Fashion trends often trickle into other areas of design. So the current favor for 1970s style—from hot-pants to halter tops to floppy hats—on the catwalks of New York, London and Milan begs the question: Will interior home design soon follow suit? We decided to look to the kitchen for any signs of a seventies resurgence.
While there are no harvest gold or avocado green appliances in the Consumer Reports test labs, several technologies that started in the seventies are coming on strong today. One is induction cooking. Though over a century old, the technology’s first rollout in cooking appliances happened in the seventies. Unfortunately, the first cooktops were buggy, and so induction didn’t catch on. But the latest induction cooktops and ranges deliver pinpoint precision in our tests, and prices have come down considerably.
Next up, the quartz countertop. The composite material was invented in 1977 and dubbed engineered stone. Despite being hard-wearing and stain-resistant, it couldn’t get past the granite juggernaut in countertop sales, in part because granite scored points for naturalness. Hence the name change from engineered stone to quartz, which comprises most of its content. While granite is still the most popular stone countertop, quartz beat it out in our latest Ratings, and more kitchen designers are giving it a look.
Lastly there’s the food processor. Cuisinart introduced this countertop appliance to American consumers in 1973. Sales blitzed through the decade, but by the late eighties the food processor was in decline. It’s now poised for a comeback, as reported in “The food processor—a grate alternative that slices and purees too.” Check our Ratings for one that will whip up salmon mousse, lemon soufflé, crab cocktail, and other seventies classics.
Kitchens without the kitsch. Find kitchen makeovers for $5,000, $15,000 or $50,000 in our Classic Kitchen special section.