Antique Finish It’s spring! Are you getting out the mops and brooms? This is the time of year when our clients call to find out how to clean the scuff marks, dirt, or grease from surfaces we have faux finished. Are you having the same thoughts? Here are a few ideas that may make the process simpler! If your decorative painter or faux finisher used water based products, such as acrylic or latex to create your finish, you want a water based solution to clean them. You would be surprised at how easily a little water and a light touch with a rag can take care of most of your problems.

If the marks or dirt are a little more stubborn or it involves kitchen grease, we suggest a solution of 50% white vinegar and 50% water. Always use a clean white cloth such as a terry towel or white t-shirt material to clean your surfaces. The dye from colored rags can transfer their color to your surface so stick with white. Dampen your rag with the mixture and lightly go over the spot to see if this does the trick. You might have to repeat the process a few times.

If the dirt is still not budging, try a little diluted dishwashing liquid and a clean white cloth. Notice how our cleaning products are getting stronger and stronger. Start with the simplest first and slowly get more aggressive until you resolve the problem.

These rules apply to your cabinets as well. I know cabinet finishes look stronger because they are on wood. Treat them as you would good furniture. Remember: No Scrubbies, No Soft Scrub.

If your surface has a metallic leaf, foil, iridescent, pearl or metallic finish, beware! They are very sensitive to everything. If water doesn’t work, stop there and call the artist to resolve the problem.

If you are like me and have a love affair with the “Magic Eraser," be very, very careful! It can take off your finish or dull your shine. On flat finishes it will make a shiny spot. So if you must, use it sparingly. Beware of any product with bleach or an abrasive as an additive. They destroy finishes!

All finishes need to cure out before they can be washed or cleaned. The surface maybe hard but the entire finish takes longer than the surface to cure. Once the artist has completed their work please allow 6 to 8 weeks for it to cure before cleaning.

Hello Spring, Summer is almost here!

Janie's Signature

Janie Ellis, RID, ASID-IP, CF,
Master Artisan