17 Unique Vintage Appliances You Need in Your Home Today

Home appliances used to be considered an important part of our homes. Rather than simply being mundane, functional items, they had cool aspects that made our lives easier and offered a decorative touch. Let’s look back at some vintage appliances with unique features you would love to have in your home today.

1. Mary Tyler Moore’s Chef’s Kitchen

Mary Tyler Moore's 70s Kitchen with 4 ovens and a giant lazy susan
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Everything about this Chef’s Kitchen is … chef’s kiss. We have to start with Mary Tyler Moore, dressed impeccably in a color-block pantsuit people would go wild for today. Moving on – four ovens? I’m in heaven. I’ve always wanted two ovens, so four ovens seem like something one could only dream of.

And how great is that giant Lazy Susan on the counter? It’s tucked away in an awkward corner, making that space much more usable. The shutters behind it probably opened into the living area so the cook didn’t have to be shut away from the rest of the action in the house.

And, of course, we’ve got to notice the stylish wood panels on the dishwasher. I give this kitchen five stars.

2. GE Oven with Automatic Rotisserie

Vintage Appliance GE stove oven with rotisserie
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This stove is truly a beaut. Just look at all the features:

  • An automatic rotisserie for perfect chicken every time!
  • A side oven for baking or small dishes and a larger oven for big meals!
  • A removable oven door for easy cleaning!
  • Ability to dial in the exact temperature for stove burners!
  • A timer that turned on the oven and could control your coffee pot for coffee when you need it every morning!
  • Space on the stovetop to put hot dishes!

I’m honestly starting to feel a little cheated. Why aren’t these features available to me today?

3. Oven with Roaster

You didn’t need to buy a high-end oven to get extra features. This oven with a stovetop is more modest than the GE Oven with a rotisserie, but it still has a side oven for roasting meat.

You could easily make gravy, too, because the drippings from the meat landed in the drip tray on the bottom. No more trying to awkwardly pour the roast drippings from the bottom of a pan into a pot on the stove. Again, why is this not a thing now?

4. Stovetop and Oven with Eye-Level Controls

Here’s how I cook on my fancy stove. I turn on the gas, put the pot on the burner, and then bend down and look under the pot to ensure the flame is at the right level.

Here’s how our housewife of the past cooked on this clever stovetop. She pushed a button with the right setting on her range hood, placed her pot on the stove, and walked away confidently.

I wouldn’t change a thing about this kitchen. I love the wood cabinets and the sunny yellow floor.

5. Vintage Frigidaire Practical Pull-Clean Oven

Why can’t I have this today, please? Yes, my oven is self-cleaning, but like many folks, I don’t quite trust it not to burn down my house. So, I find myself crawling into my oven from time to time so I can clean up a mess.

How awesome would it be to pull out the oven and wipe it out? I would have the cleanest oven in town if I had that option.

Notice the double ovens and the space for placing hot dishes. I’m swooning a little bit.

6. Magic Chef Stove with Warming Shelf and Broiler

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I’m shaking my head at all the amazing features I would love to have today. This beauty has a warming shelf – and a warming compartment! – on top so everything stays hot before serving.

Apparently, we can still enjoy at least one vintage feature today. I chuckled at how the ad for this range mentions that it has a broiler! And, you know what, broilers are awesome for browning meat.

7. Frigidaire Flair

Vintage Frigidaire Flair

Samantha Stevens had a Frigidaire Flair in the early seasons of Bewitched and it’s easy to understand why: this oven/stovetop combination is truly magical. (You’re sort of required to make a “magical oven” joke when talking about the Frigidaire Flair.)

The electric burners of the flair could be pulled out when in use and then pushed back in to hide them away when they weren’t needed.

It had two ovens. One had a timer, so you could cook a meal while you were gone, and the other oven connected to a meat thermometer so you could stop cooking when your meat reached a certain temperature.

The stovetop had a speed heat unit so you could boil water quickly and another burner could be set to operate at a specific temperature.

Why isn’t this available today? Check out this video for an overview of some of the Flair’s amazing features.

8. Tappan Fabulous 400 Range and Oven

Vintage Appliance Tappan Fabulous 400 Stove and Oven

The Tappan Fabulous 400 Range and Oven came before the Frigidaire Flair, and like the Flair, it had slide-out burners and eye-level ovens with many features.

Both ovens are still highly prized by collectors. I’ll admit that I prefer the Tappan Fabulous 400. I like the cutting board in front of the burners and the embedded outlets. The whole unit feels more elegant.

That may be because Tappan advertisements often featured the woman of the house sipping coffee or pouring drinks while clad in a stylish cocktail dress. The implication is that the stove does all the work of preparing the meal, leaving you time to dress up and entertain.

That’s an appealing thought. Although I’m sure this stove will always look prettier than me at any party.

