'I bought this mixer when I was pregnant. My son is now 35': Guardian readers on the appliances that just won’t quit

Guardian readers
·7-min read

Kenwood Chef mixer and a Magimix 2000

My wife inherited the Kenwood stand mixer from her grandmother about 30 years ago, and it still has the K-shaped beater, dough hook and whisk, plus two bowls. We think it’s from the late 70s. As for the Magimix 2000 food processor, my mum passed that to me about 25 years ago, along with the blade, graters and various other attachments. I think I remember her using it in the mid- to late 80s. Both are in perfect working order and are used at least once a week – I wouldn’t dream of replacing either until such time as I could not repair them. We’ve got friends who have been through multiple variants of similar, more modern machines in the time that we’ve been using these – they are (touch wood) indestructible. Joe Marshall, software engineer, Frome

Champion juicer

This large and heavy Champion juicer was a wedding present 37 years ago. Our favourite way to use it is to make banana “ice-cream” using only frozen bananas, which we did when our kids were little. It also makes fabulous celery juice. It separates the fibres from the juice, which is what you want. After we’ve made veggie juices, we use the remaining pulp to make burgers. Kate Lipkis, council trainer, California

Gillette Promax Compact hairdryer

I acquired my Gillette Promax Compact hairdryer not long after it first hit the market, in 1976, when I still had hair. Designed by Morison S Cousins and Michael Alan Cousins, the hairdryer has a weightless feel and sleek look – I loved it even before it was added to the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art. Although I no longer use it to dry hair, it did recently come in handy to remove condensation from a malfunctioning sensor controlling the automated gate in our garden. Barry Mitzman, semi-retired writer and editor, Washington, US

Philips Ladyshave

I’ve had my Ladyshave for 50 years, or thereabouts. My dad bought it for me after I cut my leg shaving in the bath as a teenager. The guard over the shaving head vanished long ago but the cleaning brush is still stored in the case under the flex. It is completely reliable. Pat Clark, company secretary, Hornchurch

Cuisinart food processor

I bought this powerful machine when I was pregnant with my son, who has just turned 35 years old, so it has a sentimental as well as practical role in my kitchen. This model is a 12 cup, made in Japan. I originally used it to make baby food but I’ve also used it to grind nuts for a variety of vegetarian foods, such as homemade veggie pate, granola and most recently, falafel. It also grates cheese and vegetables in seconds. I’ve had to replace the bowl once but the motor and blades are still going strong. It’s the most important appliance I own. Linda Dawn Hammond, photographer, Toronto, Canada

Sunbeam electric frying pan

This frying pan was purchased secondhand in Australia in 1958 and brought over to the UK by my wife when she returned from living in Canberra. It served as our main cooker, oven and frying pan when we had no kitchen in a previous house. Now, we mostly use it for making cottage cheese pancakes. Despite its age, the only thing that has needed replacing was the electric flex. Stephen Forster, finance director, Aberystwyth

Hamilton Beach mixer

My grandfather loved to cook, and this 1950s mixer was his prize possession. His favourite dish was chicken and noodles and he would make the noodles from scratch using his Hamilton Beach mixer.

When I got married in 1992 he gave it to me. I love to bake and have used the mixer weekly ever since I received it. Over the years, family members have asked me if I would like a new mixer, but I always decline. It’s a little scratched and the beaters are a bit bent from wooden spoons getting caught in them, but it still works great! Cindi Maudlin, mother and volunteer, California

Candy washing machine

My mom bought this washing machine for me in 1996 when I moved to Athens for university. Since then, it has been working nonstop. Even when I didn’t share my flat, I would regularly do my brother’s laundry – so it can’t possibly have been underused. I have moved house four times since it was purchased, always taking it with me. Needless to say, there is no shiny screen or fancy features whatsoever; you just have to turn the switch and push the button. I often think it’s the best value-for-money appliance I own and I hate to be reminded it is now 25 years old. Chryssa Marinou, researcher, Athens, Greece

Krups electric coffee grinder

This coffee grinder is from the 1970s and originally belonged to my parents, but I’ve been using it for the past three years. Grinding your own coffee beans is essential for a tasty cup, so I decided to do just that, and I have no regrets – I use it every day. I am all for sturdy vintage. Christophe Martinez, writer, Toulouse, France

Sony Dream Machine clock radio

I received this clock radio on my 16th birthday, along with a football, and it has been a fixture on my bedside table for the past 30 years. It is in good working order apart from the volume control that is (thankfully) stuck on medium. Over the years it has woken me up in time for school, lectures and work. It became redundant as an alarm when I had children, and I don’t use the radio as much as I once did because I can find out most things on my smartphone, but it remains by my bedside as a clock, emitting a comforting red glow. John Lewis, software company manager, York

Kenwood rotary ironing machine

The design of this rotary ironing machine is definitely from the 60s or 70s, but I’ve been using it for the past six years. Because of my job I have tons of sheets to iron, and this machine has saved my life. I very much hope it will help me iron for at least another six (or 60?) years yet to come. Ulli Stahlmann, Andros, Greece

Janome sewing machine

This sewing machine has been in my family for 40 years. I inherited it from my grandmother, who bought it in about 1980 (in France, where she lived). I learned to sew on this machine when I was visiting her. It’s a Janome 713, and it is very sturdy and practical. I inherited it after my grandmother’s death in 2014; I still use it and it works perfectly. Fortunately, I still have the instruction manual, which is incredibly useful. Algernon, teacher, Switzerland

A Panasonic CD player

I bought this radio/casette/CD player during the second year of my law degree in 1991-1992. Afterwards, I moved from Canterbury to London for postgraduate studies, and then back to Cyprus. It has followed me to each place and woken me up for undergraduate, postgraduate and bar exams. It’s still in my room now and I continue to use it regularly. Galatia, Cyprus

Electric whisk

My mum has had this whisk for at least 35 years. The country it was made in (East Germany) no longer exists. My late nan must have bought it at some point in the 80s – she gave it to my mum when she moved in with my dad, and they’ve had it ever since. It’s still used regularly and has not failed us once – I think we’re merely its custodians and it will be passed down to future generations. Jake Kelly, public affairs executive, London