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Wilsonart Betty and Endora retro laminate designs now part of Wilsonart’s Virtual Design Library

Wilsonart is discontinuing their “Betty” and “Endora” laminate designs as “stock” laminates by the end of this year, with plans to move them to their Virtual Design Library (VDL). However, Wilsonart does not sound certain the move the the VDL line will work. So as I say when this kind of change is afoot: If you want this stuff for your kitchen or bathroom, get while the getting is good. Above: Nancy used Betty for the countertops in her kitchen remodel.

retro pink bathroom
Chris used Wilsonart’s Endora to top her leggy bathroom vanity.

Thanks to the several reader Tami, who sent me this tip. Wilsonart confirms:

Question:

Can you confirm whether “Betty” and “Endora” laminate patterns are being discontinued by Wilsonart, effective 12/1/2017.

​Wilsonart: 

Yes, that is correct.

We will be moving forward to try to convert these designs to the Virtual Design Library (Retro category) by the end of the year.  Please keep in mind that not all designs can be successfully converted into VDL.  As the team works through the process, they will keep us all updated.

Designer Sally Chavez named the Betty laminate because it reminded her of the colors in this favorite photo of her mother Betty.

Question: 

Thank you. If they go VDL, the price will be significantly higher, right?

Wilsonart: 

For an average size kitchen, we typically say ~ $3-5 psf (uninstalled). Check with your local dealer for a price quote.
Note, as shown above: I calculate prices on Home Depot for the product as stock 4′ x 8′  at under $1.80/s.f., also uninstalled. So you can see the difference.

 

Why stock laminate rock:

  • Stock laminates are typically made with top-layer “deco” papers with designs that are pre-printed (on rotogravure printers) in large runs. 
  • Because they are mass produced, the price for stock laminates is generally several times less than for digital-print papers like Wilsonart’s VLD line, which printed to order.
  • Stock papers are widely available at big box stores and generally have little wait time.

Digital print papers like those in Wilsonart’s Virtual Design Library:

  • Conversely, digital prints are made to order.
  • They are more expensive, as a result.
  • There may be a delay in getting these, because they are made to order and you need to get in line.
  • But a big advantage: Digital printing opens up endless possibilities. Our Retro Renovation®by Wilsonart laminates are digitally printed.

Wilsonart’s Betty and Endora laminates were introduced to the market in Summer 2015. It’s sad to see them dropped from the stock lineup. Abstract-design laminates, like those that were popular in the 1950s and into the 1960s, will now be virtually non-existent as stock offerings. 

Links:

  1. Alison says:

    One of the reasons it was doomed was how corporate GE decided to limit to black and white and then ONLY have displays in black at Home Depot! Who wants “retro” black appliances unless you are creating a 90’s kitchen? So many people doing a Farmhouse look were looking for white and they could have captured that crowd and the retro crowd but they never reached them. Then big changes tok place at GE. They moved from Fairfield CT to Boston. (I’m in Fairfield and the exodus has really hurt property values.) With the restructuring of GE, they are less interested in appliances and want to pursue other high tech fields. I actually interviewed a member of the marketing team for Artistry and they were so disappointed in what happened. They had hoped to introduce turquoise or red.

  2. Wendi Dunlap says:

    Funny, my kitchen is turquoise and red. :/ I would have bought those in a heartbeat.

  3. Wendi Dunlap says:

    Well, the opportunity to get a turquoise wall oven and cooktop just fell into my hands this week, so I am definitely getting “Betty” for my countertops now while it’s available! Might as well go whole hog. 😀

  4. la573 says:

    General Electric recently sold their appliance division to China’s Haier (which also sells some appliances in the US under their own name), and the entire lineup is likely to be transformed in the next couple of years; some of their models are already quite different.

  5. la573 says:

    I only once saw either of these two patterns on display in a big-box store in the Wilsonart laminate samples so I’m not surprised they didn’t sell well. Nobody knew about them! And they don’t get advertised either.

    The only good news here is that the cost of digital printing is going down and the quality going up. Modern digital printing has already revolutionized laminate flooring – the quality and realism of the patterns is far above what it was 20 years ago. Hopefully the number of custom-orderable countertop laminate patterns will increase in the future. I’m also bullish on 3D printing making reproductions of various old retro stuff available again – it takes only one person anywhere in the world to put their digital files online so anyone can download them and make new 1950s lightswitch plates or whatever they can think of, the only current limitation being the available 3D-printable materials.

  6. Danna says:

    Hello everyone! I’m so sorry to hear this! We just installed Betty laminate in our kitchen of our 61 mcm. It looks fabulous! I will send pics as soon as I can. We live in Temple home of Wilsonart. So we had to put Wilsonart laminate in our home. We also used retro renovations boomerang in one of our bathrooms. It took a long time to get the Betty pattern in and installed but it is a beauty!

  7. Lesa says:

    We installed Betty in our kitchen and also had the aluminum banding put around the countertop edges. Everyone loves it and asked where we found it. It was not expensive and it is so easy to clean. We had a stainless backsplash installed with it and it looks great, we would highly recommend this countertop.

  8. maria says:

    So true.

    In my neck of the woods, laminate was considered low end even at the time, my 1959 house has original tile instead and that or laminate wouldn’t fly around here for resale now. I hope someone snags some of this, it’s beautiful fun and neutral.

  9. Anna says:

    Just had our new Betty countertops installed last week. Glad I got in before they were discontinued! Will buy a large sheet of it now for future projects lining under the sink and pantry.

    Will send a photo when we finish painting!

    Any advice on affordable appliances that blend well with the retro look?

  10. Jen says:

    If anyone is watching the Marvelous Mrs. Maivel on Amazon–set in the 1950s, Betty laminate appeared on a table in a diner! (second episode)

  11. KStacey says:

    I thought I had gotten Endora on time. Then on the day it was suppose to deliver, I received a “sorry, we canceled your order, product no longer available.” email. Gah!! I don’t even need much, it’s for a bathroom vanity project. Back to the drawing board! Boo!!

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