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100-Year History of Appliance Finishes

For the past 100 years, appliance finishes have grown and changed in line with home and design trends and an always-changing consumer preference.
by GE Appliances on 19 November 2012

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Transcript of 100-Year History of Appliance Finishes

GE began marketing its versatile electric cooking device in 1906. An electrically wired wooden tabletop positioned on a small oven was sold with a variety of small appliances, including a chafing dish and percolator, which plugged into the table.
Grilling, frying or boiling - the cooktop did it all. 1906 1922-1925 Hotpoint's all-white, fully enameled ranges with nickel trim revolutionized the industry, becoming so popular that nearly every manufacturer introduced its own in 1925. 1955 In January, GE became the first in the industry to bring bright, bold color options to its appliances with "Mix-Or-Match Colors." Kitchens and laundry rooms popped with color, featuring Petal Pink, Canary Yellow, Cadet Blue, Turquoise Green, Woodtone Brown and White appliances. The new colors were chosen based on consumer preference. 1960 Targeting the building industry, GE designed three refrigerators
with wood paneling. With refrigerators available in five varieties
of popular wood finishes made of "Industrial Flexwood," builders
could easily match them to kitchen cabinets. This played well with
consumers' taste for warm, inviting kitchens. 1966 Mix and Match colors gave way to Coppertone (1964), Avocado (1966) and Harvest (1968) - all of which were darkened around the front edges of the appliances. Going hand-in-hand with the Danish modern look of the late 1960s, the color remained a critical factor for fashion-conscious consumers. 1976 GE swapped its shaded appliance colors
for a new palette inspired by colors found
in nature. The "New Naturals" included
Almond, Harvest Wheat, Coffee, Fresh
Avocado, Onyx (black glass) and Snow. 1984 Homeowners sought clean, crisp appearances in their kitchens, so GE added Soft Silver and Sand appliances to its color collection to satisfy the demand of neutral-toned appliances. Color matching continued with GE's detachable dishwasher front panels, giving consumers the ability to have a color-coordinated kitchen. 1987-1989 GE launched the Monogram® brand in 1987.
The first product was a 42-inch, built-in side-by-side
refrigerator available with custom panels including
stainless steel. GE introduced several premium stainless steel models in dishwashers, side-by-side refrigeration and built-in cooking products. 1999 Near the turn of the century, consumers who were used to watching celebrity chefs on TV were eager to modernize their kitchens with stainless steel appliances. GE responded with
a full line in 1999. That same year, GE expanded its neutrals beyond White and Almond with Bisque, a shade in between. 2003-2004 Customers got the look of stainless steel without the higher price tag when GE introduced CleanSteel as a stainless steel look-a-like material laminated on refrigerators. GE also launched a series of Hotpoint appliances featuring a Silver Metallic finish, available exclusively at Home Depot. 2008 With more and more laundry rooms moving up from the basement and closer to kitchens and bedrooms, GE brightened its laundry appliances with the addition of Vermillion (red) and Champagne to the color offerings. 2012 GE introduces Slate - a warm, grey, low-gloss metallic finish. Slate is a premium alternative to stainless steel and complement a wide spectrum of wall colors, countertop materials and floor and cabinetry finishes. For media inquiries and
high-resolution images, please visit
http://www.geapressroom.com For consumer information, please visit http://www.geappliances.com
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