The Invention That Wouldn’t Die

A surprising variety of electrical appliances can be found in the home today, from creature comforts like electric blankets to kitchen paraphernalia such as bread makers and juice extractors. The gadgets come and go, losing popularity or just being replaced by something better. One such gadget is the “teasmade.” While most Americans have never heard of it, the machine was pretty popular in the 1960s and 1970s in Britain. The peculiar invention is just what it says — a machine that will not only make the tea, but let you know when it’s ready. Quite simply, it combines the functions of a tea kettle, an alarm clock and a bedside lamp. Despite its astonishing popularity the teasmade's decline coincided with the rise of espresso machines, slowly disappearing altogether. However, the teasmade has made a comeback and is now carried by kitchenware company Swan. The new version has smooth edges and an illuminated LCD clock and currently sells for £69.99 ($88.30).