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September 1, 2011

Our Vintage Aqua St Charles Cabinets

By Sara In AZ

I have been remiss y’all.

I have been putting off doing a post on our St Charles metal cabinets because I had high hopes we would have found a house to install them in by now. Then I could show everyone lovely before and after pictures of the cabinets in storage and then pretty pictures of the cabinets installed in our new home. I guess that is not going to happen anytime soon though. I have been promising Ruth I would do a post on the cabinets and now the time has come. House or no house, installed or not – here are our cabinets. I don’t have tons of great pictures of the aqua cabinets. I guess when we were hauling them to be stored I was not thinking “Let me get pictures of everything”, I suppose I just wanted to get the job done.

As Mike and I have been retro house hunting, we are noticing that pretty much all of the homes have gutted kitchens. My ultimate hope is that we can find a retro house with at least intact bathrooms, since we now have a whole set of cabinets and ovens! My plan for the kitchen is something like this picture from my post on the 1956 Sherwin-Williams Home Decorator Catalog. We have the aqua and pink cabinets, along with the pink ovens, so I think it will be a really cute kitchen………..someday! 


Here are the cabinets when we picked them up. The guy we bought them from told us he really wanted to install them in his house, but since the uppers were too tall he would have had to re-do the whole ceiling in the kitchen and family room just to fit them in. He wasn’t up for that, so his loss was our gain.

The lady he bought them from was removing these St Charles cabinets to install IKEA cabinets. Now I have nothing against IKEA, but there is no way I would EVER take these cabinets out to install IKEA cabinets.

Oh boy, we have a full trailer load y’all. And more! We had to put some cabinets in our vehicle and in another one too!

We are trying to be careful. Very, very careful!

Ahhhhhh, finally they are in storage. I snapped a few pictures of some of the cool features of the cabinets.

I thought this cabinet was cool with the pull out wastebaskets. This cabinet is called the “Waste Container Unit” according to my St Charles catalog.

I thought this cabinet was really cute too. This one is called the “Vegetable Storage Unit”. I love all the pull out drawers and those little wire baskets which are totally original.  And ‘Yay’ for a cutting board too!

The color of the cabinets is “Aqua”, as it is stamped on the back of all the cabinets. I have to say the paint on these cabinets  is in phenomenal condition, we can definitely use them just as they are. They just need a big cleaning first, they are pretty dirty!

Here are the cabinets in storage, just waiting for us to find our perfect retro house!

 Come back next week to get the story on our pink St Charles cabinets.

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17 Responses to Our Vintage Aqua St Charles Cabinets

  1. deb Reply

    September 1, 2011 at 7:45 am

    Gorgeous, Sara!

  2. Eartha Kitsch Reply

    September 1, 2011 at 8:05 am

    First off, what might possibly be the best first paragraph in a blog post ever: “I have been remiss, y’all.” I love it!

    Secondly, those cabinets are sooooooo pretty. You WILL have that kitchen. Especially now since all of the readers here will see those photos and picture that kitchen for you.

    Third, how cool is it to have a place to put things like onions and potatoes? I’ve always wanted that? As a Southern girl, I’m sure you’re familiar with those wooden “tater” bins that say on them – well, “Tater Bin”. Not nearly as cool.

  3. RetroRuth Reply

    September 1, 2011 at 9:46 am

    Love these!!! Love, love, love, love them! Wow!

  4. Sara in AZ Reply

    September 1, 2011 at 12:36 pm

    Deb – Thanks! 🙂

    Eartha – Hee! Thanks for loving that first part of that post! 🙂 I CANNOT wait to have that kitchen and I so appreciate your well wishes in making it happen. Oh yeah, I know those wooden ‘Tater bins’ well girl! I could put a little plaque on the outside of the drawer “Tater bin”! 😉

    Ruth – Thanks SO much! But you know YOU are still the Queen of metal cabinets girl! 🙂

  5. Jen Reply

    September 1, 2011 at 4:44 pm

    They are BEAUTIFUL! I love them! What great cabinets, and St. Charles, too! Score!

    I don’t understand ditching those for IKEA, either. What? But…their loss, your gain, right? Hope you find a great house to put them in soon!

