Cleaning breakable items doesn’t have to be a chore if you take a few precautions ahead of time.
- Dusting can be disastrous to breakables. Instead of removing all the collectibles from the shelves every week, use a can of compressed air (from the office supply) to gently blow the dirt away.
- Dress in a short-sleeved shirt when you are cleaning or rearranging your collections. Long sleeves can catch on items and knock them off the shelf.
- To clean glass or porcelain items when compressed air isn’t enough to dislodge the dust, try using a clean paint or makeup brush to gently brush the dirt away. Always hold your collectible in your hand so you don’t inadvertently push it off the shelf.
- If you must wash your glass or porcelain items to get them clean, lay a couple of towels in the sink first to protect the items from a bump or drop. Fill the sink with mild, soapy water and dip the items into the water. Use a small, soft brush to loosen any dirt then rinse and let air dry. Don’t soak your collectibles as it may cause damage to the paint.
- Ceramics and chalk ware, which is made of plaster-of-Paris, should be wiped off with a barely damp towel and dried. Don’t put them in a sink of water as they may be permanently ruined.
- To keep the inside of bottles and vases from filling up with dust, put a clear glass marble or a round piece of clear acrylic (the top from a deli container cut into the size you need works great) on the top of the bottle.
- Cleaning your collection often will ensure that grime won't build up on them.
The best way to keep your collections pristine is to store your collection behind glass, in a curio cabinet or similar in order to keep the collection away from dirt.
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