COPPER CARE INFORMATION:
Copper is a soft metal and ages beautifully. Our patina processes are applied to accelerate the aging process.
We offer a number of copper finishes, utilizing a variety of application techniques. Please be aware and understand that these finishes are hand-applied the copper can react in different ways due to environmental variables such as the atmosphere or temperature. Because of this fact, there may be variations in the color or finish.
Most of our work is done in more of an aged brown copper finish with various highlights or darker "imperfections". We then apply by hand a paste wax protective coating, which results in what is called a "living finish." The paste wax protective coating will slow the aging process down (versus leaving it raw), but it will continue to darken. And as I mentioned before, environmental factors may cause some areas to age more quickly and/or differently than others. An automotive clear coat can be applied to interier pieces to stop the aging process.
There is no way to really control this, but the aged/antique look is one of the characteristics of our copper work typically sought after by our customers and collectors of handcrafted copper work. However, occasional re-waxing every six months or so will help the color stay as stable as possible. We have found that Johnsons Paste Wax is best suited for this. You can find this at any local hardware store.
CLEANING YOUR COPPER PIECE:
As copper ages it changes its color in a process called oxidation. As it is exposed to oxygen, copper turns to shades of brown and, in effect, creates its own aesthetically pleasing surface. But despite this special characteristic, copper is fairly easy to maintain. Do not use abrasive cleaners/pads (such as Scotchbrite) or use harsh/abrasive chemicals. These products will remove the patina.
Copper is naturally antibacterial and because of this, frequent cleaning is not necessary. Most of the time, just light dusting with a soft cloth/duster is sufficient to maintain your copper. This easily removes obvious dirt, dust, crumbs, and kitchen residues. Remember to be very gentle when cleaning your countertop since copper is a soft material and is therefore prone to dents, scratches, and other surface damages. Dry the countertop with a dry, clean cloth afterwards.
Using mild dish soap is effective in removing stains and other tough dirt. Dilute mild dish soap in water and soak a clean cloth in it. Gently wipe the copper until the stains and dirt disappear. Rinse afterwards by wiping it with a damp cloth. Then use another cloth to dry the copper. Lemon has potent cleaning qualities. You can use this in cleaning a copper countertop by mixing its juice with salt. Douse a clean cloth with this mixture and wipe the copper countertop. This lemon mixture can easily break down tough dirt and stain, leaving your countertop clean. Use a damp cloth to rinse the countertop. Dry afterwards.
NOTE: A natural copper luster finish will change and discolor over time and will eventually patina over decades. This is the natural property of copper and is a desired trait of the element and is understood by the purchaser of these products. Points of welding, soldering, joints of sheets, etc., yield a different shade and at times different levels. This is to be considered part of the "charm" of the product.
~Metal fabrication is a craft and a form of art, just like any artwork it impossible to duplicate. Our products are not mass produced, we fabricate each piece individually for the client. Please understand no two items will be exactly alike, especially if browning/aging is applied.
HEALTH BENEFITS OF COPPER:
Copper and its alloys, including brass and bronze, are naturally antimicrobial. Switching items that are often touched to copper, bronze and brass fixtures is a cost-effective way to eliminate household germs while adding to the value of the home.
Copper is currently used as an antimicrobial/anti-fungal ingredient in mouthwashes, toothpastes, and medicines. Use it to fight the same germs and prevent cross-contamination in the kitchen. Replace kitchen sink drains and strainers with brass versions. Throughout the house, copper bathtubs, copper sinks, bronze cabinet hardware, and brass push plates will silently fight super bugs without having to add harsh chemicals into the home environment.