  6. Sara in AZ Reply

    September 1, 2011 at 5:36 pm

    Jen – Thank you so much! I know, St Charles – YAY!!! I cannot wait until we find the right house to put these in either; thanks for pulling for us to find the right one – SOON!!! 🙂

  7. Betty Crafter Reply

    September 2, 2011 at 9:06 am

    I think we should all start sending good house-hunting vibes into the universe for Sara! Her time has COME! Sara, you have too much fabulousness sitting in storage. Selfishly, I just can’t wait to see how great all this is going to look set up!

  8. pam kueber Reply

    September 2, 2011 at 9:32 am

    Hey Sara, GORGEOUS cabinets. St. Charles were the very best made. One thought: I would be cautious about storing them with the tape on them. As the adhesive on the tape hardens, it could adhere more than you want to the finish of the cabinets. That is: You may end up pulling the finish off the cabinets and leaving “ghost” marks when you take the tape off. I am not sure… but better safe than sorry and figure out a way to keep the door closed while in story without tape?

  9. sablemable Reply

    September 2, 2011 at 11:36 am

    Saraaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!! LOL@removing SC cabs for Ikea. Duh! What was that woman thinking?

    I don’t know if I can hold out any longer, waiting impatiently for your MCM home to rise out of the ground!

  10. Jen Reply

    September 2, 2011 at 11:53 am

    Yes, I agree—house-finding vibes! (Though there’s a beauty for sale in northern WV…*COUGH COUGH*) 😉 Oh, I can’t wait to see how it all looks, either. Do you know what other colour(s) you’ll go with in the kitchen?

    Also, Pam is right about the tape…What about some super-strong magnets? Or perhaps long strips of plain muslin cloth?

  11. Sara in AZ Reply

    September 2, 2011 at 3:02 pm

    Betty – Oh gosh thanks! 🙂 You don’t know how much I appreciate the good house-hunting vibes. I just know it has to happen soon, right!?! I am just beside myself wanting to set all this stuff up too!!!Eeeeee, please house, show up soon!!!

    Pam – Thanks so much! I would agree these cabinets are very well made, they are SO heavy I cannot wait to stop lugging them around and just have them installed! I should have noted that we DID take all the tape off after these pictures were taken, we only had it on for the move.

    Sable – I know, IKEA?!? I just don’t get it either. Pray real hard for that MCM house to show up real soon girl!!! Please, please, please!!!

    Jen – We took the tape off after these pics were taken, we only had it on for moving them around – so the drawers would not slide out and stuff. I am not totally sure what other colors I want in the kitchen. I have 5 rolls of vintage wallpaper that is mostly white but has aqua and pink in it too so I definitely want to use that. I guess I will just have to see what colors would work once I get everything in the space! *fingers crossed* that will happen very soon!!!! Or, we could just move to WV! 😉

  12. Marcia Reply

    September 4, 2011 at 10:41 am

    WOW! You are one lucky girl! I have an MCM home they had removed all the good stuff! Enjoy! YOur house WILL come to you!

  13. Sara in AZ Reply

    September 5, 2011 at 2:55 pm

    Marcia – Thank you SO much!!! Sorry about the previous owners removing all the MCM goodness from your home. My goal is to find a pretty original house, I hope it happens soon! Thanks for your well wishes!

  14. Alisa Milhollan Reply

    September 21, 2011 at 12:47 am

    I too scored an amazing St. Charles ensemble with metal lowers and unbelievable walnut uppers. When I bought them the walnut uppers were totally painted over a million times. I restored them and installed them in my kitchen. But I have a space left open for trash next to my vegetable storage unit. I’ve been searching for years, to no avail, for some sort of trash solution that will integrate into my St. Charles kitchen. And now I’ve run across your post with the waste container unit. I’ve never seen one before. Any chance you’d be willing to sell it? You;d make my St. Charles dream kitchen come true.


  15. Sara in AZ Reply

    September 21, 2011 at 12:28 pm

    Hi Alisa! Thanks for the comment and congrats on the amazing score of your St Charles cabinets! I’ll just bet they look amazing after all your work. We would love to see pictures if you are so inclined. 🙂

    I am sorry, we do not want to part with any of our cabinets at this time, as we are currently looking for a home and want to keep everything we have because we are not sure what we will need. However, if we wind up not needing this down the road I can certainly try to contact you.

    One other option for you, you may want to look into buying a new St Charles waste container unit. Check this link out here.


    On page 4 they show the current waste container unit they manufacture and you can still get the old ‘S’ pulls. Maybe you could order it in the Stainless color??? It definitely is an option for you!

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