Never used! A 1960s harvest gold kitchen for sale in Worcester, Mass.

harvest-gold-kitchen--2harvest gold kitchenWhen I announced that Harvest Gold was Retro Renovation’s 2014 Color of the Year, I asked readers to be on the lookout for harvest gold kitchens for our archive. I’ve received many emails — thanks, all! — but this one is particularly notable: Robin spotted a virtually unused harvest gold kitchen — complete with cabinets and all appliances — including a harvest gold refrigerator and dishwasher — for sale at the ReStore in Worcester, Mass.
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I do not believe this kitchen is from 1963, as advertised. We did not see gold colors like this on kitchen appliances until 1968. And this one — with the shadowing around the edges: I’ll guess a few years later. In any case — what a fun find! 

Robin wrote:

Hi Pam,

You said you were looking for some harvest gold appliances? I live in Worcester, MA, and I’ve taken some awesome photos of a complete and UNUSED harvest gold kitchen from 1963 that our Restore in Worcester has for sale. It’s a full suite of harvest gold wooden kitchen cabinets, harvest gold GE fridge and Kitchen Aid dishwasher. A chrome Westinghouse wall oven and cook top with NuTone range hood, stainless steel sink, and a brown/pink Wilsonart boomerang countertop and back splash with metal trim for the whole thing. They even have the original fluorescent ceiling fixture/light. The kitchen came out of a house in Worcester, and the Restore folks said it was a second kitchen in a finished basement that the owners had never used. They even have the manuals for the appliances! It photographs beautifully because it’s not in pieces… they have it all staged as a room (IKEA style, if you’ve ever been). They even have a little 70’s era kitchen table and fondue set in front of it, and a teapot on the stove! Super cute.

Thanks for your blog!

-Robin

harvest-gold-kitchen--12Thank you, Robin! It is so great to see the Worcester ReStore celebrating this kitchen for what it is — having fun and playing it up, rather than apologizing for it.

harvest-gold-kitchen--7Above: Interesting that the boomerang laminate countertop does not seem to have any gold or even avocado in it. I wonder — if this was for a basement kitchen — if the homeowners just chose “what they liked” rather than trying to be matchy matchy decorator-like.

harvest-gold-kitchen--3From what I *think* I now about old refrigerators, the one above likely is an energy hog. The key to high energy usage on old fridges: Does the freezer have automatic defrosting? If so, that’s what uses so much energy — the freezer compressor is turning off and on all the time to repeatedly defrost. Old refrigerator-freezers that DO NOT have automatic defrost may not use excessive energy. The only true test: Put it on a meter; don’t assume.

harvest-gold-kitchen--4Stainless steel wall oven. Yes: We do see stainless steel used on vintage appliances including all the way back to the 1950s.

harvest-gold-kitchen--5These old dishwashers were absolute WORK HORSES!

harvest-gold-kitchen--6harvest-gold-kitchen--8

Above: Sexy controls, even.

harvest-gold-kitchen--9Above: A classic “Circline” ceiling fixture. Throws a lotta light, I bet!

harvest-gold-kitchen--11

harvest-gold-kitchen--13

Thank you, Robin. I live only an hour and a half from Worcester. If I were a decorator with a warehouse, I’d drive on over and snap these up for sure for a future project. However, I’d probably try to deal re: price. It’s hard to fit someone else’s kitchen into yours… the refrigerator likely uses a lot of energy… and despite my adoration of vintage colors, it’s going to take a special buyer to understand and embrace this kitchen.

Slide show of harvest gold kitchen

To use slide show, click on any image, use arrows below the photo to move forward to back. You may stop or start at any image:

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Comments

  1. 52PostNBeam says

    The boomerang counter isn’t Wilsonart, it’s Formica’s “White Skylark” … white background with pink, light grey and a darker grey/khaki. The pattern goes back at least to 1955, and was one of the more popular skylark/boomerang color combos.

    • pam kueber says

      Hi 52, I presume Robin thought they were Wilsonart because that’s who makes most of the boomerang colors available today. Indeed, Formica introduced the original Skylark/Boomerang pattern in 1950 (as I recall).

