I've always loved the look of alabaster lamps. They're organic, but in a fancy way. Something about the hard, cold feeling of the alabaster and its subtle glossiness just speaks to me.
"Buy me", they say. There is no way I am paying $50 for you", I reply.
So I was over the moon excited when I found one at the local Goodwill on their ½ off day. Marked $6.99, so I paid a mere $3.50 (shade is not included in that price, because then all of a sudden it's not the deal of the century).
Now if you follow me on Instagram, you know that the silly thrift store workers marked the lamp with a grease pen. Oh, the humanity!
Really, on a glass lamp it wouldn't matter, but alabaster is somewhat finicky about giving up its stains. So this ended up being a bigger deal than the poor thrift store worker may have thought when they priced it along with all the other 4,000 items they priced that day.
I ended up getting it off, but not sure I want to tell the whole internet how I did it. As a lover of all things vintage, I am not proud of it.
OK, I can tell just you guys, right?
According to all my Googling, you NEVER want to use water or heavy duty cleaners on alabaster or you are in jeopardy of really ruining the piece FOREVER. A lot of people really recommend you JUST LEAVE IT ALONE. Something about alabaster being very porous, very fragile and extremely water soluble.
So after reading all of Google's astute advice, I used Soft Scrub on a q-tip and gently (very gently) rubbed off the grease pen stain and then wiped it down with a damp rag. I know, I broke the cleaning rules!!!
Thankfully, I didn't have any sandpaper nearby or I might have tried that!
So far the price hasn't magically reappeared and there are no huge dents in the alabaster, so I think I dodged a bullet on that one. Now I just have to watch out for the alabaster police.
Kimberly | Turning It Home
Wow, what a great find! I love the shade you used with it as well!
Funky Junk Interiors
What a wonderful find! It's gorgeous! Glad you got the markings off, that's so annoying! And then there's those price tickets that can't be easily removed... haha
Great find! It's beautiful.
Love it! I am on the look out for alabaster too.
I have a pair of table lamps vintage i want to sell
Amy B Cooper
I am looing for a pair of these alabaster lamps - have you already sold yours?
Musings from Kim K.
That is amazing deal. Good for you on breaking a few rules. I think the alabaster police will forgive you.
What a gorgeous lamp and what a find for you! Sitting atop the stack of vintage books....awesome! Maybe you should have called the grease pen police....unthinkable that they used that, when they could have used a paper tag with a string, even at our garage sales we have, we don't write on anything, but use the paper tie-on tags... because we Do sell some antique items...have a great day!
Cozy Little House
A woman's gotta do, what a woman's gotta do...
It's beautiful! Thank goodness your removal process worked.
ℳartina @ Northern Nesting
I love alabaster lamps Pam and she's a beauty...what a steal too! Love how you have her propped on the vintage books.
Pam, such a beautiful lamp! You find such wonderful things and now I have put alabaster lamps on my lookout for treasures. The shade you picked makes the lamp look gorgeous!
Love it Pam. You did an amazing job cleaning it up. It looks new, well old 🙂
Linda @ Itsy Bits And Pieces
OH, it's a beauty! I love alabaster lamps and have a couple in our home...yours was a great deal and a wonderful find!
I'm sure of mentioned this before, but maybe, some worker will read and care: the GW workers put the stickers on the manufacturer's mark or makers mark. Really? Can anyone say, passive aggressive? Or, on the front of an album, on the printing on the cover of a book, the list is endless. Come on people, let's play nice and be kind, good golly.
What a sweet lamp.
I am not a fan of those grease pens!
I do like the lamp.
Oh my goodness what a steal. I sometimes want to pinch the grease pencil people at Goodwill. Have you ever tried a Magic Eraser? It may not have worked but it is my go to trick for the evil grease marks. I thought I did good with my twenty dollar alabaster lamp from the junk shop. They are selling for eighty in resale stores around here now.
Thrift store pricing, now that is a topic that all thrifty shoppers have sad tales about. Stickers placed right in the center of an item, for example, a vintage dress pattern, is my pet peeve. Grease pens to mark items is my other pet peeve. Your lamp is lovely, and I am so happy you got the mark off.
What were they thinking, geez, glad that you got it off. Great find and perfect price. You always find good things even in the frigid temps.
Lucky you, Great find~