Urban Affairs

Murphy beds? Sure, anyone who's ever lived in a New York apartment knows about the fold-down sleepers. But it caught me unawares to learn that the manufacturer ventured into the kitchenette business, too. There's no plethora of cabinet space in this 1950 model, to be sure, but if mid-20th-century urbanites were anything like their contemporary counterparts, those cupboards—and, for that matter, the 'ranges of advanced design'—would be filled with sweaters and shoes and take-out menus.

As far as the cabinet material is concerned, I must say the notion of vitreous porcelain as the period's equivalent of laminate makes me nostalgic for a time I never knew.