Monday, November 07, 2016

Aspirational Dustpan

On this, the eve of of a historic election, I have a very important topic to discuss. How do all these lifestyle bloggers and instagrammers manage to turn their cleaning tools into wall art?

Like so:


Or this:


Photo from Pinterest, courtesy of the now-closed Hey Natalie Jean blog 
Seriously, what is this, and why can't I achieve it? And who got the idea to make an artful display of their broom and dust pan?

One of the many ways that my 110-year old house is inconvenient is that it doesn't have a broom cupboard. I have to prop the broom next to the refrigerator and keep the dustpan on top of the fridge. So I've been mulling over the shaker peg board broom storage method. But how do these bloggers keep their brooms so clean? Do you see that gorgeous broom? The spotless dust pan?  The snowy apron and the blue and white striped rag? The pristine white wall? If I attempted this, my walls would be black within the week. My broom and dust pan are plastic, bought at the supermarket. My rags are old cloth diapers and worn out towels. My mom used to use - prepare yourself - OLD UNDERPANTS as cleaning rags. I don't do that. One has to draw the line somewhere.

I needed a bottle brush, and instead of just buying one at the grocery store, I ordered a German-made wooden handled, horsehair bristled brush. I think it is a Waldorf bottle brush. OK, not really, but it is from Germany. It's a gorgeous bottle brush, but now I lack the peg board (and, frankly, the wall space on which to hang a peg board).

As for the bloggers who do this, I have to wonder: do they actually clean with these tools? Or are these strictly display brooms and they have cupboards for their real broom? Or, (most likely) they have cleaning help who use their own supplies.  

I have to admit, though, I am seriously tempted to get a Shaker peg board and a beautiful broom. And it's certainly true that this set up would look right in my old farmhouse. Would you ever do this?


  1. I don't think these people are real. The only place I have ever been in real life where the cleaning implements were hanging on a pegboard on the wall, in plain sight, was at a cabin we rented at a state park. They wanted no excuses from the renters - clean up the cabin before you leave!

    I keep my broom in the 2" of space between the fridge and the counter and the dustpan goes under the kitchen sink.

    I was thinking if I had a peg board, I wouldn't put cleaning stuff there because it would remind me of cleaning. No, I would put pots and pans! But no, I wouldn't either, because that would remind me of how my family doesn't like half the (healthy) stuff I cook for them. Backscratchers! That's what I would put on my peg board.

    Now I have to go see if I have a bottle brush.

    In that first photo, what is that bundle of weeds hanging to the right of the pristine white apron?

  2. My cleaning tools are most certainly not photographable. I do however, leave my funky green canister vacuum lying about, so that I create an image of being in the middle of cleaning when people walk in. Does that count as looking aspirational?

  3. I hang my broom, mop, and dustpan on hooks in the pantry. They're just regular tools -- nothing fancy or attractive about them.

  4. More time on their hands than I'll ever have. There is nothing beautiful about my cleaning supplies. Heck, even the "pretty things" in my house I'd struggle to photograph well.
    I use Mr. D's old undies. They work great for cleaning windows.