Friday, March 15, 2013

The Aga Cooker - Anglophile Friday

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There is something so charming about an Aga!  Secretly, I imagined living in a Yorkshire cottage with my dogs, my cat(s), a tile floor, and an Aga. And Kevin.

I want that kitchen (above) - complete with chubby yellow Lab and minus the lazy guy reading the paper while the carrots wilt. Okay, I'm not exactly coveting it, but it does make me think about painting my kitchen cupboards white. You-know-who is not fond of the idea. He says it's a fad. Maybe, but...


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I LOVE this Aga and the photo. I first saw the photo in a book I bought from Goodwill, 'Perfect English Cottage.' If you've not seen that book, it's worth checking out on Amazon. If I never get to England again, I will look at my photos and will page through Perfect English Cottage from time to time.

The only thing I don't like about the photo above? If you zoom in, you'll see that the tablecloth has pompoms along its edge. Eek.  But I do love the white beams.



That photo makes me want to go paint something. I wonder if it will inspire Suzan of Simply Vintageous? You've got to visit her blog if you're not already a follower. The conversations between Suzan and John are hilarious. Anyway, I digress. Back to the subject of Agas.

I did a Google search for info on Agas and came across this article from the UK Telegraph. The following is an excerpt:

'I hadn’t always been an Aga aficionado. I regarded them as status symbols that people pretentiously described as “best friends”. They were the toys of Marie-Antoinettish pseuds who wanted to play at living in a farmhouse in Wales – when actually they were hedge fund managers from Notting Hill. Madonna and Guy Ritchie had one, just as they donned Hunter wellies and Barbours and claimed to love hunting and fishing. (Now I wonder if maybe they divorced after a row over the gas bill.)


'Tessa Glass, a mother of two, who has an Aga in her second home (another eco crime) in Sussex refuses to believe she is an Aga lout, wilfully helping sea levels rise, all so she can scoff perfect Yorkshire puddings. 

'But Aga owners are green,' she protests. 'They’re the kind of people who love the country and have dogs. Apart from the footballers’ wives, that is.' She’s taken aback when I explain that flying to New York twice a year would cause less devastation to the rain forests. 'La la la, not listening,' she cries. 

'Not listening, indeed. The list of celebrity Aga owners who also profess to be eco warriors makes hilarious reading. Sting and Trudie Styler lecture us about the Amazon but – natch – they own one. Prince Charles is forever warning us of climate Armageddon but his wife, Camilla Parker Bowles, 'wouldn’t cook on anything else.'

'Colin Firth, whose wife runs a chichi “green” store is another fan. Not so much hypocritical as puzzling is Sharon Stone’s avowal that an Aga is the first thing she would save in a fire, though the lightest model weighs 64 stone...'

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I hope you'll follow the link and read the entire article. It's hilarious!




Every Jack Russell Terrier needs a matching Aga. Doesn't that photo make you want to just rush out and plop down £5-6,000 for an Aga? - or maybe a Jack Russell Terrier.


Imagine - a raspberry-colored Aga!! Isn't it beautiful. And for only £5,000+ pounds, it can be yours!

Nice sink, huh! It's deep enough to bath a toddler in, although I don't have any small children around here. Still, I like it. Actually, I have a great old white enamel cast iron sink with built in drain board, standing up along the wall of the garage, just in case I ever need another sink - which I'm sure I do, even as I write. It is a great old sink, and there's been a small ongoing debate for years now - about its usefulness and whether or not it will one day be hooked up to water lines again.

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Here's another article, this one from Housebuilder's Update. Again, an excerpt:

'The Aga stands head and shoulders above all other gender issues in selfbuild land. 95% of women aspire to owning one, 95% of men just don't get it. I have seen many an otherwise well-thought out ecologically-slim footprint completely blown out of the water by a shiny new £5,000 Aga in the kitchen. Indeed I suspect that there are many husbands who have only managed to persuade wives to go through the four years of chaos and upheaval it takes to selfbuild by using the promise of an Aga in the kitchen at the end of it all. It's a powerful, if expensive, seduction tool, the ultimate selfbuild babe magnet. If it's the price it takes to get a selfbuild off the ground, maybe it's a price worth paying.

'As a man, I am one of those who just don't get it. I have cooked in houses with Agas and about the best thing you can say for them is that they are quaint. But as a man, "What do I know?" as the current saying goes. Yes, the Aga will definitely be too hot for a three-bed cottage, but what’s logic got to do with it.'



I guess the only things I like about this photo are the hardwood floor and the avocado/lime-colored Aga. I don't fancy my piano(s) in the kitchen.



