Category: Old-Fashioned Vintage Kitchen Gadgets

Amish Made Products

Old-fashioned online General Store offers Amish-made products, handcrafted goods, and wares from over 100 Amish shops and factories across the USA.

Many know of the Amish for their beautiful handcrafted furniture, quilts, and wooden crafts.  What most don’t realize is that the Amish are still making the old vintage non-electric products and goods that were being used at the turn of the Century.

These old-time products are still available online at Cottage Craft Works .com an online general store filled with hard to find vintage products being made and used by the Amish.

From solid wood, Amish, handcrafted furniture, retro vintage kitchen wares, to Amish organically grown grains and flour you will find it in this refreshing trip back in time when quality USA made products were made to last a lifetime and beyond.

While many marvels over and collect these vintage antiques, the Amish are still hard at work in their small shops and factories continuing to make these old-time products to support their continued horse and buggy lifestyle.

As the country rebuilt from the Great Depression and electricity became readily available a great shift in the types of products in demand also began to occur.

The country moved forward but the Amish way of life stood fast.  The old-fashioned off-grid products the Amish so depended on to support them soon began to be no longer available.

The Amish are very industrious and great business minded people so many began to either make those products again from the patterns and molds being discarded or they contracted with companies to continue making them for just the Amish people.

Even the Janome sewing machine company makes a treadle sewing machine for the Amish communities.  It has crossed over to become popular with non-Amish women who claim that it is easier to control the speed than their electric sewing machines.

People living around or within driving distance to the main Amish communities in Indiana, Ohio, and Pennsylvania, have purchased Amish made products for years because of the quality and durability they offer.

It was not really until the Y2K that the buy Amish products phenomenon really began to materialize.  Before then it was simply buying American made to protest the massive loss of American jobs and the lacking quality of imported products.

The Y2K fear of losing grid power was a real concern of many who sought out the Amish off-gird products to prepare for possibly the worse.

Even though the clock struck midnight on the year 2000 and the world woke up just like another day, the discovery of just how well the Amish products worked brought on a new wave of people looking for the Amish American made products.

The reality of losing grid power for extended periods has materialized on smaller scales from more frequent catastrophic storms.  The threat of terrorism or an attack on our grid is still very real.

Adding into the blend to be less dependent on the grid and modern day products is a strong desire to escape the fast pace lifestyle and return to a simpler time.

Others looking to find safer food supplies are unearthing back yard lawns and turning them into vegetable gardens. They are finding the cheaply made imported garden tools are just not worthy of serious gardening to support a large family so they too are in search of American Amish made tools.

The proliferation of fast and prepared foods is taking a toll on our overall health. Cooking from scratch using all natural chemical free ingredients as the Amish still do is becoming very desirable making Amish made kitchen wares, products, and Amish organically grown foods also desirable.  Especially, when cooking for large families as the Amish do.

While most people won’t go back to the horse and buggy for transportation, do away with air conditioning, or even do away with television, the other aspects of living the simple life are gaining traction.

Most just want to once again have the opportunity to purchase an American made product that they can depend on for a lifetime as early generations were able to do.

The Stevens family founders of Cottage Craft Works searched long and hard for over 30 years to find quality Amish made products for their own use and now offer these hard to find oddities via their online general store at

Many of these Amish products are not available on the mainstream Internet or anywhere else. Cottage Craft Works has developed exclusive relationships with several Amish shop owners to supply unique products for them.

Products such as the folding Singer Featherweight reproduction card tables and J & P Coats thread spool cabinet were developed by Paul Stevens and then contracted with an Amish shop to build for just for Cottage Craft Works customers.

Vintage kitchen gadgets, old-fashioned kitchenware

Old-fashioned vintage kitchenware gadgets from the Amish. Old time vintage products, goods, wares used by Amish self-sufficient off-grid lifestyle.

At the turn of the Century most, every household used some these durable kitchen gadgets and cooking utensils to prepare meals at home.

As electricity began to develop most people opted to become wired creating a monumental shift to electric-powered appliances and kitchen gadgets.

Interesting today families with the most modern gadget equipped kitchens typically eat more meals outside of the home than did their parents and grandparents who grew up in the early 1900s.

