Monday, 22 April 2013

I got the Spring fever blues ....

Good morning, my lovelies!

I really must apologise for being a bad blogger of late, and as I had a Vintage Fair yesterday, and still haven't unpacked my car, I haven't got time to do a proper post today, but as it's that time of year again, I thought I would repeat my spring cleaning tips from last year, first published not long after I started blogging.  I use all these methods myself, and thought you might like to share them too! Sorry, my lovelies,  if you've already seen them ... if you haven't, these are the methods I use and I have passed them on to others who now swear by them!

Be brave and ditch all your chemical-laden cleaning products! Honestly, all you need to clean effectively and healthily are a few store cupboard staples and a couple of spray bottles.

The main ingredients are Bicarbonate of Soda (you can use the kind you get in the baking aisle, but if you want to be thrifty, they sell large boxes of the stuff for much less in the cleaning aisle of some stores); White Vinegar (any vinegar will do the job, but malt vinegar smells a bit at first); Lemon Juice and Olive Oil.

Make up a 1 litre spray bottle with 2 teaspoons of bicarb, and fill up with water.  This invaluable spray can be used as the only oven cleaner you will ever need! Spray on a cold, dirty oven, all over, and leave until next time you use oven - it's perfectly safe.  After using your oven and it has gone cold, there will be a powdery film on the bottom of the oven.  Just wipe with a clean, damp cloth (use this cloth for your oven cleaning from now on, as will get quite stained), spray and repeat.  Do this EACH TIME you use your oven, once it has gone cold ... it literally takes seconds. Within a couple of weeks, your oven will be sparkling clean without having to resort to using poisonous sprays, and with no elbow grease required! To clean the glass, mix up a thick paste of bicarb and water, plaster on the glass and leave overnight if possible.  The grease and grime should wipe off easily.  If you follow the oven cleaning tip, you will find that the glass stays clean as the bicarb absorbs grease, so all it will need is a wipe.

This spray can also be used on the hob, just spray and leave a few minutes and burnt on marks will come off easily.  Spray on burnt on stains on oven trays and pans too.  After emptying your dishwasher, use the spray all over the inside, it will help absorb odours and clean it too. Make sure you label it, so you don't get it mixed up with the vinegar spray (about 2 inches of vinegar in 1 litre of water), but it wouldn't have disastrous consequences, even if you did!

The vinegar spray can be used on mirrors and windows - just spray on and wipe, then polish with crumpled up newspaper.  Spray on  taps (spray on unseen area to test first, if unsure) on the bath and sinks, on shower screens, down the toilet and in dishwasher.  Cuts through grease, quickly and easily. If your shower head is clogged, remove and submerge in a vinegar and water solution and the limescale will dissolve and water flow freely through the holes.

See last weeks Tuesday Tip for natural furniture polish - I don't use the Olive Oil in the photo for this, far too good, just use cheap stuff, but the can looked nicer in the picture!

(This is simply a big glug of olive oil into a bowl, to which you add the juice of a lemon and mix; apply to your furniture with a cloth and leave to soak in.  Buff to a shine ... it really feeds the wood and smells glorious too!)

Lemon juice and lemons are invaluable.  Roll a lemon around before juicing, you'll get much more juice from it.  After juicing, put the 'shells' in your dishwasher cutlery basket.  Cuts through grease, and makes glass and cutlery shine - plus smells nice! Alternatively, put the shells in a bowl with hot water and microwave for a couple of minutes.  Your microwave will clean much easier, as the steam and juice loosens dirt.  Just repeat for stubborn stains.



  1. Oh this is brilliant thank you! i missed this last time what fabulous tips that i'm going to be having a go at now.
    Hope your well lovely xxx

  2. ~ Good morning, Mrs Thriftwood! Now you now my biggest tip is to dust the room with a smile ~ But of course on the heaver elbow grease types of jobs....These tips of yours really work! us girls more time to do the more interesting things of the day such as chatting on here and puttering with our flowers in pretty tea cups! Thanks for sharing Mrs! LOVED your tea cup trifle from last week! Any more please and thank you! ~ Maria x

  3. This is fascinating. Seriously. I do pop my lemon shells in our dishwasher. I got that little tip from you the first time around! The bicarb spray sounds like a little miracle. I'll deffo be trying it out! Thanks for sharing (again). xx

  4. How I wish I'd seen this post before cleaning the oven this weekend. I have nasty marks all over my arms from the horrible stuff you put in a bag. Will definitely be giving this a go. Thank you.... Sarah x

  5. Thanks for more tips Claire. I'm definitely going to give the oven cleaner a go, I hate the ones that are shop bought. And I will be polishing with olive oil from now on. Hope the vintage fair was a success.
    Ali x

  6. Oven clean was on my list this week, it was on last weeks too...oh and the week before....anyway guess what I'll be doing from now on! Thanks, you're brill :) x

  7. you are making me feel guilty, I really should clean my house but i'm not feeling could come help? :)

  8. These sound fantastic, I will definitely be giving them a go.

  9. Great tips, thanks - I'm going to have to bookmark this post and come back to it when the urge to spring clean presents itself! The basic chores were all I could manage today - hmmm.. methinks the sunshine outside took away any thoughts of cleaning indoors, so I did a wee bit of gardening instead :-)
    Look forward to hearing more about your Vintage Fair - hope you enjoyed it.
    Have a great week,

  10. Hello Lovely Claire
    Sounds like you have been a very busy lady !!
    Glad you enjoyed your tea with Maria, hope you make some time for yourself and put your feet up with a nice cuppa
    Take care my friend
    Thea x

  11. Cleaning the oven is on the "To Do" list. I will give your spray a try.

  12. Hope your fair was a success Claire?! Thank you for your tips.

    Happy new week,

    Madelief x

  13. I am definitely going to try the oven cleaning tip!! A job I hate!
    I need to do a thorough spring clean here, if I can squeeze the time its just that other things get in the way.....sewing , knitting, baking, reading lovely magazines and get the picture!!

  14. Great green cleaning tips Claire! Soon there will be a strong smell of lemons and vinegar wafting over the British Isles!! I've used the vinegar on my windows for years with always great results ;) Have a happy, clean and green week! Wendy xox

  15. I was a real sceptic of the bi carb, till I tried it and it really works and no chemicals! how good is that! I recommend it to anyone!

  16. I'm going to point the Mr at this post ... he's quite happy to pitch in with the housework but he does like his high tech and toxic products!

  17. Some very good (and easy) tips there - thank you!

  18. That oven cleaning tip is brilliant! I am going to try that, thank you so much for sharing. x

  19. I'm going to try the bicarb spray on the oven as well! Oven cleaning is actually my worse job!


I love to hear what you think of my ramblings and value all your comments ... I will try and get back to you, but am sorry if I don't always manage this ... sometimes real life just gets in the way! Claire xxx