Kate uses our new “Retro Renovation® Delightful Jade” boomerang laminate for her vanity countertop

retro boomerang laminateI built a new vanity for my guest bathroom about about three months ago, but we held the story, because lookie: I was able to use one of our seven new Retro Renovation® by Wilsonart® boomerang laminates — the delicious “Retro Renovation® Delightful Jade” design. By the time I got going with this project, the colorway was locked in, so Wilsonart printed a sheet for me [disclosure: they provided it no charge as part of our collaboration]. I love all the colors in our boomerang laminate collection, but ‘Delightful Jade’ is one of my favorites, so I’m super excited that I found a place to use it in my home.

retro green bathroomretro green bathroomThe color coordinates nicely with my circa-1962 original American Standard green bathtub and similar green wall tile accents.

retro boomerang laminatePam and I think this color also will look great in kitchens and baths stretching back to the 1940s.

retro green bathroomretro green bathroomThe verdict — I absolutely love it. Every guest I have had over to the house since I finished renovating the bathroom has remarked about how much they like the countertop — whether they are into retro decor or not. Plus, how many people can say they not only fabricated their bathroom countertop, but also helped to create the colorway?!

More info on all the work I did in this bathroom yet to come. In the wake of yesterday’s big huzzah, we wanted to show this new laminate off right away!

Disclosure: I want readers to know: I do not make money if you buy this laminate; “the deal” that I have with Wilsonart includes other elements of consideration. For example, on Feb. 1 they will launch an advertisement on the blog, for which Retro Renovation is compensated. So, I do not have any incremental financial reason to promote the laminates in this collection over other options — see all our research on countertop options to find the product that’s right for you! – Publisher Pam.


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  1. says

    That looks seriously fantastic! I’m really excited about the new boomerang collaboration. We’re a long way off from re-doing anything in our kitchen (as in, not even on the radar), but it does make me wonder if a small-term investment in a laminate countertop would be worth it, even if we have to re-do the counters completely in the future. Hmmm… you’ve definitely got me wondering. Because of that Aqua Ripple…!

    • June says

      I share your point of view. I’m having a difficult time in getting contractors to see my point of view in keeping but updating my vintage 60’s kitchen. Of course they’re all pointing to new granite/quartz, new cabinets, move this, buy that, and so on. This morning I finally said, “Let’s re-wrap those counters and move on”. I like my kitchen, and I’m going to keep it. I may not use one of the beautiful new colorways, but in reviewing them on the WilsonArt site I got some great ideas using the Recover product line. It’s a win-win all around. Congrats on developing the new retro line.

  2. 50sgirl says

    Looking for suggestions- I have the yellow Big Chill Fridge. I will get samples, but would jade make the fridge look green, or would the very light yellow be better? The new retro yellow countertop looks more gold to me… Tiles and floor white. Cabinets and walls can be painted any color..anyone with suggestions, I would so appreciate it!

    • pam kueber says

      Both Kate and I are on the road today. We can look at our samples and comment early next week. Yes, the Creme Caramel is amber-y, not sunshiney yellow.

      I think the best thing is always to: Get samples. Put ’em in your space… then decide…

      • Amy in Sacramento says

        Yes, get samples. You really can’t judge colors accurately on your computer screen. (And I’d LOVE a Big Chill fridge! Lucky you!) 😉

    • Joe Felice says

      Get the samples. But in general, greens and yellows go well together, so long as thee shades of each are not intense.

  3. Carolyn says

    Beautiful! Kate I need your help with my bathroom. I have a sink and my grandma’s vintage hall mac built in vanity all just waiting for the perfect cabinet. I know we are both Milwaukee girls. Help! Also, did you know Home Depot discontinued the mosaic tile you used in your new pink bathroom?

    • Kate says

      Hi Carolyn,

      I just checked Home Depot’s website and the pink tile I used in my pink bathroom — Merola University Pink — is still available. It has always been online only through the Home Depot. Hope that helps!

  4. cathie says

    Beautiful product by in my research on laminate I discovered that a) finding someone to install it is nearly impossible; b) these special order products are often not available in Canada; and c) unless you can install it yourself, the labour cost is ridiculous and you might as well go for a natural material. Its just not that easy.