  2. Linda says

    Thanks for posting this article. I need to take it to my local Restore.
    I used to find the greatest retro things at ours but now the Manager refuses all vintage stuff because “it’s OLD”. So my favorite local resource is no more. Maybe this will change his mind.

  3. Joe Felice says

    That’s a whole lotta gold there! Color is subjective, but harvest gold is just not my thing. Yet and still, I remember those kitchens well. People who had them thought they had died and gone to heaven! And they were usually accented with dark walnut woodwork. The only thing wrong with the aesthetic, however, is the knobs on the cabinets. They don’t seem to “fit.” Easy enough to change.

  4. says

    As many of you know, We are in the business of ending poverty housing and in order to achieve that we have to make sure that all of the products we carry sell. While this kitchen is indeed a treasure, it is not for everyone.

    To that end I am lowering the price of the entire kitchen…appliances, cabinetry, and the old MA Bell phone…to $2000. So if anyone here wants it or know anyone that does, we believe that at that price it will go quickly.

    Feel free to drop me a line if any of you have questions.

    Louis Garcia
    Floor Manager
    ReStore of MetroWest/Greater Worcester

  5. Mads says

    We have one of those exact Kitchen Aid Imperial dishwashers. It’s not great, but it works just fine. And it’s 2014, meaning the dishwasher is 50 years old!! The comment about WORK HORSES is dead on.

  6. Ruth says

    Wow, these photos bring back memories! My folks built a house in the mid-1960s when I was very young, and I remember that exact harvest gold fridge, as well as the stainless steel stove. I think the dishwasher was harvest gold too. That fridge had an automatic ice maker and, man, we thought we were uptown. LOL I think the wall oven was stainless steel and I know the big double sink was stainless steel. That was a fine kitchen for that day and time.

  7. Ruth says

    P.S. Those appliances were not energy star rated (unheard of back then), but 1) energy was cheap, and 2) they were workhorses that typically lasted at least 30 years, often longer. Our washer and dryer were in a separate laundry room and I think they were just plain white. Hotpoint brand. I spent more time in there ironing than I care to remember. These days I don’t buy clothes which have to be ironed.

    • Joe Felice says

      You are correct on all points, Ruth. Those GE/Hotpoint appliances seemed to last forever. We got rid of them more because they went out of style or didn’t look modern any more, not because they didn’t work. And I remember spending lots of time ironing when getting ready to go out boogying on Friday & Saturday nights! Like you, I do not buy anything that isn’t perma-press these day, although I don’t think they still use that term. I do still have my steam iron which I bought in 1976, and I have a small, foldable ironing board, but they hardly ever get used.

  8. Karen says

    Hi! I have been searching for months to find a Harvest Gold refrigerator in good working condition with ice maker. I am not having any luck finding anything that doesn’t look like it’s been through WW 3! I could drive about 100 miles if need be. I’m in the LA/OC Ca area. I would love it if anyone has seen one that looks great and works great. No used appliance stores carry the colored fridges. One even said if they come in they junk them! Eeee Gadddds! Oh, the humanity! No wonder I can’t find them. Help a girl out please? 🙂 Thank you! Karen

  9. Ralph Bender says

    I am interested in the kitchen. Is it still available? The 2,500 harvest gold kitchen. If it still available please let me know and is the price negotiable?
    Thank You
    Ralph Bender

    • pam kueber says

      Ralph, we do not sell anything here. You need to refer to the story and look for the links (generally in blue, usually bolded) to the seller there.

    • says

      The kitchen and all of its appliances are long gone to a collector in Canada. The Fridge, apparently, was the sole reason he wanted the kitchen and would have gladly paid the entire kitchen amount just for the fridge…The unit was very rare and not many of its vintage (c. 1968) are left in working order anywhere.
      This Kitchen is featured in a newly released indie film “Aimy in a Cage”. Check it out and thanks for the query!

  10. Kelly says

    My house is currently all harvest gold & in working condition. I use my appliances daily as a matter of fact my oven is in near mint condition. If you would still like pictures let me know as I would love to share. My kitchen still has the original appliances that were used when the house was first built.

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