was so wonderful to work with! She was just a quick text away with any questions.”

Laura turned to a lot of DIY projects and wedding resale pages on Facebook to find special pieces and decorations to bring her vision to life. She even bought her wedding dress off the rack for a great deal. Steve’s formalwear came from Tres Chic in Menomonee Falls — ”highly, highly suggested; everyone we worked with was helpful and the guys looked amazing!”

Laura is especially thankful that she and Steve were able to get into the Sterling Chalet the day before to decorate. “That helped a lot, knowing that it was done just the way I envisioned.” The bride and groom also chose to set up the reception room a bit differently than usual. “Normally at the Sterling Chalet, they place the head table to the side of the room. We, however, wanted the head table to be higher so everyone would be able to see us! This allowed the DJ to be closer to the bar area, so people could easily get drinks and then rush back to the dance floor, and people who didn’t want to dance could still watch from a comfy spot.”

In addition to the bar service, dinner was catered by the Sterling Chalet. “We had chicken cordon blue, beef tips, mashed potatoes, salad, and California vegetables — everything was delicious. We had to go back for seconds!” Steve and Laura worked with DJ Express for their entertainment: “Great experience at a reasonable price. Our dance floor was packed the entire night!”

Looking back, Laura says the moment that sticks with her the most is the emotion she felt just before the church doors opened and she walked down the aisle. “Everything I had been waiting for my whole life was happening. A rush of nerves and excitement hit me the moment the doors opened. But then I looked at my soon-to-be husband, and all I could do was smile.”

When it comes to advice for brides who are currently wedding-planning, Laura has some great words of wisdom: “Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! The week of the wedding, this was the best thing I could have done for myself. Once the day arrives, as hard as it is, just relax and enjoy it! Don’t stress about the small things, because at this point, there’s nothing you can do to fix them. Have a bridal emergency bag. Don’t forget to eat! And lastly, find five minutes to sneak away just the two of you — not even the photographer — to have some time alone. Steve and I did this, and it was so nice to sit and be with him for a few minutes, away from the chaos.”

Make-up Artist Melissa Ann Make up Artistry, Pewaukee, WI
Invitations Michaels
Rehearsal Dinner The Iron Ridge Inn, Iron Ridge, WI
Ceremony Location St. John’s Weis Hall, Rubicon, WI
Reception, Catering, Bartending Sterling Chalet, Hubertus, WI
Cake Sweet Ginger’s Sugar Shoppe, Hartford, WI
Music/Entertainment DJ Express, West Bend, WI
Transportation Wittenberg Bus, Hartford, WI
Photographer Emily Grace Photography
Travel/Honeymoon Service Shooting Star Travel, West Bend, WI
Gown Designer Casa Blanca
Formalwear Tres Chic, Menomonee Falls, WI
Rings Bride: Kesslers
Groom: Etsy (ring was made from deer antlers)