Inspiring Ideas for Vintage Kitchen Islands, Via Houzz.com
Tired of the same old boxy kitchen island? Look to the past for a functional piece with timeless personality
A true butcher block is completely at home in the kitchen. The most often found vintage size is roughly a square, usually around 30 inches, although larger blocks are out there. The smaller ones can fit nicely even in a small kitchen. Expect to pay between $400 and $700 on up for a small block. Often charmingly worn on the top, the uneven surface can cause problems with serving.
While farm tables have become popular in the kitchen, don’t overlook other working-style tables. This table looks like it might have been the bottom part of a Hoosier cabinet (note the rounded flour bin underneath).
A console table can make a wonderful worktable/island, especially in a smaller kitchen. Sometimes they come with shallow drawers in the front. Bottom shelves are common and provide a place for large stock pots or baskets. Console tables can be found in just about any style and material. The style shown here can be readily found in a reproduction model, often with your choice of painted finish.
A rather plentiful item at antique stores is the vintage buffet. The 1960s versions are usually rather dowdy looking in their original wood finish, but give it a coat of paint and voilà — a whole new look. If you are going to paint it, you don’t need to find a pristine piece, either, meaning the price will be lower. Because furniture is rarely finished on the back, consider how you can finish this to fit both the piece and your kitchen, and whether you’ll need a carpenter’s help.
Tables and carts, originally used in manufacturing or other plants, are another interesting option for a repurposed island. The bright orange of this curvy base provides a fun spot of color.
Keep a lookout for these at antique and salvage stores. (Don’t worry; they’re hard to miss.) Because of their sheer size, they’re somewhat difficult to sell and may not cost as much as you might think. Look for one with interesting detailing on the “outside.” A carpenter can help fabricate useful storage on the working side if needed.
What do you get when you combine an old wood table and a piece of Victorian flashing? A one-of-a-kind island. Any kind of old finish should be sealed for safety around food and easy cleaning.