Here’s a rare sight to be seen, five hard-to-find vintage Beauty Queen Lavanette “Vanette” steel bathroom vanities, all found in one building in northern California, and spotted for sale by several readers who sent us tips. Yowza — they look to be in great shape!
I asked the seller Laurie, how did they happen to come across not one — but five — of these rare vintage Lavanette Vanettes. Her reply:
We are just starting renovations on what was a local family practice. The doctor was there from the 1960s until a couple years ago… he never changed his decor. The Lavanettes were used in individual exam rooms. I think that is why they are in such great shape!
Laurie was also excited to hear from us — she is a regular reader! She said:
I am the assistant to the owner of the sinks and the one working on getting these FABULOUS units to their next home! I absolutely LOVE your website, follow you on Facebook too, and would be more than happy for these sinks to be featured on it…. I soooo hope these amazing cabinets go to a loving new home (wish one could come home with me J ), vintage is the BEST!!! Let me know if you have any questions. Thanks so much!!!
Thank you, Laurie! We don’t see too many of these vintage Lavanettes in the wild. We think they were quite rare to begin with, but then, when you combine their rarity with the metal-rusting moisture found in bathrooms, we think many of them just didn’t survive. The fact that these examples were not used in bathrooms, but in patient rooms in a doctor’s office is probably why they are in such good condition after all these years.
These are Vanettes from the Lavanette Line
From the Craigslist posting:
Love vintage?? Well then, one of these vintage bathroom “vanity with sink” cabinet units would be the PERFECT addition to your retro bathroom makeover.
This is one of five cabinets we have for sale. All five are part of the Beauty Queen “Lavanette” line made by Toledo Desk & Fixture Corp., Maumee, Ohio in the 1950s. They are powder coated steel with laminate tops and porcelain sinks with chrome trim and measure 4′ x 2′.
We have three light blue with light pink laminate tops and two light green units with grey laminate tops for sale. All five of these units are in fabulous condition with minimal dents, scrapes or chips. (for pictures of the other units please see our other postings)
The sinks do not appear to have any chips but, along with the faucets and nobs, will need some careful elbow grease to remove the hard water stains. There is only one light blue unit that has a visible dent on the front right, bottom drawer. Other than that any smudges you see in the pictures are just dust/dirt from sitting in a vacant building for many years.
Four of the units have the original “optional” towel bar. All five have the pull out bin in bottom left cabinet, garbage bin in bottom right cabinet and the plastic odds and ends trays in the top drawers.
Each individual unit is listed at $500 and are located in Northern California, just south of Redding, so you will either need to be able to pick up or pay for it to be shipped.
You can see more photos of these five amazing Lavanettes on Craigslist. Currently, Laurie has them posted for sale on the Las Vegas, Sacramento, Los Angeles, Reno and San Francisco Bay Craigslist.
Beauty Queen Lavanettes:
Beauty Queen Lavenettes are smaller and have only one set of drawers. Above: A Lavanette that Pam salvaged from a neighbor’s house. Will she find time to restore it? Or will she tire of having it sit in her garage and give it away on craiglist?
Beauty Queen Kitchen Cabinets
Yes, Lavanettes and Vanettes were part of the Beauty Queen line of steel kitchen and bathroom cabinets. Laurie took the info about the maker — Toledo Toledo Desk and Fixture Co., Maumee, Ohio — from our original story here. Hmmm. How many steel cabinet makers were there in Ohio, Pam wondered. She knows of (1) Youngstown Steel Kitchens, out of Warren… (2) Republic Steel Kitchens, of Columbus… and Beauty Craft, from Toledo. Perhaps one day soon we will go through our histories and make a complete list by location.
Above: Pink Beauty Queen kitchen cabinets — with a long pink drainboard sink, be still our hearts — posted to our buy/sell forum in 2008.
Link Love (Various photos are sprinkled through five different listings):
- Blue Lavanette on Los Angeles Craigslist
- Blue Lavanette on Sacramento Craigslist
- Aqua/green Lavanette on Las Vegas Craigslist
- Blue Lavanette on San Francisco Bay Craigslist
- Aqua/green Lavanette on Reno Craigslist