The Gadgets Page

July 5, 2012

Orla Reynolds Designs A Bookcase That Stores Table and Chairs

Filed under: Kitchen Gadgets — Laura Moncur @ 11:47 am

Orla Reynolds created this design for a bookcase that hides a table and chairs within it.

Orla Reynolds Hidden Bookcase Furniture

You can choose whether you want to seat two or four based on how large a bookcase you select.

Orla Reynolds Hidden Bookcase Furniture

You can also arrange the bookcases differently to create a sitting nook. Watch the video for more ideas.

In tight apartments and tiny houses, furniture that pulls double duty like this is a necessity. What I’d love is a way to hack Ikea furniture to interlock in this method. Maybe using Expedits and some of their Herman chairs…

Via: As If From Nowhere: Bookcase Conceals 2 Tables, 4 Chairs | Designs & Ideas on Dornob

July 29, 2011

Domestic Technology: Making Housework Easier

Filed under: Kitchen Gadgets,Retro Gadgets — Laura Moncur @ 12:00 pm

Mike and I were lucky enough to attend the Clark County Domestic Technology: Making Housework Easier exhibit in Henderson, Nevada last November. Since my grandmother was an antiques collector, many of the items were things that I had actually used as a child, so it brought back many fond memories for me, even though most of these gadgets were far ahead of my time.

The exhibit started out with vacuums and their salesmen.

This Electrolux looks exactly like the vacuum that my grandmother used on the stairs. She kept it in the basement. Seeing it makes me think of the green shag carpet and how many times I vacuumed up the stairs with that aqua colored vacuum.

I loved how the museum posted replicas of the advertisements for the gadgets alongside the real thing.

My grandmother also had this iron. I remember ironing my grandpa’s handkerchiefs with it while watching Phil Donahue on the television. I can still smell the spray starch.

This Rival crockpot, however, is exactly like the one from my mom’s house. Carol made homemade chicken noodle soup in that crockpot so many times that my mouth waters just seeing that avocado colored appliance.

I was most surprised by the antique toasters. I had no idea how old that technology was.

I loved how the museum included technology from present day. In this “Keeping Food Fresh” section, they included antique Mason jars, Tupperware from the 1970’s and even Ziploc containers from 2010. A century of awesome on one shelf.

The blender on the right is exactly like the one my mom had. We made so many cakes and cookies with that blender. She told me that she received that blender as a wedding present and it always amazed me that something older than me was still helping us in the kitchen.

Some of the gadgets brought back a strange nostalgia like the box for the hot plate in the background here. Then again, they included a George Foreman grill, which is a similar appliance, but it took the world by storm when it hit the market.

Seeing this exhibit was a strange mixture of nostalgia for the past and coveting in the present. The starburst clock on the wall made me jealous with desire.

It was a great exhibit and I truly enjoyed myself. Here is a video from the Clark County Museum talking about it:

September 16, 2010

Dishmaster: An Old Invention That Needs A Comeback

Filed under: Kitchen Gadgets,Retro Gadgets — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

I absolutely LOVE the concept behind the Dishmaster!


Instead of a sprayer attached to a hose on your sink, the sprayer has a dish brush. Not only does your brush stay right where you need it, it squirts water out on your dishes while you clean. You can see the entire ad here:


Oxo SteeL Soap Squirting Dish Brush at Amazon.comWhat I would love to see is a modern day hack that takes the Oxo SteeL Soap Squirting Dish Brush and attaches it to my nearly useless sink sprayer. What would I have to do to make that a reality in my own home? Maybe it’s time to hit the hardware store and find out for myself.

Advert via: Live Journal vintage_ads: This is actually kinda neat!

August 27, 2010

Silicone Oven Shield

Filed under: Kitchen Gadgets — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

Silicone Oven Shield at Amazon.comI can’t believe it took us this long to get a product like the Silicone Oven Shield. It provides a burn-free grip for your oven racks. Why don’t all ovens come with this feature. I have been using silicone baking pans for years now and I never once thought, “Hey they should put this stuff on oven racks so I don’t burn my arm on them.”

