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Author of The Complete Idiot's Guide To
Knitting & Crocheting Illustrated (3rd ed.)



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Yarn Shop Reviews

The Caprock
Milan Industrial Park
Milan, IL

Reviewed by Julie Dietz

The Caprock is an eclectic institution with a fabulous yarn and needlework selection. The entire second room is packed to the rafters with yarn. I didn't have hours to spend there, but I saw a full price range of yarns including space-dyed mohair and other higher-end products all the way through Patons Decor and more basic yarns. Full selection of needle and patterns. Owners are a husband-wife team and their daughter, all of whom are involved in the business. Knitting, weaving, crochet, and many other forms of needlework supplies. When I was in over Thanksgiving 1998, a huge wall of discounted yarn that had been discontinued. It was all 40-50% off. Very helpful people and a delight to speak with. My non-knitting mother-in-law went in there to get me a gift certificate, and was treated pleasantly as well, even though she had not a clue what she was doing.

Ehrina Yarn Boutique 28 W. Chicago Avenue
Naperville, IL

Reviewed by Carrie Plachta

I do not recommend you go to this yarn shoip. When I visited I was a very novice knitter looking for classes and a beginner project. The owner was nothing but rude and one of her first comments to me - after learning that I had taken a beginners class through the local park district - was Now I will have to UNTEACH you all the bad techniques they taught you. The conversation went downhill from there.

The shop is small but cozy and she does have a small table with chairs so you can sit and knit. I can't tell you much about the selection because I really didn't know enough at the time to tell what was there but I do know she carries Inox needles.

However, her very abrasive attitude (of which the members of my guild concur) make it a non-stop on my list. Don't waste your time unless you are into verbal abuse.

Ewe-Nique Yarns Etc.
2051 S. Main St
Morton, IL 61550 309-266-9398

Reviewed by Kathleen Risa

I found this shop because I was having a knitting emergency as we were passing though Illinois on vacation a couple of months ago. It is a large, wonderful shop with an incredible inventory and great ideas. I only stopped for the larger circular needle my project had grown to need, but ended up leaving with a great book and enough stash for several more projects. Great people, great shop! And the quilt shop next door is equally as wonderful! I hope I get back there one day.... 2/11

The Keweenaw Shepard
202 Westminster
Lake Forest, IL

Reviewed by Angela Karash

This is my favorite shop, mostly because of Mary the LYSO. The shop is named for the northern most part of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan (that part that sticks out into Lake Superior and what most people assume is Canada!), where Mary's from originally. Being another mis-placed Yooper myself, when I heard about this, I had to check it out! A good selection of yarns (with an emphasis on natural fibres), including Alice Starmore - most if not all the colors of Scottish Campion displayed as a wall o'yarn. Not as much into the cutesy stuff as some other shops and less in the way of gadgets and needles. There's a big round table at the back for browsing patterns, getting help with a project or admiring Mary's latest masterpiece. Also weaving and spinning supplies - not being either I can't say how complete.

Hours: Closed Sun and M, T-F ? til 5. Not sure about Saturday (I'm never there til late pm so I don't know when they open.). Within walking distance of the Lake Forest train station served by the Metro/Milwaukee district North line.

BTW, a Yooper is someone who lives in the Upper peninsula of Michigan as opposed to a troll who lives in the Lower peninsula. The 2 peninsulas are joined by the Mackinac bridge hence those who live under the bridge are trolls.

Knitters Niche
3206 N. Southport
Chicago, IL 60657
773-472-1976 Hours: Tue-Sat 10:30-6:30; Sun 1-5; closed M

Reviewed by Lee Watson

Knitters Niche on the north side of Chicago has a lovely selection of yarns. It is not a huge place but the service is fantastic. They will write patterns and help you every step of the way. Mary Ann is very opinionated about finishing and is very free with advice and demonstrations on finishing. She often finds mistakes and fixes them and then shows you how to fix them often without ripping.

They carry mostly natural fiber yarns but have a very nice selection of acrylics for babies and young children. There is a nice selection of wools mohairs and cottons mostly in the moderately priced range. If they don't have the color in stock they will order it for you and even ship it to you.

