Day 315 – Removing Permanent Marker from Wood

Remember that little bird that I tried drawing for Day 291? I had that sitting on the coffee table (because I liked it too much to throw away, but what in the world was I going to do with it?) when my niece came over. She wanted to try drawing one herself, so I let her. She really wanted to use a marker to make the lines nice and dark like mine, but I am not a fan of giving permanent markers to kids. She begged and bargained for every marker I had in my pencil cup, but each of them was permanent. Finally, she found a tiny little dry-erase marker, and I figured that wouldn’t bleed through the paper as bad as permanent ink, so I let her have at it.

Well, it bled through A LOT. And as it turns out, it was not dry erase like I thought it was. It was permanent. It was the little marker that came with a pack of Solo cups so you could write your name on your drink. I might as well have given her every other marker that was in that container. And now my coffee table had 2 very beautiful little bird sketches on top. I tried Clorox Clean-Up, but that did not really do anything. It kind of made one of them slightly lighter, but not by much.

This coffee table has been on its last leg for quite a while, so I figured it was just a good excuse to need to get a new one. The finish is coming off of the top, and it is extremely wobbly. I also figured I could try to refinish it for a future Pinterest project sometime this summer.

But then the husband came across this Pin (is it ok that I admitted for him that he goes on Pinterest too??) that told me to use rubbing alcohol to get the ink out. I was not very hopeful, but I figured I would give it a try. I poured some onto a sponge and scrubbed. Then I poured some more and scrubbed some more. And then I did it again…and again…and again…

I have to say, it did work much better than I thought. My alcohol is only 50% alcohol, and apparently the 95% works much better. It definitely got rid of some of the lighter marks. A lot of scrubbing was needed, and the dark parts are still pretty dark, but it looks a lot better than it did before.

I am still on board with that whole idea of getting a new table though!

Total cost: $0

UPDATE: After a night of inactivity, it seems that now I have 2 circles of lighter wood on top of my marker ink. I would really not recommend doing this. It looks fine when it is wet, but now that it is dry, it looks scrubbed. I am very glad that I do not care much about this table. Time to go shopping!!


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