Formica retro countertop discontinuations: More info on end-dates + alternatives

formica boomerang laminate in aqua blue and coralUPDATE (Oct 2011): Click over to –> this story to get an update on all three sources for boomerang laminate.

In wake of the news that Formica is discontinuing, or has discontinued, two shades of our beloved boomerang laminate, I started receiving reports from readers of other discontinuations. I checked with the super duper helpful PR folks (thanks, Laura!). Warning warning Will Robinson: To ensure you get while the gettin’ is good, read this full report:

  • 6918 Atomic Orange and 6919 Atomic Turf were discontinued as of August 2, 2010. After the deletion date of 8/2/10, these colors will be available while supplies last or until 12/31/10, whichever comes first.
  • Two of the Boomerangs – 6940 Skylark Boomerang and 6941 Coral Boomerang — were discontinued as of August 2, 2010.  After the deletion date of 8/2/10, these colors will be available while supplies last or until 12/31/10, whichever comes first.
  • 6943 VirrVarr White and 6944 VirrVarr Light Blue will be discontinued as of January 17, 2011.  After the deletion date of 1/17/11, these colors will be available while supplies last or until 6/30/11, whichever comes first.
  • 6959 Aqua Boomerang will be discontinued as of January 17, 2011.  After the deletion date of 1/17/11, these colors will be available while supplies last or until 6/30/11, whichever comes first.

Readers trying to get VirrVarr from Home Depot already are saying they already cannot get it there. Home Depot buyers: This stuff is still available elsewhere — how bad do you want it? You’re gonna have to chase it.

Also, I want to point out, there are several new laminates on the market that provide alternatives moving ahead. I like a number of the new retro style Formica laminates — Dogbone or Weft are good substitutes for VirrVarr. I also like the look of the hemp laminates from Arborite— the gold one would work for a 70s kitchen, for example. Bottom line: These laminates come in and out. If something you want is on its way out, get it now while the getting is good. Meanwhile: Check my Countertops Category for all my identified sources for vintage style laminate countertops.


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  1. Andrea says

    Thanks, Pam, for the run-down on these!
    Aqua Boomerang countertops just moved up toward #1 on The House List. We already have (original) aquamarine Formica countertops, (and I love them, for their color!) but they are worn, a bit faded and stain easily. I’ve long wanted to replace them with Aqua Boomerang—looking like it’s now or never!
    Without the “heads-up” from RetroRenovation, I’d have postponed this project until it was way too late!

  2. Kersten says

    Are they seriously taking away the blue, aqua and coral boomerang and leaving the gray? I’m perplexed by that decision. Maybe in January they’ll show us some awesome new designs? We have the VirrVarr white, and although I like it, it’s really light. Color might have been more fun… but the boomerangs were too busy for the space that leads right into the dining area. I’m crossing my fingers that more cool patterns are released! We were the amazing winners of that awesome set of St. Charles wood front cabinets in Milwaukee last winter – the FREE ones- and they are still sitting in our garage waiting to be put back to use. After doing a tiny bathroom re-do (that still has empty walls) I’m scared to start a kitchen! BUT- I doubt our VirrVarr will be able to be reused with a new layout? Counter tops are a big deal! Okay. Too much coffee this morning.

  3. says

    Pam, you should use the power of Retro Renovation to get some deals for us on the discontinued stuff. We can be hoarders and save it for generations to come.

  4. says

    For shame! These were the best, most unique laminates available. Everything else is just some variation of mottled neutral tones. BORING.

  5. ELS says

    Concur w/ Jen. We have a kitchen table made from the coral boomerang w/ a metal edging and it’s wonderful! It makes for a nice splash of color.

  6. says

    It’s a shame. I also agree with Jen – our coral boomerang counters not only look great but they hold up well to daily cooking and cleaning, too. We got enough to use for a bathroom sink countertop if we ever want to, and I’m so glad we did.

  7. says

    Oh Formica… why must you play with my heart??? We JUST saw the VirrVarr in blue and wanted to use it in our kitchen reno, forthcoming in 2-3 years. Alas… this may not come to pass 🙁 I might have to hoard some too….. it’s just so perfect! And will go wonderfully with the turqouise 50’s wall oven and cooktop I scored this weekend on Kijiji 🙂

  8. Carrie says

    Thanks for the heads up…went to Home Depot and ordered my aqua boomerang last week…and it just came in! So happy I was able to get it, it is beautiful!

  9. Sabrina says

    Thanks so much for the updates, Pam! When I ordered my sample of the dogbone in white, I ordered one of the aqua boomerang… and now I’m actually leaning toward that one. I’ve got the samples sitting on my current kitchen counters, and just looking at the aqua boomerang makes me happy. I’d never have ordered the sample without your post on it being discontinued, so if we do end up ordering it, it will be because of your blog!

