VIDEO BLOG: Steinhafels & Pabst Theater Group’s New Project – Home and History at Turner Hall

Here at Steinhafels, our mission is to help customers create the homes of their dreams.

In recent years, we’ve been looking at ways to expand that mission into our local communities. One of those partnerships has been with the Pabst Theater Group in Milwaukee. As long-time members of the Milwaukee business and entertainment communities, it really is a perfect match. The Pabst is known for creating an inviting and comfortable atmosphere for its performers as they prepare backstage, and Steinhafels helps customers create that same feeling in their homes.


It all started a little more than a year ago, when we worked with the backstage staff of the Pabst on a full-scale remodel project. Our designer worked to keep the character of the space, with some comfy, modern touches. Everyone loved the results, and we’ve heard that performers have complimented that new space many times since the redesign.

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In addition, we’ve partnered with the Pabst on several contests and other fun, social media driven events over the past couple years. It’s been a great way for Steinhafels to get more involved in the local entertainment community, and for both businesses to spread their messages to new audiences.

However, since interior design is the backbone to this relationship, we thought it was time to get another design project going! This time – Turner Hall Ballroom on 4th Street. The Ballroom is located within Turner Hall, a National Historic Landmark. The Ballroom has a rustic, lofty feel, and is the perfect backdrop to an eclectic mix of shows.

The Pabst Theater Group approached us, mentioning the Turner Hall Dressing Room needs some love. That’s when we employed the talents of our Decorating Solutions Interior Designer Jenii Kluver. Jenii loves music, and has an edgy, eclectic style – perfect for this project.

We started with a tour of Turner Hall’s backstage area, followed by Jenii’s design presentation at our Oak Creek store. Check out the Video Blog:

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Any design project requires an initial walkthrough. The Turner Hall backstage walkthrough was a great chance for Jenii to get a feel for the space, meet the crew, and take some pictures and measurements.


As we mentioned, Jenii was the natural choice of designer on this project because she loves live music. In fact, she recalls a recent occasion that has her loving live music more than ever. “I got engaged onstage at a concert at the Rave, so this is right up my alley! This is just something that means a little more to me – to work on something having to do with music.”

Sasha Molin is Hospitality Director for PTG Live Events. She showed us the space, and explained what they are looking for. “We mostly wanna use this room to add more seating, make it more appealing, and make it so it can accommodate a variety of group sizes. It’s kind of a commercial space, kind of not.. it’s more personal. It’s definitely cool and different, I’m just excited to see how the room can transform, and how much I can fit into this smaller space, and utilize what we do have.”


Both Jenii and Sasha agree the history of the building is vital to the design, and they don’t want to take away from that. Jenii says, “I’m excited to give this room a little TLC and have it be more accommodating and welcoming, but still explore the history and feel of the space. We want this place to be a home away from home, and the only way to do that is with some quality furniture and a nice layout.”


Jenii sets to work taking room measurements and getting some pictures to help with her 3D design renderings. Like any design project, you have to start with the basic logistics/limitations of the room, and go from there. It’s like a puzzle, and our designers are great at solving it!

Sasha was also involved in our Pabst Theater backstage redesign, and is looking forward to this new challenge. “I’m excited to work on a totally different space than the Pabst backstage. This one is smaller, but more open, and there’s natural light!”


After the initial design consultation, the interior designer takes the information (measurements, pictures, etc) and puts together an in-store presentation for the client(s).


Jenii works out of Oak Creek, so the Pabst crew paid a visit to our Superstore on South 13th Street right off I-94. Sasha says she was pretty impressed by Jenii’s 3D design presentation. “I thought it definitely made the experience that much better in visual form, and to see a 3D mock-up of how it will look in the room is really helpful.”


Tiffany Coris does Sponsorship and Marketing for the Pabst Theater Group. She adds, “The 3D program and the presentation were really impressive, really put together. It’s also good to see a couple other options – you don’t always get a feel for how good the first option is until you see other options.”

As a designer, Jenii says the 3D program takes her presentations to the next level. “What I really like is it’s really easy for me to show them WHY I picked out the things I did. They can see how everything looks in the space, and get a spatial idea of how it will look, and just have a face to face conversation and go over the details.”



