How to Remove Paint from Brass Hardware

I am sooo excited to share this little trick! Remember when brass was “in” and then it was so last year? Oh, guess what?! It’s back in style again.

20140331-194828.jpgThis is Superman’s dresser that he used when he was growing up. Well, we inherited it and I painted it for Mary Claire when she was a little girl. See the drawer pulls? Yea. I was a little lazy. But, in my defense, brass was a no-no 20 years ago. So here we are in 2014 and I am again painting this bad boy. (That will be another post, because right now I have to tell you how to get the paint off the pulls with NO chemicals or scrubbing!)
Because this hardware is from the 1960’s, buying new hardware would be a bit of a problem. They don’t make the holes to match up. I would have to either A: fill and drill new holes or B: take the paint off. So I went to This Old to figure out what to do.
OMG! So easy!

20140331-200118.jpgThis is what they looked like before.

20140331-200454.jpgThrow them in a pot of water and dishwashing detergent, then bring to a gentle boil. That’s it! Soap and water.

20140331-201436.jpg After 20 minutes, DO YOU SEE WHAT IS HAPPENING? This is so cool!

20140331-201619.jpgIt’s just peeling right off!

20140331-201818.jpgThis is after another 20 minutes.

20140331-201903.jpg I just pulled them out, one by one, and wiped them clean. A skewer helped me get in the tight spots. A toothbrush would work too. Again, it all came off very easily! If there was a stubborn spot, I put that baby right back in the pot for a little more cook time.

20140331-202225.jpgTaDa! Yea, they need a bit of polish, but…Heck Fire! I think they look great!
According to This Old House

A beeswax furniture polish after stripping, or a nonabrasive polish like Flitz or Maas can restore the sheen to solid brass or thickly plated hardware. And the next time the door needs painting, do yourself a favor—take the hardware off before the painter shows up.

Ok, ok…next time I’ll do myself the favor and take the hardware off before painting. Good advice.

Hope this little tid bit was helpful for you! Thanks for dropping by!



Burlap Pumpkin

Even though we are officially in the season of fall, it is still 80 something degrees outside. I can’t quite let myself buy real pumpkins yet.

20130920-143528.jpgThis wreath actually looks fall-ish, until you look closer.

20130920-143657.jpgYup! Bird poop. Gross. This needs to be replaced.

20130920-143957.jpgI had bought this adorable little guy last year, liking the way they painted on the burlap. I got to thinking the other day that “Hey! I could do that too!”

20130920-144348.jpgSo here we go!

20130920-144443.jpgCut two pieces of the shape you want from burlap.

20130920-144546.jpgOn one of the shapes, start painting. For this pumpkin, I needed a lot of orange paint. I used regular old craft paint, whatever I had in my paint bucket. I knew I wouldn’t have enough paint in the orange bottle, so I went back to my kindergarten knowledge- yellow+red=orange. Totally don’t worry about how much of yellow and how much of red. Pumpkins aren’t just one shade. Look closely, they are of varying shades.

20130920-145412.jpg Paint, paint, paint.

20130920-145550.jpgTime to add some shading. Without rinsing your brush or plate, add some brown paint.

20130920-145652.jpgThe brown shows the indentations of the pumpkin ribs (is that what you call them? You know what I mean) and the stem.

20130920-145922.jpgStill looking a bit flat, so I’m going to add white for the highlights. Again, don’t rinse your paint, just add a squirt of white paint.

20130920-150027.jpgThe white paint goes where the sun might be hitting it, on top of the ribs. Remember! We are painting on burlap, not painting for the museum of Art. Keep this fun!

20130920-150249.jpgThis pumpkin needs some twirly vines. I cut two strips of scrap burlap. Placed a piece of wire in the middle and folded the strip in half. Hot glued the two sides together.

20130920-150533.jpgGotta paint both sides of the vines green. Now let the painted pieces dry.

20130920-150657.jpgSew or hot glue the two pumpkin shapes together leaving an opening to be able to stuff through.

20130920-151357.jpgCrumble up brown paper bags or craft paper and stuff inside.

20130920-151547.jpgSew or glue the opening shut. I finished the pumpkin off by hot glueing the vines, that I twisted around a pencil to make them twisty. If I wanted them straight, I would have put them in a straightener. If I wanted them zig-zaggy, I would put them in a zig-zagger. But I wanted them twisty. I had the burlap flower, so I added her too. (She was in the dollar section of Michael’s)

20130920-152230.jpgThere you go! A pumpkin that won’t get all mushy on me and last until Thanksgiving.

Thanks for dropping by! Hope you have a great weekend!