Kirk Laing’s affinity for terracotta began in an 800-year-old Italian farmhouse tucked into a hill outside of Florence, where he and his wife — a native Italian — lived and worked as missionaries for eight years. The couple was enamored with the charms of their centuries-old home: the rustic stone walls; ancient fireplaces; and the stunning, pastoral views from their doorstep. They knew then that the Italian traditions of simplicity and craftsmanship would always be an important part of their lives.
When Laing and his wife returned to the United States, they tried to incorporate a sense of Italian design into their home. Says Laing, “We applied stucco to our walls, built old brick arches, put a wood-burning brick oven in our yard, and bought a large assortment of terracotta so that we could recreate Italy in our home and garden.” When friends who visited noticed — and admired — the couple’s terracotta collection, Laing realized that there was a true market for simple, beautifully designed products. Tuscan Imports, Inc. was born.
Today Tuscan Imports, Inc., helmed by Laing, a full-fledged terracotta expert and arbiter of Italian culture, carries extensive collections of terracotta planters, jars, fountains, urns, and more, all created in workshops scattered throughout Italy. Tuscan Imports’ products are crafted by hand using time-tested firing techniques and the world’s finest materials: Laing’s terracotta comes from the small Italian village of Impruneta, an area famous for high-quality, frost-proof clay. The end result? Individual works of art that add natural, Italian-inspired ambience to landscapes throughout the United States.
When asked to name his favorite products, Laing — still true to his Italian roots — favors the simple over the ornate and stresses that his company is built on a combination of quality products and excellent customer service. Tuscan Imports, Inc. offers trade discounts and can commission pieces for customers in search of specific items.
In addition to his Impruneta and a Siena line, Laing also offers lightweight options, glazed terracotta, and an assortment of wood-burning ovens. To view the full Tuscan Imports product line, visit tuscanimports.com.
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