There is a warning in the Amazon user comments stating that you only get one shield and that the shipping is really high for the small item. Even though the picture shows two shields, you should know that you only get one. Unfortunately, the buyer didn’t bother actually USING the shield to see if it works.

In the future, manufacturers will put silicone guards on all oven racks. Until then, we’ll have to retrofit our own.

Via: Put Your Hands in the Oven with a Silicone Oven Shield |

April 1, 2010

Datexx Cube Timer

Filed under: Kitchen Gadgets,Misc. Gadgets — Christy Strebe @ 2:29 pm

Cube Timer at Amazon.comI’ve been in search of a kid friendly timer for a while now. I needed something that was accurate and my kids wouldn’t break on Day One. I had tried the traditional egg timers but they were inaccurate and broke easily.

While at CES in Las Vegas I walked by a booth for Datexx and did a double take. Sitting on the counter was a cube with large numbers. I stopped and discovered “The Miracle Cube Timer”. I had to try it out and purchased one that day. This has been the best timer. It is easy to use, keeps reliable time and has lasted so far (even after being dropped).

This timer is very easy to use – you turn it on pick the time you want and set it down with that time face up. The cube has four different preset time amounts: 5min, 15 min, 30 min, and 60 min. It also has a small screen which shows how much time is remaining, and a blinking red light to show that it is on. It is powered off 2 AAA batteries which have also lasted (I thought for sure we would be going through batteries but we are still on our first set).

The only problem with this timer is if you want a different amount of time then 4 choices it gives you, you might have to set it multiple times, and the alarm at the end is loud (which can be good or bad, depending on what you are doing with it).

We use the timer so my kids know when their allotted computer or Wii time is up. But it could also be used for cooking, games, naps, exercising or a number of other activities. If you need a timer that can stand up to the abuse that kids can dish out, the Datexx Cube Timer is the best I’ve found.

July 16, 2009

Lisa’s Old Pink Oven

Filed under: Kitchen Gadgets,Retro Gadgets — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

Our old neighbor, Lisa, just remodeled her kitchen. When we heard about it, both NakedJen and I were wondering what happened to her beautiful old pink oven. Fortunately, Lisa was smart enough to keep it. While we looked at her lovely new kitchen, we also took the time to take some photos of her old Frigidaire. Here are the photos:

Lisa's Old Pink Oven by LauraMoncur from Flickr

The cool thing about this oven is that it is meant to be built into the wall at body level. The doors open out like a refrigerator to reveal a fairly small oven.

Lisa's Old Pink Oven by LauraMoncur from Flickr

I love how the dark color of the knobs contrast with the light pink color. This oven was made during that time when you coordinated your appliances with your color scheme. Instead of only a choice of white, black or stainless steel, you had a rainbow of colors to choose from.

Lisa's Old Pink Oven by LauraMoncur from Flickr

This timer is PERFECT and I trust timers like this so much more than the digital ones on my current oven (mostly because they are easier to set).

Lisa plans on selling her oven on eBay, so, if you like it, keep an eye out there for it.

July 1, 2009

BBQ Gadgets For Independence Day

Filed under: Kitchen Gadgets — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

The fourth of July is right around the corner, so get ready for your Independence Day BBQ the way The Gadgets Page would celebrate it!

Meco Stand Up Red Charcoal Grill at Amazon.comThe best charcoal grill: Meco Stand Up Red Charcoal Grill

Mike and I bought a grill similar to this one at a garage sale about six years ago. The previous owner had used it once. We could still see the single hamburger mark on the grill. After a good cleaning and tightening of the bolts on the legs, it has lasted us this entire time. Now that it’s time for its retirement, I’m partial to just buying the exact same one to replace it. Ours is a little different because it has a little fold-down table on the right side, but everything else is the same. I can’t count how many wonderful cookouts we have had on our little grill.

Mr. Bar-B-Q 18-Piece Stainless-Steel Tool Set at Amazon.comBest BBQ Tool Set: Mr. Bar-B-Q 18-Piece Stainless-Steel Tool Set

I thought this would be a great set because after I cleaned the tools, I would be able to put them all away in the case and keep them clean and organized. Unfortunately, the case was lost long ago. All that remains of this set are the tongs, the burger flipper and three of the corn on the cob holders. It’s about time we bought another set of BBQ tools and I’m going to go with the same kit as we did last time. I’m going to keep everything in its case, I promise!

