Thursday, February 24, 2011

Visiting A Retro Kitchenware Haven Owned By Fritz Karch, Editor Of Collecting At Martha Stewart Living Magazine

Kitchen Collectibles Galore At The Tomato Factory in Hopewell, New Jersey

I think I may have found the haven for the best collection of vintage kitchenware anywhere. Sit down, pour yourself a cup of tea.....I fell into a place called The Tomato Factory in Hopewell, New Jersey and stumbled into a booth owned by Fritz Karch the editorial director of collecting at Martha Stewart Living Magazine.

Obsessed Collector Of Kitchen Kitsch And More

Yep...he is a ridiculous collector of kitchen kitsch and then some. Picture this, Pyrex bowls which start at the floor and go up at least two to three feet high. Refrigerator dishes in colors you probably have never seen before.
Shelves and shelves of pottery vases from the 1930s, 1940s, 1950s in white,cream, aqua, blue, pink, black, green and more.

Where Are All Those Collectibles Shown In Martha Stewart Living Magazine ?

You've seen plenty of articles in Martha Stewart Living magazine with photos of how great pottery looks when grouped together by color, varying size and shape. Well where do you think all that pottery is? I'm thinking it just may be at The Tomato Factory Antiques. I kid you not. And tablecloths, Fritz had PILES of tablecloths.

In Fritz's online staff bio he says "he specializes in twentieth-century dinnerware among may things". I can tell you some of the "other things" Fritz can't stop buying: beverage glasses, Jadeite, bowls, refrigerator jugs, dish towels, Bakelite, flatware, clocks, shakers, Cookie jars, planters etc.

Largest Collection of Vintage Pottery Vases And Planters Anywhere

Fritz had one of the largest collections of pottery vases and planters I have EVER seen in one spot. And I have to tell you, his prices were very fair. Isn't all this aqua pottery dreamy? The warmer weather is coming and now is the time to buy pastel colored pottery before the rush is on. Speaking of "rushes"...don't you love it when Martha Stewart Living features an article on a particular collectible? The antique world feels the aftershocks. I am still recovering from Hammered aluminum and plastic picnic-ware. I wonder what Fritz has got planned for the next edition? If only I had an inside track. I'm working on it...stay tuned!

C. Dianne Zweig is the author of Hot Kitchen & Home Collectibles of the 30s, 40s, 50s and Hot Cottage Collectibles for Vintage Style Homes. She is also the Editor of I Antique Online an actively growing internet based resource community for people who buy, sell or collect antiques, collectibles and art. You can find Dianne’s fabulous retro and vintage kitchen, home and cottage collectibles at The Collinsville Antiques Company of New Hartford, CT, a 22,000 feet antique emporium with an in-house retro cafĂ©.To read more articles by C. Dianne Zweig click on this link: C. Dianne Zweig’s Blog Kitsch ‘n Stuff Email me at dianne@cdiannezweig.comVisit my website, CDianneZweig.comDianne is a member of:The American Society of Journalists and AuthorsThe Society of Professional Journalists


  1. I love The Tomato Factory... it's such a fun place to visit. Glad you showed the pottery booth... it's one of my favorites booths in the place!

  2. When I first heard the title I thought it was a tomato store. Then silly me realized it wasn't haha. This place looks really cool. I love vintage items. I have been really busy & haven't been around to get any lately. The pottery is beautiful, looks in great condition too & love the pyrex bowls.

  3. I wish we had a Tomato Factory where I live! The pottery is so beautiful, and I love pyrex bowls too! Aww....

  4. Wow! What a lot of fun that would be to visit! I always wondered where all those props came from!

  5. Fritz is an enigma!! I have been a hoarder of these things for years, as well. As long as I've known him, he never revealed this to me. LOL. I am off to visit as soon as Spring arrives! I have a desire to ad to my stash of matte white!! Isn't it fun to be a collecting nut?? What fun!

    Pam Konopka
    Let's Talk Turkey

  6. Hi Dianne,

    I also wish I had The Tomato Factory around where I live too. I would love to see it in person. I have stashes of fabric too. I guess we all have things we love to collect. Love all the photos. And I also wanted to thank you personally for featuring one of my victorian dress pillow forms on I Antiques Online. It was a nice surprise.
    Have a wonderful and happy weekend,
    Janet Bernasconi
    Janet's Creative Pillows