Jenii says she usually takes about an hour or so to set up vignettes for her client presentations, print the sheets, and walk the store to make sure she knows where everything is located. That’s the other cool thing about the in-store presentation – it gives the clients a chance to see, feel, and experience the possible pieces – not just see them on a page.


We’re still working out the final details of the space.. then the order will get processed, and a delivery date will be set! Stay tuned to our Steinhafels blog and social sites, as well as the Pabst Theater Group’s various social media to learn more about the project – and how Jenii will combine Home and History to create the perfect backstage space.

We can’t wait to share the results!!


Steinhafels Has a Starring Role–At The Rep!

Don’t let this blog’s title deceive you… none of the Steinhafel family members are getting on stage at the Milwaukee Repertory Theater anytime soon (although from watching all of our internal videos I can say they would do a great job)!

No, we’re sticking to what we know best, furniture. Steinhafels recently partnered with the Rep to help furnish the theater’s Donor Lounge. The Donor Lounge is a place where high level donors can relax, enjoy a complimentary beverage, and talk about the show with fellow donors.  


Marina Krejci is the Rep’s Chief Development Officer. She says the old donor lounge was nice, but it needed a little love and updating. She explains, ”We were very grateful that Steinhafels was willing to partner with us to improve the donor lounge experience. It’s very important to the Rep. We have a lot of partnerships all over the community, and we would much rather work with local businesses than look beyond.”


Steinhafels was happy to offer the Rep a deep discount so they could refurnish the lounge– including a leather sofa, 2 leather club chairs, several end tables, a couple floor lamps, a cocktail table, a buffet, and 3 lamps!


As you can see in these pictures, the lounge almost makes donors feel like they are part of the backstage experience, but also has a comfort and sophistication the lounge was lacking before.


Marina says they have received a lot of compliments on the lounge. She adds, ”I think the furnishings have dramatically improved the ambiance of our donor lounge, and we are seeing a lot more use of the donor lounge, and it’s just become a very inviting place for donors to enjoy the time before a show, intermission, or after the show.”

One of our managers, Terry Urban, even helped by suggesting the framed collages you see on the walls–displaying playbill covers from each of the Rep’s most recent Artistic Directors. There’s one for John Dillon, Joe Hanreddy, and Mark Clements–the Rep’s current AD.


If you are familiar with the Milwaukee Rep, you know it is truly one of the premier theaters in Southeastern Wisconsin. The new season starts in September, and there’s something for everyone, whether you are the casual theatergoer, or a theater geek all the way!

You can check out the new season schedule HERE… and maybe you’ll even get to have a drink in the lounge sometime.

Steinhafels & The Pabst Theater: Showtime!

It’s the big night. The stage is set, the theater crew is working on last minute preps… and the band is relaxing, watching TV, and enjoying some fresh coffee and a home-cooked meal!

The Pabst Theater Group prides itself on making all performers feel at home once they enter the doors of the Pabst Theater, The Riverside, or Turner Hall Ballroom. From an on-site caterer, to personal barista, and an enviable vinyl collection… the Pabst staff does all it can to make sure performers are comfortable before they take the big stage.

This emphasis on hospitality and the comforts of home make Steinhafels a perfect fit as a partner for this Milwaukee institution!

Over the last few months we’ve been working together to redesign the backstage of the Group’s historic Pabst Theater. As you can see it’s a neat space, but needed a little TLC and modern touches.


Steinhafels Decorating Solutions Interior Decorator Anne Sperry was basically given carte blanche to transform the space. The Pabst Theater staff admits it was a little daunting. “It’s always a little scary when you are changing something that is so personal and important to what we do. But it’s also very exciting since we know it will be a better, improved space.”

After the big Delivery Day, and a few finishing touches… check out the “NEW” digs! It still has that casual hangout vibe, but Anne added some color to make it pop, and also included some modern/rustic wood and metal pieces to hold all that vinyl!



Channel 12 and CBS 58 even came by to check it out and talk to Anne!


We love the new space, and so does the Pabst… but don’t take our word for it. Let’s see what the performers think!

