Nancy Hendricks describes her new store in Port Jefferson as just “a little corner shop that’s made in America.”
Her venture is called TAAG, which stands for Treasures America’s Artisan Gallery.
The name is fitting because upon walking into the store at 14 E. Broadway, the feel of the space goes beyond the word patriotic.
“Everything in the store is made in the United States,” she said.
Nancy and her husband of 30 years, Bob, love Port Jefferson.
Over the years, they would drive from their home in Kings Park to the village nearly every weekend. And before the pandemic hit, they considered buying a home in the area.
She and Bob are both artists.
The couple long toyed with the idea of opening up their own art studio.
Nancy’s brother and sister-in-law own Ecolin Jewelers in the village and they alerted Nancy of a florist place that just went out of business.
When the two heard about the open storefront, the couple decided to give their art studio a try — and something about an art shop “made in America” just stuck.
Located in the heart of Port Jeff’s downtown, TAAG sells custom paintings, goods, and home décor that are made from local vendors and artists from all over the United States.
Some local artists featured in the store include a few residents of Port Jefferson.
Like Angel Perez. She’s a Navy veteran who makes wooden American flags.
Patrons can also find handmade gifts from Michigan, Maine, North Carolina, South Carolina, Las Vegas, and more.
Nancy said the shop pays tribute to local heroes in the community with its “Wall of Honor,” which is a blue wall full of signed white stars in the back of the space.
“When anybody comes in and they’re in the service, or they are a police officer or working in the hospital, anybody that is a hero in these times, they put their names down,” Nancy said.
Story continues after photo.
Nancy and Bob are teenage sweethearts.
“We dated back when we were teenagers, then life gets in the way, we break up after we dated for three years,” she said. “Then 30 years later, we got back together, got married, and now we do this.”
In the corner of the shop is Bob’s own personal art studio, where he spends his free time from work creating custom paintings and signs.
Bob is currently commissioning an “ode to Port Jeff” painting that will be on display at the Village Hall for a couple of months.
Bob has spent several hours working on the painting — sometimes outside on a nice day, and it is almost completed.
Whenever he does a large painting like this, Nancy said she will grab a paintbrush and help him out.
“He’s the true artist,” Nancy said about her husband. “He’s like my mentor.”
Hendricks said she “dibs and dabs” in painting as well, and her own sunset paintings and custom signs are for sale in the store.
Aside from TAAG, the couple also provides artistic residential and commercial installations through their art studio, Royal Creations Faux Effects.
They specialize in hand-applied contemporary, modern and old-world finishes and some of their work includes commissioned fine art, murals, graphic designs, and more.
The owners hope to gain more attention for their store and possibly franchise in the future.
They also hope to help local art vendors and their businesses take off by buying and selling their designs.
“We want to help the small businesses and the entrepreneurs in taking their business off,” Hendricks said.
“We are just a little shop on the corner trying to make ends meet.”
Below are some photos of the patriotic art shop.
Top: Nancy Hendricks outside of TAAG Made in America