I have never really done this before, but as I am now pretty sure you are out there…coyly quiet, but reading away…I am going to ask for your opinion.

Background first:

Along with the Anglepoise that I have been puzzling over, I have recently acquired  not one more – but THREE new lamps to restore! They all came up on ebay within a couple weeks of each other and I got them for a deal. Heaven!

One is a rusty Hadrill Horstmann Simplus from the 60s:


And the two others are…Kaiser Idells! Sigh. At last!

Sorry for the bad ebay shots. I will be posting more on these as they get the Roost treatment!

As I just couldn’t wait to get started, I immediately stripped the Hadrill. It was rusting and because it is the least precious of the bunch, could be my guinea pig! Little oinker!

That done, I started researching how to sand and polish the metal up to glossy perfection. Having made jewellery in the past, working with metal is pretty familiar to me, and I knew it would be quite a bit of work, but thought it would be worth it.

I started looking at examples of polished/refinished lamps…and more examples…and more examples. I get a little obsessive in my research sometimes. Ok. All the time. ;-D

And you know what? I am not sure I really agree with taking something that has the marks of a lifetime’s worth of use and making it look totally new. It seems that the item really loses something. Becomes somehow generic.

Initially I was planning on powder coating my Kaiser Idell 6556 like the mint one above. At some point someone painted over the black with grey and both are chipped through showing layers:

Now that I have it in hand, and it shows me its little history from 1930 or something- it just seems wrong.

Ok…so this is where the opinion poll comes in.

What do you think? Am I being overly sentimental?

Refurbish old items to retain patina and not deteriorate further (as with rusted items), so that the lamp works safely… or refinish everything like new so it is beautifully glossy and fresh?

I’d love to hear your opinion.

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