When these rare(ish) vintage bathroom sinks show up in old advertisements or actual bathrooms, I often get questions about them. What are they, exactly, and how are they installed? Some answers…
The photo above, from deabath.com, is, specifically, a:
- 1960’s Case Apron Front Hudee ring sink
I was intrigued by it in particular because it has that original metal hudee rim. I don’t recall seeing these very often “in the wild,” and it’s amazing someone actually saved that rim when they took this one out!
- Refresher: What is a hudee ring exactly? See all our stories — we are hudee-central!.
So: This style of bathroom sink is called an apron-front bathroom sink (just like all the apron-front kitchen farmhouse sinks so popular today). On wall-hung sinks including those with chrome legs, the part you lean up against to brush your teeth — that’s also called the apron.
“Apron-front”: because the front edge of the sink hangs over the cabinetry below, ala the photo above.
Apron-front sinks could be either hudee-rimmed or tiled-in. I asked my go-to expert at deabath.com, John, some questions re the sink with hudee that he has for sale:
Q: Do you think this was meant to go on a laminate countertop — or on a tile countertop?
John: Definitely this sink would have been in a laminate countertop. Tile-in applications don’t use a Hudee ring.
Q: If you don’t use the hudee, is the sink then tile-in? That is: Was there one design — either use without hudee and tile it in, or use hudee and use it with laminate?
John: Yes, there is a difference, at least in Crane. The tile-in sinks were a bit thicker where the tile would butt up to the sink. The Hudee ring versions were slightly thinner. That being said, I’ve seen Hudee ring sinks being tiled…
Q. Okay, so I understand they are tiled-in or hudee-finished. But how do they attach to the substrate? Held in place with clips?
John: The tile-in ones are set directly in the mortar on top of ply or whatever the counter in made of. Hudee ring sinks use clips to hold the sink to the ring, and the ring sets on the Formica/ laminate.
Thanks, John — you rock my world!
The one thing I’d add about the hudee-ring installation: If you want this look — that is, apron-front sink with hudee to drop into a laminate countertop — be sure to get the hudee with your vintage sink. While we do have a source for made-new hudee rings, including made-to-order, I can’t imagine it will be cheaper or easier than getting the original with.
Link love: See all of deabath.com’s vintage bathroom and other wares here. Oh, and I see they have more vintage apron-front bathroom sinks, in plain ole white — here.
They are also vintage Crane experts — my go-to place to send folks with questions about that brand and, well, pretty much all others too.