The Shop

The origin story of the L.O.F.T. is as quirky and carefree as the store itself. It all began on Cumberland Circle in 1996, where Katie Skinner and Vann Boyd met as neighbors. Katie had recently quit her job and spent her days refinishing old furniture and making tie-chairs to sell at local arty shops and consignment stores, while trying to figure out what she wanted to do with her life. Vann, who lived just down the street, would walk by and chat with Katie while she worked on projects in the yard. Vann was a junker too, frequenting flea markets and yard sales for good furniture deals and then up-cycling them, filling his house with treasures, just like Katie. Needless to say, they became fast friends.

One Friday evening while Vann's wife, Caroline was out of town, Katie and Vann were having some drinks on the porch, Katie says it was margaritas while Vann insists it was wine, and discussing business ideas. Whatever the libations, they were buzzed, and the always energetic Vann got Katie all fired up, as he is known to do. He said, "We each have a little money saved up, lets get a building and open a store!'' or something like that... By Monday morning they met with a real estate agent and purchased 53 Broadway. The next day, Caroline returned home to find that her husband had bought a building with a woman she barely knew. Luckily, she knew this to be his nature and jumped on board with a here-we-go-again sentiment. Caroline even came up with the name: Lost Objects, Found Treasures – L.O.F.T.

Over the next six months, Katie and Vann renovated the building themselves, which had been an old restaurant supply. They filled the store with the furniture they fixed up in their respective homes along with Chronicle Books, Vance Kittera Candles, and French-milled soaps, and the L.O.F.T. was born.

While Vann is no longer a co-owner of the L.O.F.T., he and Katie remain the best of friends and regularly drink wine and cocktails on her porch.