I like shiny stuff

After many months of going to my favorite thrift store and coming home with many treasures, my husband wanted to see what was so great about the place. Yesterday, he finished work early and we headed over. I have to say, he wasn’t really impressed at first. But then I dragged him around and showed him all the places to find the best stuff. Since we were only there to look, we didn’t buy any of the big cabinets we found, or the end tables that I liked (but have no place for) or the adorable chairs that were screaming out for me to save them. We did however, find this silver plated tray.

Not so shiny

It had definitely seen better days, but it wasn’t dented or damaged other than the almost black tarnish in many spots. Since I’ve picked up many of these pieces before, I knew my $2 investment would be a solid one.

Some of the worst spots

Besides, I’m a sucker for detail, and this one had lots of it. And today, I set about trying to clean it.

A few months back, I bought one of those tarnish removing plates that you put in hot water with some “activator”, and the tarnish is supposed to fall off. At the craft fair, where I fell for itpicked it up, it worked like magic! Little did I know that every night, they put the pieces they “magically” clean of tarnish right in front of your eyes, into a tarnishing solution to make them black and ugly. So, imagine my surprise when I used it at home and NOTHING happened. What? No magic? No. But, like a glutton for punishment, I always try it first, hoping that it will work as promised. And if nothing else, it’s some place to start. So, into the water it went. Nothing really happened except a few dark orange/yellow spots appeared. I took it out and tried Tarn-X.  I’ve been told Tarn-X is no good for the silver by some people, but other people rave about it.

Don't let the clean plate fool you - Tarn-X wasn't responsible for that shine!

Let’s just say, I’m not impressed. I tried it, per the directions, two or three times. Nothing. And it stinks to high heaven!

And finally, I used my tried and true, Weiman Silver Cream. This has been the only product to effectively take the tarnish off every piece I’ve tried it on.

Weiman Silver Cream

I love, love, love this stuff! I would recommend it to anyone. It’s gentle, it doesn’t smell, and most importantly, it works.

And now, my little silver-plated beauty looks like this!


And this is a picture of the exact spot above, after I got done with it.

Yay for Weiman's!

Not bad for twenty five minutes of labor. I plan on using it by my bathroom sink to corral the things I use everyday, like my toothbrush/toothpaste/cup, etc. It makes it a whole lot prettier than just having them laying about all willy-nilly. The one I have there currently is headed to the husband’s side of the bathroom for his few things, since it’s smaller and everything he uses would fit nicely inside. Guys have it so easy 😛

Also on this trip, we picked up this lamp.

Yep, it's a Stiffel

It even has it’s original finial, which is a pretty rare occurrence when I find them there. This is the third Stiffel I’ve picked up there; the other two I picked up for $2 a piece. We paid $17 for this one. I can’t complain though, it’s my favorite one so far. It really needs to be cleaned up, but both times I cleaned the tarnish off the others, I think I over-cleaned them and now they are very brassy looking.

As I sit here adding photos to this post, I am realizing that I really need to create a space in the house to take pictures of my treasures, so that they look terrific, not trashy. But, know me well enough to know that even if I had that space, I probably wouldn’t use it because that would require planning and not just using my iPhone for all my pics!

All in all, my husband wasn’t overly impressed. I think he should come with me on a Saturday morning as they are unloading a truck to really get a sense of what goes on there, because the craziness and chaos is half the fun!

Have you found anything great lately while thrifting? Tell me about it!



6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Kim
    Jan 14, 2012 @ 21:57:32

    He will never “get” your desire to hunt, dig, & tredge thru the muck in hopes of maybe finding a diamond in the rough…but I do! The tray is beautiful & I can’t wait to see the lamp when you’re finished!!


    • A Pinterest Addict
      Jan 14, 2012 @ 22:02:50

      LOL! True! My favorite part of thrifting is showing him the finished product, and seeing how proud he is of me 🙂 I am kind of worried about cleaning up the lamp, because it seems to be a few different materials and I don’t want to mess it up… googling like crazy for the best stuff to use.


  2. mairzeebp
    Jan 18, 2012 @ 07:29:28

    I hate when thinks lie about all “willy-nilly” :). The tray looks fabulous. I love old silver trays. I actually want to pick up a few for my new apartment that I’ll be moving into in March. Do you know of any Faith Farm like places in PA? Come on, hook a sister up!


  3. A Pinterest Addict
    Jan 18, 2012 @ 10:30:10

    You like “willy-nilly” huh? It makes me smile too – sounds so old fashioned. I will check out FF for more platters when I go today. And guess what? Weiman makes an instant tarnish remover! I didn’t know about it, and now I’m itching to experiment! That would give me a perfect reason to try it out.


  4. April
    Apr 01, 2012 @ 12:24:55

    Hi, I just stumbled on your great blog via (what else?) Pinterest. A couple things. 1. I am dying to visit to this fabulous thrift store you speak. The stuff you pick up is amazing! 2. I actually have this exact same silver tray. I LOVE picking up old silver and making it shiny again and the best way I have found to make it happen is this: In a container big enough to hold whatever you are polishing line the bottom with foil. Add nearly boiling water and a healthy dose of baking soda. Lay your tarnished silver on the bottom of the container making sure it is touching the foil. The tarnish will lift off like magic! Be sure to turn it over so it cleans both sides. This works so well the first time I did it I ran around my house like a little kid looking for any silver that needed to be polished.


    • A Pinterest Addict
      Apr 01, 2012 @ 19:43:03

      So glad you found my blog! I have tried this process, and it does a pretty good job, but I always follow it up with the weinman’s cream. It makes it sparkle like nothing else I’ve tried. Hope you come back often 🙂


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