Striking it rich in society's throwaways Tender, loving care for--junk

May 07, 1994|By Sharon Overton

Mary Randolph Carter, author of "American Junk," offers this advice on caring for your junk treasures:

* To brighten old linens: Boil them with Snowy Bleach on top of the stove. Bring water and bleach to a boil, then reduce to simmer. Submerge linens with a long-handled, wooden spoon. Let simmer for 10 minutes. Rinse in lukewarm water and towel dry. Fold into white plastic garbage bags and refrigerate for at least an hour. Iron right out of the refrigerator.

* If you must clean the grime off an old painting: "Dry clean" with a slightly damp cloth dipped in Ivory Snow and warm water. Or try Ms.Carter's mother's Wonder Bread method: Ball up slices of fresh bread into dough pellets and gently rub over the surface.

* Rescuing silk lamp shades: Dust, vacuum or dunk in an Ivory Snow bath. If they're badly stained, create a new look with acrylic paints. Parchment shades should be sponge-cleaned with "dry" top suds.

* To clean metals: Use Nevr-Dull polish, about $3 in most hardware stores. Tear off a piece of the solution-soaked wadding and rub until clean. To shine, buff with a dry soft cloth.

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