By CLOE CABRERA
The Poco Pattino store at International Plaza, which specializes in Italian-made children's shoes, will close its doors Wednesday.
The owners no longer could afford the mall rent, said Cindi Peters, a co-owner of store, which opened in August 2009.
"It's very sad because we have a lot of loyal customers who grew up with us," Peters said. "But it's time to retire (the store)."
The original Poco Pattino location in South Tampa closed in February for similar reasons, Peters said. That store opened in 2005.
The International Plaza store is having a going-out-of-business sale to clear out inventory. All children's shoes are on sale for $15; women's shoes are $25. Accessories are marked down 75 percent. All sales are final.
Poco Pattino (Italian for "little shoes") sold unique, hard-to-find shoes from Italy, Sweden, Japan and the United States. Brands include Geox, the Lelli Kelly line of embellished Mary Jane sneakers, Tsukihoshi machine-washable sneakers, Naturino leather shoes for girls and the eco-friendly brand Simple.
The International Plaza store, located on the second floor just outside Nordstrom's, offers children's shoes in infant sizes to junior size 6.
Some women's shoes are also available -- many in styles similar to the children's shoes at the store - in up to size 10.