Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Switchplate Lament

The original hardward in 419 S. Taylor is amazing.  I'll lay in bed and look at the door knob and ponder.  What did it look like the day it was put in?  Was it considered stylish at the time?  Were there even other choices available in 1915 in Enid, Oklahoma?  I'd post photos but I'm in Fayetteville at the moment so I can't take any.  Darn!  Stay tuned for a future post!

Most of the hardware (door knobs and door hinges mainly) in the house is black from age.  Underneath, I figured, was bronze or brass, perhaps. 

One day I got curious and took salt and orange juice (because that's what I had on hand) and about an hour worth of soaking and elbow grease to the switchplate from the front bedroom.  It was totally black and kinda almost-gummy on top of tarnish.  I just HAD to see what it had looked like once upon a time when it was just a run-of-the-mill ordinary switch plate and not an almost-antique (you have to be 100 years old to be and antique and it's only 95)! 

A glimmer of metal here and there kept me going until finally I had it all shined up!  And here is the finished product!  And I just love the mother-of-pearl topped  push-button switches too!

I was really looking forward to the before and after photos (because, you know, I just LIVE for before and after photos!).  I had planned to take a "before" picture of one of the other switchplates in the house when I was done. Only after I finished stripping 95 years of history off did I realize that this was the ONLY switchplate of it's kind in the house! ARGH! But it did come out kinda pretty. And there's no turning back unless I have 95 years to wait. After all this, I DO think I'll refrain from messing with the door knobs and leave them their long-earned patina because I kind of DO regret it. Kind of.

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