Very pretty, but I think this was a show kitchen. Who really lives like that - (besides my sister and my daughter?)  lol    I mean, c'mon. Flat surfaces are there for a reason.  Just look at my desk, for example! (maybe not) But it is a nice black Aga.

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And here's my sweet little happy 1913 Home Comfort cast iron cookstove:


It costs nothing but wood to run - and doesn't have to stay on all year 'round!
I should have moved my gloves and hat before taking the photo.


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Have a great weekend, everyone!

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 This post may be linked to some of the following: Mop it Up Monday  and  Cure for the Common Monday and Mealtime Monday and Clever Chicks Blog Hop and Mosaic Monday  and Barn Charm and  The Marketplace  and On the Menu Monday and  Mix it up Monday and Make it Pretty Monday and   What's in the Gunny Sack and  Making the World Cuter Mondays and Make the Scene Monday and  Something I Whipped Up Monday and  Motivate Me Monday and  Making Monday Marvelous and Get Your Craft On and   You're Gonna Love it Tuesday and Creative Showcase and  Tweak it Tuesday and  Coastal Charm Tuesday and  Take a Look Tuesday and  Tasty Tuesday and Tasty Tuesday and Love Bakes Good Cakes and  Tempt My Tummy Tuesdays  and Overflowing With Creativity and Mom on TimeOut  and Adorned from Above and 3boysandadog and Trueaimeducation and Cast Party Wednesday and  We Did it Wednesday  and It's a Party at Creative Princess and Artsy Corner Thursday  and The Self-sufficient Home Acre and  I'm Lovin' it Thursday and  Mandatory Mooch   and Foodie Friends Friday and  Serenity Saturday and Get Schooled Saturday  and Inspiration Friday(ThursNite) and Vintage Inspiration Friday and Photo Friday and  A Favorite Thing Saturday and Sunny Simple Sunday and Market Yourself Monday and  Saturday Nite Special

47 comments:

Trace4J said...

Good Morning Friend
Oh I LOVE your STOVE and your SINGER on top. :)
I too dream of painting my cabinets white or cream.
Maybe blue with a AGA :)
Woolie Joy
Trace

Yenta Mary said...

Oh, the kitchens are just too charming, too enticing! Bright, quaint ... sigh. Don't have the Euros for an AGA; fortunately, my Jack Russell grandpuppy came for free ... :)

Diane said...

Very interesting kitchens. Not too sure about that lime green one, and I usually love color. One word about white cupboards which I have (cheap laminate that was here when we moved in): they show every fingerprint, smudge... I'm constantly washing them! Ugh!

Terri D. said...

Very pretty kitchens - all. I have enough trouble cooking on my electric flat top...the Aga is beautiful, but it looks complicated! LOL

I will check out the blog you linked! Wishing you a good weekend!

Chatty Crone said...

Thanks for the tour and taking me though some examples! So I kind of like the aqua one, but I don't like the dark table with it - I like a little lighter color. They were all very pretty and so very English. Love, sandie

Cherry's Prairie Primitives said...

I love a beautiful stove!! Maybe someday I'll win the lotto and get one!

Sandra said...

i would be happy with any of these kitchens, they are beautiful. and mother had pom poms on her table cloth and on her lampshades and anything else she could put them on, back in the 50's... even on the edge of the kitchen curtains. glad they went out of style....know this, white cabinets show every single smudge same day... i have had mine for 23 years and wish they were not white.

Terri Weems said...

What a great post! I want to paint our kitchen cabinets white, too, but every time I suggest it, someone rolls his eyes at me. Why don't you and Kevin do it first and let me know how it goes? Lol! I'm in love with your old Singer.

Dewena Callis said...

That second picture is my favorite. It looks like a kitchen that Pilcher's Shell Seekers' Penelope would have had. I think every Pilcher book had an Aga in it!

But your wood stove is beautiful! Do you really use it?

Suzan Sweatman said...

Are they gorgeous or what?
I had a friend whose Grandmother had one - I think they were quite popular here with the Scottish/Irish/English community at one time!
I can see you the Dales Judy - so perfectly - making yorkshires in your Aga!!!
( I make a mean Yorkshire Pudding by the way - in my regular gas oven lol )
XOX

Rachel said...

JUDY!! Hope you are doing well. I personally like the kitchen with the teal cabinets, very "Breakfast at Tiffany's"- like!! :)

Have a great weekend!!

:)

Joyce said...

