Interior Decorating Information

10 Tips to Care for Your Antique Glassware

Antique glassware needs a gentle hand. This month we'll give you some useful tips to help you care for your antique or modern glassware.

1. Avoid putting glassware into direct sunlight or near any other heat sources such as radiators.

2. Avoid slippage by using two hands when carrying delicate items. Remove lids and stoppers to be safe.

3. Avoid stains in vases by changing the water every two days and removing any flowers or leaves before they dry onto the vase. Keep in mind that any liquid will stain glassware if it remains over a period of time.

4. Avoid temperature extremes. Very cold or very hot water is too taxing on antique glassware. Sudden temperature changes can stress the glass.

5. Avoid the dishwasher; it is too harsh on fragile glassware. Fill a plastic bowl with warm soapy water in the sink to wash glassware. The plastic bowl protects the glassware from the hard stainless sink.

6. Wash items one at a time to avoid any in-water collisions. 7. Use a soft bristled brush made of nylon or plastic to wash glassware.

8. Line the drying area with towels in case of any tumbles. 9. Gently dry glassware with lint-free cloths.

10. During storage, remove decanter stoppers and lids. If there is any dampness, the lid will trap it in and cause cloudiness.

Martin Swinton owns Take-A-Boo Emporium, an antique shop located in Toronto, Canada. He does furniture restoration, caning and rushing repairs, custom reproductions, upholstery, teaches courses on antiques and does appraisals for estates and community events. He can be reached at 416-785-4555 or by visiting

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