Here are our top five tips:
1. A white ring on a tabletop is in the finish, a black ring is in the wood. It is easier to remove a damaged finish than a wood stain. To remove white rings—usually made by damp glasses or hot cups of coffee—from wooden tabletops, rub the spot with a mixture of mayonnaise and toothpaste. Wipe, then polish.
2. Glassware, old or new, requires careful handling. Stand each piece upright, not touching another. Never rest glasses on their sides. Wash in moderately hot water and mild detergent. Avoid wiping gold- or platinum-banded pieces while glasses are hot. Never use scouring pads or silver polish on glass. When using an automatic dishwasher, be sure the water temperature is under 180 degrees. Don’t put lead crystal in the dishwasher; the detergent will turn the glass cloudy.
3. Clean your hard stone jewelry, the diamonds and rubies, in a mixture of equal parts liquid laundry detergent and water. Quickly swish dirty pearls, opal, or coral in a mixture of 1 teaspoon Ivory liquid and 1 quart lukewarm water. Don’t soak. Rinse, pat dry. 4. Heavy, color-glazed dinnerware is oven-safe for baking up to 350 degrees. Do not use the dishes in a microwave. Do not wash them in an automatic dishwasher; the detergent may discolor the glaze. Do not scour the dishes. Early 1930 to 1942 dishes had lead in the glaze, so do not use scratched dishes with acidic foods. Lead poisoning is possible with prolonged use. 5. Always vacuum your stuffed moose head from the snout up and scrub your stuffed pheasant with fresh white bread, torn not sliced. Vacuum your moose head with the furniture attachment but go with, not against, the grain. Rinse the head with water every five years. Careful—too much water will make a mildewed moose. After cleaning your stuffed moose head, polish the hair with a wad of nylon stocking.