Kitchen Collectibles: Relics of Desperate Housewives & Tools for Today’s Chefs No longer needing to be “Desperate Housewives” who slave over a kitchen stove, women are passing over yesterday’s kitchen relics to today's “Desperate Professional Chefs” .
News-Antique.com - Mar 30,2008 - Homemakers of the caliber of your grandmother’s or certainly great grandmother’s generation are indeed becoming an extinct breed reports Zweig who has studied this topic when she wrote “Hot Kitchen & Home Collectibles of the 30s, 40s, 50s (Collectorbooks.com ). Home Economics Departments which once offered important foundation courses in school are old news....ancient history. Today staying home for a “fresh home cooked meal” means popping into the microwave yesterday’s container of Lo Mein or a frozen “home-style package of Macaroni and Cheese.
If women are not home “homemaking” than will we see a dwindling supply of kitchen collectibles for future generations? According to Zweig, who just finished her second book, “Hot Cottage Collectibles for Vintage Style Homes” (Collectorbooks.com), technological advances have completely changed the face of today’s kitchen and homes and may offer tomorrows collectors nothing more than a collection of computer chips?
In the meantime, there still are plenty of kitchen collectibles around from baby boomer’s grandmas to help warm up today’s stainless steel “industrialized” kitchens which have become so popular. While young people like adding vintage accessories to their commercial style kitchens for “show” Zweig says professional chefs buy older gadgets and appliance to use!
Tim Kesser owner and chef of the Kess Café in Plantsville, Connecticut, a funky eatery on Main Street, often walks around the corner to shop at The Plantsville General Store Antique Center where he finds a huge selection of vintage kitchen wares. He recently bought an old ricer which he says works far better that the poorly designed (and expensive) import he gave up on the week before.
Kesser like many men (and women) in the kitchen today, appreciates all the wonderful products, utensils and gadgets passed on from mom’s of the colorful eras of the 30s, 40s, 50s. Kesser also understands all too well how hard it is to balance family time with the demands of his growing restaurant business which is drawing customers from all over Connecticut.
While the workload may have been physically harder during the period before modernization of the kitchen, life may have actually been less complex as there were less choices for women and men to contemplate. Roles were clearly defined for both sexes. Women stayed in the kitchen and men went out to work and that was expected.
Zweig, who is also a psychotherapist believes that family life may have seemed simpler in the good ole days when women (and men) didn’t have to obsess over roles, careers and childcare. Women didn’t agonize about whether to leave their children in childcare while they left the home to work. Women worried about how much butter to use in a cake recipe and which batter bowl to use. On the other hand, back in the “fabulous forties” or “nifty fifties” you hardly ever heard a father say “I need to spend more quality time with my kids”. The times they have changed..... hopefully for the better.