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What is your favorite vintage kitchen item?

We are planning a retro or 50s/60s themed shower for a friend and we want to start listing pces that we can look for in antique stores,etc.

We want the gifts to NOT be newly designed great items, but ones that are so good they cannot be improved upon? (Thinking, electric coffee percolator, etc...)
We'll take any suggestions and we have eight months to shop; many of us live in different cities. North American and European brands accepted.

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  1. Since I did not get out of high school until 1967, I think of kitchenware of that era that included my mother's Revereware pans, a few Corningware pieces, and definitely a percolator. Then I discovered an altogther different kind of retro, the things you might have found in Julia Child's kitchen...tin-lined copper, carbon steel knives, tinned plaques and molds, Apilco porcelain. I far prefer the latter kind of retro. That said, one of the things that bridges the gap well is a Melitta coffee make (although a press makes better coffee). Of course Pyrex is eternal. I still use Corningware and Pyrex pieces for microwaving things. A waffle iron is a cool thing to have, too.

    1 Reply
    1. re: tim irvine

      I like the carbon steel knife idea, having recently discovered them myself. However, they really do need to be taken care of.

    2. 12" Blue Michael Lax designed Copco cast-iron skillet.

      1. A ball-bearing wooden rolling pin, similar to this:


        with a "stocking" and pastry cloth, similar to these:


        Granny knew best!

        1 Reply
        1. re: Channa

          A good old-fashioned waffle-style potato masher, not the squiggly nonsense most people have now.

          Wooden spoons

          Fun potholders and dishtowels

          An apron

          Uncoated metal bakeware

          (I don't care for it myself, but . . .) Fiestaware

        2. Roto Broil and Rotiss-a-Mat electric rotisseries; the Sunbeam self-lowering toaster (the original one - not the similarly style one made today); a Westinghouse can opener that slit the side of the lid (In can't recall the name, but it had green sides); a glass coffee percolator with an internal light on the bottom (it doesn't make the greatest coffee you've ever had, but it's beautiful); an original Silex glass vacuum coffee maker (which does make great coffee)

          1. I love my vintage aluminum foil/ wax paper / paper towel dispenser! You can find really sweet versions online, like this one on ebay:


            1 Reply
            1. re: katetheskate

              Adorable; never seen one of those before!

            2. An aluminium star-patterned colander--my mom's--going back, for sure, ninety years.

              1 Reply
              1. re: GeezerGourmet

                I have one too! It belonged to my dear grandmama Blanche.

              2. She loves Julia Child...we should incorporate that into the shower and that would bump it up a noth. Thanks tim irvine. I agree about the latter of the two retros. The melitta is a plug in?

                1 Reply
                1. re: itryalot

                  no, the Melitta is white porcelain, both the pot and cone. It is the same size as my brown Betty teapot and therefore fits well in a cozy, keeping the coffee warm. The press fits a cozy, too, but it is too tall, so I wrap a towel around the base before I put the cozy over it.

                2. I found a 1930's era potato ricer at a garage sale. (Formerly) bright orange enamel over metal with a removable sieve for easy cleaning. Not a week goes by that we don't use it.

                  1. Cast iron skillets and dutch ovens. Le Creuset enameled cast iron cookware. Olivewood spoons. Pyrex mixing bowls. Crock pot. Maybe not really retro, but timeless.

                    1. A vintage ice crusher like this (I love mine):


                      There's also the classic nordicware aluminum bundt pan - I use the one my mom gave me almost weekly - and she bought hers in the early 60s.

                      1. One more: a carbon steel omelet or crepe pan.

                        1. A hand crank meat grinder. So easy to clean, never jams, three different blades for fine/medium/coarse. Just clamp it on the table.

                          1. A dark stone mortar and pestle works in every type of kitchen.

                            I used to used an old flat-iron as a meat pounder. I wonder what happened to it.

                            1. I inherited a little glass Scottie dog teaspoon holder from my grandma--as I have a small kitchen with little drawer space it saves a slot in the silverware drawer. And you go through spoons pretty quickly!

