Crystal Tips: Cleaning and more
Crystal Tips answers all those questions you’ve had about getting your crystal cleaned. Ever wonder how to clean the chandelier hanging in your dining room? Or maybe the one overhead as you enter your home that lights up your entrance? Or maybe you have a room full of crystal Lalique that needs some attending to. What about the display cabinet that is filled with your crystal pieces. And let’s not forget the glassware standing in the cabinet that we are too afraid to use because we may break it. Crystal comes in many different weights. Some is so delicate you really wouldn’t want to use it, but then some is weighted for everyday use. It’s really a shame not to use your best glassware at all times. After all that’s why you bought it. Crystal Tips lets you know not to be afraid to use them. Of course be careful but enjoy them.
Crystal Tips: Cleaning Glassware
Here are some great Crystal Tips for you.
Under no circumstances put your crystal glassware into the dishwasher. The extreme change of temperature can cause the crystal to crack, and the jets streaming water can be very strong that your glassware can be forced against one another and can cause chips, cracks, and breakage that cannot be repaired. The one last thing I want to tell you is, the dishwasher detergent is so harsh that it can cloud your crystal. No-one wants to drink out of a cloudy glass. If all of that doesn’t stop you from putting your crystal into the dishwasher, then be aware of the consequences.
Crystal Tips for cleaning your glassware:
What you’ll need
1. A gallon of white vinegar
2. liquid dish detergent
3. soft towels to line your sink with
4. micro cloth for washing
5. lint free towels for drying
Start by filling your sink with about five or six inches of water, then add a couple of squirts of dish detergent and about two cups of the vinegar. Now line the sink with the soft towels so that the entire sink has been lined with them. Throw in your micro cloth for washing and give it all a good mix. Take a piece of crystal and place it into the sink and let it soak for a minute or two. In the meantime fill a large bowl with water for rinsing your crystal. Take your micro cloth and wash your glass thoroughly. Then rinse it off completely and then wipe dry with the lint free towel. What I do is place towels on the countertop, and when I’m done washing and drying my glasses I place them on the towels. When I’m done washing and drying all of them I then place them back into the cabinets. Make sure that they are stems up so they can’t bump into each other and chip or crack. If you want to store them in containers then pick up a wine glass storage container it will help to keep the dust off of them.
Crystal Tips; cleaning your crystal chandelier:
What you’ll need:
1. A lot of nerve.
2. Drop cloth or bath towels to absorb the drips.
3. A spray bottle with one part isopropyl alcohol and the rest water.
4. Sandwich baggies and rubber bands.
There are those that believe this method is entirely wrong for cleaning your crystal chandelier, and I’m inclined to believe them, but try it for yourself and you be the judge. Here’s what you do.
Turn off the power to the chandelier. Then wrap the light bulbs with the baggies and secure them with the rubber bands. Fill your bottle with the alcohol and water mixture then place your towels underneath the fixture to catch any drops that fall from spraying. Spray the fixture until you see that the crystals are clean. Then let stand for 24 – 48 hours before you turn on the power again. Best of luck and let us know how it went.
The other method takes some time, but makes sure that the entire fixture has been cleaned. You will need to:
1. Take photos of your fixture to ensure when you put it back together that all of the crystals are placed in their rightful positions.
2. Turn off the power to the fixture
3. Place a drop cloth under the fixture
4. Fill a bucket with warm water and some isopropyl alcohol and place on the table near the fixture.
5. Start removing the crystals to be cleaned. I usually do one section at a time to make sure that the crystals are replaced back exactly where they came from. You can clean the interior of the fixture as you go, as well as the light bulbs. Keep going until you have completed the entire fixture.
6. Turn the power back on and remove the drop cloth.
7. Your fixture is finished and it now sparkles again. Enjoy.
Hopefully you will find that this method is best and removes the chances of anything bad happening to you your home or the fixture. I had a client that had a 16th century fixture in the entry to her home. It had of course been electrified, but the wires that connected to the crystals had over the years become very brittle because of the heat from the fixture that was given off when turned on. Although she left it off for the most part, it was turned on for gatherings and this made it very hard to clean. We had to bring in someone to rewire the crystals, but when that was done the fixture could be used more often because the wire was able to withstand the heat. The reason I tell you about this is because the crystals can become dislodged from the wire and fall the floor and break. They cannot be replaced because of their age. No one would be able to replicate the same crystals. So it’s very important here to understand that your fixture does have a life to it. And like everything else it needs to be kept up in order to use it properly. Not something that needs to be done a lot but you need to keep this in mind when you go to clean them.
Of course there are many other pieces of crystal that need to be cleaned. By now you have an understanding of exactly what it takes to clean your crystal and keep it sparkling. Just be very careful when handling art pieces and you’ll be just fine. I had a client with a room set aside in her home that was made especially for her collection of Lalique. The ceilings walls and even some of the furniture pieces were covered in mirror. The room would take many hours to clean. It was done exactly as I have shown you here. Buckets of warm water and isopropyl alcohol lots of towels and even more patience than you think you can muster for a job like this. It is very gratifying at the end when you can see your work on display in pristine condition. So don’t be afraid to clean your crystal or use it, that’s what it’s for. Enjoy.