This entry could also be titled ‘How I almost ruined my favourite piece of furniture with a pink post-it note’. Now that I’ve recovered from the shock and horror, I thought I’d share my stupid mistake (and how I dealt with it) as a little warning to other post-it-note coffee lovers out there.
You’re probably familiar with this table – it’s been on the blog a few times:
It happens to be one of my favourite places to work when I’m at home, simply because it’s big enough for me to spread out all my papers, and I have a lovely tree-filled view to keep me entertained. Wednesday I was happily settled in my spot, mapping out a presentation on some neon pink post-its. Instead of getting out our coasters, I set my fresh cup of coffee on one of the post-its I was working on, not realising the bottom of my mug was wet. Wet, and of course warm. Which basically meant I unknowingly heat-transferred the dye from the post-its into the top of our table. So imagine this, but neon pink, in the middle of our gleaming white table:
I won’t lie – I shrieked, and then cried a little when I discovered it. And then frantically grabbed every cleaner in the house** and started scrubbing.
The table is from BoConcept and has been coated in a white high-gloss lacquer, which makes it extremely hard wearing. Even our cats claws haven’t scratched it yet. The normal anti-bacterial spray did nothing to move the stain. So I swapped to nail polish remover and a cotton ball – probably not recommended by most furniture manufacturers, but I figured I could revarnish the table if needed. This went a good way in lifting the colour, but it took several slow rounds of gentle soaking with a saturated cotton ball, followed by a quick rinse with a water-soaked cotton ball. Each step of the way, I checked the varnish and luckily it seemed to be in tact. After taming the neon to a subtle, but still noticeable fuchsia, I stopped and googled. Rubbing alcohol appeared in the list of suggestions. With none in the house, I went for some hairspray (which has a high alcohol content). Again, going gently in rounds, I sprayed the stain, let it sit for 20 seconds or so, rubbed it with cotton wool, rinsed it with water, dried it with a white muslin kitchen towel. Checked the state of the varnish. Then repeated the whole process again, the entire time with my mom’s voice in my head saying ‘You should have used a coaster’. Yep – lesson learned.
Luckily it is all but gone. If I stare at the table for long enough with my nose millimetres from the surface, I can find it but my husband has yet to point a finger at where it is and his eyes are far sharper than mine. I’m hoping the sun will go the rest of the way in bleaching the final colour out. But I’ve learned my lesson and will NEVER be putting coloured post its on the table again without some sort of protective layer underneath. ALSO (mom, you’ll be glad to hear this) I now pledge to always use a coaster. And will probably buy some rubbing alcohol, as I’m pretty sure this would have worked like a charm after my luck with the hairspray.
Anyone else have a similar story to share? Any cleaning tips you would recommend for situations like this? I (and I’m sure many others!) would love your advice. along with any products you’ve discovered not to use in a situation like this one…
Wishing everyone a great end to the week. xo
**Please DO NOT just try my suggestions above on your furniture without testing a small space first, just to ensure it doesn’t lift the colour or ruin the finish. I was lucky that the damage wasn’t worse.