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Vintage Kitchenware

Updated on May 9, 2012

if you have a vintage inspired kitchen or would like a touch of vintage to your décor, you don't have to go searching through thrift shop or auctions (unless you have your heart set on collecting the real thing), as there are quite a few retro-designed products on the market which have older styling but modern function.

While contemporary designed kitchens can look fantastic, they sometimes look a little cold - a vintage touch here and there can add warmth and personality to an overly sleek design.

Many modern kitchens are decorated in safe, neutral colours (brown, beige, cream and grey). You can create your own bright contrasts to liven things up with the addition of retro kitchenware such as a set of red canisters or a colourful set of scales. Consider putting up a tongue-in-cheek retro tin poster to create interest and a dash of humour.

Vintage Colour

Vintage kitchens from the 1930s to the 1970s, were not quite as 'beigiest' as modern ones. Designers back then were not afraid to include colour and whimsy. In the 20s green and black were popular colour choices, while in the 50s, pastels in blues, yellows and pinks were favoured.In the late 60s and 70s bright colours such as lime green and burnt orange were mixed with earthy browns

Interestingly, in the futuristic at right, made in the 1950s, the ultramodern fantasy kitchen displayed, anticipates the modern obsession with stainless steel,large bench tops, neutral colours and clean lines. Most 50s kitchens of course, were nothing like this.

Vintage laundry set  - art posters
Vintage laundry set - art posters
1950s kitchen restored to its in original colour scheme
1950s kitchen restored to its in original colour scheme
Paula Deen kitchen scales
Paula Deen kitchen scales
Colourful vintage kitchen canisters.
Colourful vintage kitchen canisters. | Source
Retro kitchen wall clock
Retro kitchen wall clock

Kitchen Nostalgia

"But our waking life, and our growing years, were for the most part spent in the kitchen, and until we married, or ran away, it was the common room we shared."~Laurie Lee

For many people, a touch of vintage kitchen has a nostalgic value, reminding them of their mother's or grandmother's kitchens and memories of warmth, nourishment, love and security - "oh my granny had a flour sifter like that!". As the hub of the home is a kitchen, it's often the focal point of family relationships and dramas and tends to feature heavily in childhood recollections.

Others simply like the older designs. If you already have a vintage kitchen, it can be great fun to search around for vintage kitchenware to enhance the atmosphere. While authentic vintage wares are terrific to have and often well-made and good quality, they can also be very expensive and/or hard to find and sometimes not working properly or not as technically up to spec as modern products, so reproductions can be a a good alternative.

Vintage kitchen elements
Vintage kitchen elements | Source
Vintage inspired handy kitchen stool/step ladder
Vintage inspired handy kitchen stool/step ladder
Simple vintage charm
Simple vintage charm
Vintage inspired ceramic cookie jar.
Vintage inspired ceramic cookie jar.

Budget Retro

Re-creating the flavour of a retro kitchen doesn't have to be expensive or time consuming- a coat of paint in vintage colours on cupboard doors, mixed with a funky 50s light fitting and a brightly coloured blind or curtains in vintage fabric can completely change the ambiance.

Complete the look with detail - a retro spoon set, a tiered fruit bowl, an old-fasdhioned cookie jar. Oh.. and don't forget to hang a vintage apron on the bak of the door!

Cupcake cookie jar
Cupcake cookie jar
Kitchen inspiration
Kitchen inspiration


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