                              Looks like this:

                              1. An old-style mouli grater for parmesan cheese. Their newer styles incorporate plastic, are larger and aren't as comfortable in the hand.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: thinks too much

                                  I totally second the mouli grater; I'd save mine first in a fire. You can get one on ebay for under $10.

                                2. Mirro cookie press.
                                  Magnalite bakeware, Wear-Ever bakeware, Guardian cookware.
                                  Don't forget the old aluminum ice cube trays with the pull handles.
                                  Maybe an old Hamilton-Beach milkshake blender? (single purpose though)

                                  And any electrics in Avocado Green (grin).

                                  4 Replies
                                  1. re: ThreeGigs

                                    Those old aluminum ice cube trays were the worst thing ever. I HATED them growing up and was very relieved as a young adult to discover that there were much improved versions of ice cube trays out there in the world. (My father held on to those awful things for dear life...) I love vintage stuff but that's one item that I personally think should stay on the dust heap.

                                    1. re: flourgirl

                                      I agree totally. The old trays are good for baking mandelbroit, (biscotti), however. That's how my grandma made them.
                                      Rubbermaid makes the best plastic ice cube trays. We now have some Sterlite ones that are are pain in the tush.

                                      1. re: p.j.

                                        I love the rubbermaid trays too! :)

                                        1. re: flourgirl

                                          Oh, and it;'s good to know those old aluminum ice cube trays are good for SOMETHING. :)

                                    1. Classic Ronco Vegamatic, if you can find one. Cuts home made french fries better than anything else on the planet

                                      1. I reckon my granite counter top is about 240 million years old.

                                        1. The tin lined copper gratins my mother purchased way back when Dione Lucas (anyone remember her? She was *the* French cooking guru before Julia Child) had a shop called Bazar Français on Sixth Avenue in NYC. Nothing better for gratin potatoes or pommes Anna. Anyone else remember Dione? She wrote cookbooks & had a cooking school as I (faintly) recall.

                                          5 Replies
                                          1. re: fauchon

                                            Hers was the first French cooking show on TV - I never saw it (don't think Canadian TV carried it) but did read her cookbooks when I first got interested in food as a teenager. You read about her in biographies of James Beard and other luminaries of the period. It would seem (as I recall) that she was not a very nice lady. Not that that's necessary to what she accomplished, perhaps the opposite.

                                            1. re: fauchon

                                              I know this is almost a year later but.... The Bazar Francais was my family's store. It was owned by successive generations of the Ruegger family, not Dione Lucas. The Ruegger name, and the store's for that matter, are still visible on the old building on Sixth between 20th & 21st in NYC.

                                              1. re: Jaxie Waxie Woo

                                                I used to fantasize about getting to go to that store when I was a teenager (living in Canada). It sounded so appealing.

                                                1. re: Jaxie Waxie Woo

                                                  Wow; what great foodie history for your family. You must have some great vintage pces.

                                                  1. re: Jaxie Waxie Woo

                                                    Hi, Jaxie:

                                                    I know this is old, and the chances of reaching you are slim, but there is no e-mail contact for you...

                                                    I have a friend who is in the process of researching a book on American copperware. Would you *please* get ahold of me? I'm sure you have a wealth of information to contribute on Ruegger--and perhaps other marks.



                                                2. I still love my classic Farberware pots. Not expensive, better than Reverware, I think, and 30+ years old. My mom had some when I was a kid in the 50's & 60's. I bought a couple last year for my son's college kitchen.

                                                  1. A very old apple-corer/peeler. Works better than any of today's new apple peeling inventions!

                                                    6 Replies
                                                    1. re: rockability

                                                      Every single canister in my kitchen--and I use a lot, storing in bulk and needing six kinds of rice, etc. ---is vintage. Most are either the plastic Lustroware (Alton Brown used to have these in his first TV kitchen) or the hand-painted, towel ware style, metal Ransburg ones.

                                                      Flour sifters! Especially the spring-loaded kind that let you sift just by squeezing the handle.