The Amish with their large families has held steady to the traditions of old-fashioned cook from scratch home cooked meals. They still prepare and cook all that food without grid power.

Because of the concerns of how large companies have manipulated our countries food chain creating less healthy choices many people are trying to turn back time to cook more family meals at home from scratch.

Many are also trying to become less dependent on the grid power concerned with its vulnerability from storms, terrorist and computer system overload and glitches.

They can become frustrated quickly because most of the hand operated kitchen gadgets of today are cheaply made copies of the originals used at the turn of the century.

The cutting edges dull very quickly, the gears don’t mesh well, the plastic parts often break or the product just doesn’t work at all.

During the 1950s and 1960s, the Amish began to see their mainstream suppliers of these vintage products disappear as the new more modern electrified items were in higher demand.

The Amish began to transform into making their own old time gadgets to supply the next generations of Amish families.

The scale began to tip back to the Amish American made goods when the large discount stores began driving down the prices with cheaper made imported products.  At some point along the journey companies also figured out the concept of making things to wear out quicker so that they would have the opportunity to resell the item again in a person’s lifetime.

The loss of American industrial jobs has created a strong movement to buy American made products.  Many of those products are made in and around various Amish communities across the nation using Amish factory workers.

The year 1999 really placed a spotlight on the Amish quality products as Y-2K buzz had a lot of people worried if they would have grid power when the clock struck midnight into the year 2000.

Even though the Y2K computer shut down never materialized the threat still remains a real potential of losing grid power for extended periods of time due to some type of attack on or a malfunction in the computer networks that control our nationwide electrical power.

Those who have experienced major storm damage can already attest to the fact of living without grid power for weeks and months has become a common reality.

Finding some these old time kitchen gadgets and cooking utensils is not easy as Amish off-grid also means off the internet.

Sure you can find all kinds of Amish handcrafted furniture and quilts online but finding the really good stuff comes to finding sites specializing in Amish self-sufficient old-fashioned products like Cottage Craft

Cottage Craft Works is a small family owned business who still answer their phone and provide old-fashioned one on one customer service.  The Stevens family have spent several decades exploring the Amish back roads finding vintage products for their own home and have been offering those products online now for over a decade to others who want to buy American made quality products.

Cottage Craft Works is one of the largest sources of Amish made products, goods and wares anywhere on the internet allowing for one stop shopping from the comfort of your easy chair.

You can explore this one of a kind emporium at

It’s like waking up in an earlier transformation back into time exploring an old country general store chalked full of vintage merchandise and wares.


Discover Amish USA Made Products, Wares, Goods, Furniture

Handcrafted Amish products, wares, goods, furniture. American made products are very desirable, Amish American made products are in even higher demand.

Cottage Craft is one of the largest online retailers of Amish USA made products from over 100 Amish cottage based shops and factories.

Shopping the vast online store is like taking a trip back to the late 1800s and early 1900s in a time machine.  It was a time when America made products were made to last lifetimes and beyond to the next generations.

Serving the general public for over a decade Cottage Craft Works has developed a solid reputation of old-fashioned integrity and customer service.

The folks at Cottage Craft Works have explored the deep back roads of America in search of high-quality Amish made vintage products that are still being made and used just like they were before the country moved over to electricity in the most rural areas.

The results of their searches have assembled one of the most comprehensive Amish product listings on the Internet with many hard to find items not available anywhere else.

Products and gadgets are made from durable materials for hand power off-grid use and work with ease.  Handcrafted furniture is made from solid wood to become family heirlooms.  Planned obsolesces is never a consideration.

Products are simple, geared for common sense practical uses and not to simply mass produce as cheaply as possible to sell products to the masses.

Somehow the Amish never got caught in the middle of Americas move from a self-sufficient conservative stewardship of the environment to a prefoliation of cheaply made toxic imported products to fill landfills.

In the mid-1900s the Amish who were dependent on the same products used in an off-grid America soon discovered those products were fading as the rest of the country moved on to more modern times.

They began to transform their farming and woodworking skills into small metal working and machine shops to continue to make and supply those goods and wares to other Amish communities.