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The first band to use the space was Wisconsin’s own Horseshoes and Hand Grenades. The band has been playing together for about 6 years, and they always love playing the Pabst theaters. Davey Lynch plays harmonica and accordion. He explains, “The hospitality is absolutely the best.  That’s not just a Milwaukee pride thing either, since I live in Milwaukee.  Of the entire lower 48, Pabst/Riverside/Turner has the best hospitality. That’s not just food and beverage, but the feeling you get with the hospitality and the staff too.”


Lynch and his 4 bandmates spend an average of five hours a day together on a small bus, so he says having a place to call home away from home while touring is very important. “Getting that living room environment is wildly important, especially to feel comfortable before performing too, so it’s nice to have that. Just that good down home feeling, that’s just great.”


We had him try out one of the new leather couches. He was impressed, and had some fun with it! “I definitely notice the leather furniture, absolutely, very comfortable couches… Oh yeah, I did the lay down, the sit down, the half laydown.”

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It’s good to see Davey and his buddies making themselves at home! We are so excited to continue our partnership with the Pabst, and help bring a touch of home to the men and women who work so hard to give audiences a great time.

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You can check out more pictures from the big “Reveal Day” by clicking HERE.


Steinhafels & Pabst Theater: Delivery Day!

There’s nothing more exciting than DELIVERY DAY when it comes to an interior design project.  Delivery day takes on an even greater meaning when you are delivering to a Milwaukee institution… a place with a history dating back 122 years!!


We first told you about our new partnership with the Pabst Theater Group a few weeks ago. The Pabst Theater team approached us a few months ago about a potential partnership.  The ideas started small, but when you get a bunch of creative people in a room the ideas get big fast.  Before you knew it, we were talking about an entire redesign of the Pabst Theater backstage!



The Pabst Team explains, “We believe the partnership is not only a marketing opportunity, but a way to highlight Steinhafels as local business that supports other local organizations.  It’s a way to reach our communities with unique content, and provide an incentive for each of our fans with custom content and information that they may not be aware of otherwise.”


Steinhafels Decorating Solutions Interior designer Anne Sperry is leading the project.  Anne has a theater background, and wanted to help create a comfortable yet trendy space for artists performing at the Pabst. She says this project is very special to her, and close to her heart. “Often talented artists and actors come from stress filled beginnings…they turn to their art for comfort and it’s something they can rely on. I have a mother’s heart for artists and giving them a soft nest to land in for awhile feels blessed on both ends.”


Both the Pabst and Steinhafels teams worked for weeks to make sure DELIVERY DAY would go as smoothly as possible. The warehouse and delivery crews are the unsung heroes of a big delivery like this one.  Without them, the furniture wouldn’t be stocked, loaded, or delivered!!

Managers Kevin Riley and Erik Swamp took the lead on this project.  Kevin admits it was a little daunting. “Deliveries like this are always fun but are usually a challenge because of the unknown.  We try to prepare for every situation, but a delivery like this can be much different than your typical customer home delivery.  Thankfully the theater has a gigantic stage elevator that we were able to use to easily move everything into the lower lounge!  Overall, we enjoy moves like this because we get to see something outside the norm and get to work with some great people.”


Every delivery is important, big or small.  As Kevin points out, “The most important detail when planning a delivery like this is that our customer is happy.  We double check our inventory list and make sure everything has been inspected before we load it onto the truck.”



Erik enjoyed getting to see some of the ‘Behind the Scenes’ media activity.  He adds, “I would say that pace can be a challenge in deliveries like this. When our drivers are out on the road they are trained to move as efficiently as possible to service all of their customers for that day. When working with media teams such as film crews and journalists, it can be challenging to slow things down and make sure everyone is getting what they need, but very rewarding as well.”


Carl Deffenbaugh of Fox 6 and Dan Shafer of the Milwaukee Business Journal graciously took the time to come out and cover the event. Media coverage of something like this is important–to not only let the community know what’s going on, but also show how local businesses and Arts organizations can work together and thrive.



Dirk Stallmann is the Marketing Director at Steinhafels.  He tells the Business Journal, “It’s a lasting project, so it’s a substantial investment on our part. Hopefully it will last a long time, and hopefully it will help keep this theater and this venue as one of the top spots in the country. That’s really the goal. You want to have this experience. All we do is provide props for your life. What we do is really give you the props, and the experiences are up to you.”