Digital BBQ Fork at Amazon.comBest argument ender: Digital BBQ Fork

The biggest argument while we’re cooking is whether the meat is “done” or not. I don’t own this gadget, but I imagine it would end all of these arguments. I can see them play out like this:

“I don’t think it’s done. You should give it another five minutes.”

“But that will make it all dry and gross!”

“It’s not safe to eat right now.”

“It’s just fine. I’ll risk a little e.coli to have a tender burger.”

“Let’s let the Digital BBQ Fork decide!”

“See! I TOLD you it was done!!”

Of course, it my fantasies, I’m always right, so the Digital BBQ Fork would agree with me. In reality, I’d probably have to wait the five minutes just like Mike said.

Q-Labs Top Secret Spy Gadgets BBQ Apron at Amazon.comBest BBQ apron for a gageteer: Q-Labs Top Secret Spy Gadgets BBQ Apron

I don’t own this apron, but I want it. What gadgeteer wouldn’t want this awesome apron for both BBQ’s AND science experiments!

In the end, you don’t need a bunch of gadgets to have a great BBQ. You just need some good friends and a bit of good food. Have a happy holiday and don’t burn yourself on the grill!

May 28, 2009

So Proud of the New Fridge: A 1950’s UnBoxing

Filed under: Kitchen Gadgets,Retro Gadgets — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

I love this photo from Darth Bengal.

Two kids and a Hotpoint by Darth Bengal from Flickr

I can just imagine what was said before the photograph was taken.

Dick and Baby Judy, go over and stand by the new refrigerator. I want to get a picture!

Imagine being so proud of your new fridge that you want to take a photo of it. That’s how it used to be. Maybe they had some old ice box from way back when and when that photo was taken, they were FINALLY able to have a REAL fridge.

A few weeks ago, I retweeted a message in Twitter about unboxing photos. I have never really understood unboxing photos. They are just pictures of someone opening the box to their new toy. What’s the fun in that?

The fun in that is GRATITUDE. When people are so excited about their gadget that they take photos of it while they are taking it out of the box, they are GRATEFUL for the toy they just got. It’s the same reason people take pictures of themselves next to their cars.

This HotPoint Refrigerator was a LOVED gadget. So valued that it was included in the family photos. THAT’S gratitude.

May 14, 2009

Top Loading Dishwasher

Filed under: Kitchen Gadgets,Retro Gadgets — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

Kitchen Aid Portable Top Loading DishwasherI found an ad for a top-loading portable dishwasher from Kitchen Aid on Flickr. You can see the full ad here:

I understand the appeal of top-loading because there is no way that water can leak and spill all over your kitchen floor. Anyone who has had a dishwasher with that problem understands the desire to contain that potential mess.

The CAPACITY, however is so low! Imagine only being able to wash ten plates and six glasses! No pots or pans, just service for six (or so).

I’m sure that front loading dishwashers came into existence so they could be installed under counters, not because of their limited dish capacity. They must have been around for only a short amount of time, because I’ve never seen a top-loading dishwasher in my life. Honestly, I’ve only ever seen two portable dishwashers, period.

What was once a “fashion” or a luxury, has now become a housing staple. My first apartment didn’t have a dishwasher, but I’m sure it does now. It surprises me how quickly gadgets advance within one lifetime.

April 30, 2009

Trongs: Eat Messy Food Without The Mess

Filed under: Kitchen Gadgets — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

Trongs - finger-food utensil at Amazon.comI instantly fell in love with Trongs the minute I saw them. They are little utensils that protect your hands from messy foods.

I LOVE buffalo wings. I have taken to eating boneless wings because I can eat them with a fork and spare myself the mess, but with the advent of Trongs, I could go back to eating the original wings.

Here is a video showing you how to use them:

Here’s a video that gives you a closer glimpse of them:

Every bar and wings restaurant in the country should hand out a pair of Trongs with every basket of wings they serve.

Via: Trongs are the Finger Tong Utensil of the Future »

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