Many Americans who became fed up with wasting money and throwing out the cheaper made products turned to the Amish communities to continue to purchase the durable USA made products.

It was not until the Y-2K scare that the general public took stock in the dependency on the modern times in their everyday life.  Amish products became in high demand as people prepared to live off the grid as the clocks struck midnight and presumably the computer controlled world would cease to operate.

A phenomenon was discovered by many that some of those old-fashioned hand-operated gadgets were actually easier and quicker to use than their electrical cousins.

Although you can find much cheaper copycat products being imported they just don’t work as smoothly as the Amish made products. Just a simple imported egg beater can be very frustrating to use compared to the Amish made Country Egg Beater.

The same goes on down the line with cooking utensils to gardening tools.  Amish made products are just made to last and to serve large families.

Many women are going back to the treadle sewing machines used by the Amish as they feel they can better control the speed of the treadle sewing machines over the electric sewing machines.  The Janome 712T sewing machine was built for Amish families but surprisingly it is one of the most popular items order with a reproduction treadle sewing cabinet from Cottage Craft Works by non-Amish women.

As simplicity goes so does the practicality of routine household chores. The Amish don’t use dishwashers but still take care of mounds of dishes produced in a day by their large families.  Clothes dryers are not an appliance that you find in an Amish home.  So, the Amish rely on air drying of dishware and laundry using a variety of drying racks.

A large stainless steel kitchen sink drainboard is a very popular item at Cottage Craft Works as well as the many different folding wall and floor clothes drying racks.

Many order the Amish organically grown grains and stone ground flour.  Whole and sprouted spelt is some of the most popular grain products as well as the rolled oats.

It would take an entire website to discuss all the wonderful Amish products available so take a look yourself at


Surviving Off-Grid Kitchens Early 1900s and Today

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Ever wonder how things were done in the kitchen before electricity? Many are going back to simpler times using reproduction off-grid kitchen gadgets.

They are finding the manual versions actually work better and last longer than some of the more modern days cheaply made imports.

Kitchens in the early centuries were equipped with all types of non-electric gadgets, and food processing apparatuses. Many  of these old-fashioned kitchen gadgets were very unusual and are still being reproduced today for use in the Amish off-grid communities.

Without electricity, refrigeration was primarily done by ice boxes.  Ice blocks would need to be frequently purchased at a local store or delivered to the home to keep the icebox cool. During winter months ice could be harvested from a frozen pond. Today many of the Amish homes still use modern day ice boxes and ice houses.

In  winter freezing zones sheets of ice can be stored  throughout the winter months in a well-built ice house that will last a family up until late summer. Ice tongs are standard equipment for a vintage kitchen. Ice for cooling drinks would be chipped off the block using an ice pick. Stores gave away ice picks with the store name as promotional items, along with handheld stick fans and kitchen calendars.

The pictures used in this blog are courtesy of Cottage Craft Works. The pictures show both old vintage products and new reproduction items which, Cottage Craft Works carries on their back-to-basics online store at


Amish ice house under construction in Ohio.


Ice harvested in backyard wooden frame box with plastic sheeting stacked for the summer months.


Ice Tongs used to carry ice from the ice house into the kitchen. A reproduction is available at Cottage Craft Works.


Store advertising vintage ice picks

With a big advantage though over vintage times. New ice houses being built in the Amish communities today use high efficient thick Styrofoam lined floors, walls and ceilings up to 20″ thick.  The Amish also build shallow wooden frames and line them with rolled plastic sheeting in order to fill with water and freeze for ice harvesting.

There were no freezers compartments or freezers available to store food by freezing. Cold foods had to be used or stored in an ice box to prevent spoiling. In the early 1920s, Crosby introduced the Crosby Ice ball refrigeration device. It worked by mixing water and ammonia in one ball. As the ball was heated for around 90 minutes the mixture evaporated and formed ice on the other side. The ice ball side would then be placed inside an ice box to last up to 24 hours.


Vintage Crosby Ice Ball

Living in the 1800s and early 1900s people had to be very self-sufficient. Before a meal could be served the ingredients would have to be processed mostly from scratch. Meals were made from fresh meats and vegetables or staples and food items preserved during harvest periods out of fields and backyard gardens.

