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Clockwise from top left: Twelve Chairs by <a href="http://www.flagshipphoto.com">Flagship Photo</a>; Restoration Hardware via <a href="http://curbed.com/archives/2013/03/29/14-crazy-things-about-restoration-hardwares-boston-store.php">Curbed Nationa
Clockwise from top left: Twelve Chairs by Flagship Photo; Restoration Hardware via Curbed Nationa

Redecorate Fabulously at Boston's 38 Essential Home Stores

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Clockwise from top left: Twelve Chairs by Flagship Photo; Restoration Hardware via Curbed Nationa

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With the end of winter comes dreaded spring cleaning, which will usually turn us against the hand-me-down coffee table and bookcase that resembles the leaning Tower of Pisa in our living room. And we're certainly not holding on until Allston Christmas, so, we're giving our Home Goods 38 guide a makeover.

Last year brought numerous additions and some unfortunate closures in Boston's decor retail scene. South End boutiques Diseño and Addo Novo closed, but cosmic balance has been restored with openings from kitchen and vintage cookbook shop Farm & Fable, Southie's beachy Neatly Nested, urban gardening store Niche Garden Supply, and SoWa's offbeat December Thieves.

While we adore national chains like West Elm and Design Within Reach, we've swapped them out for Restoration Hardware's epic space in a historic Back Bay building and the Vermont-based glassware specialist Simon Pearce. Other updates to our map include Cambridge gems Didriks and Local Root, artisan goods at Good in Beacon Hill, and sleek Back Bay showroom Montage.

We've selected every price point (from New England indie to fancy French, Italian, and Scandinavian designers), and hit all corners of the city in highlighting alternatives to the big box chains. This list is in no particular order; rather, it goes north to south, hopping back and forth between neighborhoods—just like you will be after diving in. Time to pore over those Pinterest boards and prep that household wish list.

Did we miss your favorite spot? Hit the tipline or drop a note in the comments.


03/20/13: Added: December Thieves, Didriks, Farm & Fable, Good, Local Root, Montage, Neatly Nested, Niche, Restoration Hardware, Simon Pearce

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The Boston Shaker

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Boston has a thing for craft cocktails, but what's a person to do when making them at home? Stop by The Boston Shaker. This temple of libations stocks the right tools, drinkware, and even obscure ingredients required to recreate those speakeasy elixirs. [Photo]
Handpicked items like Mexican folk art (Day of the Dead pieces abound) and African instruments sit alongside equally unique clothing and jewelry at Nomad. Bolivian blankets, Swahili baskets, and Indian lanterns are just some of the global buys at this Porter Square shop. [Photo]

Abodeon

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Modern furniture is the specialty at Abodeon, with top notch contemporary and professionally restored vintage pieces. A Scandinavian sensibility dictates the merchandise—a (welcome) step up from generic Ikea. [Photo]
Don't sleep if you fall in love with a mid-century gem at this mostly vintage furniture store—quick turnover results in a constantly changing inventory. Generally high prices reflect the one-of-a-kind nature of your piece (if not collectible). Reupholstery can be arranged. [Photo]

Local Root: the Kitchen Store

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Though a bit off the beaten path, Local Root draws customers for its kitchen-dedicated mission to offer high quality (and high design) tools from All-Clad, Revol, Mauviel, and more. Knives can be professionally sharpened in just 24 hours, so you can pretend you're as skilled as say, Barbara Lynch, in your own house. [Courtesy Photo]

Didriks

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The forerunner to neighboring sister store Local Root, Didriks specializes in outdoor furniture and umbrellas (teak and steel from Barlow Tyrie), tableware (for example iittala glass), and textiles (including Brahms Mount blankets). [Courtesy Photo]

Black Ink

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The hodgepodge of trinkets at Black Ink is kind of like an in-person Fab.com. It's pegged as a "one stop design shop," and it certainly has found a home in Harvard Square. Clever goods, including a bounty of paper items and "kawaii" kitchen supplies, are appreciated in this intellectual crowd. [Photo by Flagship Photo]
Xylem speaks to its Kendall Square spot with home goods and gifts for brainy folks. The name itself is a horticulture term, and the distinctive wall design feels scientific, displaying cheeky kitchen tools and more. [Photo by Flagship Photo]

Acquire

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Antique and repurposed furniture are eclectic at Acquire, but it's also worth mentioning the owner, Nikki Dalrymple. Her design services are renowned and while the gallery focuses mostly on decor, she serves the fashion lover well with a unique selection of jewelry and bags. [Photo]
Good owner Paul Niski has been editing a collection of regionally-sourced items for over a decade, bringing in potters and furniture makers from Vermont, iconic Peterborough baskets, and ceramics from Connecticut. A selection of pillows and vintage tableware is a nice counterpoint to the artisan nature of the decor. [Photo by Flagship Photo]

E.R. Butler & Co.