When it comes to the actual logistics of the delivery, things couldn’t have gone smoother. As Kevin mentioned, having a gigantic stage elevator didn’t hurt! The crew unloaded the large items from the truck quickly, and Anne brought an array of accessories.  The room quickly transformed from an empty space to a flurry of activity as volunteers and staff worked to unwrap and arrange furniture. It was great to see so many people coming together to help. As Anne says, “Many hands make lite work! Great job by all.”



Anne admits that a designer never truly knows how a space will look until the furniture arrives, but she had a good idea.  She explains why she made the choices she did with the Pabst space. “Shiny and new always look good… but the balance and scale of the new pieces give more free space, and the plants and pop of color in the lime and red just made the space buzz with excitement. The accessories added a little fun as well.”


Everyone else was also impressed!  The Pabst team likes that the ‘Steinhafels Touch’ makes it feel a little more like home. “We want the artist to feel special, providing a space that is comfortable where they do not need to do anything extra. All they have to worry about is picking out which record to listen to. The redesign definitely helps by allowing for more mobility and an improved emphasis on our wide selection of vinyl, and keeping a unique and comfortable atmosphere (and maintaining a few key elements like the Colectivo Coffee barista station and food line).”


As delivery operations managers, Kevin and Erik have seen a lot, but even they were impressed by the results! Kevin exclaims, “The space was really cool.  Our designer turned a boring basement lounge into a hip and comfortable relaxing space.  Hats off to Anne from Kenosha.”


This is not a ‘one and done’ event.  As the Pabst Team explains, this is just the start of an exciting partnership.  “Providing unique content is just one way to maintain the relationship, but in order to take it to the next level there could be connections with specific shows at our venues.   Perhaps include ticket promotions, staff incentives, and again additional marketing exposure–with the ability to highlight the Steinhafels brand related to other events.

We look forward to the ‘official’ reveal in the next week or so, and to whatever else this new partnership of visual and recording artists brings! Be sure to stay tuned to this blog… we will keep our readers posted on any big developments.

Check out the Dropbox LINK to all pictures and videos!!


Exciting New Partnership Between the Pabst Theater and Steinhafels

Here at Steinhafels, we are always looking for ways to expand our horizons not only as a retailer, but as an active member of the community.  We are involved with many different non-profit organizations and charities…but today we’re excited to announce a new partnership that’s a little different.


Recently, we began a conversation with the Pabst Theater Group about ways we can work together to help each other, as long-time members of the Milwaukee business and entertainment communities.  When you think about it, a furniture store and theater actually have a lot in common!  We both like to make people happy, and express the beauty of our surroundings in new and creative ways.


While we have several ideas brewing for future projects that could enhance the theater experience for patrons, our first project with the PTG will actually be BEHIND the stage!  One of our awesome Decorating Solutions interior designers is working with the Pabst’s Operations and Hospitality teams to come up with a plan for a complete backstage redesign and refurnishing.


While Steinhafels has taken part in many different redesign projects with local businesses, and our designers work on all kinds of spaces…the chance to work with a historic theater is very unique and exciting!!

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Designer Anne Sperry is leading the project.  She has some great ideas for bringing new life to the space, while still keeping the retro, laid-back vibe the Pabst Theater Group likes to exude in their backstage spaces.  It’s all about making the performers feel at home while they’re on the road… so who better to help than Steinhafels–the home design experts!



Anne has been working with the Pabst team to get measurements and a true “feel” for the space.  As you can see, it’s already a very eclectic and cozy space.  We’re excited to give it the “Steinhafels” touch, and help update some of the furniture that has seen years and years of use.  Imagine the stories some of that furniture could tell!!

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We’re also pleased to have Anne at the helm, since she has traveled the world as a designer, and has a vast background in theatrical set design.  We look forward to posting some comments from her throughout the project to learn how she uses her theater and design background to make this space fresh and comfortable for the world-class musicians, actors, comedians, and other various performers who come through the Pabst’s majestic doors.


Stay tuned to our Steinhafels blog and social sites, as well at the Pabst Theater Group’s various social media to learn more about the project, and see the redesign process step by step!