Since freezers weren’t an option meats were cured and hung, or used fresh. Vegetables were either dried or canned in glass jars and either used in the cooking of a single meal or preserved for future meals.

Home canning was an almost weekly event throughout the spring and summer months from backyard gardens as most rural stores carried very few canned goods. The Amish still do home canning and even use the large 15-quart stove top water bath canner pictured below.


Home canned supply of family vegetables and fruits for the winter months.


Stovetop water bath canner


Amish made 15 qt stovetop canner available at Cottage Craft Works.

Some of the Amish today do use propane gas powered refrigerators and freezers such as are used in RVs and campers.  They are rather expensive and have smaller compartments than the electric models.

Herbs and vegetables were dried on screens and slats during sunny days or hung over the top of wood stoves. At one time a water filled corn drying pan was popular to dry sweet corn and other herbs and vegetables on a wood cook stove.


Reproduction water filled corn drying pan available at Cottage Craft

The double layer pan was made out of galvanized metal. A new heavy duty reproduction drying pan is now available on the market. It is made from all-welded stainless steel. The layer of water keeps food items from burning. Once the water inside is brought up to temp on a gas or electric stove, the pan takes very little heat to maintain the ideal drying temperatures over 24 hour periods.

The drying pan can also be used to sprout grains, which are then ground into nutritious flour. Dried sweet corn was reconstituted in a milk mixture to make cream sweet corn.

Fermentation was also a very popular preserving method and once again is gaining popularity for the reportedly healthy enzymes that it produces. Fermentation dates back to the long voyages of sailing ships coming to the new Americas as a way to provide the benefits of vegetables to prevent scurvy disease a condition that occurs when individuals are deprived of vegetables over long periods of time.

Fermentation crocks work somewhat like a cabbage sauerkraut crock except they have a built in water chamber at the top to allow air to escape but prevents oxygen from entering and spoiling the contents.


Reproduction fermenting crock available at Cottage Craft

Water was available in the older vintage kitchens using a hand pump pitcher pump. When pressurized water systems became available many of the vintage kitchens lacked counter space so a large country style kitchen sink would be installed with drain boards.


PHB pitcher water hand pump available at Cottage Craft


Amish made stainless steel kitchen drainboard. Standard and custom size available at Cottage Craft


Vintage kitchen

As sinks began to be installed into cabinets, dishwashers were only known as the extra hands assigned to the dishwashing detail. Large drainboards would be used to air dry pots and pans. A reproduction stainless drainboard is made by the Amish.

Most used a root cellar or other cool location to store root vegetables such as onions, turnips, potatoes, carrots, and beets. Those who were lucky to be located close to a running spring built spring houses close to the spring and diverted the cold spring water to run through inside troughs.

They set metal and pottery crock containers into the running water to keep the ingredients cooled. Racks along the walls kept root vegetables cool like a root cellar.

Many devices were made to peel, slice and dice potatoes and other vegetables.


Typical vintage kitchen work table with clamp on kitchen gadgets.

Cabbage was one main vegetable, with many variations of wood with metal blade slicers being made to slice cabbage in order to make sauerkraut and slaw dishes.


Samples of vintage cabbage and vegetable slicers

The smaller wooden trough slicers were used to slice other vegetables, such as carrots, and cucumbers.

Heavy cream and homemade butter would be used in cooking on the dining room table.


Vintage butter churns


New reproduction butter churns from Cottage Craft Works.

All types of butter churns were developed over the years made from all wood to glass jars with wooden paddles. The Daisy glass jar butter churn was probably the most widely used and copied over the years. Similar glass jar butter churns are still being made for small home dairies and hobby farms.

Butter would be formed in wooden molds and then kept cool in the ice box until needed. The long paddle butter mold in the picture made several small butter patties.


Vintage Butter Molds

The initials inside suggest it may have been used in a large well to do family home or perhaps to make butter patties for a hotel dining room.

Old fashioned ice cream would be made in a hand crank ice cream freezer. These old time freezers are still being produced today. The most popular ice cream freezers are still the White Mountain and the Amish made Country and Immergood Ice Cream Freezers.


