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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.
We hope you'll support your local shops and browse through our extensive SHOP LISTINGS to find a shop near you.

We take you to...

The Needlepaint Nook
In Merrick, NY


Janice Tillis, owner of the The Needlepaint Nook, grew up on the South Shore of Long Island, in a town called Malverne. Janice also has a sister Beth who is two years younger. Beth is a partner in a C.P.A. firm. Their parents are both retired New York City school teachers and their mother's and father's consistent support during their daughters' childhoods has been invaluable to both Janice and her sister.

Janice attended Buffalo State College and graduated in 1984 with a dual teaching degree in Elementary Education and Special Education. After completing her education, she taught for 1 year in the NYC school system, then got married and moved to New Jersey. She has been married for eighteen years to her wonderful & supportive husband, Richard. They have two bright and beautiful daughters; Katie (16) and Jessica (13) and live in Merrick, NY. Her sister Beth is married as well and has two daughters of her own, twins 10 years old.

Upon moving back to Long Island in 1990, Janice was introduced to The Needlepaint Nook by a friend, Nancy. They both had 2 year old daughters and initially met at the nursery school which their children attended. They were also both pregnant expecting their second child at the same time. During their growing friendship they happened to discover that both of them shared a love of needlepoint. Nancy had been shopping at The Needlepaint Nook for a few years already and recommended it to Janice.

Janice and Nancy reveled in stitching together and soon became mutual "common fixtures" at the shop. When the original owners of The Needlepaint Nook decided to retire, they asked Nancy and Janice if they might be interested in purchasing the store. During the negotiations, Nancy opted out, but Janice resolved to make the big leap and buy it on her own. Having no business or retail background was more than a little unnerving; it was outright daunting. But Janice's excitement at the new venture and its creative potential and possibilities helped her to overcome her reservations. The Needlepaint Nook had already been in business for 23 years when Janice bought it and she has now successfully stewarded it for almost 8 years.

Upon its purchase, Janice commenced to completely revamp and redecorate the store, creating a bright, pretty and extremely user friendly atmosphere. Prior customers immediately noticed the difference. "Long-lost" customers began to re-discover, flock back and return repeatedly. Janice was thrilled and has never regretted her decision nor looked back.

When she took over the helm, Janice promoted a very valuable employee, Pat, who had worked for the prior owners, to manager. They work seamlessly together as a team and have since developed a very special rapport. Customers are comfortable with Pat and look to her for guidance, support and creative advice without hesitation. Janice adds, "We are also extremely lucky to have wonderful part-timers. Diane has been with us for 7 years, Holly for 4, and Phyllis for 1 and a half years. They all thoroughly delight in working together and share the same goal of giving each customer personal, individual and undivided attention to the client's specific needs and wants. Janice has truly created the environment she first envisioned for a shop that is creative and both truly exciting and relaxing at the same time.

Staff of The Needlepaint Nook
(from left to right)
Diane, Phyllis, Janice (owner), Pat (manager), Holly

Janice and Pat travel to California for the TNNA Show and have since turned their buying sprees there into veritable Olympic events! The shop had already stocked "Rachel" threads from the Caron Collection for a few years because a current customer had worked with Rachel and liked it so much. This past winter at the Long Beach, CA. Show, Pat and Janice were on the hunt again to find new fibers for the shop. They mentioned this at some of the classes they took there and many of their peers suggested speaking with Lois Caron of the Caron Collection. When they met with Lois in her booth, she was friendly and very helpful in guiding them through her tremendous thread collection. Janice and Pat settled on purchasing Watercolours and Impressions. Not only do they both thoroughly love these fibers, but to their extreme delight many of their customers have found them fabulous to work with.

The Needlepaint Nook stocks mostly hand-painted canvases, with a few stamped and some kits. They carry a tremendous fiber inventory and the whole staff loves experimenting with different combinations. The shop also offers personalized instruction with the most experienced and professionals. The entire staff glories in mapping out canvases with loads of fibers and stitches. Everyone is always on the lookout for new and different projects to experiment with: Tic Tack Toe Board Games, Pocketbooks, Faberge Eggs, endless categories of canvases and even Shoes enhance their inventory.

Janice employs a custom artist to personalize projects and create original designs to her customer's specifications. The Needlepaint Nook also offers a fabulous finishing department. Their custom finisher is extremely talented and creative. They also employ the services of The Spinning Wheel Shop in Texas and Voila! C'est Fini! in Florida. The results are always very exciting to behold! In addition, the store creates Tallis Bags, Christmas Stockings & Ornaments, Pillows, Dreidles, 3D animals, 3D eggs, Pocketbooks and much more.

Transportation Alphabet
by Alice Peterson Company
Framing Treatment as Racetrack Custom Designed
by The Needlepaint Nook

Framing services are also provided which complement each piece in its most appropriate and beautiful style. You can choose from regular stock frames to the most creative and unique custom, hand-made designs. Among custom projects they've completed are Barn frames for Cow designs, Oven shaped frames for kitchen scenes to Racetrack Themed frames for transportation and alphabet designs. The possibilities are virtually endless and Janice and her staff are eminently suited to help you choose the best frame to complement your handiwork to look its finest.

Country Wreath Cow
By Marcy
Available from JB Designs
Framing Treatment as Barn Custom Designed
By The Needlepaint Nook

The Needlepaint Nook is located in the shopping district of Merrick, NY. This happens to be the third site the store has occupied since its inception, and was the location when Janice purchased it. Parking is available within the immediate area and the suburban neighborhood lends itself to pedestrian traffic as well. Some long-time loyal customers travel great distances just to visit the shop. It is close to major highways and the staff is always eager to give directions to potential new clients coming from any direction!

"So, come visit us," exclaims Janice, "We can't wait to meet you!"

Janice Tillis
The Needlepaint Nook
76 Merrick Ave
Merrick, NY 11566
Phone: (516) 623-0250
Shop Hours: Wed. and Fri from 10:30 am to 5 pm
Thursday from 12:30 pm to 6 pm
Saturday from 10:30 am to 4 pm

Note: a special thanks to Janice's husband Richard, without whose help and support this shop feature would not have been possible.

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