Q&A with Orion Creamer, Founder of Big Chill
A company with a retro look accompanied by modern performance, Big Chill initially began as a favor to a friend looking for a 50s style appliance. The goal was to find a high-level functioning refrigerator that would “fit” into the look/design of a kitchen without seeming out of place and without the extra upkeep older appliances require.
Orion Creamer started the company out of his love for vintage style. As a child, Creamer spent a lot of his time antiquing with his parents and visiting junkyards to create this style. His goal was to bring heart into homes and create a memorable space for families to enjoy. After the first retro-fridge was sold in 2003, Creamer has released several other collections since then each with their own twist on appliances that most would consider outdated.
Creamer created this company in order to stand out and make a statement. Producing appliances in Boulder, CO the company remains close to home along with Creamer’s original designs. Read this HudsonMOD exclusive to learn more about the Big Chill founder.
Can you name a person who has significantly impacted your success?
Guidance from my Uncle Thom was key in launching Big Chill. In 2001, while I was studying product design at Metropolitan State University of Denver, he called to tempt him me with a project. He wanted a 1950s-style fridge with modern functionality for his California beach house, but couldn’t find one in stores. With a love for mid-century design and junkyards, I jumped on the challenge.
Beyond inspiring me to found the company and funding the endeavor, my uncle served as my mentor for the first 10 years that the business was in motion. Needless to say, he put me on the path to success.
We’re in the middle of designing our new Classic Fridge, which will showcase an early 20th century-inspired look with a modern interior.
What was your inspiration for your favorite line or product?
From day one, our Retro Original Size fridge has been the most popular piece and a personal favorite. Our quest to create a modern fridge with vintage appeal led to long days in the junkyards and antique shops, collecting handles, doors, logos and chrome trim details from fridges we loved. Inspired by various makes and models, we ultimately fused our favorite design elements to create a look of our own.
Where can consumers look to purchase appliances from Big Chill?
We have 20-30 great dealers in locations around the United States and Europe. Customers can also purchase directly through our website, www.bigchill.com.
What makes Big Chill different from other appliance companies?
Two things come to mind. First,we focus all of our energy on design and color, which most appliance companies overlook. Our products are available in three era-specific styles (Classic, Retro, and Pro), over 200 custom colors, and eight standard colors that include cherry red, buttercup yellow, classic white, pink lemonade, jadite green, orange, beach blue and classic black. This gives our customers limitless opportunity for customization, ensuring they will find the perfect appliance for their aesthetic and project. Additionally, our online business model is different. We pride ourselves on being one of the first appliance manufacturers to sell directly to consumers.
Our appliances not only serve a functional purpose, but also evoke emotion and bring cheer to the heart of the home. Our Retro, Classic, and Pro lines all make kitchens memorable and guests feel welcome.
Are there any challenges that you face as a retro contemporary appliance company?
At the moment, our biggest challenge is scaling our operation to meet accelerating customer demand. We’re continuing to face this head-on, adapting to better serve our clientele.
Where do you see Big Chill 10 years from now?
Over the next 10 years, our goal is to bring color and design to the entire home, not only the kitchen! More details to come. For more information on Big Chill or to view products, please click here.