Thursday, May 8, 2014

Shhh.... It's a Secret...Tips for Cleaning Vintage Items.

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Hi it's Debbi from Tattered Butterfly Studio.  I grew up going to estates sales, rummage sales, and garage sales.  I know how to dig to find neglected treasures.  Sometime they're dusty, dirty, grimy, rusty or even a have a few cobwebs.  I love finding these gems.  It's like rooting for the underdog.  Seeing the potential that hasn't be used or loved in a long, long, time.

 There's the thrill of the hunt.  Yes, it's like a wild animal in me.  There's a an adrenaline rush as I comb through basements of estate sales.  While everyone is upstairs I'm looking for old wooden hangers, old board games, camping items, etc..

Sometimes I want the rusty dirty items to be left as they are. Rusty gold is can be charming.  A good rusty bucket should be left alone with some planted flowers or used for magazine storage.

Okay, I know your ready for the tips.  Cleaning up a vintage item can show off  it's beauty.  Here are some staples t I use.

Pictured here are Goo Gone, Naval Jelly, Mr. Clean Eraser and Dawn Dish Soap. 

1.  Goo Gone.

Yes, I use this to get off sticky tags from estate sales to thrift store.  The tags I hate most is Savers.  Their tag are HUGE!  I usually spray the tag and let it set for a few minutes and then it comes lickety split.  This even gets out permanent marker out of wood items.  You might have to let it soak a few times and rub it out.  I sold a wooden box that I paid $3.00 for and I sold it for $35.00 because of Goo Gone.  I've also used rubbing alcohol  works great too for removing tags.  . 

2.  Naval Jelly.

This is a new product I've been using.  I found this awesome vintage child's oven that had a lot of rust on it.  I wanted to use the oven as kitchen decor item.  

I saw that green and fell in love with it.  It was very grimy. I used the Magic Eraser on the everything but the the paper labels. The Naval Jelly I used on the burners.  I highly recommend gloves when using the jelly.  You let it sit for 5-10 minutes.  Wipe off any residue with a wet cloth.


The stove looks brand new and this is from the 50's.  Over 60 years old.  I'm not selling this but you can get more money on an item you are reselling if it's clean and is good shape


3.  Magic Eraser

Yes, the title is true.  It cleans plastic in minutes and gets rid of grime like no other cleaner.


Sorry the picture is blurry.  It's late and I don't have time to take another pic. It looks brand new.

4. Dawn Dish Soap

This vintage mixing bowl had grime and grease all over it.  It was disgusting.  I felt ill inside when I looked at it. It was greasy with a thick layer of dust.  Dawn is the best on grease.  Hot water and Dawn and it looks amazing.


You can pick up these products at a local hardware store.  These are simple tips that pack a powerful punch.  You can find all kinds of curiosities that will make your home one of a kind.  

Be Your Own Kind Of Beautiful, 


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