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This history-rich store is the successor to earlier hardware suppliers in New England, resulting in tried-and-true hinges, knobs, and more. The Early American, Federal and Georgian periods are E.R. Butler's specialty, but French and contemporary offerings are also available. [Photo]

Roche Bobois

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Roche Bobois is essentially French—but we're not talking Versailles. The upscale furniture store has been around since the 1950s, evolving with mod egg chairs, abstract sofas, and Scandinavian inspired chests and tables. [Photo]

Ligne Roset

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Another French manufacturer, Ligne Roset operates on the principle that ideas come first and technique follows—though it generally has the latter down pat. Their contemporary designs are rooted in designer collaborations with industry leaders from Japan, New York, and Denmark.

Thos. Moser

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Scrap that particleboard for solid wood pieces from Thos. Moser. Bedframes, cabients, and the like are built in Auburn, ME, from American black cherry wood and bear a resemblance to Shaker and Pennsylvania Dutch style design. Local partners provide rugs, artwork, and bedding for display. [Photo]

Montage

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Montage is a sleek Back Bay showroom for upscale modern, with a penchant for Italian furniture that costs a pretty penny (emphasis on pretty). Shop major names in European design like Moroso, B&B Italia, and Poltrona Frau at this family-run retailer with more than half a century of experience serving Boston. [Photo]

IL DECOR

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Imported modern furniture has a home at Il Decor, especially Italian brands like Rosetto, SanGiacomo, and Calligaris. Service here is noted for being attentive and personal. [Photo]

Circle Furniture

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This local furniture chain is chock full of stylish and comfortable sofas, dining sets, and office equipment. The look is modern-meets-traditional, and a sizable selection of leather chairs and recliners is welcome—as are eco-friendly options. [Photo]

Neena's Boylston

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Local mini-chain Neena's nails lighting, with an expert-selection of in-demand brands that sparkle from Boylston Street. Those Kartell ghost chairs you see everywhere? They can be bought here. [Photo]

Pompanoosuc Mills

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Pompanoosuc builds functional wood furniture right in Vermont for pieces that can stand up to family life. Build your items to order at the Boston showroom. [Photo]

Restoration Hardware

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Restoration Hardware went big and bold for its takeover of the Back Bay building formerly occupied by Louis. From an indoor park complete with mini Eiffel Tower to an antique centerpiece elevator, the palatial space features many highly-styled rooms. The basement contains an impeccable children's department with a variety of baby gifts including textiles and jewelry, while an on-site florist can work on completing your own majestic look for home. [Photo]

Simon Pearce

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The name Simon Pearce is synonymous with Vermont-blown glass goods, offering a range of American-crafted tableware, lighting, and decor with coordinating linens and pottery items. [Photo]

Jonathan Adler

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Grounded in ceramic design, Jonathan Adler quickly expanded to a level of international-celebrity with a full product line. We are always excited to spot his work in a friend's home and have never stepped in the store without walking out charmed.

Marimekko

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If Marimekko's poppy prints and smile-inducing colors don't give warm fuzzies, you don't have a pulse. Textiles and kitchenware are emblazoned with signature patterns from the Finnish house. Tons of events regularly pull fans into the store.

