Thursday Dilemma: Jackson Pollock

Remember Jackson Pollock, the artist famous for the paint splatters? I got to thinking about him last night as I was on my hands and knees scrubbing our living room floor. How did I get from Murphy’s Oil Soap and a scrub brush to abstract expressionism? Because of all the little paint drips here and there on our hardwood floor. I’d never noticed how many there were before, but after getting up close and personal with the hardwood last night I realized there were a couple of spots that were hit pretty hard. We were very careful to put plastic down when we painted the LH, so I’m not sure how they got there. I’m blaming the cat.

Feline romping aside, my dilemma today is how to get the paint speckles off of my otherwise pristine hardwood. Any suggestions? I tried using Goo Gone, but that just seemed to strip up whatever coating was on the wood and left a light spot… but didn’t get up the paint.

Help! How do you remove year-old (or older) paint speckles from hardwood?

8 comments

  1. Kristen says:

    Okay, so when I was in HS, I would babysit my neighbor’s two boys. They were terrible (literally NO ONE wanted to baby sit them a 2nd time) but I always got suckered into it because of my mom being friends with her. Any who, the last time I babysat for them, the kids somehow broke one of the spindles on the banister, tried to crazy glue it back and then used white out because the glue was so obvious. Needless to say, there was white out ALL over their wood floor. I wiped up as much as I could and then used a dime to scratch off anything I could (keep in mind I was about 15 at the time so I wasn’t aware of scratching and such).

  2. Jennifer L says:

    Did you use normal Goo Gone or was it Goo Gone Painter’s Pal? There’s one just for paint. I’d try Goof Off as well. I know they’re pretty much the same, but there must be at least subtle differences in the formula, and that difference may be just enough for you.

    I was going to suggest the fingernail method, as that’s what’s worked for me and that’s what I’ve seen YHL recommend. As a last resort I’d grab some sandpaper and sand off very carefully, if it really bothered me. When was the last time it was refinished or recoated? It sounds pretty recently since you say they’re pristine. Some of the damage and spots I’ve caused to my floors I just reason that they’ll come out next time I refinish or recoat in a few years (last refinished 3 years ago). Two running clawed cats are creating many friendly grooves that I’ll want to take out by then.

    • littlehousebigheart says:

      I don’t know for certain if/when they’ve been refinished. Since the house is 72 years old they have to have been refinished at some point to look as good as they do, but it was before either we or the previous owner moved in (so at least 5 years).

  3. Amanda says:

    Try mineral spirits. They smell horrible, but take paint right away. They might also take the finish off of your floor though, so I would check the directions just in case!

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