                                                      Old wooden-handled poking forks....every kind of rolling pin under the sun...those nut chopper jars with the little metal chute on top and the handle that turns "teeth"...old mixing bowls of all kinds...vintage Le Creuset in the old shapes that aren't made any more...My entire kitchen is stuffed to the brim with old fruit crate labels, old advertising posters, knife blocks that hang on the wall with decal decorations, old copper pots and mixing bowls, funky tourist toothpick holders and lucite napkin holders filled with seashells and dried flowers and silly stuff. It's a bitch to keep clean but it makes me happy. :-)

                                                      1. re: Beckyleach

                                                        I love hearing from people who clearly love their kitchens - even though they don't sound like they look like the pictures in a high end kitchen design magazine. ;) (Mine doesn't either.)

                                                        1. re: Beckyleach

                                                          I am visualizing your kitchen now - sounds wonderful!

                                                          1. re: itryalot

                                                            Well, I love it but it has a lot of flaws...like no counter space, for starters. You can get an idea of some of it by going here:


                                                            1. re: Beckyleach

                                                              Looks amazing and functional. I can see why you adore it.

                                                      2. Okay -- I have the perfect answer. We needed to make a lot of coffee this weekend, and I remembered my mother's old Westbend 42 cup coffee maker in Harvest Gold. She bought it in the early 70's, I think. I hadn't used it in at least seven years. Guess what? After dusting off the box, it worked like a charm. It took about 45 minutes to brew 42 five ounce "cups" (which really is not what most people drink these days), and kept it warm without burning for well over one hour. What a great gadget.

                                                        My recommendation is to pick one of these up. If you look around, you can probably find one in Avocado too!

                                                        1. Vintage cookie cutters. I have an old aluminum tin of old-fashioned cookie cutters from my grandmother.

                                                          I also like the old hand-held egg beaters, vintage tea kettle, egg cups, ice cream scoop, citrus juicer, wood cutting boards with the Scandinavian dancers painted on them.

                                                            1. re: Politeness

                                                              Holy smoly - That thing is a work of art. I am in search of that Westbend coffee maker mentioned by RGC. Would go with the theme of the party and I would let her keep it after we used it.

                                                            2. Waffle pattern potato masher. Hands down. I have my grandmother's and you can't beat them!!!!

                                                                1. A set of Griswold cast iron skillets. I treasure my set I assembled from my mother in law and ebay. They don't make that quality anymore.

                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                  1. re: Antilope

                                                                    Nope they don't! I love my Griswold skillets too..and my big Le Crueset dutch oven. Here's two of my favorites.The B52 bomber and the Beast in the background.

                                                                    1. re: i4details

                                                                      What a wonderful stove/oven/range (never can figure out what to call them...I grew up calling everything "stoves.")! How happy it must make you, to see that every morning when you come out to the kitchen.

                                                                  2. My Tupperware jello mold ring and lid has a 101 uses. Never thought it would be a vintage, sought after item, but there you have it.

                                                                    1. My Sunbeam toaster. My grandmother purchased two of them in 1949, and she gave me one of them when I moved into my first apartment etn years ago. It's chrome, has a rounded top, and (most importantly) IT DROPS AND RAISES THE TOAST ON ITS OWN! No lever! You place a slice in the slot, and it slowly drops the bread into the toaster. And, it makes great toast. I just love the thing. If you can find one, you may need to clean it a bit, but it would make a lovely gift and last forever.

                                                                      5 Replies
                                                                      1. re: mattwarner

                                                                        Something like this? ... http://www.adclassix.com/a3/52sunbeam...

                                                                        Hint for some: To magnify the picture and read the text use ctrl + (ie Ctrl Key with either of the plus keys) I only mention this because I just found out my SO didn`t know

                                                                        1. re: Paulustrious

                                                                          That's the one! Although, after all these years, it doesn't toast quite that evenly anymore. :-)

                                                                          1. re: mattwarner

                                                                            I inherited one from my grandmother and brought it to college. You should have seen the look on my friend's faces when they would come to my room to use my toaster. They were so confused. I would make them figure it out and watch for sheer entertainment.

                                                                            1. re: dobs737

                                                                              Happy, happy! Just picked one up, yesterday, in perfect working condition (and the cord looks virtually new; no fire fears!), and with one small, cosmetic blemish (a tiny ding on on side) for $5, yesterday.

