Nina, the yarn shop, opened in 2004 in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood. Nina, the original owner, had a vision of an inviting and contemporary space and she filled it with beautiful textures, colors and lots of inspiration. After nearly 13 years, the shop transitioned into the hands of Hilary, a long-time employee and lover of all things crafty. Hilary now continues Nina’s mission of inspiring creativity in others beyond knitting, with the help of an amazing staff!
who are the nina girls?
The Nina Girls all started out as customers of the original Nina! We are co-workers and friends, all very fortunate that we have gotten to take a place we have always loved and make it our own.
Hilary learned how to knit almost accidentally. Immediately obsessed, she learned every new technique and tried every new yarn she could get her hands on, before starting to work at Nina in 2009. Hilary realized she was in her element helping other knitters with their yarn choices and teaching them new skills. Then, she started designing her own patterns, which are written under the label Hilary Hues. To this day, she continues these interests while running the business, and despite her busy schedule, she wouldn’t have it any other way.
Jen has a background in clothing construction, fashion design, and art education. She has been knitting for more than a decade and creates knitwear designs as well as other knitting accessories. You can find her line of bags and notions cases, under the label J.M. Plumridge, in our shop. Jen spends most of her time teaching at the shop because nothing makes her happier than the excitement of a new crafter.
On her birthday, during the very same month that she retired from owning a business, Shari came in to the shop inquiring about a lesson to refresh her knitting skills which had lay dormant for a good twenty-five years. Less than three years later, she enthusiastically agreed to come work with us. She enjoys helping customers with their yarn purchases, winding yarn, and anything else that doesn’t require being in charge!
Aerial began knitting as a way to pass time while performing with a circus in Germany. It went from a hobby, to an obsession, to a passion. She has turned her passion into her job, though when she’s not knitting, you will likely find her hula hooping somewhere.
A long-time customer of Nina Chicago, Kristine is a very experienced knitter and crocheter. She made most of the beautiful crochet samples in the shop and teaches intermediate and advanced-level crochet classes.