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The CARON Collection is featuring one of the outstanding shops who so ably provide stitchers with not only supplies but guidance, technical expertise, and inspiration.
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In October of 2000, Mary Ellen Nixon, a former fan and devoted customer of the Exclamation Point!, purchased the store from Lyn. She relates, "The store was being sold because Lyn had owned it for 25 years and she was going to retire -- either sell or close -- and, guess what, it sold!

The Exclamation Point! has been in business since 1977, specializing in handpainted canvases and a wide variety of threads for needlepoint. The store inventory represents numerous artists and includes over 7000 specialty threads including wools, cottons, silks, rayons, metallics and combinations. A partial list of hand-painted designer canvases that are regularly stocked includes Amanda Lawford Artworks, dede's Needleworks, Alexa Designs, Peter Ashe, Beau Geste, Caron Collection, Nan Hempel, Melissa Shirley Designs, Maggie Co., Kathryn Molineaux, Rosalie Peters, Painted Pony Designs, Renaissance Design, Tapestry Tent, and many more. Needless to say, at Exclamation Point!, orders for custom designs are always welcomed.

The odyssey of Mary Ellen's ownership began when her cousin paid her a visit from out-of-town in the fall of 2000. Mary Ellen continues, "We immediately headed to the Exclamation Point! -- Disneyland for us!! She walked out with many beautiful projects and I walked out with the biggest project of all ­ the store!"

Specialty classes are offered by many nationally known teachers including June McKnight, dede Ogden and Susan Hulme and this year specialty classes are planned by Sandy Jenkins and Deborah Wilson. The store has its own Village Bear especially designed for Mary Ellen by dede Ogden. The dede Village Bear is available exclusively at the Exclamation Point!

Village Bears
Designed by dede Ogden
Exclusively for Exclamation Point!

The "Thread Wall" at the shop is a spectacular display and is like walking into an artist's palate. Each color has a separate section and every shade, weight and texture of the color is represented. Mary Ellen tries to stock a full color range of every thread the shop carries. Among these are all Caron Watercolours, Waterlilies, Wildflowers, Impressions, Antica, Rachel, Rachelette, Double Dipped Rachel, Candlelight and Soie Cristale. The threads are displayed in rainbow fashion - all of one color together so that pulling threads for a particular canvas is logical, quick and easy. It lets one determine color first, then texture and stitch suitability.
Stocked accessories include working frames, scissors, threaders, all tools for needlepoint and wooden products including boxes, footstools, luggage racks, trays, etc. to display finished work. Artisans are employed to expertly finish belts, rugs, three-dimensional objects, pillows, ornaments, etc.

The Exclamation Point! is situated in a beautiful, flower-covered, arbored courtyard in the charming town of Saratoga, CA. There is easy access to parking, specialty shops and fine restaurants. Whatever your needlework needs, you'll find a helpful and knowledgeable staff and an enormous selection of products and services at Exclamation Point! It's a true shopping delight for the stitcher.

Mary Ellen adds, "Whenever you find yourself in the Silicon Valley of California, stop by the Exclamation Point! We would love to meet you, or visit us on the web at http://www.xclamationpoint.com

Exclamation Point!
14510 Big Basin Way
Saratoga, CA
Phone: (408) 867-7550
Fax: (408) 379-5519
E-Mail: maryellen7@earthlink.net
Website: http://www.xclamationpoint.com
Store Hours: 1 0 AM to 5 PM Monday through Saturday.

CARON email: mail@caron-net.com / Webmaster monika@nika-net.com