Bridal Shop Destroyed By Fire In Oak Lawn

Updated 10:10 p.m.

OAK LAWN (CBS) — An extra-alarm fire has devastated at least two businesses in an Oak Lawn strip mall, including one that claimed to be the oldest bridal shop in the country.

The fire started around 3 p.m. at Eva’s Bridals of Oak Lawn, 4811 W. 95th St. That’s when an employee at the bridal shop spotted smoke on the roof and called 911. All five businesses in the area were able to evacuate safely.

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But brides like Ashley Kuhl say they are left scrambling to replace dresses they ordered there.

“I guess I just feel kind of shocked. It’s just really sad,” said Kuhl.

She and others say it’s hard to look at home video of the fire and the smoke.

Kuhl’s mother was in tears.

“It does break my heart,” she said.

Kuhl’s future groom tried to assure his bride everything will be OK.

It’s a dress. It’s a huge deal, but it’s not as if we’re getting married tomorrow,” said Rick Piwowarski. “So we will find you another dress and you’ll look even more beautiful, and we’ll be fine.”

The family owned shop is well-known the South Side and south suburbs and has been outfitting brides for decades.

Chicago Fire Department crews were assisting in fighting the blaze, Fire Media Affairs Director Larry Langford said.

Cleanup crews shoveled debris on Wednesday night near the Radio Shack and physical rehab offices that were also damaged in the fire.

The Oak Lawn fire chief says they can’t yet pinpoint the cause of the fire. He does believe they will have additional results after an investigation on Thursday.

The owner of the bridal shop says she wants to help these devastated brides get dresses. She is setting up a number that brides can call to get information on their orders. The number should be up and running by Thursday: (630) 747-1911.

CBS 2’s Pamela Jones contributed to this report.

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  • Mike Fangman

    You know some bridezilla is going insane right now.

    • tomil

      Wow, how rude you are. My weddingi s in 3 months and my dress is at that salon. I apologize if I am a bridezilla beause the dress that I have bought and have been dreaming about marrying the man I love wearing is completely ruined! Do you honestly think tht the response you posted was necessary and in anyway has benefitted the readers of this article? Give me a freaking break.

  • Melissa

    How sad. I purchased my gown there….I pray nobody was hurt and I pray for the brides and their dream gowns. Yes, a dress is part of a dream. It’s the end of an era…..

  • jim

    Yes bridezilla-this you are. How about the owners and all their dreams and hard work that went up in smoke. I wish your your soon to be husband luck-as it sounds he or no one else will ever PLEASE YOU!

    • Mike Fangman

      Jim, I’d like to invite you to a White Sox message board,

  • Chrissy

    So sorry for Eva’s bridal shop. Feel terrible for any bride to be that now does not have a gown. I was married last August, and my gown was purchased from Eva’s.
    I am willing to sell it, if interested. It is a Christian Dehour, size 14, custom made, off white, platinum beaded long flowing train, with a custom made veil. If any bride to be is interested, please contact by my email. It is ready to wear, just needs to be cleaned. It is really beautiful!

  • DebbieM

    Decades go, there used to be a restaurant called Lorelei’s (sp?) at this location. It had a fire that destoyed it. Some time afterwards, the strip mall was built upon the site. So sad to see so much destroyed.

    • Bilus'

      I remember Lorelei’s. They had good burger, but even better milkshakes and sundaes.

  • Maria Jurek

    Pamela Jones, Was there another Eva’s Bridal on Harlem Ave near Foster Ave in Chicago that burnt down some years ago or was it another Bridal Shoppe?

  • Lip Marktak

    This would never happen in Beverly. Or Burbank. I went to two high schools.

  • Brides In Limbo After Oak Lawn Shop Burns « CBS Chicago – News, Sports, Weather, Traffic, and the Best of Chicago

    […] An extra-alarm fire broke out around 3 p.m. Wednesday at Eva’s Bridals of Oak Lawn, 4811 W. 95th S… […]

  • sue

    i can say that i do feel sorry for the brides waiting on there dresses, but i do not feel sorry for the owner or the staff, they are very rude people.

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