In celebration of their 40 years operating in Santa Barbara, the Italian Pottery Outlet will have an open house with live music on April 1 at its downtown location at 929 State St.
Antipasti and prosecco will be served to the public. To add to the occasion, the IPO is offering a 25% storewide sale and a gift-with-purchase giveaway.
“We’re really thrilled to achieve this milestone — to work together as a family and accomplish something lasting,” said Julie Spalluto, who is a daughter, sister and partner in the company.
Ms. Spalluto’s parents, Ben and Carol Spalluto, started importing together in the Los Angeles area before they retired to Santa Barbara. Mr. Spalluto, a native of Castellana Grotte, Italy, came to the United States in the 1950s,
and married Carol, a Santa Barbara native.
They found that they both shared a love for fine Italian ceramics. It was their dream to bring these high-quality, handmade, hand-decorated ceramics to the attention of the U.S. market. These gems are made in the smaller Italian factories by artisans and their families.
In the following years, while learning the retail market and finding suppliers in Italy, they hoped that their children could be involved sometime in the future. In 1996, daughter Julie joined the business, followed soon after by her sister, Adele. A few years later their son, Joe, also joined the business.
which began as Arte D’Italia Imports, a wholesale operation, which was originally located in Tujunga.
When the family moved to Santa Barbara, the business was located on
Helena Avenue near Stearns Wharf and renamed Italian Pottery Outlet. In 2008, it was relocated to State Street in the downtown shopping district. The IPO website, www.italianpottery.com, was launched in 1998 and has helped reach an audience far beyond Santa Barbara.
The Spalluto family scours the Italian countryside each year for the most interesting designs and patterns. A huge selection of traditional pottery from Umbria and Tuscany, as well as new and exciting patterns from regions all over Italy are available in their downtown store.
These ceramics are made in small workshops where artisans and their families produce individual works of art using techniques handed down from generation to generation.