From Chrome to Bronze
The faucet sets we selected for the casita’s bathroom sinks and shower were bronze. The toilet we’d ordered before deciding on the sink sets, however, sported a chrome flush pull. It would cost $50 to replace the simple chrome pull knob on the top of the toilet. Since the toilet is in its own separate room the chrome knob wouldn’t be side by side with the bronze fixtures. And because we still had things to buy for the bathroom (towel racks, soap dishes, wall hooks, etc.) I decided not to spend money on changing the knob.
It finally dawned on me that perhaps spray paint was a solution. After making sure I selected a paint that worked on metal, I bought a can of bronze spray paint. I removed the knob from the toilet and cleaned the chrome surface with rubbing alcohol to make sure it was clear of dirt and finger prints. I turned the chrome knob through short, even bursts of bronze spray, holding it by its metal stem. In case you don’t know, it’s better to do multiple light coats of spray paint rather than try to cover it heavily with the first spray – too easy for it to run and drip.
The bronze spray paint did the trick – and the toilet pull knob doesn’t look like it has been painted thanks to the paint’s metallic finish.
Later, when shopping for two bronze soap dishes I couldn’t find a style I liked especially. As usual, a “clearance” shelf sign caught my eye, leading me to a stack of chrome trimmed soap dishes. I liked the dish but I liked it even better when I discovered its usual $9.98 price tag was now clearance priced for only $1.99. Hmmmmmm, the fact that I still had bronze spray paint left flashed through my mind.
I bought three of the chrome soap dishes for a $1.99 each – saving almost $24.00. One was for my kitchen, because it would work with my stainless appliances, and the other two were slated for bronze spray paint so they could be used next to the bronze sink fixtures in the casita.
I very carefully taped over all the areas I did not want painted bronze on the soap dish. I left the sticker visible so the price could be seen in this post but it too was covered with painters’ tape before the spraying began. Light even strokes and the spray paint worked on the soap dishes too!
After removing the painters’ tape the soap dish is ready to use!
So with a single can of bronze spray paint I saved almost $74!…$50 on a bronze knob and about $24 on soap dishes. Nice!…”free” bronze towel rack here I come!
Have You Sprayed or Paid?
So what’s your spray paint story? Have you ever spray painted something to give it a second life or make it fit in better with other room accessories? Did painting it work? Share stories and photos of items you transformed with spray paint. Tell us what worked and what didn’t work for you. Leave your note by clicking on the Comment link at the bottom of this column or email us (send photos!) to firstname.lastname@example.org.