      • Sabrina says

        I definitely will! Just need to get a budget figured out… and figure out if we can really do a complete remodel, with new cabinets, etc. (the originals are solid, but quite worn, and poorly configured) or more of a surface “freshening”, with just refacing the cabinets, swapping out some appliances, and installing new countertops. I’m also not sure I can live without a kitchen for months in order to do the bigger project…

        And yes; thanks to the community!

    • pam kueber says

      Sabrina — the thanks should go to the readers who alerted me to these discontinuations in the first place. Hurray for the community!

  10. Kelly LeBel says

    Oh bother! Hubby and I were gunning for the VirrVarr in White, but were waiting until we finished our other kitchen upgrades. I guess we will need to put the counter tops on the front burner. Thanks Pam for the heads up! Your site is a live saver in crisis like these.

    • Cynthia says

      I agree! And you know what I love most? I love that there is a community here that understands that this is a crisis. Most people I know in-real-life would be shaking their heads in disbelief if they knew how upset so many of us here are about this…

      Maybe I need to find a new crowd, eh? 😉

      • Sabrina says

        I’m pretty sure my mother-in-law will have something to say about it when we replace our current Formica countertops with more Formica countertops, LOL! She’s planning a big kitchen remodel in her 1970s home that will of course include granite and stainless steel. She also assumed that we would be updating our pink bathroom, which is in fantastic shape (except that the cast-iron sink is rusting at the drain hole; not sure how to go about replacing that without losing the completely awesome original pink cracked-ice laminate) and so awesome that there’ no way I’m “updating” it… my 3 girls would probably disown me anyway if it was no longer pink. ; )

        My friends, though, dig our “vintage” kitchen and bathroom, so luckily no need to find a new crowd.

  11. BonnieKae says

    Last November I ordered “retro pop” from Wilsonart. It is a white laminate with robin egg blue boomerangs and light and dark pink boomerangs. I love it. It was a special order item at the time. However, I now miss my original yellow cracked ice…so I might have to order some before it is dc/d and hoard it.

  12. says

    What a time to be poor! Could only afford the smallest piece of aqua boom they sell. I cut down my huge entertainment center into a small cabinet. I was in the process of painting it aqua to match the yet-to-be-purchased boomer lam. when I read about the crisis on your website.You betcha I went the same day to Lowes and ordered my tiny piece of reto! Thank you for yhe timely FYI!

  13. Northside CJ says

    That’s a shame. I redid my kitchen with in-stock black Home Depot counters to save time and money. It looks great, but I was hoping to eventually re-re-do the counters with aqua boomerang or the white Virr-var. Unless of course, by some miracle, I were to run across the ever elusive “gold-flecked” laminate.

  14. Paula says

    I too love the boomerang and I am waiting to hear back from my guy that it is ordered. I also looked at the new “mode” from Formica which is really fun. The website states that it is inspired by digital pixilation. I think it’s inspired by Laugh-In from the 60’s. Fun stuff.

  15. kmodek says

    Funny, but if you want fake stone of any shade in the rainbow, you have more than you’d ever want to choose from now. But if you want something different, it’s SO hard to find!
    Maybe in 30 years, fake stone counters will be ‘retro’!

  16. The Atomic Mom says

    Just wanted to say, I’ve really been enjoying this site as I’ve popped around it the last few days. What brought me here was a picture from my grandparents home of their pink bathtub and toilet and the Save the Pink Bathrooms site, then one click let to another and so on.

    I remember this boomerange countertop patterns so well from my childhood. It seemed like all the elegent lady friends of my mom and grandma had these kinds of things in their homes — and I really loved them at the time, and I love them even more now. I’m sad that they’ve been discontinued.

    I’m feeling a bit sorry for myself as well. Thru reading about you awesome kitchen, I know that at one point my house had steel cabinets. We just have some genric Home Depot cabinets now. My heart is weeping a bit. If only, the previous homeowner had just left the cabinets up….anyway…

    This has been a great way to spend my snow-covered morning! 🙂 I look forward to getting more ideas from you. We’re going witha Route 66 theme in our home right now, and your sites are a gem!

  17. Sandra says

    Hi, does anybody know where I could find “Irish Linen’ laminate for kitchen bench top? I have looked in Australia but have been told it is discontinued.

  18. Lisa says

    Boo! I just went to order samples for my long awaited new counters, and the selection at Formica is now pretty dismal. As someone else said, 50 shades of faux stone, but little else. Even the solids have been disappointing, I was hoping to see a muted green like Grasshopper, but even that’s gone. Maybe I missed it but I only saw the Dogbone in grey/black (Storm?).
    Oh well, hopefully the Arborite samples will have a winner among them.

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