When buying a broom test it by pressing the edge against the floor. If the straws bristle out and bend, the broom is a poor one. They should remain in a solid, firm mass.
Clean it with pulverized pumice-stone, wet with household ammonia, applying this paste first, and polishing the brass when this has dried, using for this purpose chamois skin.
Wring out a flannel cloth in kerosene, rub upon Putz-Pomade, clean the brasses and polish with old linen.
First, beat out all the dust and hang in the wind for some hours. Then lay it on the floor of a room you seldom use and fill it with dried flour. Rub it into the rug as you would suds, rubbing between your hands, and working with your fingers down to the roots of the fur. Cover with a clean cloth and leave all night with the flour in it. Next day take out of doors, shake out the flour, hang on a line and whip on the wrong side until every particle of flour is dislodged.
Powdered chalk may be used instead of the flour, but if any is left in the rug the alkali may injure the fur.
For ants, saturate rags with kerosene, and hang or lay these near their runs, and they will quickly disappear.
Kerosene is a household necessity at cleaning-time. For cleaning painted and varnished woodwork, painted walls, varnished floors, bathtubs and marble washstands it is unsurpassed. For tubs and marble, apply with a woolen cloth, then wash with soap and water. For woodwork and walls use clean cloths, changing as soon as soiled. A few drops in the water when washing windows and mirrors will give them a beautiful polish.
If one desires snowy whiteness, silk should never be allowed to become badly soiled; that is, so that the silk is yellowed. Dust the garment and wash in rather warm (not scalding hot) water with Ivory soap. Rinse well, the last water being quite blue. Hang up and allow to get just dry enough to press nicely with a warm iron. If this is followed out, I know that white silk will stay white. Care must be taken with the blue water not to have it too blue, and yet blue enough to help the silk retain the "new" shade.
Should silk merely need sponging no iron should touch the surface. If rolled while damp on a broomstick, it will dry in a day or so. When there are grease spots, apply the time-honored remedy, powdered magnesia, to the wrong side under a cold pressure; then, after some hours, rub off, and if not wholly cleansed, apply again.
If you desire to keep the lace yellow, pour enough gasoline into an earthen crock to cover the lace, shake it about in the liquid, rubbing soiled spots gently between your hands; immerse it fully in the liquid, cover the crock and leave the lace in the gasoline for five or six hours. Squeeze and shake it then, and leave it in the open air. When quite dry lay it on a clean cloth, spread over a board or table, and dampen slightly. Pull into shape with your fingers while it is damp. If the lace be wide, baste it to a thick, dampened cloth, setting a stitch in every scallop and figure. Cover with a thin, damp cloth, and press with a warm iron.