Friday, July 9, 2010

Page Two: Old windows

Today, I am working my way into the living room of my darling old lady and am concentrating on windows.  One of the best architectural features, I think, of older homes.  Mine are of many varieties.  I have double hung windows in large and small, the casement type, the sliding type, skylights and mutton and mullions style in some of these.  Mutton and mullions are the traditional window style that comes to mind when I think of the older home.  I have 2 large ones and 2 small ones.

The biggest problem with m & ms are that they build up moisture where the m & m meet and soon loose all their varnish.  In fact, the woodwork in an old home is one of the striking features that does take a lot of wear and tear over the years.  And, as a new home owner you have to decide which camp you are in.  The paint over the woodwork camp, the restore the woodwork camp or ignore the woodwork camp.  Since some of that decision making was done for us by previous owners, we have a little of all three.  And here is where you will probably think that I am going very crazy, because I like the look of the old crawling varnish.  Now, don't get me wrong, I am not in favor of the neglect camp at all.  But, I am too lazy to do the woodstripping (and too asthmatic).  I think some of the painting on woodwork can look very nice.  But, when it comes to lettling the old girl show her age, a few wrinkles here and there aren't unattractive.

So, I have decided to do what would have been done to the woodwork years ago when it was new.  I purchased some floor wax in a dark stain to match the woodwork and I am coating the old wood with it.  Here is the product that I found at my local hardware store.

I figure since it has been around longer than my home it will be okay to try it out and see if it will do the job of protecting my woodwork and pleasing my aesthtic whim. First, I lightly sanded the wood to remove all the loose pieces of varnish.  You have to be very gentle with the sandpaper as the wood is very dry.  Then I  applied the paste wax  with a foam brush and I will let it dry overnight.  It is so humid here that I want to give it a good chance to work.  It has a dark stain to it and is a petroleum based product.  I couldn't take too much of the fumes without opening a door or window.  But I think the experiment is worth it.  I have set up my power drill with a buffing foam ball and will buff the heck out of it tomorrow. 
The left side is without wax and the right side is with.

So, with patience maybe tomorrow my windows will look rejuvenated without a total face lift. 

1 comment:

  1. Oooh, I can't wait to see the final product. Maybe Andrea can use this on her windows.