Right before I went to Haven, I restored our $30 thrift store dresser’s finish using Feed-N-Wax and Restor-A-Finish. The wood looked awesome. The brass handles? Notsomuch.

I bought some good ol’ Brasso to polish it. This stuff works. It pulled the tarnish right off. I found that it helps to soak the metal in Brasso. Oh, and do it all outside and wear gloves and eye protection, because the ammonium is harsh. (There are more natural ways to do this, involving salt and lemon and more scrubbing)

Brass polishing tips: Use a magnet to test if the metal is actually brass (non-magnetic) or brass plated (magnetic). Use a soft cloth for polishing. For real brass, you can gently rub with fine steel wool. Brass plate can scratch off, so be careful.

So yeah, the Brasso was effective.┬áBut I was disappointed by the metal underneath. I was hoping for bright brass, but it was a bad yellow gold: uneven, foggy. It just wasn’t what I wanted. This photo has bad lighting; it shows how clean the Brasso made it, but not the bad gold color.

So, following the title of this post, when all else fails? SPRAY PAINT. I used Valspar’s metallic spray paint in Classic Bronze, slightly more muted than the brass.

So, two weeks ago, here’s what we brought home.

And now, after a little bit of love. Oh, and I filled in the missing veneer at the bottom with one of those brown furniture crayons.

Here’s a close up of the handles, after the spray paint.

Not bad, huh?

Have you ever used Brasso? Do you have any tips and tricks for polishing metal?


2 Responses to When All Else Fails, Spray Paint

  1. This piece is just beautiful! You did a great job and I am just loving that bronze spray paint! Thanks so much for the tips! By the way, love your blog!!

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