You’ve been on the hunt for your favorite kind of antique for awhile now and after months of hunting, you finally tracked it down. The only problem is it’s not in the best shape. It is an antique, after all! How exactly are you supposed to clean that vintage lace or cast iron skillet? Follow our tips below and your things will be looking as good as new.
Antique lace is always beautiful, but it isn’t always as vibrant as it used to be. If you have antique lace or plan on buying some it’s important to give it a proper cleaning before it ends up deteriorating. All you need to safely clean your lace is a large glass bowl, hot water, Orvus Quilt Soap, and your lace. Simple, right?
Orvus is sodium lauryl sulfate, and many quilters and lace restorationists constantly use it. If your lace appears to be extremely delicate, baset it between two layers of white mesh. Be sure to use white or ivory colored thread to avoid the bleeding of other colors into the lace. Fill the large glass bowl with one teaspoon of well-mixed Orvus paste and a minimum of one gallon of hot water. Gently place your lace in the bowl. Let the lace soak for at least 45 minutes, then place the bowl in the sink and run the bowl under warm water. The goal is to get rid of the Orvus water so the water around the lace is now clear. Note: this may take some time.
After the water becomes clear, lay the lace out on a clean white towel and let it air dry. It may appear to be a little discolored when you first set it out to dry, but after one or two soaking sessions the lace will appear to be considerably whiter!
Cast iron skillets are always a hot commodity here at The Picker Knows. It doesn’t take long before your cast iron skillet is looking like it has seen better days. Whether your skillet is ten days or ten years old, we’ve got the cleaning tips to make it look as good as new!
Unlike most things in the kitchen, you do not want to clean your skillet with dish soap. It has the tendency to strip out oils that are necessary for your skillet. To properly clean your cast iron skillet you’ll need coarse sea salt, oil, and a potato. These are items that you may already have in your kitchen! This is a messy process so if possible do this outside or over newspaper for easy cleanup.
Cover the bottom of the pan with your course sea salt. Next, cut the potato in half. Place the potato, cut side down, on the salted pan and start scrubbing away. The potato has the right amount of moistness to help the salt get rid of the rust, just make sure you’re using a good amount of pressure.
The sea salt will get dirty quickly, so you might want to rinse dirty salt out and start again if it’s looking too dirty. Next, rinse with water and pat the pan dry. Pour in a small amount of oil and rub it in with a paper towel until the bottom of the pan is coated. Place your pan on the stove and heat on low for 30 minutes. Once the cast iron skillet is cooled off, wipe off remaining oil and store away.
Stop by The Picker Knows in West Des Moines to check out our wide variety of antiques. Who knows, maybe you’ll come across some great vintage lace or a used cast iron skillet that you’ll want to clean up. In addition to browsing our store for antiques, you can stop by our Thursday night auctions, get appraisals, or ask about our soon-to-be-open event center. Contact us today for more information on The Picker Knows!