My house in the UK did not have an Aga, but some we looked at did. I have never cooked on one, and wasn't very familiar with them, but found it unnerving to think about the oven being always on. I know its not as simple as that, but everything was a little unnerving initally : ) People who have them seem to love them.

Ruth Kelly said...

Is your Aga just for looks?

Cranberry Morning said...

Inquiring minds want to know:
The only time I use our Home Comfort wood range is when it gets to minus 30 degrees outdoors (which does happen). Then I fire it up (having first removed the plethora of items from the top) so that it acts as auxiliary heat to our wood-burning stove in the living room. Normally, our Quadrafire in the living room heats the whole house (adequately for someone whose winter 'uniform' includes Cudl Duds and polar fleece), but when it gets down to 30 below, the Quadrafire can't seem to manage on its own. Then the Home Comfort comes to the rescue.

Heide at ApronHistory said...

Love Agas! And by all means paint those cabinets white!! Nothing like a little white paint to perk something up, especially old wood. And no it is not a fad. Can't you find a few pictures of old English kitchens with white cabinets to prove your point?

I hadn't thought of Aga being inefficent. Unfortunatly I don't think I would be able to ever afford one anyway! Lol!

Angela said...

Paint your kitchen! Then it can look like mine!

:D

Cranberry Morning said...

I don't think my kitchen would ever look like yours, Ang, but I have an even better idea - why don't YOU paint my kitchen? :-)

OLLIE MCKAY'S ~ A Chic Boutique said...

Love all those kitchens - my Fav is the first one with the black tiles! Also LOVE the photo in your header! Happy Friday!

Deanna said...

I think Agas are gorgeous and there's certainly a romance about them. However in our Oklahoma climate they would be totally impractical. I have a vintage stove which I really do like, though. I love your Home Comfort. I recall my grandmother describing the Home Comfort stove her mother cooked on. Is it a double sink with drainboards which you have in your garage? I had one in our last house and LOVED it. I tried to find something similar when we remodeled our kitchen but without success. The closest I found came from England and would have cost us thousands of dollars. I ended up with the biggest triple compartment sink Kohler makes instead. Miss the drainboards, though.

Marcia Pilar said...

I agree with "you-know-who" that painting everything white is a fad...although some of it looks pretty. The piano in the kitchen is kind of cute though. ;)
LOVE your stove.
This was a dreamy tour.
Happy weekend!

Marcia Pilar said...

Oh yes, I almost forgot, I dismissed the store bell after all. teehee Until I find a non-delayed music player one of these days.
Love and blessings.

Christina said...

Delightful! So glad you visited my blog as it let me find yours and start following- Love those kitchens- with scones and Earl Grey tea- sigh- I looked at an Aga stove once but it cost more than my first car (and probably second)
Cheers!

Denise said...

Lovely.

Willow said...

Oh yes those Aga def made me want to put one in our big country kitchen and take a photo with our dog /um dogs. ~ laying on a braided rug in front of it !
Had been meaning to get back here and tell you YES you guessed my Cranberry state correctly! :)
I hope you get to the festival this year.

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

You have a beautiful stove! I know you love it. I don't cook or bake as much as I used to but I love seeing these images. Thanks for sharing!

Carla said...

Hi Judy,
I have a white kitchen :-), you will have to come visit.

I enjoyed today's tour, very fun!

bj said...

A great post about a great stove.
Love them, too. :)

Chel C said...

Now I used to have an Aga, a nice blue shiny one that came with the cottage I previously owned (in fact it was that that sold it to me!). This wasn't gas or electric this was furnicite solid fuel that we had to go and fetch from the bottom of the garden every morning and evening in all weathers, rake it, and then pray that the wind was blowing in the right direction otherwise we'd come home to a blue smoke kitchen. Christmas was a problem as the turkey was always too big! (the ovens are not as big as you think), it was always a funny time of year with my hubby laughing at me literally pushing the bird in. Also you don't smell your cooking. I forgot I had put a pie in the oven one day and the next day, well, it was cooked!! Don't get me wrong, they are BEAUTIFUL and they become the heart of the home, but don't expect to get large family dinner gatherings sorted with it, you need an extra oven! We had lots of laughs with it and trials and errors, and yes I do miss cooking on one, it is a different way of timing. Now happily have a double electric oven with no welly boots and bucket waiting for me each morning. Take care. Chel x

Cranberry Morning said...

After reading Chel C's testimonial, I've decided that I don't really want an Aga for cooking, but simply to look at. Maybe I can invent an Aga-looking cover that goes over my electric range. I bet that would be a great seller, what do you think?? lol

Jessica said...