    • Alan says

      Putting on new laminate is so easy. Even someone who just a little handy can do it. There are plenty of how to videos on the internet to show how it’s done. Best way to remove old laminate is with a hot clothes iron and a paint scrapper to peel it up. Use mineral spirits to remove the old adhesive that’s left on the counter.

    • Joe Felice says

      Labor costs are indeed outrageous, and you can always count on overruns. Renovation projects are not for the light-of-pocketbook.

  5. Deanne says

    Cathie – If you can find a place to purchase it I would ask them if there is a local installer they would recommend. I recently wanted boomerang Formica in my kitchen with the metal edge. I had a hard time getting the big installers to even call me back. When they did I was told $3k with an 8 week lead time. But when I found a store that carried both the Formica and the metal edge in stock their guy came the next day and installed for $400 bucks. He probably wasn’t licensed or bonded and I know he doesn’t have a website or a crew of helpers, but he was fabulous!

  6. G S says

    It really looks fabulous. We will eventually need to redo our hall bath and plan to use colored 4 x 4″ tile to restore it to its original glory. we had to re-do the floor tile a couple of years ago and already have the B&W pinwheel. We have cultured marble on our vanity top, but I’d love to use the boomerang laminate in the re-do.

    • pam kueber says

      haha – But… chrome edging not commonly used in bathrooms as far as I know. A self-edge, like Kate used, likely more common.

      • Joe Felice says

        You know, Pam, I never really thought about it, but I think you’re right. Chrome edging was a touch brought into our homes from diners, and therefore, used only in kitchens and dining rooms. These rooms tend to be more “blingy” than bathrooms.

  7. Karen in Philly says

    To 50’s girl. I would give my right arm for a yellow Big Chill fridge! It would look totally fantastic with the jadite colored formica. I have some experience with these colorways as I scored a hoosier cabinet on CL in these two colors. The original color of jadite green was accented with a little bit deeper green on the original glass “stencil”. And the yellow color of the cabinet was a couple of different shades of yellow due to wear. But the overall effect is fabulous. I agree you need to get samples. One thing you may also want to check out is the vintage pyrex bowl in the Shenandoah pattern (on ebay) I don’t think things have to match perfectly, since the colors in any room change during the course of a day based on the light. You just want to make sure it pleases your eye. And if you giggle with excitement every time you see buttercup yellow and jadite together, you know it is for you. I love the jadite green boomerang formica. I loathe tv shows, realtors ect. who cringe at the idea of anything other than granite and stainless steel appliances.
    Kate, your bathroom vanity with the boomerang formica, white tiles and pops of jade, and the color of the wood cabinet are TO DIE FOR. !! Congrats on your collaboration with Wilsonart and now get some much deserved rest!!

  8. Jackie says

    I have a vintage kitchen set that’s kind of greenish, minty, crushed ice. Table is in very good condition, but the chairs, while not torn, the color has worn away. Do you think the jade boomerang countertops would fight with the crushed ice? Also do you know where I might find “crushed ice” vinyl to redo the chairs?

    • pam kueber says

      I just found this site for cracked ice vinyl yesterday – they do not have green – but their gray might look good with our jadeite boomerang on the tabletop edged with a steel/aluminum/chrome apron. Our Delightful Jade boomerang design has a touch of gray in the rounded squares on the bottom layer. But I will say: I would probably get lots of anxiety trying to figure out whether crackle ice chairs with boomie-topped table would be too much pattern; and the shades might be a big factor, I’d have to see. For dinette sets, I was just imagining pairing any of our laminates with chairs in two tones of colors piped by maybe a third. E.G. Jadeite table top, jade and white pleather chairs, piped in white — see the photos from AnMarcos in this story for the idea – http://retrorenovation.com/2016/01/18/acme-chrome-dinettes-vintage-style-buy-today/

    • Alan says

      If there is a big box store near you (Lowes or Home Depot) would be your best bet for buying Wilsonart laminate. I bought 3 sheets that came rolled up in a box that fit easily in my car. Just lower the back rest of the passenger seat all the way down.

      • pam kueber says

        Yes, you should be able to get these via Big Box stores — trick may be: Do the associates know what you are talking about, or will they research it, if you don’t. I’ve heard stories.

        • Alan says

          Yes you are correct. The workers (associates) in the flooring departments in these stores really do not seem to be very knowledgeable about these laminates. Wilsonart is very good with sending a small sample to you if you wish. I annoyed them with sending me 4 different ones at 4 different times before I settled on Retro Mint. Very good company. Go to their web-site to order samples.

