Cafe Brauer Wedding Chicago | A Glamorous & Sophisticated Wedding

For a glamorous and sophisticated Cafe Brauer Wedding Chicago, this beauty from July 24, 2016 seamlessly mixed tradition with up to the minute touches, creating a stunning effect. The details are lush, the setting is gorgeous, and the cute beagle puppy adds just the right note of whimsy. Emilia and Mladen were married at the Holy Resurrection Serbian Orthodox Cathedral. The reception was held at the beautiful Café Brauer venue at the Lincoln Park Zoo.

This wonderful event would not have been possible without all the extra touches added by an amazing team. Every detail, from the biggest to the smallest, showcases the perfect marriage of modern and traditional.

The Bride and Her Attendants

The first thing you’ll notice about this sophisticated Chicago wedding is that all of the clothing and accessory details work together to create an elegant whole. The sophisticate palette suits not only the setting, but also the bridesmaids, the groomsmen, the flower girls, the ring bearer, and the tables. It all works together and nothing feels out of place or overly showy. The overall feel is elegance and charm, not ostentation or over the top.

The bridal gown is a breathtaking Monique Lhuillier. The gown’s delicate lace and beadwork, and its full skirt, mixed a classic look, with the strapless sweetheart bodice adding an up to the minute feel. From every angle, both the gown and the bride exuded elegance, class, and grace.

The colors were blush, rose gold, and gold. The flower girl gowns were in white to match the bride, and elegant mother of the bride and mother of the groom gowns were in contrasting navy. The rose gold bridesmaids’ dresses worked well together, giving the attendants individual looks which flattered them the best. The flower girls’ dresses were classic and bright, appropriate for young ladies who are not just playing dress up but really doing it.

The essence of this glamorous wedding was the intersection where old meets new and both are the better for it. It’s the details that matter, from the bride’s stylish, lacy Jimmy Choo’s to pretty matching bracelets for all of the attendants.

And then what was under the gown really made everything work. Check out these fun accessories with a bit of Serbian patriotic flair from BHLDN.  

Shop BHLDN Weddings

But of course it’s the wedding gown that really shines, here against a backdrop of the Chicago skyline, mixing old and new architectural styles. The light gray-blue sky and the light-colored buildings set off the gown perfectly.

Pink, lavender, and off-white peonies worked well with the color scheme, in a straightforward round bundle.

Makeup was natural and not too heavy. The bride’s hair flowed in ringlets and was held in place by classic combs from Nordstrom. Her attendants had similar styles which still reflected their own individuality. This gave the bridal party the look and feel of working together synergistically, rather than as pale imitations of the bride or of each other.

Getting Ready

Of course a wedding is all about the people. So let’s take a look at the ladies in the wedding party. The bridesmaids and maid of honor were all showered with thoughtful gifts. They got ready at the Trump International Hotel and Tower and wore romantic painted petal robes from BHLDN.  Beautiful bride Emilia got wonderful support from her sister, her future sister-in-law, and her closest friends.

The party started early with mimosas!

Everybody looks great already! But then, that’s easy with this group. Plus of course the mother of the bride and the mother of the groom were a part of the fun. They wore personalized gorgeous robe from David’s Bridal.

Emilia opened her gifts – check out that earring and pendant necklace set! It’s time to get ready.

A few more touches get everything in place and really make it sparkle.

Still love the downtown Chicago background. Now let’s see everything put together.

Everyone went outside and we got to see even more of Chicago. The rose gold bridesmaids’ dresses work well together, giving the attendants individual looks which flatter them the best. And who is better at supporting you than your closest family and friends?

There’s nothing better than a happy bride.

From every angle, both the gown and the bride exude elegance, class, and grace.

The Kids

The kids in the wedding party had a formal yet comfortable and age-appropriate look. They were dressed up without looking like little versions of adults. The smaller members of the bridal party wore delightful flower girl dresses in satin & tulle from Nordstrom.

The flower girls are wearing a bit of greenery in their hair, which adds a natural touch. And where there are flower girls, can a ring bearer be far behind?

The Men

Let’s get a good look at these handsome guys in classic black tuxedos! Classic black tuxedos with a notch collar got a touch of whimsy from pink argyle socks. Silk twill pocket squares in blush color were from Nordstrom as well.

The Groom

To go along with the classic black tux, the groom wore a black bowtie with a subtle allover dot pattern. He had a rose boutonniere and his silk pocket square was in a subtle pastel shade from Nordstrom.

Emilia says it best: “Mladen and I have been dating for three years before we got engaged.  It all happened on Christmas Eve in front of our family right after dinner prior to opening the Christmas presents. I was so surprised and I thought it was the most romantic moment in my life! Mladen was extremely nervous and lost for words when he dropped on one knee holding the most beautiful Harry Winston engagement ring I have even seen!”

The Groomsmen

The classic black tuxedos looked great on all of the men. Boutonnieres in shades of pink, silk pocket squares, plus suspenders underneath completed the look.

