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Williams-Sonoma: It All Started With Imported Cookware

Updated on October 7, 2013

Charles E Williams, Founder

In 1953 Charles E Williams took his first trip to France and fell in love with French kitchenware.  This inspired Williams and he knew that there was nothing like this back in the states.  In 1956 Williams-Sonoma was founded and revolutionized American cookware.  They would soon gain the reputation as the purveyor of choice kitchenware, and gourmet products.  The first Williams-Sonoma shop to open offered imported French cookware to the American public.  Today they play host to 250 stores nationwide, catalog sales and host a very successful e-commerce site.  Williams-Sonoma Home would complete that package in 2005 and can now boast that they have everything you need for your home.  Stylish, classic and high quality furniture that would get anyone enthused about home decorating.

Williams-Sonoma Store
Williams-Sonoma Store

Williams-Sonoma, Inc

Williams-Sonoma did not stop there, in September 1986; they acquired Pottery Barn, which is now a wholly owned subsidiary.  Pottery Barn also has some great stuff for the home ranging from furniture bedding to accessories.  Pottery Barn expanded to Pottery Barn Kids which has bedding and other items geared towards younger kids, and PBteen is geared towards the teenager.  West Elm was added to the Williams-Sonoma family with their furniture being more contemporary and modern in style. 

Williams-Sonoma website has a lot of great information and shopping.  There is gift registry, wine club, and one fun thing that they do is the Cook’s Network.  The Cook’s Network is an affiliate program that you can earn you commission buy displaying products on your blog or other site.  If you are already an affiliate through Google you can sign up through that and one needs that to become part of the Cook’s Network.  If you blog or write about cooking, recipes, and cookware this could be ideal to earn some passive income. 

In October 20, 2001, marked the opening of the company's first international store in Toronto Canada and more followed.  In 2005, Williams-Sonoma entered into an agreement with the CBS News weekday program “The Early Show” featuring a segment called the Five Minute Cooking School.  This was popular among the morning viewers of “The Early Show”. 

Charles E Williams started a dynasty that set the trend for high end, classic cookware that would last forever.  This expanded to furniture, then the acquirement of the Pottery Barn and West Elm.  With any of these companies you know you are going to get the best that money can buy. 

Williams-Sonoma Information

Williams-Sonoma has a fabulous website and here are some links to get you started.


Williams-Sonoma Wine Club

Williams-Sonoma Home (furniture)

Pottery Barn Furnishings
Pottery Barn Furnishings

Pottery Barn Information

West Elm Furnishings
West Elm Furnishings | Source


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