Tips and Tricks from the Sprucettes!

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Here at the Spruce shop we are steady cranking out furniture.  While we like to make sure that our client’s pieces leave the shop in flawless condition, occasionally we have an unexpected “bump in the road” that needs resolving.  Through many heart-crushing experiences we have accumulated a handful of remedies for different complications!  I would like to be generous and save you from the despair/freak out that you may encounter after having a slip up of sorts.

The above image is of a simple can of silicone.  I am not kidding: I discover a new use for this stuff nearly everyday.  As you may have seen from a previous post, Clar, Frank, and I rely heavily on silicone to help stuff foam into cushions.  It serves as a lubricant and helps to cut the friction between the foam and the fabric.  It is also handy to spray onto the hinges of our scissors, or onto the blades of our turkey cutter for a smoother cut.  Silicone spray is useful to spray onto rubber to prevent drying and cracking.  I have recently realized that silicone is to Spruce as Windex is to the Greek family in My Big Fat Greek Wedding.  In addition to all of the aforementioned  jobs that Silicone performs, we use it to remove spray adhesive from our hands and scissor blades.  Spray adhesive is ultra-sticky and can get all over you if you aren’t careful. We have also been known to resort to silicone spray for spot removal. It will often lift out the stain if you get to it quick enough! Please note that it does not take out all stains and can in some cases discolor your fabric. It is very important to test the silicone on a scrap of fabric or on a discrete area – just in case! We have found it to take away Sharpie marks on a chair frame with haste.

Lastly, I would like to give you a big warning…Be careful not to spray your floors with silicone unless you were wanting to turn your house into a giant booby trap. 🙂 I have actually heard silicone spray referred to as a “banana peel in a can”.  It will make your floors (or whatever surface you spray it on) very, very slippery.

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This next tool was totally new to me when I started working at Spruce.  It is essentially a giant eraser.  These little sock-like pouches are filled with powdered gum eraser shavings and are not only useful for removing just pencil marks as one would expect, but also random marks and spots that might find their way onto your upholstery. You just rub the bag over the spot and like magic (if you ‘re lucky) its gone (or at least less noticeable).  You can find these eraser bags at most art supply stores.

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For my last pearl of wisdom, I would like to let you in on the secret of using crayons, Sharpies, and color pencils as secret weapons.  Sometimes when working with woven fabrics it is common to get a snag here and there.  When there are contrasting colors this can be a problem.  Simply find a crayon or Sharpie that closely matches the color of the snag and carefully touch up the blemish.  These tools can also be used to disguise chips and nicks on finished wood. Our first line of defense is always Restor-A-Finish, but if that doesn’t cut it you will be surprised how well these items work.

I love learning new tips and tricks that make my life a little easier.  I hope that something in this post will help you to get out of a pickle if you ever seem to find yourself in one!