Farmhouse drainboard sinks

farmhouse drainboard sinkClassic farmhouse drainboard sinks are one of the most desirable features in a vintage kitchen. We continue to do extensive research on all the options for retro sinks and faucets — so now there is enough information to make a whole page of all the alternatives.

1. Authentic vintage farmhouse drainboard sinks:

Mid century and prewar farmhouse kitchen sinks were, I believe, generally manufactured using a cast iron or steel substrate, covered with porcelain enamel. They were available in white…


…in pastels… as in Erica’s Jadeite kitchen

pink sink…. ooh, and pink! 1954 American Standard pink drainboard sink

brown sinkand later, even in coppertone brown and other 1970s colors. Of course, all the colors including pastels are going to much harder to find.

Here is slide show of  16 vintage Kohler kitchens that give you some idea of the designs. I will add some more photos shortly.

2. Where to buy original vintage drainboard sinks:

To me, this would always be the most desirable choice — in general, because I am super thrifty — aka *cheap*… because I love the hunt… and because I think it’s super cool to find and use authentic vintage in my house. BUT: This method requires lots of time and tenacity, and I totally understand why others would take the reproduction route.

If you want to buy a vintage drainboard sink — which is likely to be porcelain enamel on cast iron or on steel — the best places to look likely include craigslist, your area ReStore / Habitat for Humanity, or other area salvage stores. Ebay… maybe… but I would want to go look before I buy. See this story with a list of particular salvage companies that sell online and which may have vintage drainboard sinks.

porcelain sink

3. Re-porcelain a vintage sink:

It may be difficult to find a vintage sink that is not chippy. If you have a vintage sink, and want to re-porcelain it, here is our known resource (photo above is an example). Two readers who far have reported positive experiences.

We also recently received a tip about a second company to contact if you are in need of re-porcelaining from reader Barb who is having her vintage drainboard sink re-porcelained by Independence Porcelain Enamel. We will follow up with a story soon!

I do not believe that if you have a vintage kitchen sink that it makes any sense to have it  “resurfaced” by a tub resurfacing company etc etc — the coating will not endure.

4. How to clean a porcelain enamel drainboard sink:

Be very very very careful about what you use to clean a porcelain drainboard sink. Acidic cleaners… and abrasive cleaners… may harm the surface coating, and there’s no good way to restore it once it’s gone, expect to re-porcelain $$$. For tips, read this detailed story — I ask Kohler what should and should not be used to clean porcelain enamel on cast iron plumbing fixtures.

5. Farmhouse sink reproductions — porcelain enamel on cast iron:

We know of  two sources for a reproductions of apron style farmhouse drainboard sinks. These designs below are porcelain enamel on cast iron — the very old school way to make these sinks.

sandford-cast-iron-sink-2The first is the Sanford Cast Iron Kitchen sink with drain board and apron from Signature Hardware — like Laura used in her adorable summer cottage kitchen.

clarion-kitchen-sink-1-2The other available option — also in cast iron — the Clarion farmhouse drainboard sink. It is made by Strom Plumbing and marketed by a number of companies such as our longtime advertiser, — but you can shop around. This apron sink is 60″ wide.

These faucets will use a vintage style wall-mount kitchen faucet — see our story 8 vintage style wall-mount kitchen faucets.

steel drainboard sink

6. Steel drainboard kitchen sinks:

drainboard sink

A second style “drop in” (rather than full sink top)

7. Reproduction farmhouse sinks available from Nelson Bath Tub, Inc.:


Nelson Bath Tub offers six reproduction farmhouse drainboard sinks manufactured using gelcoat and fiberglass reinforced polyester resins. Above is the “Apron Sink”.

drainboard-farmhouse-sinkAbove: Apron sink with double drainboards.


Above: The second sink from Nelson Tub and Bath is a 66″ wide double sink double drainboard farmhouse sink.

double-bowl-double-drainboard-sinkAbove: Nelson’s double bowl, double drainboard 60″ sink.drainboard-sinkAbove: Farmhouse sink from Nelson’s with single bowl.

single bowl drainboard sink

Above: Nelson’s 42″ single bowl, single drainboard sink.

