our storyLovely's doors opened at 1130 North Milwaukee Avenue in Wicker Park on June 30, 2007. Our vision was and continues to be that Lovely exists as a unique place for customers to stop in for their coffee, tea, & exemplary espresso drinks, along with their favorite pastry, on the way to the rest of their day. Additionally, we designed Lovely to be a destination spot for gathering with friends, meeting with colleagues, and as a comfortable space for hours of work and study. Thanks to our loyal customer base, Lovely continues to grow after all these years. Lovely would be nothing, however, without the family of employees who make it as lovely as it is. The purposeful and respectful attention they pay to each other, the business, and the customers is easily our greatest asset and what makes Lovely exceptional.
Lovely’s owners & operators, Bob & Gina Hartwig, were the first bride and groom ever to be married at Lovely on its brand new patio on October 4, 2008, thus establishing Lovely as a unique wedding venue in Chicago. This was not only the continuation of their personal love story, but an opportunity to add the honor of hosting other couples’ most special day as an exciting and fulfilling addition to Lovely’s repertoire. Lovely weddings are hosted more frequently now than ever before. In 2009, the Lovely family decided to grow, inspired by our love of pairing brunch with baking. We opened Bakin’ & Eggs at 3120 North Lincoln Avenue in Lakeview on November 9th of that year, and it continues to be ever more popular with our regular customers as well as new faces every single day. The opportunity to sell Lovely pastries alongside our newly designed breakfast, brunch, and lunch menu was the fulfillment of a goal for Lovely to be a preferred wholesale pastry provider in Chicago and beyond. In no time, Lovely had more wholesale clients and produced way more product than our little Lovely kitchen could keep up with! In the blink of an eye, it was time to grow again.
On June 14, 2012, the doors to Lovely, too opened at 1138 West Bryn Mawr Avenue in Edgewater. With our new enormous kitchen and its state of the art equipment came the opportunity to hire more team members, take on more clients, and expand our menu and offerings! Along with a beautiful production kitchen, Lovely, too has a sweet little café with all the charm you’d expect and the pastries you’ve grown to love at Lovely and Bakin’ & Eggs.
The success of Lovely, Bakin’ & Eggs, and Lovely, too would not be possible without the leadership of the following members of our lovely teams:
Mary has been a Lovely family member for over three years. She manages Lovely with all the heart of an owner. Mary is an integral part of this family, the glue that holds much of us together. Professionally, she accomplishes amazing things on a daily basis. Personally, she makes us laugh like no one can. Mary provides the organization, quality control, levity, and laughter we all need in our lives. At the helm of special events coordination and Lovely coordination in general, daily customers and event clients could not be in more capable or loving hands.
Front of House Manager: Lovely, Too
Iain joined the Lovely, too family very early on, during the renovation of the space. Alongside Bob & Gina, he cleaned, moved equipment, went on home depot runs, changed light bulbs, did anything it took and poured his heart and soul into making the dream of opening Lovely, too a reality. Iain is always looking to improve our bakery & café’s systems, organization, and employee and owner quality and ease of life, and for that we are grateful. We see nothing but growth and success with Iain at the helm of managing wholesale accounts and FOH operations now and in the future.
Back of House Manager: Lovely, Too
Trisha joins the Lovely family with a great deal of education and experience in the pastry world. She is a talented, smart, and truly gifted leader. Trisha has a knack for simultaneously caring for the people around her while nudging them in the right, most efficient direction. Lovely, Too is grateful and glad to have her join the management family, and everyone looks forward to learning from her and growing with her as we evolve.
Front of House Manager: Bakin' & Eggs
Ranya plays crucial roles in the Lovely family management team. Ranya approaches her job as a server as if she’s hosting you in her own home. She’s passionate about customer service and has a keen eye for quality control. Ranya takes her role as a leader extremely seriously while creating an environment full of laughter and fun. Bakin’ & Eggs customers and employees are well cared for in her hands. Bob and Gina are grateful for her unwavering loyalty and support, and for all she does for the greater good of the big picture.
Espresso Bar Manager: Bakin' & Eggs
Jenny has been with the Lovely family longer than any other team member! She started as an intern with Lovely during its conception and now is a central figure at Bakin' & Eggs. She is an invaluable assest to the team bringing to Bakin' & Eggs valuable knowledge about the pastry production and quality standards of Lovely. She strives to bring the customer a superb experience from the presentation of the house to serving the best product at the table. Bob and Gina feel a great sense of pride to have such a committed, reliable member on the team, as does the rest of the Bakin' & Eggs and Lovely Family!
Stay tuned as we continue to grow. We look forward to many exciting developments in the near and distant future.