                                                                              Oh, Brave Little Toaster! You have found a new home.

                                                                              1. re: Beckyleach

                                                                                We keep thinking we'll have to break down and replace ours with a new toaster. The chrome is a bit scratchy in places, it toasts a bit less evenly than it did even ten years ago, and the cord is... vintage. But, I just can't bring myself to part with it. And, as dobs737 suggests, the magic dropping bread is a source of endless amusement. All of that aside, of course, from the fact that I dearly loved and miss my now-dead grandmother, who gave it to me when I first moved out on my own.

                                                                      2. A hand held beater. I still have grandma's around here someplace, it works great. The only reason I don't use it all the time is the thing weighs a ton - which is why it is indestructible.

                                                                        1. I have a heavy iron potato masher that was a wedding gift for my grandmother in about 1915 and cost 11 cents. It's solid as a rock, completely indestructible, and I've never seen a modern one that I liked more.

                                                                          1. What about some vintage cookbooks.. visit a second hand book store. :)
                                                                            I actually just got back from one and picked up the 1976 congressional club cookbook.
                                                                            Haven't really gone thru it yet, but it's a ton of recipes from past & then current judges, congressmen, representatives, presidents and their wives.

                                                                            1. The vintage item I wish I could lay hands on again is a 1970's Braun kitchen machine - the only one I've seen lately is in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art in NYC! A thing of beauty, mixer + attachments blender + meat grinder + citrus juicer. Mine died in 1980. I've looked for them everywhere, no luck.

                                                                              1. I second the nod for vintage cookbooks. When I look at my two shelves of cookbooks the ones that are falling apart from use are Fanny Farmer, original New York Times, New Basics, Beard on Bread, and, of course, Mastering the Art I and II. I almost never follow a recipe, but these are the ones that always give me ideas on how to combine ingredients and what temperatures and times to use. Also, my espresso machine finally died after fifteen years of service and I figured, :What the heck, try a Bialetti; they're under $30." I love it, and it has a definitely vintage air about it.

                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                1. re: tim irvine

                                                                                  Nothing like Bialetti espresso. We use ours often; almost daily.

                                                                                2. I like the vintage cookbook idea, I'd also suggest from memory that copper molds as decoration, as well as really large wooden spoon/fork wall decor, was hot stuff in the 60s.

                                                                                  My favorite vintage piece is a wooden plaque I inherited from my grandma, which hung in her kitchen and now has a place of honor in mine. It has some corny pictures on it with this "poem": No matter where I serve my guests, it seems they like my kitchen best.

                                                                                  1. How about aluminum storage canisters? I have a set from my wife's grandmother (in order of descending size): flour, sugar, coffee, grease. The grease one has a built-in filter for bacon fat.

                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                    1. re: Richard L

                                                                                      Vintage cookbooks and cast iron skillets.

                                                                                    2. A butter cutter from the 40's. Weighs a ton and will cut a pound chunk of butter into quarters and/or slices or pats. Bought on ebay, shipping cost more than item as weighs about 6 pounds.

                                                                                      1. Many wonderful things already listed.

                                                                                        1. I'd add Dansk Kobenstyle pots. I have collected a variety of colours and sizes.
                                                                                        2. Can-O-Mat wall-mounted can opener. I've seen those in chrome, white, red, blue and yellow. They may come in other colours, also.
                                                                                        3. Vintage electric waffle maker. The texture of the waffles is so much better than waffles baked in a non-stick baker.
                                                                                        4. Dazey wall mount juicer.

                                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: decolady

                                                                                          I just got a really keen Dominion Waffle Maker (with a new cord!) off Ebay for about $5. It's beautiful and chrome-y and so Late Deco it makes me swoon. I don't need the calories but I needed this waffle maker. :-D

                                                                                          1. re: Beckyleach

                                                                                            OMG, Becky, isn't it wonderful? (BTW, I'm a Becky,too.) I have two deco era waffle makers and used them simultaneously when there were more than three of us at home. Now I can pretty much go with one, unless my elder daughter and her fiancé are here. My younger daughter and I love waffles - much more so than pancakes. We eat them both savoury and sweet. I so understand why you NEEDED that wafflemaker. :-)

                                                                                            Also remembered that the Can-O-Mat also comes in pink and turquoise, which would be very 50s.