8. Reproduction drainboard sinks in acrylic available from other makers (including colors)drop in drainboard sink

The Karran drop-in double bowl drainboard sink is made of acrylic and retails for $366 on Amazon (*affiliate link), free shipping.  Available in white or bisque, this is an affordable drainboard sink option. However, it looks like this sink doesn’t have holes for the faucet, which means you will have to have a solid surface or tile countertop or install a wall-mounted faucet. (We don’t think that installing deck-mounted faucets into laminate is a a great idea, due to all the water that typically accumulates around the base of a faucet.)

colorful-drainboard-sinksdrop in drainboard sinkdrop-in-drainboard-sinkAnother new option — this CorStone Wakefield Double Bowl Drainboard sink  *affiliate link) comes in a 36 colors — including pale yellow, greens, pinks and even a bluish lavendar. This sink is made of acrylic and sells for  $468.75 (*affiliate link) with free shipping (some colors may be an extra charge).  One note — a review on gave this sink low marks for difficult installation.

9. Reproduction drainboard sink made of composite stonedrop in drainboard sink

Another new option is this Blanco sink (*affiliate link) lists for $933 plus shipping. While this model has the lovely drainboard — and appears to be made of a composite including hard rock granite — it is not what we’d describe as “retro” in style. Still, we’ll put it out there for you. This model is available in eight neutral colors — but also has the drawback of no faucet holes — limiting counter top options.

10. Drainboard laundry sink

drop in drainboard sink

Also of note — the CorStone Hamilton Laundry Sink (*affiliate link), prices starting at $258 — with three holes for a deck mounted faucet — appears to come in all of the same 36 colors as the kitchen sink. So if your laundry room is right off the kitchen, and you like colorful matching sinks, this might be just what you’ve been looking for.

10. Rare kitchen sinks

american standard midway sinkPerhaps you will find a rare drainboard sink like the 1954 American Standard Midway sink, which is among the rare vintage kitchen sinks that we’ve archived here.

See all our kitchen sink research here.


  1. Mary Becknell says

    My brother remolded his kitchen recently and removed his old 1948 double deep sink but did not save the cabinet. I asked him to save the sink for me. Any chance that I could get just the cabinet to install this back into? Any Ideas as to how I could incorporate this into my outside flower garden?

    • pam kueber says

      See our stories about steel kitchen cabinets including where to find them in the Kitchens / Steel Kitchens category.

  2. Olga says


    I’m wondering if anyone has any experience installing a double drainboard double sink onto anything other than a steel sink cabinet base? I fell in love with the sink and bought it off of Craigslist without realizing it doesn’t easily mount on modern sink base cabinets!

    Any ideas would be appreciated. Also, my apologies if I’m not posting in the right place – I am new here!

  3. Deb says

    I recently bought the farm sink from Signature Hardware, after looking for a used one for two years. It’s beautiful and worth the little more than I would have paid for a used one.

  4. Pam Zirbel says

    WOW!!! How hard is it to find a dbl bowl porcelain left drain board!!?!! OIYE!!! This is Pam that has bought that 1870 house and showed you a pic on FB today!!! Might have to settle for a stainless one..or..use the cruddy stainless one that is there!! Looked on ebay and of course…people know the valiue and how popular they are now!! Might be looking at Buffalo Restore place!!! Can a stainless one BE porcelainized!?!! Thanks and thanks for having your blog!! You rock!!

    • pam kueber says

      I was told that stainless cannot be porcelainized. but check our reporcelainer — see story under Kitchens / sinks

    • pam kueber says

      I looked at the photo on Facebook. Will a Kohler Delafield drop into the same space as your stainless sink? I presume you are not messing with those pink countertops!

  5. Donna says

    I am lucky enough to live in my family farmhouse with original dbl drainboard, dbl sink. My problem is finding a drain stopper that fits. Evidently, standard size has changed over the years. Any suggestions?

    • pam kueber says

      hmmm…. My first place to try would be, but this one may be tough…. What is the size you are looking for?

    • Jade says

      You can get a flat drain cover – they’re about 6″ across and will cover nearly any drain. Not perfect, but at least it’ll do until you can find something that really fits. I’ve used them in old bathtubs, and even in stall showers that were deep enough to bathe a baby.

  6. Audrey says

    We just found a steel cabinet with double farm sink. The cabinets have 2 very narrow and tall doors on either side of the middle doors. Any idea what those narrow compartments are for ?

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