Nightingale Arts of Salem Offers Unique Handmade Art and Crafts

Items made locally with care.

Along with Heidi and Melissa Chouinard, Marie Barron has opened a new store on Boston Street featuring artwork, refinished furniture, jewelry, stonework, sculptures and other items — almost all handmade by local artists. 

“If people want something unique, handmade from local people, that’s what we’re all about,” Barron said.

Barron, the former owner of MVP Sports, has a long background in retail and bought the property two years ago. She said “I knew I always wanted to open a store like this.”

With Heidi and Melissa creating most of the artwork, their uncle Michael often buys furniture at auction or even picks it up by the roadside for refurbishing and selling. People can either purchase original artwork or prints beginning at $25.

“Something we wanted to emphasize was all kinds of price ranges,” Barron said. “We can really cater to everybody. And we’re trying not to be mass-manufactured, putting a bit more quality into our gifts.”

Working full-time, all three women feel an attachment to both the store and its merchandise. The Chouinards grew up in a very artistic environment, and Barron and her sister have always been making arts and crafts. Michael is Barron's boyfriend, and she calls Heidi and Melissa her neices since they are all so close.

“We love it when one of the things we made sells,” Barron said. “It’s personal. We can take just about any object and fix it and make it new for someone. Sometimes we try to keep things old and beautiful or sometimes take it and make it modern and cool. Anything that’s in here can go into any type of home.”

Barron says that even though the shop is not downtown, Boston Street has a lot of traffic and they are enjoying a steady stream of customers. To draw them in, the store is painted bright yellow with a big wooden crow standing on the sidewalk.

Sylvia Warner, a frequent customer who has run Filigree & Fancy Antiques on for nearly 30 years, said “I think it’s wonderful. I just love to see places like this coming in.”

For all the last-minute shoppers out there, Nightingale will have a special open house holiday sale Christmas Eve from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Holiday items include handmade scarves, Christmas stockings and of course, ornaments.

Their website www.nightingalearts.com is not up yet, but the shop can be found on Facebook.

Stephen Oakes December 15, 2011 at 02:52 PM
Thanks for the clarification. Michael is Marie's boyfriend. She refers to Heidi and Melissa as her nieces since they are all so close.
roger boulay December 17, 2011 at 09:05 PM
it has come to my attention that there has been some misunderstanding about my post regarding the article about nightingales new store...the 1st article the patch published stated that mike chouinard was the father of melissa and heidi..the article also stated that marie barron was the girls aunt..rick chouinard is the girls father and marie is no relation to the girls...these are simply the facts..the patch made a mistake and i pointed it out....i have never met marie barron and my post was in no way meant to be a shot at marie.....i am sorry if my comments were taken out of context...i have known melissa and heidi since they were little girls and i wish only the best for them.....as a business owner myself i wish marie and micheal only success...i hope everything works out well for all involved and meant no harm in my comments....good luck.........
john December 17, 2011 at 10:46 PM
Salem Patch is an unreliable source at best.
Bob Kerr March 06, 2012 at 11:57 PM
Their website: www.NightingaleArts.com is now up and running, I know, I built it. Additionally, I am the creator of some hand-made white birch crafts such as birch lamps, candle holders and more that can now be found at Nightingale.
Pamela Burgess November 22, 2012 at 04:27 AM
I just bought A medium sized painting from Melissa Chouinard. It is of a sea horse floating in an ocean of blue. It is whimsical yet serious. The color and lighting are great. It brightens up the room wonderfully. I get lots of compliments on the painting.The price was reasonable. The delight of having "real" art in my home is very important to me. I highly recommend visiting the Nightingale gift shop if you like to support your local community and artists. Pam B.


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