Just about ready …


Oh, and about the dog … Max the beagle puppy steals the show wherever he goes. This wily canine was an important part of the wedding, serving as the couple’s official greeter at Café Brauer. Plus he got to wear a bowtie, and bowties are cool.

Now that looks like a pup that just ate half of the groom’s boutonniere.

One Last Look

There’s no time to sit down! It’s time to get married!

The Ceremony

There is a moment in every wedding when the bride walks down the aisle and looks at the world through her veil. It’s that foggy, dreamy, mystical moment when the world stands still. The ceremony was held at the Holy Resurrection Serbian Orthodox Cathedral. This 45-year-old building has a rich tradition dating back to 1905 for the chapel and 1872 for the settlement of Serbian people in Chicago.

As with many parts of this breathtaking wedding, tradition mixes with the new.

The parish priest, Rev. Protonamesnik Radovan Jakovljevic, joyfully performed the traditional Serbian Orthodox ceremony.

The Holy Resurrection Serbian Orthodox Cathedral is a spectacular venue, isn’t it?

The Wedding Party

The area around the Café Brauer, including the Lincoln Park Zoo, offered some terrific photo ops. Natural scenery and classic stonework offered different looks, and the Chicago skyline tied it all together.

The architectural curves and arches added tradition and interest and the wedding party’s asymmetrical arrangement gave it a modern flair.

Of course Max had to get into the act. The greenery added a lush feel, and the blooming Black-eyed Susan flowers added just the right pop of color.

And then it came time to party!

Cafe Brauer Wedding Chicago | The Tables

The Café Brauer is listed on the National Register of Historic Places for good reason.

The streamers on the ceiling and the subtle pink of the draperies and the table runners enhanced the color scheme and the overall look of the venue. There were interesting-looking chandeliers and unique lattice work on the ceiling.

Guests were greeted with an exquisite arrangement of roses and peonies at the place card table. The settings were traditionally arranged, with gold tableware adding to the color scheme. The gold chair backs took the theme even further. The menus, place cards, and thank you cards all continued the color scheme.

Aren’t the centerpieces lovely? Roses and hydrangeas top the larger pieces, with smaller urns holding a single, perfect bloom. The sweetheart table had an urn on each side, and a larger urn.

The long tables were enhanced with tall, clear candlesticks and small gold-toned tea lights, plus bright table runners added sparkle.

Cafe Brauer Wedding Chicago | Favors and Details

For wedding favors, on the tables there were s’mores on one seat and macarons in gold and black on the next seat, alternating. Plus gold tableware, gold-rimmed china, and warm tea lights added charm and ambiance.

Cafe Brauer Wedding Chicago | Entertainment and Cake

Elysia Root Cakes made the three-flavored cake. With gold and off-white coloring, the cake continued the color scheme, coordinating perfectly.

The TVK Orchestra provided the entertainment which included a romantic and fun first dance.

Cafe Brauer Wedding Chicago | Food and Drink

Let’s check out the food and drink! Guests were made to feel right at home and there were so many choices. The food was rustic yet elegant. The sweets included fruit with chocolate, macarons, and s’mores.

Of course there was plenty of Champagne for the celebration. The wedding specialty drink included a champagne with a rock candy stick in gold sugar rim glass.

In addition, at the exit there were mini Orchids and mini bottles of Chandon in gold or rose gold colors, for the guests to take as gifts.

Cafe Brauer Wedding Chicago | Cutting the Cake

But let’s not forget that delicious cake, with a personalized server, naturally. The cake’s straight lines evoked a feeling of newness while the flower decoration paired that with tradition.

Cafe Brauer Wedding Chicago | Revelry

There’s always time for more fun! A photo booth provided laughs and a chance for guests to put on a new persona and ham it up.

The bride and groom’s dance was romantic and fun. Now that’s a dance!

Night Falls on Chicago and a Perfect Day

As the event wound down, we got one last look at the Chicago skyline – and a rainbow!

The wedding might be done, but romance will go on.

After saying “I do”, the happy couple jetted off to once in a lifetime honeymoon in Hong Kong, Thailand, and the Maldives for a 21-day journey filled with plenty of sightseeing, leisure, romance, and delicious cuisine.

Resources Cafe Brauer Wedding Chicago
Bridal Gown: Monique Lhuillier
Bridal Shoes: Jimmy Choo
Bridal Salon: Ultimate Bride Chicago
Accessories: BHLDN, Nordstrom
Save the Date: Minted
Wedding Invitations: Papellerie
Menus, Place cards, Thank you cards: Mi-Te Print
Wedding Website: Appy Couple
Rentals: Halls Rental
Venues: Café BrauerHoly Resurrection Serbian Orthodox Cathedral
Bride Prep: Trump International Hotel and Tower
Transportation: M & M Limousine

Event Planner: Megan Estrada
Photography: WASIO
Floral Design: Ashland Addison Florist
Entertainment: TVK Orchestra
Catering: Jewell Events Catering
Beauty: Antonette White Airbrush Makeup & Hair
Cake: Elysia Root Cakes
Videography: Small Batch Cinema Jason Knade


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