There are a few toys for young children to play with and even dog biscuits if you have your dog with you. This is a very friendly place.

The owner has a bookcase with her personal collection of patterns some going back to 1965. Customers are free to peruse these while sitting in a rocking chair.

Loopy Yarns
719 S. State Street
Chicago, IL 60605

Reviewed by Aidan Gilbert

As a man who knits -- and has for 35 years -- I have been subjected to some memorably rude service at yarn shops. But that is not ever a worry at Loopy Yarns! Everyone -- and I do mean everyone -- who works there has been helpful and friendly. The owner, Vickie, is knowledgable and enjoys spending time with her customers. You can tell she's always thinking about how she can better serve them. And her goal is to be known as the friendliest yarn shop in Chicago.

Loopy's customers are important to the shop, and they treat them accordingly. Last fall I was looking for cable needles that were less awkward, but not having any luck finding any. One day I got a call at home from Loopy saying they had just received a shipment and had some new cable needles they thought would work better for me.

They carry a lot of trendy yarns, which aren't necessarilly my cup of tea, but I recently started knitting socks -- the ultimate knitting addiction -- and I found their sock yarns to be varied and reasonably priced. When I voiced my disappointment at the selection of solid colors, they promised to stock more solids.

Mosaic Yarn Studio
1585 Ellinwood St. #211
Des Plaines, IL 60016

Reviewed by Anne Claxon

This shop in a suburb of Chicago offers a wide selection of yarn, books, gadgets and expertise. They are open Tuesday through Sunday and also offer classes on Sunday. They are very friendly and helpful.

This shop was reviewed by a second knitter.
Reviewed by Becky Whitt

Shop appears to rather new. Has a limited selection of yarn, but what they do have is very nice moderately priced. They were ordering more yarn when I was there. Little atmosphere but very helpful employees, appear to be off to a good start.

This shop was reviewed by a third knitter.
Reviewed by Gayle A. Cox

I am a new knitter and have been scouting out all of the local yarn shops. This is a very nice shop. It is very well lit so you can judge color well. Nice selection of yarns and patterns. Very helpful owner and staff. Open on weekends (Sundays) and Thursday evenings, a plus for those of us who work full time. They even have classes on Sundays! I really like the sock of the month club. Good selection of knitting tools.

This shop was reviewed by a fourth knitter.
Reviewed by Kathleen McDonald

This is the happiest knit shop I have ever visited. The sales help make you feel right at home. Incredibly large selection of 100% wools as well as washable wool, and blends. There is something for every knitter, and in every color. The Mosaic Yarn Studio is what every knitter dreams a knit shop should be, wool aplenty, helpful as well as knowledgeable staff, classes, and great hours. For a shop that has been in Des Plaines for only four years it is obvious that it will draw knitters from near and far because of its wonderful reputation.

This shop was reviewed by a fifth knitter.
Reviewed by Nancy M. Monzo

I highly recommend this store. The owners and staff are friendly and knowledgeable. There is a wide variety of yarn at all price levels.

What makes it especially stand out are the many designs by the staff and patrons. They are excellent patterns in a wide variety of styles, sizes and yarns. I attened their fashion show last month and not only was it a delightful evening I also found fantastic patterns from the simple to the challenging with a wide variety of yarns. The patterns that use an expensive yarn often have the gauge and amounts needed of a less expensive yarn that will drape the same and often there is a model made in both yarns.

Another plus are the hours. The shop is open two evenings and on Sunday. They also have lessons on Sunday. I am a knitter who had dabbled in crochet and I look forward to taking the Sunday morning crochet class.

Even if you need to travel some distance, as I do, to this shop believe me it will be worth your time.

My Sisters Knits
9907 S. Walden Parkway
Chicago, IL 60643

Reviewed by Deanna Kiel

This warm and quaint little shop will blow you away. The owner is very nice and personable and their is always one or two customers/friends sitting around knitting and chatting. The yarn this shop carries is out of this world!

