If it’s been too long since you’ve redecorated, perhaps your house isn’t as fine as you thought. Take a good look around with a visitor’s eye and if things need a little sprucing up, check out the following specialty stores. You are sure to find a piece or two that will change the look of your room from faded to fabulous. Sometimes all you need is a punch of color or a conversation piece to renew your tired-looking castle.

Scarlett Alley
241 Race St.
Philadelphia PA 19106
(215) 592-7898

Scarlet Alley is aptly named, as it is tucked away on one-way Race Street. But what a treasure trove of trinkets can be found if you decide to ditch the traffic for a bit and meander into this little gem of a store! Scarlet Alley offers a little bit of everything for both you and your home. With a website that complements the store, this is definitely the place to shop for decorating items no one else has. From a New Jersey coastline shower curtain to antler candleholders or globes that rotate using only the movement of natural light, you’ll spend the whole time poking your shopping buddy saying, “Hey, look at this!” Home to Barefoot Dreams bedding, Mariposa glassware and Nambe crystal, Scarlet Alley is a cut above the routine home departments found in most stores.

Rejuvenated Furniture and Finds
7430 Frankford Ave.
Philadelphia, PA 19136
(215) 624-2707

Rejuvenated Furniture and Finds is one of those places you will enjoy visiting again and again to see what is new. Heirloom pieces from days gone by are refinished and repainted to reflect more modern times. Crisp clean whites, ocean blues and seashell pinks are just some of the hues used to create that everything-old-looks-new-again decor. If you need to decorate a vacation home on a shoestring budget, this is the place to come. On the lower level, find knick-knacks and bric-a-brac of all kinds to accentuate your home furnishings. Stop in often: You just may find that special item you didn’t even know you were missing.

Ten Thousand Villages
1122 Walnut St.
Philadelphia, PA 19107
(215) 574-2008

If wanderlust beckons to you but taking a trip to a foreign shore is not in your budget, then appease that voice inside you by visiting Ten Thousand Villages. Here, you will find hundreds of one-of-a-kind items handcrafted by artisans from around the globe, including alpaca blankets from Bolivia and friendship candleholders made in Kenya. An added benefit is that your purchase is a show of support for these skilled craftsmen, who are located in more than 38 countries. A founding member of the World Fair Trade Organization, Ten Thousand Villages offers 390 outlets throughout the United States and two within the Philadelphia city limits – Center City and Chestnut Hill. A visit to one of these stores is like taking a mini adventure to an exotic location. Visit the retailer’s website to learn more about fair trade, volunteer opportunities and the artisans themselves.

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Roots Inc.
8436 Germantown Ave.
Philadelphia, PA 19118
(267) 385-5753

Not everyone needs a paper-mache bull’s head, but if you do, this is the place! Located in Chestnut Hill, this store offers wacky things like artichoke lamps that set it apart. These are definitely singular items that more than likely will not be found anywhere else. Heather Stauffer, a second-generation store owner on the Avenue, offers up a menagerie of home décor items as well as clothing and accessories.

Luxe Home Philadelphia
1308 Chestnut St.
Philadelphia, PA 19107
(215) 732-2001

If you are looking for high-end decorative accessories, a visit to Luxe Home in downtown Philadelphia is in order. Browse the showroom not only for lamps, rugs, artwork and mirrors, but also for furniture. Luxe Home lends its expertise to real-estate staging, and its skills are proven – check out some of its finest work on the website. One particular item of interest is its eco-friendly wall and tabletop fireplaces. Manufactured by Eco Feu, these fireplaces use ethanol to create a real fireplace look without the soot. Warning: A visit to Luxe Home may cause a redecorating explosion.

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Anita Flynn is a freelance writer covering all things Philadelphia. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.