A World Tour of Décor
A repurposed Tata truck grille from India is made into a long table that can also serve as a bar.

A World Tour of Décor

Home Emporium and its Cincinnati showroom offer a wide array of global items for anybody’s home

There are 11 Home Emporium stores sprinkled throughout the midwestern and southeastern United States, all of which promise customers that they can shop the world at one stop. The Cincinnati location—located at 11360 Princeton Pike in Springdale after formerly being off Ridge Road in Pleasant Ridge—offers shoppers a treasure hunt with every visit.

That’s because of the dizzying array of unique products contained therein. Home Emporium sells international items sourced from trade shows, markets, manufacturing plants and individual artisans, as well as renovating materials and one-of-a-kind decorative pieces, fixtures and furniture. This ranges from international versions of standard items, like hanging lamps imported from Bali and India or teak root furniture, to wildly unique fixtures like half-century-old saris made into quilts and clothing and Tata truck grilles—complete with headlights—repurposed into long tables, home bars and cabinets.

Home Emporium prioritizes stewardship in finding the products it procures from around the globe. The company’s product buyers build relationships in other countries, try to work directly with makers and aim to support the local economy in the regions where they purchase these goods to sell in Home Emporium stores.

Home Emporium interior
Home Emporium prides itself on its array of butcher block wood for countertops, available in a wide range of finishes and types of wood.

“A lot of the stuff is made from reclaimed materials,” explains Star Roberts, advertising manager for Home Emporium. Those found materials include items collected in the wake of natural disasters and those once cast aside as junk, which are then upcycled into furniture, decorative pieces and more. 

Not everything sold in the store is from half a world away. Home Emporium also sources some countertops and flooring materials from Reclaimed Reserve, a company that salvages wood from abandoned horse and tobacco barns and historic buildings in southeastern states such as Kentucky. The Cincinnati store also consistently carries unfinished cabinetry for kitchens and bathrooms, vanities and popular styles of renovating materials.

“The big, big trend in countertops is butcher block countertops and we absolutely dominate the market with butcher block countertops with all the variety of woods that we have,” says Roberts.

The domestics section of Home Emporium—which encompasses everything else related to décor—includes interesting items like three-dimensional metal artwork, one-of-a-kind rugs of all sizes and much more.

“It’s a very eclectic design era right now,” Roberts says, adding that the unique styles and items carried at Home Emporium fit well with this trend of blending established design motifs with individuality and personality. “It’s just really something that you have to see (in person) to really appreciate how cool the stuff is.” 

The many one-of-a-kind items create a new experience with every visit to Home Emporium and create that feeling of a treasure hunt to find the decorative pieces or materials that call out to a shopper on a personal level. But Roberts cautions visitors to Home Emporium to act fast if they see something that strikes them as a perfect fit for their personality and home.

“We tell people, ‘The item you saw today and want to think about tonight is being bought by the people who saw it yesterday and thought about it last night,’” she says.