Those kitchens are just gorgeous! And your stove is so charming! What a great place for a cup of tea or coffee!

Debra @ Homespun said...

Love your stove. I want the first kitchen!

Balisha said...

A friend of mine moved to Vermont years ago and told me the house that they bought came with an Aga. I had no idea what it was...I haven't seen so many different colors...love that first kitchen.
balisha

Ladies Holiday said...

those classic kitchens are great! and the aga- love the dark red...so cozy!

hello from the photo friday blog hop- we love your links :)

ImSoVintage said...

I love this, as I covet Agas and English cottages. Just too dreamy.
Hugs,
Laura

AshTreeCottage said...

Your Comfort stove is a knockout! I love Agas too, but alas I think the only one I will ever have will be in miniature. Although I do have a Viking which I love and am proud to say is made in the USA.

Big Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Revamp Spunky Rena said...

Hi Lovely. I'm your newest follower from Blog Hop.
Your blog is awesome.
Feel free to visit and follow me @ www.revampspunkyrena.com

xoxo
Rena

Mary said...

A few of my friends back in England do have AGA cookers - mostly because they came with the house. If one can't afford a new one, looking for an older home is good - most people don't want to move them.

Camilla actually cooks, ha! ha! I find that questionable - have you seen the size of Highgate where she and Charles live?

I'm not permitted to paint my cabinets either - because it would mean painting ALL the original stained trim and six panel doors in the house to match! A horrendous job for me or a professional painter.

My friend painted her cabinets white - finds they chip easily when hit by dishes being put away etc. You may want to think about that.

Great post, and awesome kitchen pics, thanks for sharing.

Happy weekend - Mary

April Hoff said...

Hi, Judy! Thanks for stopping by my blog, House by Hoff, today! Also, thanks for teaching me what an AGA is...I had no idea! :)

April Hoff said...

Hi, Judy! Thanks for stopping by my blog, House by Hoff, today! Also, thanks for teaching me what an AGA is...I had no idea! :)

Bonnie K said...

I'm in love with the Aga! Thanks for stopping by my front porch. I loved the photos. I just went to an antique store and was dooling over an old woodstove. It was in perfect condition, only the wrong color.

EM Illustrator said...

Oh I love these Judy, in particular I like the raspberry Aga, with the the dard wooden beams. I would love to live like that, in an English cottage :) or Irish. Enjoy your Sunday!

Claudia said...

Your cast iron stove is stunning! That's a keeper. I am with you on Agas - love them. The closest I'll ever get is the one I have in my dollhouse kitchen!

Thanks so much for joining in this week!

xo
Claudia

Babajeza said...

Tiba in Switzerland. :-)

Anne Kimball said...

Hi Judy, I’m Anne from Life on the Funny Farm (http://annesfunnyfarm.blogspot.com), and I’m visiting from the Creative Home Acre Blog Hop.

I love AGAs, though I've never had one and probably never will. And I love those pictures of the country kitchens! I'm with you, there's something about white cabinets. My next home....

Anyway, thanks for posting this. If you ever get a chance, stop over to my blog to say hi! Have a great day…

8)(8 said...

Yours, though a different brand, is quite cute.

And your stove also makes sense for you given the weather where you live.

I really can't stomach the hypocrisy ;)

White kitchens have been in for years; IMO they are classic. My last house had a white kitchen, and ten years ago I remodeled a condo and put in a white kitchen. The kitchen I just finished is nearly white either light gray or a darker white. It depends on the light. So if you like white, go for it. I think it will look nice with your stove.


Lisa Lynn said...

Those are certainly some kitchens worthy of a little jealousy ;-) Thanks for sharing this on The Creative HomeAcre Hop! Hope to see your next project tomorrow at:
http://www.theselfsufficienthomeacre.com/2013/03/the-creative-homeacre-hop-8.html

J_on_tour said...

At first when I was scrolling backwards quickly on your post to the start in RSS feed that these were all photos of your friends kitchens but then I realised.

I love the Jack Russell caption.

One of my work colleagues has an Aga and I'm checking out the personalty similarities discussed here in my head :-)

The last break I had away for more than one night was in May last year at Crosshill house, Laxton in Nottinghamshire. Breakfast was most unusual as the sole midweek guests are placed on the opposite side of the breakfast table from the kitchen hatch window. On view was the Aga where you could watch the host cooking breakfast. The hatch window was draped with curtains and it reminded me of a theatre show a the curtains were always closed later ! I'm weighing up in my head again the decor & personality traits once again :-)

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