Kitchens are the heart of the home, and this is shown time and time again in some of our favorite sitcoms. If you’re a fan of the classics, Leave It to Beaver might come to mind. Although the show first aired more than 60 years ago, the portrayal of this cookie-cutter American family survives the test of time with themes of sibling rivalry, growing up, and navigating parenthood remaining ever-present today.
Running from 1957 to 1963, Leave It to Beaver revolves around the Cleaver family and their sons Theodore (the Beaver) and Wally. While the show isn’t primarily about the family’s kitchen, or even cooking, they often discuss the day’s events or their children’s antics over meals, with the room serving as a prominent location for countless scenes.
In Leave It to Beaver, the Cleaver’s kitchen reflects the style and décor seen in many kitchens across the country in the 50s and 60s. The show was in black and white, but can you guess what color the walls and cabinets actually were? Like other kitchens from the same period, the Cleaver’s kitchen had white cabinets and a pop of color nearly everywhere else with the walls, countertops, and even some appliances covered in sage green. Post-World War II, the desire to liven up the home brought forth more colorful kitchens, with various shades of green being especially popular.
Due to the show’s popularity (and June’s sheer dedication to her family, of course), stay-at-home moms have since been dubbed as “June Cleavers”, largely in reference to June’s time spent in the kitchen preparing and serving meals. If there were any scenes taking place in the Cleaver’s kitchen, you could almost always count on June to be there cooking or baking for her husband and kids.
Aesthetically speaking, the stars of the show’s kitchen, however, are the island with the built-in cooktop, the double oven built into the wall, and the breakfast nook, all of which saw a rise in popularity starting in the early 1960s.
While contemporary, more monochromatic kitchens have been on the rise in the 21st century, in recent years many people are opting for colorful accents, bringing back some of that retro feel. At Kitchen Magic, our celadon green and colonial blue cabinets are two options that come to mind. This colored cabinetry livens up the space, while still complementing more modern styles.
It can be tough to find a show the whole family enjoys, but the meals shared around the kitchen table at 211 Pine Street brought together characters and viewers alike. While Beaver, Wally, Ward, and June spent quality time together sharing stories, lessons, and laughs over dinner, families across the country looked forward to the same quality time around the TV set.
Whether you’ve been a fan from the beginning, or you discovered the Cleaver family’s charm somewhere along the way, there is no denying that Leave It to Beaver showcases the beauty of the mundane, and their time spent in the kitchen is no exception to that anecdote.