I believe nothing can prepare one for the big-ticket adult purchases that are neither fun nor exciting to buy. For example, the procrastinator in me had hoped that buying a refrigerator would be something I could put off until I had a home of my own, or at least until I felt like a real “grownup”. In any case, I wasn’t planning on saving up for a refrigerator in my mid-twenties. For us renters and non-renovators, these big bulky boxes are not the prettiest or most design-friendly items so our fate lies in what refrigerators the internet and/or retailers have in store for us.
Currently, the fridge my boyfriend and I have is a hand-me-down and it has definitely been through the wringer. It barely works and the temperature is always out of control. It’s warm in the front and freezing towards the back and also, very very small. After almost a year of dealing with it, I finally decided enough is enough. I can’t live like this! So I started my research and painstakingly scoured the internet for the right replacement. But we have some limitations:
- The height of the refrigerator must be under 68 inches
- Our budget is under $1000 or $2000 (with a payment plan available)
- I want to like the way it looks (a.k.a. I don’t want to spend $$ on something that is ugly).
In short, we don’t need anything super nice. We don’t need this to be our forever fridge, we just want one that is affordable, somewhat good looking, and actually works. Is that too much to ask? We’ll see…
So now you know my quest, it is only fair to divulge where this new addition will live. Behold, our kitchen:
This is what it looked like upon moving in, and it is not decorated yet (just a lot more cluttered) because I am trying very very hard to tackle one room at a time. The fridge will be our first and only big purchase for the kitchen until I finish the living and dining area. That said, I am prioritizing both function and style so my future self will have an easier time decorating and designing around it. Basically, I would hate to purchase a fridge and then despise how it looks later on. This means that I needed to have some clue as to what I eventually want the kitchen to feel like.
I’ve always been a fan of rustic farmhouse kitchens. I think they make a home homier and bring out the country girl in me (I’ve always wanted to live on a farm and raise horses–something I remind my boyfriend Rocky of constantly). I plan to bring in some rustic elements through vintage art, color, and possibly by DIYing a wood countertop similar to what Jess did here. But because we will not be doing any real renovating (besides replacing the terrible track lighting), I think our style will be a combination of retro and rustic.
So, planning for a retro meets rustic style kitchen, here are my top refrigerator contenders:
I am very impressed with the price of this model considering its size. It is 57′ high, 7 cubic feet, and has ample side door storage which I love. This seems like a decent option for two people because we don’t need a ton of space, but I do want one that will be easy to keep organized. The look is also great and I like both color options.
Similarly, this one by Unique is almost the same exact model but a little taller at 64″ high and 7 cu. ft. Basically, this one has more freezer space which is never a bad thing. Mint green is such a classic color for a retro-style refrigerator but because we are painting our dining area this dark green, the mint green might be a mistake. The black option however would work nicely and will allow me to keep the color scheme consistent.
Now for the more modern options. Of course, I think a retro-style fridge would be ideal design-wise, but I worry that those models won’t be as reliable and they don’t have as much storage as the modern options do.
Samsung French Door Refrigerator, $1,791 | KitchenAid French Door Refrigerator, $2,000
Option 5 is simple and sleek and I really like the all-black finish. I’ve imagined incorporating black accents in the kitchen since it is currently extremely white, so I think a black fridge like this one won’t clash with the vision I have for the kitchen.
Of course, option 6 is the most expensive because it is the modern option that I like most (Ms. expensive taste over here). It is essentially a slightly cheaper version of this but sans some of the bells and whistles. It does however come equipped with a water dispenser which is something of a dream come true for me. I am a closet water snob and am slightly repulsed by tap water. It’s a big shame of mine and my boyfriend will even try to trick me by filling water bottles up with the tap water but I always KNOW. So the idea of a built-in water filter feels like peak ~luxury~ but I am not sure it’s worth the price. Thoughts??
Alright, now you know what I am debating, but here are the others I seriously considered but ultimately did not make the cut for price or size reasons:
1. Sky Blue Counter Depth Top Freezer Refrigerator | 2. Retro 24 in. 12 cu. ft. Bottom Freezer Refrigerator in Champagne | 3. Counter-Depth French-Door Refrigerator | 4. Samsung – 21.8 Cu. Ft. French Door Refrigerator | 5. Smeg Full Size Refrigerator | 6. Smeg Two-Door Refrigerator | 7. French Door Refrigerator in Stainless Steel and Counter Depth | 8. Big Chill Original Fridge | 9. Bottom Freezer Refrigerator in Fingerprint Resistant Stainless Steel
I would love to hear what you all think and if you have experience with any of these brands/models, please spill all the deets. Questions, comments, and concerns all welcome. Let’s chat. xx
Opener Image Credit: Design by Velinda Hellen | Photo by Sara Ligorria-Tramp | from: Velinda’s Tiny Kitchen Makeover Takeover (With Tons of Smart Storage Hacks)