We moved into a really cool, very old home with beautiful light fixtures. I should say beautiful but disgustingly dirty light fixtures. The house had been a rental home until a smoker bought the place. Can you even?
Lord help me. I cleaned the you-know-what out of that house, repainted, replaced light switches, everything I could think of.
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And when I was whooped from a day of painting on top of a ladder in a house that was 85* (and who knows how hot it was on the ceiling), I would crash into my chair and stare up at the ceiling.
Only to see the grossest, brownest, beautiful light fixture looking down at me. Begging me to clean it. And honestly, day after day I was just too sore or too tired to clean it. It glowed a weird creamy brown color. Really.
But one day my mom came for a visit. She helped me hang curtains in the whole house. And when I had hung curtains in 4 rooms, she volunteered to clean my light fixture for me. So it was her turn to climb the ladder.
Hooray! Mom to the rescue. She got some cleaner (we used Windex). I was surprised how easily it cut through the tar and grease from the cigarette smoke.
You’ll need a roll (yes, a roll!) of paper towels, especially if you have a chandelier with a lot of sparkly things. And you’ll need a trashbag.
You’ll also want a tarp to catch the yucky drips.
And if you’re a weenie like me, you’ll want cleaning gloves.
Here’s what you do.
Lay out your tarp and set up your ladder to the side of your chandelier.
Put your paper towels and cleaner on your ladder.
Turn off the light.
Gloves on unless you’re a really brave soul (like my mom).
First, spray down the entire chandelier, taking care to miss the light bulbs.
Then, start working on the top few sections. You want to spray the main areas then wipe it down.
Once you finish one arm of the chandelier, you should get a dry paper towel to sparkle up the dangling crystals.
Continue working your way down the chandelier until you get to the bottom.
**This is the important part** Step down off your ladder before putting your supplies away.
You’ll most likely find one or two pieces that you missed. And if you don’t climb back up to clean them, they’ll taunt you until you do.
It only took us 20 minutes tops, from the idea to having a white sparkly chandelier. And since we cleaned it, I can’t tell you how much more relaxing it is to crash in the chair after a long day of work.