Many hand paints, silks, wools, etc. The color palette and selection of fibers will please any one, and you will just want to stay and touch. The store also has many classes for all your knitting and crochet interests. I would not go any other place. 5/07

Needleworks, Inc.
24 East Green #5
Champaign, IL 61820
(217) 352-1340

Reviewed by Bonnie Hendershot

Neeldeworks is the kind of shop a knitter can't help but walk into and smile. There's beautiful yarn lining the walls and over flowing in baskets. A great selection. Novelty yarns, wools, you name it. I've often found their yarns and supplies to be priced at or below what I find on the web. The staff is very knowledgeable and there's a table set up where you can usually find people sitting and working on projects. The store displays many lovely items created by staff and customers. They also have a large cross stitch section and do custom framing. Well worth a visit.

Never Enough Knitting
121 N. Main St
Wheaton, IL 60187

Reviewed by Angela Karash

A smaller selection of yarn than the others, good selection of patterns and needles (mostly metal though) etc. Lots of wool, most every color of Canadiana and Knitaly and Cotton Classic and some specialty fibres.

Hours: M-Sat. 10-5pm. A block up from the train tracks but a number of blocks from the station. The LSYO and her mom are very helpful and willing to special order just about anything.

1655 West Division
Chicago, IL 60622

Reviewed by Cynthia Pagan

Nina (also the name of the the owner)is extremely helpful. She is a very kind person and willing to help a newbie. Nina is a hip yarn shop with top of the line yarns including yarn made of bamboo. She will also order yarn if you don't see what you want in the store. Private lessons are also available. Nina knitting recently won Best of Chicago in Chicago Magazine. There is street parking. If you have the time, it is well worth it to check it out.

Sunflower Samplings
89 N Williams St.
Crystal Lake, IL

Reviewed by Becky Whitt

You could not pack more in to this very small shop if you tried. It is a room off of a very cute gift store. We were there the day before the huge snow storm. She was having a 25% off everything in the store. Not a tremendous amount of patterns but a very nice selection of yarn.

Tangled Web
177 South Oak Park Ave.
Oak Park, IL 60302
Owner: Elin Thorgren

Reviewed by Paula M. DeBois

This is a new store in the Chicago suburbs. The yarns carried are Vittadini, Rowan, Brown Sheep, Mission Falls, Tahki/Stacy Charles, Berroco, Muench, Jaeger and more. The owner Elin is gracious and accommodating. Her store is well lit and well stocked. The store handles mail orders in a timely fashion. This shop also features some of the best knitting instructors in the Chicago area. There is an open knit studio on Thursday nights. This store is a winner!

The store's hours are Tues, Wed, Fri 9-6; Thu 9-9; Sat 10-4 and Sun 11-3.

This shop was reviewed by a second knitter.
Reviewed by Kathleen McDonald

This is a new store in the Chicago suburb of Oak Park. They offer many classes for all experience levels and the instructors are great. Each session I learned some wonderful trick or tip besides enhancing the skills I needed for the project. They have a splendid array of fiber and when I fall in love with one they have a patterns for it. I am so glad to have a store of this caliber in our area and highly recommend it to others.

Three Bags Full
1130 Shermer Road
Northbrook, IL 60062

Reviewed by Karen Farino

I've been to numerous knitting shops in and around the Northwest Suburbs of Chicago. This knitting shop is my favorite. They have a great selection of yarn and patterns which seems to be continually updated. They offer an abundance of classes from one to four weeks long both in the evening and daytime. They also have a diverse selection of classes - definitely something for everyone. The best part about this shop is the people that work there. I have no idea who the owner is or if I've ever met them, but every person that works there is so friendly, helpful and knowledgeable that you feel comfortable and at ease the moment you walk in the door. I took a private class for finishing and was totally thrilled with the instructor and the results.

The Village Knit Wiz
1802 Glenview Rd
Glenview, IL 60025

Reviewed by Becky Whitt

This is a store I would highly recommend. Plan to spend a couple hours. Everything is packed in this store that is owned and run by a husband and wife. Lots of yarn, accessories and patterns. You have to walk around in it a couple of times to be sure you have seen everything.