Country USA Made Ice Cream Freezers available at Cottage Craft


Immergood USA made ice cream freezers available at Cottage Craft


Old vintage ice cream freezer

Kitchen tables like the one in the pictures were set in the middle of the kitchen and used as work tables.

The 1” thick table top edge made them perfect for clamping on hand crank food processing equipment.


Hand crank clamp on meat grinder


Vintage clamp on apple peeler

SM-Apple Peeler

Reproduction clamp on apple peeler from Cottage Craft

In the 40s larger kitchen counters started to be built in with cabinets and began taking the place of the work tables. The devices that use to clamp on to the work tables also began to change to more table top devices.

In 1946 a salad maker was introduced as the best thing since sliced bread. It was a hand crank base unit with suction cups on the legs. The device used several interchangeable serrated stainless steel cones to chop, shred, and slice all types of vegetables. A housewife could chop up salads in just a fraction of the time that it would have taken to cut by hand or any other device made prior to that time.

This type of salad maker is still a very popular device that is being reproduced as the Fresh Kut formally Master Kut Salad Machine.


Reproduction hand-crank salad maker from Cottage Craft

Today the kitchen counter and work island have taken the place of the work table. Many use the old antique work tables now as dining room tables.

Considering a modern day counter is 36” and these work tables were only 30” tall. One has to think they caused many back and fatigue problems, although most people in that era were shorter.


Fresh grains would be ground into flour, and then fresh eggs and vegetables were gathered directly from the garden.

Many devices were made to use with eggs. Egg separators, removed the yoke, the egg cooker has markings on the side to show the egg cooking process as eggs were being boiled, and the egg slicer allowed one pass slicing for salads.


Vintage hard boil egg slicer


Vintage hard boil egg cooker timer.


Vintage egg white separator on the right

Most every home had a hand crank grain grinder to make flour for baking. Fresh harvested wheat could be ground into flour, and corn into cornmeal.

A screen flour sifter like the ones pictured would sift the flour down into a fine powder to use for baking. Most have seen the flour sifter on the left that used a hand crank. The sifter is double sided with a screen in the middle. The handle would be held and the sifter part shook to dispense the flower. The two lids screw on the ends.


Vintage Flour Sifters

Many kitchen tools were made of wood, either hand carved or turned into a home base workshop. Others were made in small factories, sometimes catering to the cultural settlers in the area and their ethnic dishes .

While most will recognize the pie dough roller, the other rollers in the picture are unique. One has carvings to roll out pasta shells, one is raised on both ends, probably used to roll out biscuit dough, and the ringed one was probably used to cut thin noodles.


Vintage dough rolling pins


New dough rolling pins

At one time a hand crank mini pie maker was made and sold to make the 3 X 5-1/2” fired pies. The one in the picture is a new reproduction pie maker made by the Amish.


Hand-crank meat and fruit pie maker available at Cottage Craft

Plungers, pounders, smashers, and other wooden kitchen tools were used to smash herbs, berries, grains, potatoes, and to tenderize meat.


Wooden kitchen gadgets

Mixing bowls were either made of pottery and then of a Pyrex material. The pottery bowls were mostly glazed in white with a blue stripe or stripes at the top edge.


Vintage Pyrex bowls


Reproduction Old-Fashioned Blue Stripe Mixing Bowls available at Cottage Craft


Reproduction batter bowls available at Cottage Craft


USA Pottery Mixing Bowls from Cottage Craft

Pyrex bowls were fired in bright colors. Pyrex was not developed until the 1940s but became very popular. Both pottery and Pyrex bowls were oven proof, which today even makes these vintage bowls safe for the dishwasher and microwave.

Making homemade bread was a two to a three-time weekly event in most homes. The labor-intensive task of hand mixing of dough spurred many inventions to hand crank the dough making the process rather than doing it all by hand.  The hand crank dough bucket became a very popular kitchen item and is now being reproduced by the Amish built into a stainless steel mixing bowl.


Reproduction hand-crank dough mixer available from Cottage Craft

Most of the counter top appliances available today started as stove top version that could be used on a wood, kerosene or gas cook stove.  The Amish still use stove top appliances and they are readily available for off-grid lifestyles.


