Keeping up with upkeep , with so much tatting around ?! A Herculean task.
That is why the Pinterest Challenge is my ticket to keep at it, albeit at a monthly snail’s pace.
We bought this little wooden ‘antique-look’ chest about 8-10 years back. The brass overlay work was shining, the wood nicely polished . This is used to store hand towels in the bathroom. When an item is new, maintenance is so easy (and age was on my side)! Gradually, with time & eventual negligence, this is how the side facing the bathing area started to look ; the front is in no great shape either (leftmost in top pic). One can’t eliminate water splashes completely, despite the shower curtain ;-(
It was finally time to roll up my sleeves & get to work.
Materials : Oil, Vinegar, rag/towel
Quickly mixed up some vegetable (cooking) oil & vinegar (3:1), gave the jar a shake – it is an emulsion & sat down with a kitchen towel (the fiber roll type). That’s all one needs!
Applied the emulsion with the towel & left it in sunshine (for better absorption).
That’s it! Didn’t even rub it in.
|Applying emulsion to left panel|
|Left panel after a few days|
I’m sure if I do this regularly, it will get back all it’s original beauty. With a single application, there has been a marked change. With a few more applications spread over the next few months, the spots should disappear completely.
TIP : I might even mix in some coffee powder to add colour!
|Top panel immediately after application of emulsion|
This was my challenge completed. But the upkeep wasn’t over. The brass needs to be polished, too!
Easy Brass Polish
|Simple tamarind paste as brass polish !|
Materials : Tamarind Paste/pulp , toothbrush, rag, & water.
I had a few ideas in mind besides Brasso, which I do not like much (this branded brass polish does make the item shine but for a very short duration; and it is all chemical). For vases, etc. I use tamarind pulp. I tried store-bought salted tamarind paste (Dabur Homemade) . The paste worked quickly on the least affected brass parts.
In the step 2 (top right) of process pic above, I have tried to show 3 areas within the same brass circle for comparison : (in counterclockwise direction) before any application of paste ; with tamarind paste ; paste applied & wiped off.
|More applications required for gunk build-up|
The most difficult was the left side again. All that build-up took me many repeats before I realized that if a few drops of water are added after brushing, it wiped away the gunk easily. Repeat application, brushing, adding water, wiping for as many times as required. I think the before/after pics speak for themselves.
TIP : Lemon wedges & citric acid crystals (with a few drops of water) were the other two materials I tried this time. The results are inconclusive – they would work for regular cleaning & polishing, not for old & hard build-ups. I intend to scrub some areas regularly whenever I have a few leftover lemon slices.
With a bit more elbow grease & time, I could’ve done a better sparkling job. But my intention was to start with the upkeep & keep it up in future rather than tire myself out into distaste. I am very satisfied & motivated to regularly maintain the maintenance of this box !
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Related Posts : Jan 2016 Pinterest Challenge