The stereo that fits in a briefcase


For music on the go, have a look at this “Stereo Sound System” by Bohsei. Circa 1970-1980, the complete stereo system is fitted into a nondescript briefcase. The piece is decked out with a 3-speed turntable (with a 45 record adapter), removable speakers, AM/FM stereo with a rod antenna, and cassette tape player/recorder. It also includes two microphones, AC connector, and a “Beat Cut” switch, Main switch knob, Speed knob, Program knob, Band knob, Tuning knob, and Tone, Volume Left and Volume Right knobs.

The dishwasher that was the size of a breadbox


This 1950s Colston dishwasher seems to be a bit bigger than a breadbox, and ideal for apartment living. Sadly, it is an antique!

The stove that came with its own cutting board


In 1959, appliance giant Tappan recreated the stove, and came up with the innovative Fabulous 400.

In place of the standard low single oven that required crouching down to cook or clean, the 400 was fitted with dual ovens placed at eye level, both lined with glimmering stainless steel and integrated with full glass doors. The smaller oven carried an electric rotisserie motor built-in at the rear. Burners were placed in a slide-out drawer, and finished with fold-down maple cutting board. The 400 could be built-in, but was usually fitted on its own matching lower storage base cabinet.

The refrigerator/stove that was quite the space saver


ElectroChef combo refrigerator and stove is an ideal ‘made for apartment living’ kitchen appliance. Although ElectroChef lacks in space it compensates with its weight – it’s a whopping 500 pounds.

The mid-century precursor to Facetime and Skype


This classical tv/phone combo was a futuristic invention that never really got out of the prototype stage. This clunky, costly and painfully intrusive gadget didn’t really take off until the 21st century, but we are all praises to Western Electric (and other videophone creators) for leading the way.

The television/radio combo that came with its own mini bar


We have ‘fallen in love’ with this mid-century television/record player/mini bar combo. Its beautiful, hand-rubbed, liquor-proof cabinet provides a stainless steel mixing tray, liquor-proof serving shelf, ‘empties’ receptacle, and racks for 32 glasses. Lower compartment has space for over 30 bottles.

The fridge that was hidden in kitchen cabinets


A refrigerator concealed in the cabinetry? The GE wall refrigerator-freezer of 1955 was pretty much the same.

The precursor to the modern day dishwasher


Ideal for small space living, the electric sink did not really take off, although it is forerunner to the modern day dishwasher.

The Depression-era refrigerator that came with a radio


While it appears like it wasn’t really a bad idea, simply putting a radio in the kitchen would have been a cheaper solution than buying the above combo, particularly at the time of the Great Depression.

The appliance known as the “Rolls Royce” of refrigerators


The Kelvinator Foodarama came up in the 1950s and was an amazing vintage appliance. It is heralded as one-of-a-kind, side-by-side refrigerators ever produced. It carried the following features:

• Left side freezer; right side refrigerator
• In-door “Breakfast Bar” with built-in egg holders and removable juice containers
• Tilt-out crisper bin
• Butter keeper
• Frozen can storage in freezer
• Chrome exterior door handles

The dishwasher that also cleaned clothes


Thor came up with its maiden electric clothes washer in 1907. They also landed into the market a machine and dishwasher in the 1940s – however the idea of washing clothes and dishes in the same machine was a turn off to the consumers.