Secondhand Stories: Dormey Hand Mixer

Dormey Hand Mixer

It wasn’t until we were hosting a dinner party and had planned on serving a dessert with whipped cream that I realized I was lacking a mixer at the Dream House. Back at the city apartment I have The Mister’s mother’s old Sunbeam stand mixer but here at the house I’m mixer-less. I added a mixer to my list of things to try to find while thrifting and within a week I found this vintage Dormey mixer.

I have an affinity for vintage appliances. Unlike the cheap plastic mixers of today, this Dormeyer Model 7500 mixer features a metal body. At the risk of sounding like an old fuddy duddy, they just don’t make ’em like they used to!

Vintage Dormey mixer

When I got back home with my new (old) mixer, I started Googling around for information on my little Dormey. Over on Vacuumland I learned that Dormeyer was Sunbeam’s main competitor. As the label states, Dormeyer was based in Chicago. In addition to the Dormey hand mixer, Dormeyer also made a stand mixer, as well as house brands for various department stores. My Dormey probably dates back to the 1950’s or ’60’s. Apparently the company offered the 7500, with the enamel finish like mine, and the 7600, a chrome version. I also came across this adorable vintage ad for Dormeyer mixers on Vacuumland:

Vintage ad for Dormeyer mixers

There are two things that amaze me about this old mixer. First of all, it’s absolutely incredible that a 50+ year old mixer is still in working condition. Can you imagine one of those cheap plastic mixers of today still working in 2064?! Umm, no, probably not.

And then there’s the history of this mixer. I can only imagine the many cake batters and cookies dough that were made with this mixer. I imagine a lady with a classic name like Betty or Mildred receiving this mixer as a wedding gift back in the 50’s. It probably sat in a drawer in her kitchen, always ready for whipping up a quick recipe for her husband and, later, their kids. Through the years her family were say she should upgrade to something more modern, maybe a Kitchenaid stand mixer, but Betty was adamant about keeping her well worn Dormey. It was more than mixer to Betty, you see. It was a part of the family.

Dormey mixer

Betty probably passed away and her kids finally saw their chance to donate the dirty old mixer to the thrift store. And of course that’s where I come into the picture. Now, I’ll use Betty’s old mixer to prepare food for my family. It took some scrubbing to clean this old Dormey of the years of greasy fingerprints and thrift store dust, but it’s now ready to use.

As I placed the mixer on the check out counter at the thrift store, the cashier said, “Are you going to bake a cake?”

“Yes, I hope so,” I replied.

“I hope you bring us some,” she said. 

“Well then I guess I better make cupcakes!”

We shared a chuckle, I handed over my $3.50 and came home with my beloved vintage appliance.

— J. Blandings

Images: Mr. and Mr. Blandings and Vacuumland

10 thoughts on “Secondhand Stories: Dormey Hand Mixer

  1. kesmarn

    I own the very same model and it’s working beautifully. Just made a cake with it this evening! Enjoy!

    Reply
    1. edg

      After my parents past, I kept the Dormey 7500 my mom used since the 50’s and have made several cakes for my 3 girls on their birthdays. Today I used Dormey once again. It truly is a wonderful piece of history that will and has out worked many newer types of hand mixers. I have stripped mine down and gave it a full cleaning inside and out, other than usage marks it is just like new. Love it!

      Reply
  2. Lisa

    I have one which worked perfectly until a few months ago when it shorted out and the guy at the appliance store said he could not fix it. Any idea where to get it fixed? I am in Toronto, Canada

    Reply
  3. edg

    Hi Lisa, the only things I can come up with is to buy one from ebay and either use it for parts or if it still works…. Other than ebay is to search Kijiji or antique stores in TO.
    T Bay,ON

    Reply
  4. Matt

    I just got a Dormey from a thrift shop but it doesn’t have beaters. It was so cheap I figured I would just eBay some, but I can’t seem to find a set anywhere. Does anyone know of somewhere I might be able to purchase a set without getting the entire thing? I really want to use this mixer, it runs fantastically well and looks amazing, but without beaters it’ll just be a object d’art…..

    Reply
    1. Jason Post author

      Some thrift stores have containers full of mixer beaters. Maybe you could try to pick up a few to see if you can get one set that fits your Dormey.

      Reply
  5. argela

    When I got married in 1954, I “borrowed my mother’s Dormyer mixer and have used it exclusively for cakes and cookies. Just made a batch today and still marvel at how well it works. Mine is a white one model sm6 whi and also says mixwell on the side. It has measurement equivalents for liquids and solids. For the first time I noticed that the highest setting #10, says juice power attachment drive. Don’t remember having any attachments, but use the highest settings for frostings.
    You are so right, today appliances are made to quit working so you have to buy another one.

    Reply
  6. Judy Lopez

    I just found a 7500 model, with beaters!! It works and I paid $1.60 (with a 20%discout applied) wheeeee!!

    Reply

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