Vintage porcelain china and vintage porcelain figurines are beautiful and delicate decorative items and are a pleasure to own; but, they do require delicate care and protection from harsh sunlight and the potential of being chipped, cracked or broken. Here’s a few cleaning tips for your fine porcelain.
One of your first concerns after you acquire a few pieces of porcelain is where you are going to store all these pretty items.
Usually, you want to show off or display your porcelain figurines; however, you’ll need to find an area where little children (don’t you just love them) or pets can’t topple over your lovely collectibles and fine dinnerware.
Storing Your Porcelain
The best storage area for porcelain china or similar porcelain figurines is often referred to as a china cabinet. This is usually a cabinet with interior shelves and glass panes so you can display your fine collectibles but protect them from household dust.
Some of these china cabinets are made with wooden details that provide small wood rails or guards that will prevent the slippage of the porcelain figurine or dinnerware. In addition, you can also place thin non-slip pads under the item you are storing.
When it comes to porcelain collectibles, you should make an effort to keep these figurines or china out of direct sunlight. The exposure to direct sunlight over an extended period of time can fade the coloring or design details of the figurine or dinner plates.
Cleaning Your Porcelain
As for a porcelain figurine, keep it dusted with a soft bristled (preferably natural hair) paintbrush which can remove the dust and grit from crevices in the figurine that you would not be able to reach with another tool.
Another good trick is to use a can of compressed air to blow away the dust and grit. Hobby shops have triangular shaped q-tips that are also good for this use, they are also available on Ebay. Try to avoid over handling the porcelain figurine so that you can reduce the risk of chipping or breaking it.
If the figurine has any spot or stain, make sure you use a soft cloth that has been submerged into a mild detergent and warm water, and dab at the stain or spot rather than using a scrubbing back and forth motion.
If you are trying to clean the stain within a teacup or saucer, I have heard that the product Efferdent (the product used to clean false teeth or dentures) will do a good job of lifting any stains within the teacup or saucer without any scrubbing action.
And it’s not surprising, since industrial porcelain is used by dentists to make false teeth. Make sure you follow the package directions for the exact amounts you should use.
As mentioned earlier, it’s usually a good idea to keep your porcelain collectibles or china stored behind glass, this way you won’t have to dust them as often and handling them less will reduce the potential of chips or breakage on the actual figurine.
Try to avoid submerging your porcelain figurine in water. However, if you have a stain that can only be removed by placing the figurine in water, make sure that you don’t submerge it for more than a few seconds.
This works well for porcelain that has a high gloss finish, but you must be even more cautious with porcelain that has a matte finish such as bisque porcelain. A common example of bisque porcelain figurines, are the Precious Moments figurines made by Enesco.
Of course if you are washing porcelain china, now that’s a different matter, you will have to submerge the china dinnerware in soapy water. And hand washing is especially advisable if your porcelain china dinnerware has any delicate painted gold or silver details. In order to preserve the lovely finish, avoid harsh detergents and scratchy scrubbers for your porcelain china dishware.
Be sure that you place rubber mats in the sink or soft towels nearby to prevent any jolting movement or sudden drop of a teacup or plate and thus potential chips or knicks to your china.
Keeping these tips in mind, should give you years of enjoying fine porcelain china dinnerware or your beautiful and decorative porcelain figurines. These will be treasured porcelain items that you can pass down as a family heirloom to be loved and used by future generations.