Midcentury Dresser DIY Makeover: Brass Hardware
I needed to find a DIY natural brass cleaner for this amazing midcentury modern dresser I picked up for FREE in my local buy-sell trade Facebook group (get the BST group lingo here)! I tested out a few DIY & natural brass cleaner recipes and here is what I found out! I needed to research homemade brass cleaners, so it was a perfect fit!
Recipes for DIY Natural Brass Cleaner
I absolutely loved this dresser and couldn’t believe that we were able to pick it up for FREE! If you love DIY furniture makeovers, you may also want to see how we redid an old metal desk for my home office. For my home office project, I ended up having to buy new hardware. However, I LOVED the hardware on this midcentury modern dresser and I really wanted to keep it. You cannot buy hardware like this anymore. I had one HUGE problem because the hardware looked pretty beat up. I wanted to try my best to not have to paint it. Where does one go when they need a simple DIY and natural brass cleaner? Pinterest, of course! Here is the link to the pin from Salvaged Inspiration that started this whole brass cleaning journey!
Test Brass Hardware
To make sure that you are solid brass, take a magnet to your hardware. The magnet will not stick to solid brass. Therefore, if it doesn’t stick, you will be ready to start making your DIY natural brass cleaner!
Vinegar and Salt Brass Cleaner and Polisher
- In a plastic container, mix 2 cups white vinegar with 10 tablespoons salt.
- Using an old toothbrush, rub the mixture around on the brass.
- Allow the brass to soak for around 45 minutes. Don’t rush this. I am always impatient, however you end up having to work harder. Just let the brass hardware soak!
I attempted this mixture a few ways. As you can see, the hardware is soaking, however, I also felt that I needed something else to help the solution get around the ends of the handles.
Mix flour with the DIY brass cleaner to make a brass cleaning paste
I decided to mix flour with my brass cleaner solution to create a paste. It really seemed to help get some of the areas that didn’t want to be cleaned by only the solution. After my handles were done soaking in the DIY natural brass cleaner, I used the toothbrush to clean them as well as a sponge. BE CAREFUL when doing this as you may end up scratching your hardware. I cleaned the hardware in one motion so that any scratches or lines would look intentional.
Other DIY Brass Cleaners
I was very happy with the outcome of my DIY natural brass cleaner. During my research I did see some other ways you may want to try. As weird as it sounds, ketchup might be your answer!
As a child, I remember being in awe when I put a dirty penny in ketchup because it came out completely clean after soaking it. So if you are up for, slather some ketchup on your hardware and let me know how it goes. Another brass cleaner would be to try a lemon and baking soda mixture. I would love to hear what your homemade and natural brass cleaning remedies are? What worked the best for you?