                                                                                            1. re: decolady

                                                                                              Hi, Becky! There's a really cool book on Amazon about waffle iron collecting--can't remember the title but it's practically the only one--that you can search for details about your "babies," as it's all online. I may buy it if I really get the bug...

                                                                                              It tickles me to see how LONG the cords are on the vintage toasters and waffle irons and so forth....Recall all those wonderful old romantic comedies from the late 30's and '40's, which invariably include a cosy, domestic Breakfast Scene? Sitting smack dab in the middle of the table--surrounded by ironed linen place mats and silver biscuit baskets and fresh floral arrangements--the usual Hollywood get up for an ordinary Tuesday morning breakfast--are the toaster, or the percolator, or the waffle iron. People used to bake/cook/brew FROM THE TABLE!

                                                                                              I guess this custom eventually fell out of favor because Little Suzy or Junior chased each other, playing Cowboys and Indians, 'round and 'round the breakfast table and ripped the appliances off onto the floor, on time too many. :-( Now, everything seems to come with cords SO damned short, you can't plug them in at all!

                                                                                        2. I'm still using my 1961 Sunbeam Toastmaster electric toaster! My daughter has gone through about 10 toasters since she left the nest, but my old Sunbeam just keeps on toasting.

                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                          1. My sister has my grandmother's chitarra. It looks like a piece of art on her counter :)

                                                                                            3 Replies
                                                                                            1. re: lawgirl3278

                                                                                              What a wonderful thing to inherit. Mine is relatively new. Hadn't thought about keeping it out on the counter.

                                                                                              1. re: decolady

                                                                                                deco - I was going to say the same thing. Mine's hidden away in a closet. It really is beautiful - i might have to figure out a way to display it.

                                                                                                1. re: flourgirl

                                                                                                  Mine is actually lent out now to my daughter's Latin teacher, as they were making pasta in class yesterday. When it comes home next week I will look for a way to display it.

                                                                                            2. Mouli-Julienne without a doubt. Use it all the time. Retro chic for sure...

                                                                                              1. An antique single piece of walnut, shaped like a German hand grenade, potato masher. So versatile and fits in the hands so well. I use it as a pestle to grind items too.

                                                                                                1. My great-grandmother's gravy ladle. It's oval shaped, with pouring spouts on either end, with the handle mounted on the side of the bowl. It is so user-friendly, no drips, no spills and easy for lefties as well as righties. I have two but have never seen another like it.

                                                                                                  1. I recently purchased a vintage Flint stainless steel potato masher, the kind that looks waffle-shaped. I love that thing. Absolutely the best potato masher ever. And I've tried them all.

                                                                                                    1. I was married in 1948. My mother, a wonderful cook, gave me a set of Dione Lucas kitchen knives. 62 years later I'm still using them! Sharp as ever!

                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                      1. re: dumbo

                                                                                                        I have been looking for those knives since they were mentioned on this board. I want some vintage good quality French or Italian knives.

                                                                                                      2. Found a cast iron Bundt pan at an antique store. Gorgeous pitch black patina, and HEAVY. Makes the lightest fluffiest cakes ever.

                                                                                                        1. Salad Spinner, if you can find one. It was a metal, mesh bag with two handles. You could lay it flat on the counter, fill it with your greens and close it using the two handles. Then you send the oldest child outside, and they swish it back and forth, spraying the water without bruising the greens.

                                                                                                          I keep looking for one since my mother threw out all three that she owned.

                                                                                                          1. I love my "Kitch-a-ma-jig" (tm): a slotted metal scoop-spatula with a wooden handle that is invaluable for deepfrying. Been around since I would think the 50's (not mine, but the concept).

                                                                                                            1. When I was a kid I had a mug that had a whistle in the shape of a bird built into the handle. It whistled if you blew through the tail. The handle was a tree and the bird was "perched" in the top.

