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Cleaning dusty lampshades on a bedside lamp.

I was given many years ago a pair of matching lamps that fitted so well into our decor, that you'd think we had bought them specifically. Over the years they have served us well but since I'm on a bit of a cleaning binge at the moment and these two lamps came under scrutiny and it has been decreed that they must be cleaned...

They photographed much better stained and dirty than they looked in real life!!!

Here's what I did...

First I consulted my copy of "How to Clean Practically Anything" and decided that they way to go was to brush them with bran, a little detergent, warm water and a stiffish brush.


I sprayed a small portion of them with a light mist of warmish water...


And then rubbed a handful of the bran and a tiny bit of detergent in a circular motion on the lamp shade taking extra time on the really soiled bits. I did them both section by section so I didn't miss any parts. You have to rub quite gently as they are more fragile than they look! Pop one (clean) hand on the inside and do the rubbing on the outside so the lampshade doesnt collapse on you. Do this over the sink or a "wet" area as it got quite messy quite quickly. Oh, and you get a bonus hand scrub with this project at the same time!


Then I left them to dry overnight...


Using a stiff brush, I brushed off all the bran. It was quite hard to get off and some bran bits had to be picked off with a fingernail! But it did make a difference!!


Since I had them off the stands and they were looking quite good - I ran a line of hot glue along this seam that was coming unstuck.


And also around the top of this one that was a bit lose on the stand - it was quite tricky to do without burning myself with hot glue. A while ago I PVA glued some leaf skeletons from the $2 shop into the inside of the lamps. When they are off they look like normal lamps. When they are on they have this great leaf pattern that sort of glows.


 And this is what they looked like when they were put back together and turned on...


Much better!!

Score card:Green-ness:  Good green-ness to clean with natural products!
Frugal-ness: Excellent frugal-ness to clean and fix rather than buy new ones!
Time cost: About 15 mins to scrub lamps, over night to dry, 10 mins with the hot glue gun and 2 mins to put back together.
Skill level: Basic stuff - give it a go!
Fun -ness: When its all clean, fixed and back together, you feel great!


Comments

Layne Adams said…
Lamp shades are the finishing accessories for antique lighting. Thanks for sharing a very interesting and informative stuff, keep it up!


lamp shades boston
Alison said…
Put it in a big, black garbage bag. Add 1 to 1 1/2 cup yellow corn meal. Close the top of the bag, and SHAKE. Shake the bag really hard, for as long as you can. The slight abrasiveness of the corn meal gets a lot of the dust and dirt off or loosened. After you're done shaking it in the bag, take the shade out and vacuum it well. This process also works well for artificial fabric/silk flowers
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