Here’s the next edition of “Things Mom Never Told You”.
Have you ever wondered how to….
…Clean Tarnish Off Silver
Because we all have so much good silver laying around the house, right? Well recently I did get a few pieces, and I wanted to make sure that they were cleaned up in the most gentle way I could. So once again, back to my ever trusty source of truth I went, and looked it up on the internet.
Line a sink or in my case I used a plastic bucket, with tin foil. Put the items you want to remove tarnish from in here. Cover them with boiling water, and to that add about 3 tablespoons of baking soda premixed with a teaspoon of salt. Let them soak for a few minutes. For heavy tarnish it may take up to 15-20 minutes. Some spots may even require some gentle scrubbing with a soft cloth, or if you have nooks and crannies in things you can gently clean them with a soft toothbrush. The tarnish transfers to the foil like magic, as you can see here, where the ring is on the foil.
After the tarnish is gone, remove them from the hot water and rinse WELL with more hot water to prevent pitting, then dry thoroughly. To prevent (or at least minimize) further tarnishing, first wrap in a soft cloth, then put into an airtight bag along with a small piece of chalk. The chalk with absorb moisture, which is what causes the tarnish. You can use this for both sterling silver as well as silver plated items. Check out my before and after photos of a silver plated sugar bowl:
That was in solution for about 2 minutes. That’s it.
…Scorch Marks from Fabric
I know, I know, who’s dumb enough to leave the iron on and down, right? Well before I got smart enough to buy one that lifts itself up when I take my hand off of it so that it CAN’T scorch anything, I will admit I may have done so on one or two occaisions. And of course if you’ve ever used spray starch, you know that it takes almost no time at all before you get discoloration that is nearly impossible to get out of fabric, right? Well here’s a tip that really works, provided the marks aren’t too horrendous.
Get a bottle of hydrogen peroxide, and several clean, old rags. Heat up the iron to the hottest setting the fabric can take, turn off the steam feature and put the fabric on an absorbent towel and pour some peroxide on the stain. You don’t need much, just enough to wet it. Lay a dry rag over the spot, and start ironing up the peroxide. The rag will absorb the peroxide, and the stain along with it. Continue ironing until the peroxide is dry. If any stain remains, do it again. You may need to do this several times before the stain comes out completely, but provided it wasn’t too bad it should come out. (I haven’t tested this on a huge variety of fabrics, primarily cotton and muslins, but it’s worked well on those.)
…Scuff Marks from Patent Leather
Use a Magic Eraser. Wet it a bit, and rub the scuff mark. Voila, gone like, well, magic!
My promise: I will never share something with you that I haven’t personally tried. I won’t tell you it works if I can’t prove it. Where possible I will share photos or a video. If something is an epic fail, well I’ll tell you that too as I think that is just as valuable, even if I end up looking ridiculous doing it.
2 thoughts on “Things Mom Never Told You, Vol III”
Wonderful tips! Isn’t Magic Eraser great? I’ve used it on the walls and wood furniture but never thought to try it on patent leather. Now I’ll have to!
I know! It’s nuts. I used it to clean a bike saddle the other day. My next update is going to be on making homemade magic erasers. I have everything to do it, just need to test them out and see if they work as well. If they do, they will be SO much cheaper.