                                                                                                              There was a matching bird - looked like a crow - which you stuck in the center of a pie with a double crust to vent steam as it baked. It would whistle while it worked (LOL!). I'm pretty sure it was on the theme of "four and twenty blackbirds baked in a pie".

                                                                                                              Both pieces are long gone now (this was in the early 60's, nearly 50 years ago). I've looked but have never seen anything like them. The closest was a plain white pie vent in the shape of a bird available from Lehman's about 7 or 8 years ago, I don't know if they still carry it. I don't know if that one would whistle while "letting off steam".

                                                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                                                              1. re: ZenSojourner

                                                                                                                That reminds me a coffee mug my family used to own. It was quite large, and a dark green color. When you got to the bottom of the mug, you would first hear a "gallump" sound and then see the frog sitting on the bottom of the mug. As the frog's mouth gave up the liquid, it made this wonderful frog croak. I have no idea what happened to that mug.

                                                                                                                1. re: smtucker

                                                                                                                  Your galumphing frog reminds me of a toy I had as a child. Admittedly not a kitchen item - well sort if maybe, if you look at it from the point of view of where food comes from.

                                                                                                                  It was one of those cow-in-a-box things that made a mooing noise when you turned it over. You can still find them sometimes, but they're not as common. At least you could still find them when my son was little, like 20 years ago.

                                                                                                                  I loved that thing, when I was all of 4.

                                                                                                                2. re: ZenSojourner

                                                                                                                  I got curious and went and looked on line and found several pie birds, but none all that close to what I remember.

                                                                                                                  Actually that was not a blackbird on my mug, it was a robin, and the matching pie plate had a robin built into it as well.

                                                                                                                  Then there was also one or more (I'm not sure) blackbirds. The blackbird(s) (if there was more than one of them) were probably a set.

                                                                                                                  There was also a set of mugs that looked like the faces of gnomes or fairy-tale dwarves.

                                                                                                                  All long gone now.

                                                                                                                3. I LOVE my vintage toaster, (my daughter would stand at other people's toasters and wait for the bread to go down by itself, but alas it never did; her friends must have thought she was mentally defective...) my vintage cookbooks, wall mounted can opener, meat grinder, stand mixer, chrome wrap dispenser (though some things don't fit any longer, and there's no slot for plastic wrap) ...to me, vintage is the only way to go with some kitchen things.

                                                                                                                  Right now, my search is for a strangely shaped toddler bowl from about 1990. It was red semi-flexible plastic and had white suction ring around the bottom. The rim on the side away from the toddler rose up high, and then sort of bent/swooped back over the bowl, so any food pushed up there would fall onto the spoon or fork 'chasing' it. I can't find it on eBay, nor Amazon, (duh), but as I'm about to become a grandmother, I *desperately* want one. Or some! LOL Even my Mother wished for one after she had a stroke!
                                                                                                                  I think they didn't sell well because people couldn't understand the curved side and how it was designed to be used. I only ever saw one other one at a garage sale or flea market, and I doubt it had the suction ring! Arrgh! Does anyone remember it or know the name of this bowl so I can search more efficiently? Thanks so much. I've been reading at Chowhound for ages...

                                                                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                                                                  1. re: Kathrynwitte

                                                                                                                    Not exactly the same bowl, but similar with the suction cup bottom: http://www.booninc.com/products/Catch...

                                                                                                                    1. re: Kathrynwitte

                                                                                                                      What's your toaster brand? Can you describe it a bit more.