        • Joe Felice says

          You got that right! I had to explain what backplates were, and why they were used. And then was told to go online. I’m so tired of being told that.

  9. Reader Deb says

    Think you could use this to line shelves with without gluing it down? Or with some kind of adhesive that wouldn’t harm steel cabinets? I recently purchased a set of Genevas that look like they just came out of the box. Since they don’t need repainting, I thought I could splurge on something to protect the shelves.

    • pam kueber says

      I think that if you don’t adhere laminate, it will warp. You could try repositionable spray adhesive though…. Another potential issue: I have received the equivalent of several wicked “paper cuts” during this project; if you don’t edge the laminate, you risk roughing up against cut kraft-paper….

      I think that back in the day, folks used vinyl sheet flooring for inside their cabinets (rather than laminates). I have some in the bottom of my vintage Geneva pantry cabinets — original!!

      • Reader Deb says

        Just walked by the fridge and had an idea. After I get some samples on Feb 1, I’m going to try sticking some adhesive magnet paper to the underside of the edges and see how that works.

        • pam kueber says

          Wilsonart also has a feature called “Recover” — for $1 per square foot, they will add peel-and-stick adhesive. We will be writing about this at some point! Sounds kinda permanent to me….

          Some fridges and dishwashers have metal edging to take an insert! Another idea!

  10. says

    I LOVE this for my 1955 Boles Aero Vintage Trailer! We began renovation in 2015 and we are ALMOST FINISHED. But we need new countertops! I was thinking about butcher block counters but this material is absolutely perfect! I may even redo shower and table to match. Although they are in “ok” condition, they are different patterns–changing them all out would tie everything together <3

    • pam kueber says

      Woot! Samples should be ready Feb. 1. I’ll do a story as soon as they are available! Yes: I think the vintage trailer and camper market will love these!

      • Alan says

        The Formica Co. should have thought long and hard about their decision to stop making their boomerangs. This is going to be popular again.

        • Joe Felice says

          All things mid-century are wildly popular today! So-much so that it’s becoming difficult to make them look retro!

  11. Paul - CT says

    I’m very happy to see the ‘Laminate Counter Revolution’ is picking up speed and soon granite and quartz will be passé.

    Question: will their be a matching edging product for these patterns or is it just available in flat sheets?


  12. Joe Felice says

    Delightful Jade appears to be almost identical to the now-discontinued Formica Aqua Boomerang, which is what I used in Joe’s Diner.

    I have always wanted to go to the Bath and Kitchen Show. For some reason, I am into all things bath and kitchen, and not just those that are retro.

    • pam kueber says

      Yes, the show was fun, even if the vast majority of the products were not retro. I think that the reason that kitchens and bathrooms are so fascinating is that they must be packed with so much functionality – often, in small spaces.

      Re the patterns: The Wilsonart pattern is unique – there are three layers of biomorphic characters — the kidney-shaped boomerang on top, a loose figure eight in the middle and a rounded rectangle as the bottom layer. Working with Wilsonart and this existing pattern in their reportoire, we played with the colors to get the overall tone-on-tone effect we were going for.

  13. Cindy says

    I have 1959 kitchen counters that are rounded on the peninsula end, with the little shelves inside (mine missing though). Can Wilsonart laminate be used on rounded edges? I would think I’d need a professional to install that, for sure, if it’s do-able. Are there pix anywhere online, or will there be Monday, for a curved surface? My house is too new to use the metal edging, so I think I’d be doing it the way it’s done in this bathroom example. What’s that called?

    • pam kueber says

      Laminate typically can be used on countertop edges — the laminate is pliable, you just glue it on….

      Samples should start becoming available Monday, Feb. 1!

  14. Rob says

    How does one acquire the Boomerang laminate product? Is there a minimum purchase?
    I have a bathroom project just screaming for this upgrade!

  15. Dana Day says

    After years of dreaming about it, I just replaced my countertops with Wilsonart Retro Domino in December. Love it, but the Delightful Jade is gorgeous!
    I had it fabricated as a special order through my local Lowe’s – it took a few phone calls on my part to the Wilsonart rep to convince the fabricator that he really could get that pattern, but it was completely worth the hassle.
    Make sure you order the big 8×10 samples…

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