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How To Refresh Old Hardware

Hello darlings!  Hope you are having a lovely day.  It's a brutal heat wave in little old Rhode Island right now, and I'm having a hard time functioning.  I don't like summer (and I know I'm in the minority there.) I absolutely cannot stand being hot!  I'd rather it be 30 below 0 so I can layer myself in sweaters and blankets.  You can always add layers in the cold, but in the heat you can never take enough off!

Aaaaanyway, it's almost the 4th of July, and I hoped to have a fun and festive post for you today - like a red white & blue layered cocktail or something like that.  Unfortunately, I did not have any time to come up with a new concoction. We spent the entire weekend working around our house.  In the brutal heat.  Yikes.  Our vacation is off to a fun start!  -_-

I've decided that today I'll talk about one of my projects from this weekend - restoring the old hardware on all our doors!

Our house is very old (1930's) which I love because it means there is a lot of charm and character.  One thing that sold me on this house was the beautiful glass door knobs on all the doors!  Once we moved in and took a closer look at everything though, we realized the previous owner had actually painted over the base of all the doorknobs.  We've been in this house for 5 years now, and I'm finally getting around to fixing the doors up!  Here are the steps I took to make the hardware look good as new:

Step 1: Remove the Paint

First thing in the morning, I got to work trying to remove all of the knobs, face plates and hinges from all the doors, which was QUITE a chore let me tell you.  The paint had sealed all the screws to the face plates so it took a lot of elbow grease to get them undone.  My arms are going to be hurting tomorrow. 

Some of the plates were stuck to the door, so I used a sharp knife to cut around the edge of the plate for easy removal.

Once I had all the hardware off, I took the pieces that were painted and placed them in an old pot.  Make sure you use a pot that you no longer cook with!  I added enough water that everything was completely submerged, and added about a cup of white vinegar.  

I brought the water to a boil and let it remain at a nice rolling boil for around 5 minutes.  I then turned off the burner, and let the hardware soak and cool for close to 2 hours while I did some other things. 

Next, I used tongs to remove all the hardware from the water.  A lot of the paint had stripped off on it's own! Anything that was left I gently scraped off using a paint scraper (being careful not to scratch the metal hardware.)  It was all latex paint, so it came off very easily.  

You might find that your hardware is in great condition once you've removed all the paint! Unfortunately, this was not the case for me.  There were tons of scratches and dings all over the hardware, and it was severely discolored.  I decided to move on to step 2. 

Step 2:  Prep for Painting

Much of the new hardware we've added to our house has an oil rubbed bronze finish.  I decided to go with the same finish to freshen up the door hardware as well!   Rust-oleum sells spray paint in every finish you can dream of, so of course they have a great oil rubbed bronze. 

Before I could paint though, I had to get the hardware ready.  I obviously wanted to preserve the glass, so I used aluminum foil to thoroughly wrap the glass end of the knobs, leaving the metal exposed. 

I laid all the hardware out on the driveway on top of old flyers from the recycling bin.  That's it! On to step 3.

Step 3: Paint the Hardware

Shake the spray can well, then hold about 8 inches from the hardware.  Hold the can as upright as you can and spray in an even, back and forth motion.  Make sure you always maintain the same distance, and that you slightly overlap each layer.  Be sure you keep the can moving while you are spraying.  If you hold the can too long in one place it can cause the paint to build up into heavy, gunky blobs on the hardware.  Try and get the hardware from all angles too.  When you think you are done, double check all of it and make sure you covered everything!  Look how sparkly that fresh coat is in the sun:

Let the paint dry for 1 hour, then apply a second coat.  The second coat will dry to the touch in about 30 minutes, but you should leave it out to dry for about 24 hours before you put it back on the doors. 

While the hardware dried, I sanded and painted all the doors with a fresh white coat.  Once the hardware was fully dry this afternoon (day 2 of the project) I was able to put it back on the door.  All our doors look good as new!!

That's all I've got for today!  Have you ever used Rust-oleum for a DIY project? Share in the comments below!  Happy 4th of July everyone!!

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