                                                                                                                      1. re: itryalot

                                                                                                                        It is likely a Sunbeam. I have one too. (Mine is in perfect shape except for one little dent which is a little annoying).There are no levers to push down, the weight of the bread turns on the heating element and the bread is automatically lowered and raises when done to the setting desired. Here is a link to a website describing them:


                                                                                                                    2. I just got a vintage melitta porcelain coffee filter and can't wait to try it. It's a piece of art.

                                                                                                                      1. An Imperia Pasta Machine. Mine is from 1958

                                                                                                                        1. So the shower should have happened by now. Wonder what gifts were chosen.

                                                                                                                          1. So, the shower DID happen and part of the shower invitation had a link to this posting. MANY were bought (found through Craigs List, second hand stores, and ebay). This has caught on so well that another friend who recently got engaged has asked for the same theme, even though her house is brand new. The score that I drooled over was a set of Dione Lucas knives that were purchased for $20 for the set! She also received some mint conditioned waffle potato masher, I picked up a Westbend coffee maker to be used at the shower and left it to her, she also received a really nice potato ricer (all vintage of course).
                                                                                                                            Keep the list coming; we are on the hunt for shower #2 gifts for next year.

                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                            1. re: itryalot

                                                                                                                              Cousin is getting married this year. I may be into another shower!

                                                                                                                            2. From before the postwar era, but will still look good with other vintage kitchen items: ribbed depression glass mixing bowls. They're extremely sturdy, and come in green, amber, clear, and even pink or cobalt blue (makers: Hazel Atlas, Federal, Hocking). A set might be pricey, but even one makes a beautiful and useful piece.

                                                                                                                              A genuinely 1950s line is one from Hazel Atlas that was only made in clear glass; it has a starburst design in the base (introduced during the war, it was marketed as the 'Victory' bowl). And these and other companies continued to make mixing bowls that have the 1950s look: the nesting set of primary-colored Pyrex bowls, red stripes, polka dots, ivy design on milk glass, etc.

                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                              1. re: ellabee

                                                                                                                                The smaller depression glass mixing bowls also make attractive 'cloches' to cover food that sits out (cheese coming to room temp, half a sandwich you're going to come back and finish, etc.)

                                                                                                                              2. http://cgi.ebay.com/VTG-WEAR-EVER-ALU...

                                                                                                                                I have this Wear Ever juicer of my mother's (I'm 64) and just used it the other day when I needed 2-1/2 cups of orange juice and then 6 T of lime juice for sorbet. It's still the best thing I've ever used for this type of thing.

                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                  oh wow, my great-aunt had one of those.. i had forgotten all about it till i saw the pic. thanks for the smile.

                                                                                                                                  ps: my favorite vintage item are the hand crocheted pot holders that my great grandmother made long before I was born. not something likely to be found in a catalog.

                                                                                                                                2. My great, great grandmother's cast iron skillets. I absolutely treasure them. I also collect Dansk Kobenstyle and have a huge collection in Turquoise, quite a few pieces in White and 3 pieces in the super-rare Apple green.

                                                                                                                                  1. You might look at the site toaster central for some ideas. They have some refurbished electric items but they are pricey.

                                                                                                                                    1. I have vintage Sabatiers carbon steel knives, a sheffield boning knife forged in the 1890s and some vintage cast iron - I use them all daily.


                                                                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                                                                      1. re: HalifaxJ

                                                                                                                                        I've been saying for years that you don't need to fuss with seasoning cast-iron...you just need to buy cast-iron that someone else has been frying bacon in for 50 or 60 years. I was lucky enough to inherit some pans, I've expanded my collection with cast-iron from garage sales and thrift shops. You can't go wrong with cast-iron anything. I recommend a good old Swing-a-way can opener. My mom bought me mine when I went to college...thirty years later and I'm still using it.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: tonifi

                                                                                                                                          That's new; the swing a way/. I gave vintage kitchen items this year to my foodie friends; I was the most popular person in the lot! I need to find myself a good old, used cast iron pan.

                                                                                                                                      2. I have my Mom's 3C Kitchen Aid mixer w/glass bowl from 1950, found a Sunbeam T-20 (1950 dated) Automatic toaster at a Thrift store, Sunbeam CG, or CG-1 waffle irons-could also get the earlier W-1, or W-2 models. Mom's CG waffle iron is still going strong.

                                                                                                                                        Looking over the above list I also have the Wear-Ever juicer, Mirro cookie press, the Flint potato masher-used it this weekend, and lots of vintage cookbooks from Mom.

                                                                                                                                        My brothers donated the 1950's chrome Black Angus rotisserie, and I haven't been able to find the Mirro popcorn kettle.

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