Today’s Q&A with a local business is with Christine Keane, owner of Found & Design on Elm Street.
Here’s our exchange.
New Canaanite: You opened on Elm Street in 2016, hitting the five-year milestone this year. How’s it going at Found & Design?
Christine Keane: Really well. Very happy with my move.
While the pandemic has been deeply disruptive for retailers, it also appeared to fuel extremely high activity in the local residential real estate market. We are hearing now about a corresponding rise in building permits issued, as many recently landed residents go to work on their newly purchased homes. What effect, if any, has all that activity had on your business?
People are definitely looking for furniture and things, and because that is so backed up right from new companies, that has helped with my vintage pieces. People are buying directly off of the floor, which I’ve always offered. I think it has also borough a lot of new customers into town, which is great for any business.
You moved your storefront recently from Elm Street near the intersection with Park, to Elm near the intersection of Main, so you’ve had a front-row seat of activity in our downtown. How busy is it this holiday shopping season? What is your sense of shoppers’ willingness amid this lingering pandemic to come out and patronize our local merchants?
I would say it’s probably the same as before.
Your website features some of your “favorite” items on its homepage, such as the gold ceramic pagoda and blue-and-white medium cherry blossom jar. What are some of your most popular offerings?
Right now it’s ornaments. They’re very popular this year. Probably the most popular item is a ‘stick a butter.’ You know, a glass, full-size stick of butter. It’s definitely ornaments, I would say because people are getting bigger trees, people that have moved to town who were not here before.
What else would you like to tell our readers about Found & Design?
I think some people are confused about what it is, so I would say that it’s a home decor store but it’s a mix of vintage and ne. I have everything from mirrors to consoles, but also if you’re looking for a unique hostess gift or a fabulous pair of earrings, that’s all tied in with our home decor items.
[Past installments of our Q&A series with local businesses this holiday season can be found here.]