There’s a big payoff for blogging day in, day out, for more than five years: You see a lot of stuff. My archives are just brimming with all kinds of rare features found in midcentury American homes. I was thinking, “Golly, I’ve seen quite a few very interesting vintage kitchen sinks,” so I decided to go through my archives and see what I could find. And find, I did. Here are thirteen vintage kitchen sinks — some are super rare, as in one siting in five years… others are a bit more common (although still rare in the grand scheme of things)… all are delightful. Although: Beware, surely, of those sinks that put water and electricity seemingly way too close together. First up:
- Youngstown Servi-Center — Very very rare, I think. We have only ever seen one.
- Elkay Stainless Steel Console — Also just one spotting in the wild.
- And here’s another Elkay design — the Elkay Consolette — discovered by reader Karen in Oct. 2014.
- Tappan Ultraflo kitchen sink: Woot!!! zzzzzzzappppppp. NOT! I have never seen this sink still extant, in the wild.
- American Standard “Midway” sink — Porcelain drainboard sink — built like a kitchen island. Circa 1954 image. We have never seen one of these in the wild — only in this advertisement.
- Added Dec. 3: I just spotted this in an old story — a vintage Elkay (I’m guessing) similar to the American Standard Midway — but in stainless steel. Originally spotted in the Corbett House.
- Update Jan. 16, 2013 — Kate spotted this big stainless steel sink — similar to the Corbett House sink, but also featuring two drainboards — at her local ReStore. Wow. I’m guessing: used commercially
- Updated March 24, 2013 — Another variation on the vintage Elkay, this one spotted on craigslist and as I write this, currently available for sale. I’m calling this rare(ish) because you cannot get this kind of deep bowl/shallow bowl combo today. Listing said: Mid Century (1955) 84 inch stainless steel kitchen counter with 2 integrated sinks. Vintage Elkay Lustertone (top of the line back then, and today), excellent condition, no gauges or scratches, just normal fine wear in the stainless steel. Counters angle towards sinks on both sides. One sink is 14″W x16″L x 8″ D with opening for garbage disposal. Second sink is 22W x 16L x 4 D (the lady of the house had a stool under the sink). Entire piece is 84″ x 25″. Called Elkay — today, a new 80″ Lustertone counter with 2 sinks would retail for $2,800. Perfect for a modern or mid-century modern renovation. $450 or best offer.
- Kitchen drainboard sink with integrated top-loading dishwasher — These units from Youngstown (and maybe other makers) were not super-rare. But still coolio to the max.
- GE Wonder Kitchen — Super fabulous: GE made the Wonder Kitchen — these wereThese were marketed as one-piece, space-saving, space-age kitchen units. The cabinet modules were united by a long single piece of stainless steel counter top, which also had a sink and electric range engineered right into into it. Above: Read more: Chris buys a Wonder Kitchen on craigslist, restores it, and installs it in his Mies van der Rohe apartment kitchen. We also have seen “Hotpoint Wonderline” kitchens — same exact idea; at some point GE owned Hotpoint, so these may be the same kitchens, just rebranded.
- American Brand drainboard sink — Not so easy to see in this particular photo, but the faucet is designed to fit into a specifically designed niche. You can still get the replacement faucet for this sink today. I get the original reader question on this… I point them to the resource… and they are amazed. I am amazed.
- American Standard Fiesta Sink — Came in a variety of colors and bowl configurations.
- Another stunning American Standard kitchen sink with a unique shape, round bowls and a mysterious original faucet.
- Ebco kitchen sink with two bowl shapes — I have only ever seen one vintage kitchen sink like this, combining one square bowl and one round bowl. Sold for $150 at Historic House Parts.
I just got this vintage faucet with a built in flourescent light. It’s wired right through the faucet stem. Seems terribly dangerous but I couldn’t pass it up. I can’t find ANY information on it. Ever seen one or know anything about it?
But hey, Ron G.: That looks just like the Elkay Consolette we subsequently identified in Oct. 2014. Dial back to the top-ish of this story to see the labels. And note, all: Wait long enough, and we’ll identify your woddities!
Would you like to see a bunch more “typical” vintage kitchen sinks? How about these 15 vintage sinks from Kohler: