antique charcoal iron
Mayukh Saha
Mayukh Saha
March 25, 2024 ·  4 min read

Can you identify these vintage items?

In the modern world, where technology is growing at an impossibly fast rate, it is important for us to know where we come from. Retro or vintage items are a sign of the past, something that we might have already grown out of but still deserves the respect. We usually don’t know much about these vintage items, so let’s check our knowledge for the same. 

Do You Know What These Vintage Items Are?

1. What Do You Think This Item Is?

A vintage charcoal iron.
Image Credits: Wikimedia Commons
A. Room HeaterB. Vintage Oven
C. Amputation DeviceD. Charcoal Iron

2. What Is This Photo Making Process Called?

A man processing the films from a roll.
Image Credits: Pexels | Ron Lach
A. Cross Cut Paper ShredderB. Hi-Fi Amplifier
C. Photo Lab Film ProcessingD. Sending and Receiving Faxes

3. Where Can One Find This Tray, And What Is It?

A. Coin holderB. Ashtray
C. Mini CD PlayerD. Transistor

4. What Is This Mechanism Underneath A Window?

A car window crank.
Image Credits: Wikimedia Commons
A. CB RadioB. Car Window Crank
C. Vacuum TubeD. Analog Clock

5. What Is This Twisted Contraption?

A vintage Carpet beater.
Image Credits: Wikimedia Commons | Auckland Museum
A. EmbroidererB. Flyswatter
C. IncenseD. Carpet Beater

6. What Is This Black Square?

A Floppy disk 3.5 by Sony
Image Credits: Wikimedia Commons
A. Physical MP3SB. Math Squares
C. TV Video ClipsD. Floppy Disks

7. What Is This Little Fountain?

vintage pencil sharpener
Image Credit: Shutterstock
A. Hole PunchB. Notary Device
C. Pencil SharpenerD. Knife Sharpener

8. What Is This Item Used To Fix Holes In Clothes?

A vintage sewing machine.
Image Credits: Pexels | Eftychia Syrimi
A. Hot Glue GunB. Tack Paper
C. Sewing MachineD. Iron

9. In Which Particular Item Did The People Keep Their Bread?

A Breadbox
Image Credits: Wikimedia Commons
A. FreezerB. Breadbox
C. HumidifierD. Clay Bear

10. What Is This Item Used To Make Bigger Fires In Homes

Vintage bellows isolated with clipping path included
A. Accordion B. Airstream
C. BellowsD. Blow Torch


1.D. Charcoal Iron– Before we had electric appliances, most gadgets used to run on heat generated by burning coal or charcoal. So, the fist irons were charcoal irons. You could lift the top part, put in some hot, burning coals, and then lock the lid in place. This would make the bottom part heated, while you could use the handle on the top to move the gadget and iron your clothes.

2C. Photo Lab Film Processing– Before the age of digital cameras, cameras used to have rolls of film in them, on where the impression of the image you click would be left. It would be inverted and the colors would be inverse. You would have to leave the film with a professional developer to actually get the picture printed and see how it turned out.

3. B. An Ashtray on an Airplane– Smoking was not always banned on airplanes. Even as recently as the 1990s, smoking was allowed on board flights if the duration of the flight was not more than 6 hours.

4. B. Car Window Crank- As with many other things, rolling up or down a car window was slightly more complicated than just pressing one button. Passengers would need to crank a lever clockwise or anti-clockwise depending on whether they wanted to roll the window up or down. Sometimes, it would take quite a bit of effort!

5. D. Carpet Beater- This also looked like a flyswatter and could be used for that. But primarily, it was used to beat the life out of carpet dust. Today, we have vacuum cleaners that do the job pretty well.

6. D. Floppy Disks- They had to be inserted into computers, which would then pull up the saved file. Now, these aren’t in use anymore. They were the first kinds of portable storage devices and had a maximum size of only 1.4 megabytes.

7. C. Pencil Sharpener- This was equipped with a manual handle that turned, and was predominantly cranky and loud. Even though pencils are rarely in use nowadays (because why write when you can type, or even speak and the computer automatically records it), still, some of us miss them. 

8. C. Sewing Machine- An invention from 1755, the wonderful machine did not become popular until 1830. Even today, they are in use in many households because of their ease of sewing.

9. B. Breadbox-It wasn’t ideal, but it kept your bread from going stale for a little bit longer.” It is theorized that the neat box was invented to help keep the bread fresh while being transported by trains as early as the 1800s. Modern renditions of this box are available now, which are, of course, a lot more efficient at the job.

10.C. Bellows- It is basically an artificial gust of wind generator. You would have to pull the handles apart, and then press it, which would expel the air inside the cavity at a high force through the focused mouth. It was extremely useful for fireplaces, and blacksmiths. The controlled gust would help fan the flames and keep them raging for longer.

So, how many of the retro, vintage items could you identify? For that matter, how many would you consider purchasing again, if given the chance? Write to us in the comments below!

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