HOW THOSE fingermarks do collect on painted or enamelled woodwork! Keep after them with clear warm water to which you’ve added a little washing soda (1 teaspoonful to 1 gallon of water).
For dusting down walls a longhandled wall brush is a lifesaver. Or you might try a clean broom or mop with a clean duster on it. Use light strokes—change the clotlj often.
Grease spots on wallpaper are a problem. To remove them, make a paste of fuller’s earth and a good noninflammable dry cleaning fluid, then spread it over the grease spot with a flexible knife and leave on several hours until dry. Brush off with light strokes. Put on a second coat if necessary. If a ring is left on the paper, apply a paste made of fuller’s earth and water. Brush off when thoroughly dry.
If the lamp shade is washable, shampoo it by grasping the metal piece across the top and ducking the shade up and down in lukewarm, sudsy water. Do this until it is clean; then rinse well, using the same tech-
nique. Loop a string around the metal crosspiece and tie it on the clothesline—in a shady place.
Have you been missing a good bet in your vacuum sweeper attachments? They can do almost anything—from cleaning books, carved furniture and lamp shades to drapes, pianos and molding. Not to mention demothing.
Have busy, scuffling feet flattened patches of your rug? Or have chairs been left sitting too long in one spot and crushed the pile? You can bring up the nap by applying a damp cloth then pressing with a hot iron. Brush the pile briskly afterward. The same goes for curled rug corners. Press on both sides.
Is it like looking for a needle in a haystack when you hunt for a spice jar in your cupboard? If so, a “lazy Susan” is your answer—you’ve probably seen those small round trays that revolve about a centre post. If you can’t find a carpenter to make one, create your own with a layer
cake pan, placing the tallest bottles in the centre and grouping the smaller ones around them. A twist of the wrist and the pan spins around, bringing all the bottles into view.
Light washable fabric gloves need a daily bath for that spick-and-span look. A quick way to wash them is
in a warm, soapy solution in a fruit jar, with a tight-fitting lid. Pop in the gloves and shake well—cocktail fashion. Rinse in two or three clear, lukewarm waters in the same jar, pat in a towel and dry in an airv spot.
Glass vases and saucepans look so attractive—but not when there’s a telltale high-water mark. Fill with a hot water and vinegar solution— about half and half—and shake or stir frequently until the cloudiness disappears. Let stubborn cases sit it out overnight.
“Chewing gum is here to stay” needn’t apply to floor and table surfaces. Chill the gum with ice, then ease it off with the blade of a knife. A good furniture cleaner will remove any remaining mark.
To do a good job of waxing floors, that old wax should come off. It’s a bit of a chore, so roll up your sleeves. Go over a small patch at a time with a cloth moistened in turpentine or a good floor cleaner. Then rub lightly with steel wool or fine abrasive. Wipe off with a fresh, turpentine-moistened cloth and finally, with a clean dry one.
Light bulbs collect dust like everything else. To get maximum light from them, remove the dust by holding the metal end and dipping the bulb in warm, soapy water. (Caution: don’t ge( the metal part wet.) Dry well with a soft cloth.
The story you want is part of the Maclean’s Archives. To access it, log in here or sign up for your free 30-day trial.
Experience anything and everything Maclean's has ever published — over 3,500 issues and 150,000 articles, images and advertisements — since 1905. Browse on your own, or explore our curated collections and timely recommendations.WATCH THIS VIDEO for highlights of everything the Maclean's Archives has to offer.