Among the crowd of new shops popping up in the village is Found, which opened its storefront on Sea Cliff Avenue three months ago. Co-owner Stefanie Nemirov, of Glen Head, once sold antiques that she restored in her home studio online. It wasn’t until she met fellow resident Dan O’Connor that she entertained the idea of opening a shop and bringing greater exposure to her artistic talent.
“[Dan] likes to do a lot of picking and searching for antique and vintage stuff, and we figured we’d merge together and open a little store,” said Nemirov, 44, who grew up in Sea Cliff and has a background in theater design. The idea behind Found is to return Sea Cliff to the antique-laden village of yesteryear, she said, and offer “old world” pieces redesigned for the modern-day home.
For O’Connor, 43, who spent his childhood accompanying his mother to estate stales and antique auctions upstate, Found gives shoppers the opportunity to connect with items from the past.
“I’m a firm believer in history,” O’Connor said. “I always feel like people should know history, whether it’s good, bad or indifferent, and the pieces kind of speak to that. They’re real wood, they were built a certain way, and [that aesthetic is] hard to duplicate today.”
He added that while Nemirov’s talents help bring out the “elegance” of a piece — whether that means adding a fresh coat of paint or adorning it with an original saying — its authenticity remains.
“There’s really a hand on everything,” O’Connor said of Found’s unique pieces.
“But nothing is mass-produced,” Nemirov added. “Everything is one of a kind.”
The shop specializes in vintage furniture, handmade focal pieces and “gathered goods” touched up with a modern, farmhouse feel. In the center of the shop stands a wooden table-and-chair set layered with chalk paint, which adds a weathered, driftwood-like finish. The seats of the ladder-back chairs were refurbished with a taupe-colored mattress ticking affixed using antique brass nails.
Inside the store are vintage dressers, vanities and cabinets containing colorful china, modest tableware sets and custom-painted wine glasses, beer pints and coffee mugs. The inviting seat of a baby pink vanity — which is currently Nemirov’s favorite piece in Found — is upholstered in a rose-petaled fabric. Its drawers feature a confetti of gold polka dots.
Hung on Found’s walls are refurbished picture frames, monochromatic signs adorned with homey sayings, and transformed two-by-fours detailing the coordinates of Sea Cliff, Glen Cove and Glenwood Landing.
The items in the shop mirror Nemirov’s and O’Connor’s own appreciation for the past, as the two grew up with an affinity for finding hidden gems.
“I’ve lived in Victorians since I was an infant, and my parents would always go antique hunting,” Nemirov said. “I remember walking home from school, I used to go garbage picking — I used to get things in the garbage all the time!”
“I’ve collected my whole life,” O’Connor said. “Whether it’s matchbox cars, marbles, cameras, I always like finding something that interests me.”
Accommodating the community’s interest in unusual home goods is key to Found’s success, Nemirov said. “I think a lot of people who live here really appreciate having a store like this; it fits a niche,” she said. “There really aren’t a lot of places to go, especially in Sea Cliff, to get a gift. But you can come here, grab something and go.”
“As president of the Glen Head Glenwood Business Association, I welcome Found to our North Shore Community, and I’m happy to see Sea Cliff now flourishing with many unique choices to shop local,” said Deborah Gordon.
Found, at 249 Sea Cliff Ave., will have a grand opening in September.