6 hours ago
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
But the problem with chandeliers is that they are magnets for dust and extremely daunting to clean when they get dirty (more like "ruzzle duzzle"). You can ignore it for a while, but during Spring Cleaning everything gets a bath. So here is the method I have developed in my many years as a chandelierophile for dusting and washing that crystal monster. It'll put the "shine" back in "chandelier".
1. Spread a soft blanket or towel on the area under the fixture. This will prevent your floor or furniture from getting nicked if you accidentally drop a crystal, and makes it more likely the crystal itself will survive the fall.
2. Pull out the diagram of how the crystals hang if one came with your fixture. If you don't have one, take a few digital photos of the chandelier to use as a guide later.
3.Carefully remove the crystals from the fixture. All chandeliers are different, but there are usually long swags of crystals hung between the arms, and then straight drops (called pendeloques) hanging from each bulb. Don't twist or turn the chandelier to reach the drops- instead, leave the fixture hanging as it is and move around it- twisting can compromise the connection to the ceiling and cause it to fall.
4. Soak the crystals in a mixture of warm water and gentle dish soap (I use Palmolive). Meanwhile, standing on a ladder if it helps, clean the base of the chandelier with a 1:1 mixture of water and isopropyl alcohol in a spray bottle, gently wiping off any dust with a clean, non-linty rag (like an old soft t-shirt). Be very careful near any electrical wiring (getting it wet might create a short) and the lightbulbs (as they may be hot).
5. Use a clean, dry, non-linting rag to dry each crystal. Using the photographs as a guide, hang the crystals back on the fixture. Bask in the sparkly dazzling glow of your chandelier, and be glad that's done until next year.
photo credit: Curbed NY