Washing-up Dish, c.1950

Recycled kerosene tins were used for all kinds of household jobs involving water. This dish was made by Abe Law and was used by the Wright family until 1965 when a fitted kitchen sink was installed. The kero tin was cut diagonally and opened out to form two chambers. The edges were beaded with timber to give added strength and mask the sharp edges. Even the handle of the tin was put to good use - the dish was hung on a nail when the washing up was finished. The V-shape of the sectioned tin uses about a third of the water of a flat-bottomed sink.

Dishes were washed on one side and drained on the other. Care was needed when stacking the dishes on the first side. If too much weight was placed on the outer edge and the second side was still empty, the whole lot might tip over, spilling water and dirty dishes over the table.

Loan Courtesy of Les Wright