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Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Harmony House : Sears Melmac

Photo and Item offered by palimpsette store on Etsy.  This is the Catalina Sugar Bowl.
Gorgeous in Design, sturdy and well made were the Harmony House melmac liens.  Some of the styles included "Catalina" and "Talk of the Town" melamine. Many of you may have seen Harmony House in ceramic or china, and that's because Harmony House was a generic brand name for Sears!
Life Magazine,  May, 1957

In fact, many manufacturers created items under this generic name, whose point was "to increase Harmony in your home."  Sleek designs, affordiblity, and color pallete were key to the good design items offered by Harmony House.  One may call it the "Macy's" department at "Sears."  Any discriminating housewife in the 50's would not be complete without a Harmony House room - from furniture, linens and spreads to cool ceramic dishes or Melamine designs.:
This photo and grouping for sale by palimpsette store on Etsy shows the lovely, 
sleek design of the Catalina Sugar & Creamer.

Sleek detailing of cups makes for good design. Photo /Item by RicRacandButtons on Etsy.

Close up of backstamp as shown by Magark, who deals in vintage items.
I love these bowls photo and item by TimeforVintage on Etsy.
The Talk of the Town line was square and modern in design as opposed to the round designs of the Catalina.  The backstamp still donned the Harmony House logo.
Photo: LindaPaloma

In my experience it's been a slight bit harder to find.  Although I do not have proof I only can offer a few guesses for why:
  •  Catalina may have been more popular and carried for longer, which is why it is more plentiful.
  •  Perhaps Catalina was priced lower than Talk of the Town, who knows?  
  • My personal #1 theory would be that the Talk of the Town looked too similiar to the already rapidly selling "Brookpark Modern Design" by Joan Luntz, and the "Arrowhead" commercial line.  Just a thought.....look at the photos below and tell me what you think?
 Jadite Talk of the Town, items &  photo by BantamHouseAntiques.on Etsy.
Undersides of "Talk of the Town" Melmac photo and items at LindaPaloma on Etsy.
Top View of "Talk of the Town" Melmac photo and items at LindaPaloma on Etsy.

 Talk of the Town Cups, not as square as Brookpark. These items &  photo by BantamHouseAntiques.on Etsy.


  1. I love the clean modern design of this era and am so happy that it is making a respectable return! Thank you for such an informative article and for including a few of my items in your blog. [Bantam House Antiques]

  2. My mother recently passed away. In going through her stuff, I found a piece of paper with a couple of recipes on one side. On the other, a list of each piece of Harmony House "Talk of the Town" dinnerware she was ordering, how many of each piece, the cost, etc. It was so sweet to find, and to think of my young mom planning her kitchen, figuring the cost--which I know would have been utmost in her mind. This has to be from the very early 50's or late 40's. Do you know when this pattern was offered? I have the dark green sugar bowl and lid, which is all that was left in her house.

  3. i recently found 1 dinnerplate, on the bottom it says harmony house verde. the plate has a modern looking leaf design, haven't been able to find anything like it

  4. I stumbled across a set in pretty good shape at a thrift store - paid $7.50! Love the set - I use it in my RV. My Talk of the Town set has fruit, leaves and feathers and is white w/ brown and orange colors in the design.

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  8. My grandparents had a TON of the "talk of the town" dishware, and grandma gifted me with what was left when I moved out on my own. I'm cleaning out cabinets and got curious as to what pieces were still available as I'm missing a few from having a whole set. I'll have to keep my eyes open around Etsy until I go on my next thrift spree. :D


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