This shop was reviewed by a second knitter.
Reviewed by Jo Christos

A small, lovely store. A friend recommended it so I went to check it out. Picked the yarn I wanted, but they did not have enough of the same dye lot. I was told they are expecting more in 3 days & gave them my name & number to call me when it came in. A month went by without a word, so I called. The yarn had come in weeks ago, so I gave them my credit card # and asked them to UPS it to me. I was assured it would go out in a day. A week went by--no yarn. I called, left several messages before someone called back. I was told that the box got mixed up with an incoming shipment, but that it would go out that day for sure. Another week and still nothing. I have made 7 follow-up calls and still have no yarn! These people clearly do not know the meaning of Customer Service. It's a wonder they're still in business!

Weaving Workshop
2218 N. Lincoln
Chicago, IL 60614
Hours: M-T Closed; W 12-5; Th 12-9; F 12-5; Sat 10-5; Sun 12-5 (not sure of fall hours)

Reviewed by Erica Lee

Weaving Workshop is on Lincoln Avenue, just south of Fullerton, in Lincoln Park. Mary, the owner, carries an extensive Anny Blatt collection, Rowan, Mission Falls, Trendsetter, Classic Elite, Jaeger, Jo Sharp, Filatura di Crosa and Colinette. She also has a great selection of baby yarns. The staff is more than helpful in finding yarn, finding patterns or help on a project. If you can't find the yarn you like, they will order it for you. Prices range from affordable to expensive. There is an on-going schedule of classes. Every Thursday is open knit night, it's open to anyone who wants to socialize and knit. It's close to the Fullerton 'L' stop and is easy to get to on the buses or by car.

We'll Keep you in Stitches
67 E. Oak
4th Floor
Chicago, IL 60611
Hours: Monday-Saturday 10am-5pm

Reviewed by Mary Williamson

This yarn store is located on Oak Street between Michigan Ave and Rush. The shop is small but mighty in its efforts to satisfy any level of knitter. They have a large selection of very nice yarns. Whether it is cotton, wool, an acrylic for a baby project, or a novelty yarn that you just have to have, you will find it here. I was helped by Maria, who is extremely knowledgeable in the craft and will help you design a project according to your specifications. They have a selection of needles, accessories, magazines and patterns, as well as needlepoint supplies. They have some gorgeous hand-knit sweaters and scarves on display, which really got my creative juices flowing!

The Yarn Sellar and Gifts
6128 E. Riverside Blvd.
Loves Park, IL 61111

Reviewed by Beth Wemmer

The store hours are 10-5, Tuesday thru Friday and 10-3 Saturdays. Lisa (the owner) has a lot of lovely yarns in this cute little shop. She carries a lot of Brown Sheep and Plymouth yarns as well as Mountain Colors, Classic Elite and Colinette and several other brands, too. Lots of patterns and notions and she can order just about any needle if she doesn't carry it in stock. She also has Passap and Brother knitting machines, cone yarn, patterns and supplies. She gives both private lessons and group lessons on hand and machine knitting and crochet. Another nice thing about the shop is that it also has a selection of hand made soaps, candles, and some wonderful chocolates that you can't resist trying. She has different yarns on sale all the time, so even if you are on a tight budget, you can find quality yarns for your knitting habit!

Update Reviewed by Beth Wemmer

I have an update on a shop that I mentioned earlier in the year. The shop is much bigger than the one previously located in Belvidere and she is expanding to include some needlepoint and cross-stitch kits. She will offer classes in these two arts soon as well as regular knitting, crochet and machine knitting. She also has a lot of fun summer yarns and has added a few different Lion Brand yarns, but is still carrying Tahki, Plymouth, Mountain Colors, and Colinette to name a few. She also has the Regia yarn that makes the stripes and patterns and she can show machine knitters a pattern to quickly make several pair on either the Passap or the Brother standard machine. She is now a dealer for the Artisan machine, a really good value if you are thinking about getting a machine.

Yarn Shop Review Index