Brady Bunch “bittersweet” orange kitchen counter tops — from Pionite

bittersweet colorWhen reader Ann told me she had used Pionite laminate in Primary Yellow for her 1965 kitchen Retro Renovation, I jumped on over to Pionite to look at the chip. And golly, Ms. Molly, wouldn’t you know it, but sitting right there in the same row of color chips was: Bittersweet. I didn’t know that any laminate maker still produced Bittersweet.


stangl bittersweet
photo courtesy dixie-too on ebay

I think that Bittersweet is a super classic 1960s and 1970s color. I first learned about it, because we collect Stangl pottery, and one of their patterns is “Bittersweet”. It’s a color that endured many years — more than I guess I knew, as here it is again (or still?) today.

I tend to believe that the kitchen counter tops in the Brady Bunch kitchen were exactly this shade of orange. Here’s short clip from CBS that shows Mike Brady struggling to do women’s work, ugh, in the Brady kitchen:

bittersweet colorReaders, what do you think? Are Bittersweet and Brady Bunch orange one in the same?

Anyway, this Pionite palette of solid colors is pretty darn nice. There are two pages of color options — with lots of off-whites, which are always classic, and with many true retro colors — French blue, Boxwood, Surfin’ USA, Burgundy, Royal Burgundy — and a nice Primary Red.

Orange is my favorite color. It was the first Retro Renovation Color of the Year, in 2011.

I also loved the Brady Bunch, of course. Looks like you can see lots of, or maybe all of, the episodes here.

Oh. Yes. This blog is about decorating. Want your own Brady Bunch orange countertops? Get them, along with other retro solid colors, here: Pionite solid laminate colors — 2 pages

  1. JustanotherPam says:

    This laminate is in the kitchen of the 1973 time capsule house we move into in mid July. When himself posted photos for friends and family on FB people went mad for it which, considering where we live, surprised the heck out of me. The kitchen has pop art-ish floral tiles for the back splash with orange as well and the bulkhead has more orange flowers on the wallpaper, the latter has to go as it’s just too much and takes the eye away from the tiles and that’s not a good thing. Great to know that if it ever needs replacement more can be had as I can’t break that many hearts.

  2. ILTim says:

    I’m about to replace ceramic tile counters in my 1968 house. Some exploratory demo has revealed orange laminate under the tile! I doubt the laminate is even close to recoverable, but I hope to expose it for a photo shoot. Tile was installed in a 1993 renovation. The house is architecturally significant, roughly a usonian style. I shopped for orange laminate but ultimately couldn’t bring myself to do it… now I get a chance to live with the possibility for a short time.

    1. JustanotherPam says:

      I’ve seen photos of this colour in one of Frank Lloyd Wright’s houses which surprised me but it does look fabulous.

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