Serious Choices for a Family Sized Retro Cooler

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Serious Choices for a Family Sized Retro Cooler

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To make this a unique Buying Guide, I worked hard to dive deep into the real competitors-so it’s a long story, and who spent 15 year writing about retro kitchens and appliances.

Here Is The Index:

  • Sub-Zero [or any other retro-looking refrigerator that includes a custom color swatch)
  • Great Cold
  • North Star
  • Smeg
  • Unique Devices
  • Rooms
  • Vintage
  • Paint your own
  • Wrap your refrigerator in vinyl or…
  • Opt for a Proxy to save money

1. sub-Zero refrigerator with historical equipment

My first option for a retro-style refrigerator will probably surprise you, but apart from Buying Vintage, this is undoubtedly the most authentic choice: Sub-Zero. That’s because Sub-Zero is not a mid-century interpretation of refrigerators – they’ve actually been around for decades.

However, the key to getting the “authentic” retro version is to specify it correctly:

  • Choose a Design “ready for the panels”—buy the panels directly from Sub -Zero or ask your carpenter to make them to measure—the panels will then be “framed” in metal as in the photo on the right.
  • Select the “classic slatted insert” grid on the right photo.
  • And choose the “full-length standard handles” – these are stuck under the panels.

About the size and capacity:

  • The sub-zeros are available in many different sizes, and they are all against depth. Using the exact specifications listed above, I used a 42″ side-by-side Sub-Zero fridge freezer in my kitchen and added white enamel for the front and sides. The place I had ordered from hadn’t taken an order like mine in year, but once I made myself clear, they understood — and got it right. Note that the Sub-Zero website does not help to specify “my” classic configuration. Use my instructions and be persistent (with kindness and patience).
  • Sizes that were usually used before: I am sure that the 42″ side by side has been around for a long time. The image shown here is from a 1966 advertisement, and I would say that it is a 36″ wide refrigerator with a small freezer at the bottom. Really, I think you could go with any size and be retro-appropriate. Final

Note: the sub-Zeros come with ice makers. Outdoor cooler are not suitable for a retro refrigerator until you get in… the 1970s are coming, I would say.

2. Big Chill – two mid-century refrigerator models, including a countertop depth

Big Chill is undoubtedly the biggest name among owners looking for a retro refrigerator. And rightly so: I think they really did a good job with the design of their devices. The lines are curved and attractive, but not overly stimulated, not cartoonish. Beautiful.

Big Chill has two different models that talk about the post period-The Original, which has a Look from the 1940s to the 1950s… and the Retropolitan, reminiscent of the 1960s and 1970s. I also show the new classic when it comes to channeling the cooler of the nineteenth and early twentieth century.

Sizes and capacities:

Some key facts about the size and capacity of Big Chill refrigerators:

  • Storage space for retro refrigerators / freezers: from 13 cu.ft… at 18.2 cu.ft… at 20.6 cu.ft… at 24.1 cu.foot.
  • Widths of about 25″… up to 28″… up to 31″… up to 33″
  • Heights of 57″… up to 65″… up to 69″
  • The depths of the “boxes” (not counting the overhang of the door or handle) are 28″, with the exception of the thin refrigerator, the box of which rests against the depth.
  • Big Chill’s Designs are available in up to nine Standard Color. Or the company can paint your refrigerator in a custom color for an additional fee. The great thing about this company is also that there is a complementary range of retro stoves and cookers, hobs, dishwashers, a microwave oven and even hoods that help create a complete kitchen with a consistent appearance.


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