Old-fashioned whistling tea kettle available at Cottage Craft


Old-fashioned coffee percolator available at Cottage Craft


Old-Fashioned drip coffee maker from Cottage Craft


Stove top non-electric waffle maker from Cottage Craft

Knives weren’t the only thing used for cutting and chopping. Through the centuries many handheld cutters would be invented.


Vintage food choppers

The slicer and choppers pictured all have blades that are rounded on the bottom to cut on a flat surface or to rock in the bottom of a bowl.

Several tall glass cylinders were developed with a mixing plunger on a metal rod. The tall one in the picture on the left was used to make mayonnaise. It was sold by the Wesson Company to promote Wesson Oil.


Vintage mayonnaise maker

This mayonnaise maker actually has the recipe for mayonnaise embossed on the side. Which follows as written, An egg, 2 Tablespoons lemon juice or vinegar, teaspoon each of mustard, salt, sugar and a dash of pepper. Beat thoroughly as poured from can 1 pint Wesson Oil.

The glass with a plunger on the right was made to mix drinks, without any other explanation of if it was fruit juices or alcoholic beverages.

Many juicers were also made, the one appears to be a ricer but has a removable slotted tray to apparently hold fruit.


Reproduction Ricer Food Mill


The handheld ricers were used to place cooked potatoes and pressed down through the holes for mashed potatoes. A perforated pan with a hand crank auger also was used as a potato ricer and is still being made today.

Before electricity was available many different hand crank mixers were made. Some were made stationary to fit over a bowl. The most common were the hand held double beaters operated by a center hand crank.


Reproduction Daisy Egg Beater “Country Egg Beater”


Vintage Daisy Egg Beater

These old fashioned egg beaters are still available new today, but like many things that continue to be produced from vintage times have become cheaply made and do not work as smooth as the old ones. The Amish are still making a reproduction of the famous Daisy Egg Beater. The Country Beater is a heavy duty replica of the original Daisy Beater. A bit expensive but worth the money if you ever plan to live off grid.

One of the first electric mixers introduced was by KitchenAid and then Sunbeam, who introduced the Mix Master with glass bowls and a top attached juicer.


Vintage Sunbeam Mixmaster


Hand-crank conversion mixer


Little Dutch Maid Hand-Crank Mixer


Little Dutch Maid Mixer With Optional Slicer Shredder

The Sunbeam Mix Master came standard with mixer blades, whisk and dough hooks, The Sunbeam Mix Master was priced at a fraction of the KitchenAid H-5 and quickly became the most popular mixer up until the 1950s.

Bosh introduced the Universal Mixer in the 1950’s developing a heavy duty multi-task mixer that soon became popular especially for those who baked a lot of bread. The bottom operated mixing bowl allowed easier access to the top mounted motors made by Sunbeam and KitchenAid.

The Amish developed a hand crank base to use with the bosh attachments called The Little Dutch Maid Mixer. It is still made and sold today by the Amish and for others who live off the grid.

Other electric devices began to enter the marketplace to fill the consumer quest to become electrified.

Beyond the electric mixers toasters, and waffle irons were some of the first electric gadgets introduced into the home kitchen market.

While no one would recommend buying a vintage electrical appliance and taking it home to use, many of the old hand held and hand crank vintage tools and gadgets are still useable for today’s kitchen.

Just be sure the surface is intact and can still be sanitized.

Reproduction items are also still being made and used by both the Amish and non-Amish for off-grid self-sufficient lifestyles.

Many of these Amish kitchen products are available for order online at Cottage Craft Works .com.

Amish Apple Pie Recipe

1 ea pie shell, unbaked

2 cups raw apples, chopped fine in salad maker

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup water

2 tablespoon tapioca

1 cup rolled oats

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/3 cup nuts

1/2 cup butter

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Amish Apple Pie Recipe

Mix chopped apples, sugar, water, and tapioca. Put in unbaked pie shell.

Mix topping ingredients, rolled oats, brown sugar, nuts, butter, and cinnamon. Put mix on top of apples. Bake 425 degrees

Recipe from the Amish Wooden Spoon Wedding Sampler cookbook available under the Amish recipe section at Cottage Craft Works .com