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A History of Hoosier Cabinets

Hoosier cabinets are a type of freestanding kitchen cabinet that was popular in the early 20th century, particularly in the United States. They were first produced by the Hoosier Manufacturing Co. in Indiana in the early 1900s, hence the name "Hoosier cabinet."

These cabinets have gained popularity in recent years, and we love seeing these, and other antique kitchen storage pieces at estate sales in Tacoma, Gig Harbor, and Olympia.

Let’s talk a little more about these versatile pieces of furniture.

Why They Were Made

These cabinets were designed to be a central workspace in the kitchen, providing storage and a convenient surface for food preparation. They typically feature a porcelain work surface, a large cupboard with shelves and drawers, a flour bin, and a set of glass or metal canisters for storing commonly used ingredients like sugar, coffee, and spices.

Hoosier cabinets were especially popular during the Depression era, as they allowed families to make the most of limited kitchen space while also providing a sense of order and efficiency in the kitchen. Today, they are considered vintage or antique pieces and are sought after by collectors and enthusiasts of vintage kitchenware.

How they are Used Today

Today, Hoosier cabinets are still used in many homes, albeit for different purposes than their original intent.

One way in which Hoosier cabinets are used now is as storage cabinets. These cabinets are often found in antique stores or estate sales and are purchased by people who appreciate the unique style and functionality of the cabinets. Hoosier cabinets often have multiple drawers, shelves, and compartments, making them ideal for storing a variety of items such as dishes, cookbooks, and utensils.

Another way in which Hoosier cabinets are used now is as decorative pieces. Many people use Hoosier cabinets as a focal point in their kitchens, dining rooms, or other living spaces. These cabinets are often painted or refinished to match the decor of the room, and they can be used to display decorative items such as vases, picture frames, or antique kitchen utensils.

Some people also use Hoosier cabinets as workstations in their home offices or craft rooms. The cabinets' built-in desk and storage compartments make them perfect for organizing paperwork, office supplies, and crafting materials. They can also be used as a sewing station, with the desk providing ample space for a sewing machine and the drawers and shelves providing storage for fabric, thread, and other sewing supplies.

We love hearing how people reuse these unique and beautiful pieces of furniture. If you are in the market, check out our upcoming estate sales.


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