Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Brush Crush

I've always had a thing for paint brushes.  I love how they are just a simple tool and yet can have such a big an impact on a project.

I find that I often reach for a brush when I am trying to think through something.  I hold it in my hand and feel the bristles, twirl it between my fingers, tap it in my palm ... they help me think.

I won this fabulous brush this past spring from a local online auction.

It was in a large metal box with a bunch of other used brushes.  I couldn't make out the whole shape of it but from the little bit that was sticking out of the pile I could tell it was unique so I took a chance and bid ... I won the whole box for $3.

The handle and bristle base were almost completely covered in caked on paint.  It took a couple of hours of scrubbing and a lot of turpentine to get through it but I got most of it off.  
Once the paint was removed I was able to see three things ... 

1) the name Maendler imprinted on the handle 

2) the bristles are held as individual bunches, inserted into holes in the wood and they have a wooden wedge in the center of each hole to apply pressure to the keep the bristles in place  

3) The handle and the bristle base are all one piece     

It's a pretty substantial brush.  As a whole it is one foot in length and the bristles are 3.5" long.  

I haven't used it yet because the bristles keep shedding.  I want to learn how to maintain it first before I do anything else.   I'm thinking if nothing else, I will add glue to the base of the bristles to reinforce the wedge ... but not yet, I am hopeful that I will come across some info on it first.

In the mean time this is my go-to brush when I have to think-think-think.  I keep it in my studio because I love to look at it.

Check out this other brush that was in the metal box:  

I like how thin it is and the wear on the bristles from years of use.

Comparing them to the average 2" brush:

If there is anyone out there who knows what kind 
of brush this is please let me know  :)


  1. OOooo, that round brush looks like Annie Sloan's waxing brush... Hers is $35. I'm green over here...

  2. Gwen, I finally checked out the Annie Sloan brush and agree, they do look alike ... thanks for the heads-up!

  3. That is quite a find! What a cool looking brush!

  4. Is the last brush a wallpaper paste brush? Some of the others in your box looked like the type that you use smoothing out the wallpaper? Why don't you google brushes? Or vintage brushes? There are probably collectors' websites out there. Ann