9. Frigidaire Fliptop Dishmobile

Vintage Appliance Frigidaire Fliptop Dishmobile

When did we decide we were ok with so much bending down in our kitchens? The housewife of yesteryear certainly wasn’t having it. The shelves of this top-load dishwasher popped up for easy loading and unloading without any bending.

Plus, this dishwasher was portable, so you could keep it in a closet and roll it out when needed. No need to sacrifice cabinet space to have a dishwasher. Genius!

Fun fact: Frigidaire used to be owned by General Motors! It feels like we lost a little ingenuity since they spun off, doesn’t it?

10. Vintage Counter-High Dishwasher

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I love the innovation in appliances during the 1950s – 1970s. It feels like we’ve lost a bit of convenience now that everything is so standardized.

For example, when dishwashers were a new invention, engineers took time to analyze what women needed in the kitchen. They concluded it’s more convenient to load dishes into a unit at countertop level rather than bending down to load the dishes.

Unfortunately, it seems like we moved into a phase where the focus is making an appliance as cheaply and easily as possible without thinking about what’s best for the consumer. Bring back the innovation!

11. GE Wall Fridge

GE Wall Fridge
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We’ve featured wall refrigerators before on Things Boomers Love, but we had to include this beauty here as well because it’s a miracle of engineering.

Look at how beautifully everything is organized and how you can see everything in the fridge at a glance. This unit is particularly special because there are two cabinet freezers below the fridge.

I appreciate how useful this would be in cooking. Just grab the fresh veggies from the fridge and chop them up on the countertop below. I’m not sure, but I believe the bins under the fridge are a mini-pantry for bread and other staples.

12. Westinghouse 1955 Twin Juice Fountain

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This is the first item on my list that I wouldn’t necessarily want in my own home. I can picture all the spilled juice I would find in the fridge whenever my kids poured themselves some juice. And, honestly, I’m not sure I trust myself to be able to pour myself a glass of juice neatly.

However, I’m intrigued by the ad. All you have to do is pour juice concentrate into the dispenser. The dispenser automatically mixes the juice with cold water whenever you want a glass. That’s cool, and the amount of laziness I want in my daily life.

13. GE Revolving Shelves Refrigerator

GE Revolving Shelf Refrigerator
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Now, this is a fridge I need in my life right now! Why do we not have revolving shelves in every refrigerator sold today? Also, why are there so many uncovered foods in this fridge? That turkey is going to be so dry!

Nevertheless, this is exactly the sort of thing that makes me think that vintage appliances are better than modern-day appliances. Who needs stainless steel when you can have revolving shelves? We need to bring all of these back now!

14. Cycla-matic Frigidaire with Roll-Out Shelves

Cycla-matic Frigidaire with Roll-Out Shelves
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If I can’t have revolving shelves, can I at least get refrigerator shelves that pull out? That doesn’t seem like too much to ask for, does it?

The freezer in this fridge is a little small, but the convenience of quickly grabbing a dessert pudding without having to lean into the fridge more than outweighs that small inconvenience. Let’s make pull-out fridge shelves happen again!

15. NuTone Built-In Stereo Music System

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Growing up, my house had a whole-house intercom system with an AM radio. The master unit was in the kitchen and each room had a built-in speaker on the wall. I still remember my mom calling us to dinner over the Intercom and my dad playing gospel music on the radio on Sunday mornings.

As a music lover, my dad would have freaked out over this sophisticated stereo system. A reel-to-reel tape system plus a phonograph with a record changer? He would have been in heaven, blasting the latest Tony Bennett album over the speakers 24/7.

You can set up a modern-day version of this setup with Amazon Echos (or another smart speaker) in every room, but they don’t have the push-button convenience of the built-in solutions. I miss how easy that was.

16. Whole House Central Vacuum

Growing up, I thought having a central vacuum system meant you were extremely wealthy. (Other signs of wealth: Dixie Cup Dispensers and shag carpeting. I was a simple child.)

My next-door neighbor had a central vac and I loved to help her vacuum with it. You grabbed the lengthy hose out of the closet, plugged it into a wall outlet, and you were ready to go!

She also had an outlet in her kitchen for sweeping messes without getting out a dustpan. The system was so much more convenient than lugging around a heavy vacuum.

Nowadays, we have powerful cordless vacuums that are lightweight and don’t require bags, so maybe a central vacuum system isn’t as necessary. I still miss the days of running around my neighbor’s house with that giant hose.

17. Trash Compactor

Vintage Trash Compactor from Sears

Trash compactors were a brief fad in the early 70s but then they seemed to go away and I don’t know why. You can still buy trash compactors today, but they are no longer a common feature.

Too much trash is a serious problem in today’s society, and, as a person who pays for their trash pick-up by the bag, I would love something that helped me use fewer bags.

Perhaps the price is a reason trash compactors never caught on. This trash compactor cost $219.95 in 1971. That’s around $1600 in today’s dollars. And wouldn’t you know it, a new trash compactor can run about $1600 today. You would need to save a lot of money on your trash pickup in order to justify the cost.

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