Friday, August 19, 2011

Favorite things: Vintage Couroc serving trays

While I watch Mad Men and Twin Peaks, this vignette stands atop my media cabinet. It has so much awesomeness: Dinosaur bones! The Eiffel tower! Books! And a vintage Couroc serving tray!

Dinosaurs are such divas. Let's get a better look at that tray.

I can't find much info about this particular design; someone with a Flickr dedicated to Couroc calls this
"San Francisco Cable Car by Couroc" and says it is an early example of the company's work.

My aesthetic isn't easy to describe. If there existed a bizarre version of shabby chic in which mid-century Danish modern furniture was painted black, placed in a room with neutral walls, jazzed up with textiles and art in jewel tones, and accented with plants, lab glassware, scientific curiosities, and small objets d'art featuring bold black and white graphics, THAT IS MY LOOK. Try describing that to the helpful salesfolks at Jennifer Convertibles! So it's hard to describe what I like, but I know I like the simple lines and bold contrast of Couroc. In early 2007 I was researching mid-century design because I wanted to do my new home up all spiffy-like, and I accidentally stumbled upon Couroc on eBay. It's been love ever since!

Couroc trays are made of black resin and feature simple designs, often made with inlaid seashells, coins, wood, metal, or even paperclips. The company has an interesting history. Couroc was founded in 1948, and ran until the early '90s. In their earliest days, they functioned as an art commune.

Couroc trays are affordable. In 2007, Coroc trays were selling for $9.99 on eBay. The prices have gone up slighty, but they're still quite cheap. Here are some pretty Couroc trays for sale now on etsy...

Lishylou on etsy is selling this for $15.00.

Marcelandmargolis on etsy is selling this for $20.
The fruit design is one of the first Couroc trays I ever saw, and it's still one of my favorites.

justmenicki3 on etsy is selling this for $19.65. If you're obsessed with owls, this is the tray for you.

Next time you're thrifting, keep an eye out for Couroc! It's easy to find and makes a bold and beautiful design statement, whether you're using it as a serving tray or as a decorative object. Happy Friday, and have a fun weekend!


  1. I love the SF tray and the owl tray! Never heard of Cuuroc, but loved that you shared this because now I know. I love mix of vintage with new in my house.

  2. Thanks for the shout out! This was the first time I came across couroc when I found the drinks tray and it's fascinating to me! Mad men plus twin peaks is my idea of heaven! I have a wall in my house dedicated to twin peaks type items. Lishyloo!

  3. Love this. Also adore the child's head!

  4. i've always liked the assortment of items that you have on top of your tv!

    The owls are not what they seem

  5. that's a great description of your style/taste :)

  6. my style is all over the place when it comes to my household. hopefully when i finally one day move out of an apartment i will finally figure it all out. :P i think you described your taste perfectly.
    love that amazing serving tray..such an amazing piece to have.
    have a wonderful weekend.

    ps. saw your comment and it is the Hunter Museum in the background in Chattanooga, TN. was just there for the last 3 wks visiting my family. :)

  7. That tray! It's great.

    And thank you so much for adding me to your blogroll... you don't even know how flattered and happy that made me :)

  8. Hey girlfriend! Thanks so much for the thoughtful blog comment - and for checking out my weekly outfit series :)

    So far, I love your writing/blogging aesthetic. Following! I'm excited to get to know you/your blog. :)



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