Laura Cameron-Behee won the sink lottery.
At least that’s what her kitchen designer said after the Everett woman found a rare 1920s vintage sink in an alley.
Cameron-Behee walks north Everett streets and alleys. When she spots an old home undergoing a remodel, she watches for discarded treasures. That’s how she came across the sink.
“I don’t like to see anything wasted,” she said.
When she saw the vintage sink leaning against a fence in an alley, she knew it would be perfect for her 1910 four-square. She speed-walked home and had her husband return. The owners didn’t want the sink since it had a single basin. The Cameron-Behees offered $200 for it.
Now the wall-mounted sink fits beautifully in her recently renovated Arts and Crafts-inspired kitchen with its beadboard ceiling and Wedgewood range.
It’s in remarkably good shape for a sink of its age, said Cameron-Behee’s designer, Chandra Sadro. It’s unusual that it still has the drainboard.
“It’s really hard to find a decent one because of the amount of work that gets done in them,” Sadro said.
Victoria Thomle, the manager at Seattle Building Salvage in Everett, confirmed that a good vintage sink is hard to find.
“We get maybe a couple every year,” she said. “People call and ask all the time and we end up with waiting lists.”
Unlike other fixtures, sinks don’t last because of the wear and tear. Decades of dropped pans, clinking utensils and spilled sauces take their toll. Most people end up throwing their old sinks in the trash. Unlike bathtubs, they get so much wear Thomle doesn’t recommend resurfacing them.
The price of a vintage sink varies depending on age, condition, number of basins and whether it still has the drainboards. Thomle said the Behee family paid about $25 less than what she would have sold it for at Seattle Building Salvage.
Meanwhile, Cameron-Behee continues to discover discarded treasures. Her other find?
A green 1950s toilet.