I took an old, stained metal bowl and gave it a brushed metal finish to hide the flaws and give it interest.
When I got this great metal bowl second hand, I could see potential. It’s a Lenox bowl, so I knew it was good quality. And I loved the shape and design. Very simple, yet interesting, and very modern. The only issue was all the stains and what I thought was tarnish.
I got the bowl just before setting our table with the winter holiday tablescape, and I thought it would be a quick job to shine it up and use it in the table decorations. Wow, was I wrong.
I tried everything I could to get those stains off. I researched online and tried every metal-cleaning idea I could find. I tried silver polish, brass polish, Bar Keepers Friend, stainless steel cleaner, cream of tartar, baking soda, borax, bleach, vinegar, wood stripper, mineral spirits, and more. And no, I did not try any of these together. I would try one, give up, wait a few days or more, then try something else. I even tried polishing it with a dremel. Nothing chemical was working, so I had find something else.
I love the look of brushed metal, but I figured that was just a factory finish and never tried to DIY it. Until now. I had nothing to loose with this bowl, so I pulled out some steel wool and started to rub. I rubbed following the lines of the bowl, so that the brushed metal would work with the design of the bowl.
Steel wool alone was not enough. I ended up using 400 grit wet/dry sandpaper alternated with steel wool and Bar Keepers Friend, and a lot of elbow grease. (sorry, the Bar Keepers Friend didn’t get in the picture).
When I had finished sanding the bowl, it looked pretty good. The only problem was that every time I touched it, I left dark fingerprint marks that did not just wipe off. That’s where the silver polish comes in. I rubbed the whole bowl down with silver polish to shine it up.
I could have been finished with the brushed metal bowl then, but I wanted to add an interesting detail to it. I taped off three stripes on opposite sides of the bowl. And covered the rest of the bowl with a plastic bag.
I found spray paint that can be sprayed on metal and gave it a few coats of light blue. (I’m trying to bring more blue into my interior decor.) Unfortunately, I should have peeled the tape off right after painting, but I waited about half an hour so the lines are a little jagged on the edges. Not what I’d planned, but I think it works with the brushed look of the bowl.
Here’s the finished bowl. The brushed line from sanding follow and highlight the unusual lines of the bowl. So do the painted lines. I’ve displayed the brushed metal bowl inside my china cabinet with some oranges to warm up the cold metal. And the blue goes well with some of the other blue pieces.
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This post was shared at some of my favorite link parties, and it was featured on The Wednesday Showcase!