Bostonwood

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This supplier in Packard's Corner is known for unfinished wood furniture, from storage boxes to desks and more. Paint 'em gold, neon, or do a nice glossy finish—work on the DIY of your dreams. [Photo]

Mitchell Gold & Bob Williams

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Mitchell Gold & Bob Williams has international adoration for a reason—comfort is disguised in ultra modern pieces that have traditional influences behind them. The collection is made in a North Carolina factory and eco-friendly initiatives have been implemented since its inception. [Photo]

Twelve Chairs

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Having formerly occupied a gigantic lofty Fort Point Channel space, the duo behind Twelve Chairs boasts a constantly rotating selection of colorful and textured furniture and decor. The second level shop is beautiful because it's merchandised by the interior designer owners, who also offer consultation services. [Photo by Flagship Photo]

Farm & Fable

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Owner Abby Ruettgers introduces her dual concept of a vintage cookbook store with a chef-grade basement kitchen in an environment that celebrates nostalgia. Drawn toward mid-century modern, she stocks a variety of vintage barware, complemented by rustic handmade culinary accessories from regional makers including aprons, cutting boards, and oyster plates. [Courtesy Photo]

Niche Garden Supply

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A green thumb is not necessary to enjoy this petite garden shop (but it definitely helps, and they'll gladly lend a hand teaching you). The South End shop serves apartment inhabitants well with easy-to-maintain succulents and window box blooms, including veggie seeds. On occasion, Niche hosts workshops to tackle topics like terrarium making and centerpiece arrangements. [Photo]
Clean comfort defines the Hudson look, which is very reminiscent of a perfectly worn-in Cape house from a design magazine. Vintage furniture and preppy textiles mix with organic motifs in vases, storage knick knacks, and lighting. [Photo by Flagship Photo]

Michelle Willey Boutique

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Michelle Willey is a South End mainstay with all sorts of easy, sophisticated pieces. Chinese porcelain, Tibetan pillows, and handmade subway sign wall art are all must-haves. [Photo by Flagship Photo]

Patch NYC

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Our love for this store cannot be contained. It excels at home decor with candle collaborations, a ceramics line in conjunction with Parisian studio Astier de Villatte, papier-mâché animal busts, illustrated pillows...the list goes on and on. [Photo by Flagship Photo]

Lekker Home

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A Dutch name signals the mostly Dutch selection of furniture and decor. Having recently celebrated its ten year anniversary, Lekker was at the forefront of bringing creative design to the Washington Street corridor. Shiny chrome and gorgeous wood anchor colorful room accessories. [Photo]

Mohr & McPherson

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Bostonians flock to Mohr & McPherson for relaxing lattes in the cafe, but what keeps them exploring the space is a selection of rustic decor items and a treasure trove of Asian-found goods. Plus, they have a dedicated rug gallery. [Photo]

December Thieves

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Small but well-stocked, the focus here is on emerging artists and brands, many of which employ sustainable production techniques. You'll find tableware and wall art at friendly prices. [Courtesy Photo]

Machine Age

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Machine Age is pretty amazing—9,000 square feet are filled with the largest collection of twentieth-century home design in the region. Expect to find notable names like Eames and Knoll in prime condition, as well as objets d'art. [Photo]

Neatly Nested

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Just a few months old, this cheerful boutique will have you grabbing Seawicks candles (poured in Maine), hand-painted vintage furniture (that you can actually afford), and charming bric-a-brac that speaks to a New England beach sensibility. Shabby chic and cottage styles reign supreme here. Frequent craft nights teach decorating tricks including paper flowers and candle votives. [Photo]

Room 68

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Funky lighting, eccentric seating, and geometric shelving are the statement-makers in this edited boutique in JP. Plus they stock the uber cool 3D printed Nervous System lamps and decor that are designed right in Somerville. Come May, Room 68 Provincetown will open. [Photo by Flagship Photo]

Kalembar Dune

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A hidden gem, Kalembar Dune offers antiques and funky found objects on a super wallet-friendly budget. Every look around the store delivers a new discovery, and artisan goods from area makers add a local touch. A neighboring space is home to a furniture-dedicated area for refinished pieces. Later this spring, it will open Garden and Shed, offering vintage and artisanal garden items as well as architectural salvage. [Courtesy Photo]

The Boston Shaker

Boston has a thing for craft cocktails, but what's a person to do when making them at home? Stop by The Boston Shaker. This temple of libations stocks the right tools, drinkware, and even obscure ingredients required to recreate those speakeasy elixirs. [Photo]

Nomad

Handpicked items like Mexican folk art (Day of the Dead pieces abound) and African instruments sit alongside equally unique clothing and jewelry at Nomad. Bolivian blankets, Swahili baskets, and Indian lanterns are just some of the global buys at this Porter Square shop. [Photo]

Abodeon