What does a Garden Gnome do when she is not gardening, in the kitchen or doing genealogy? Well the answer might just surprise you so read the entries to find out more. This blog focuses on everything we do to make our house a home. There will be a strong emphasis on home energy efficiency and do-it-yourself (DIY) projects. At the same time there will also be crafts, knitting and crocheting projects along with any other little tips we do to create that down to earth, I want to be here home. Please enjoy your visit :)

Friday, January 14, 2011

Cleaning Antique and Vintage Glassware

Vintage and antique glassware is fun to collect and with the exception of rarer, more valuable pieces is still very much functional.  As a collector of vintage and antique glassware I've learned a few things over the years when it comes to keeping my collection sparkling.  Vintage and antique glassware is no more fragile than modern pieces UNLESS there is a special finish or painting on the glass then it is quite fragile.  Improper cleaning will leave you with a nice shiny piece minus the special finish or painting.  This is a case where you really have to know what you have.  Here are a few of my tips:

  • know what you have, if in doubt do not wash!
  • dust off the piece before washing
  • wash and rise in warm water to avoid any thermal shock
  • use the mildest form of cleanser possible and do not scrub - I suggest vinegar or mild soap and water. 
  • once washed set the piece upside down on a towel to air dry
  • tough grim can be removed from old canning jars, milk bottles and other plain glass using rubbing alcohol sprayed onto the surface then wiping dry
  • never put antique or vintage glassware in the dishwasher or microwave oven as this may damage the finish especially painted pieces, those with metallic trim or those with special finishes like lustreware and carnival glass
Garden Gnome