Ever wanted to make something look like metal?  This simple tip will create the look of metal for your next project.  Here’s an easy how-to you that takes minutes to transform almost any surface to look just like metal.

On the downstairs bathroom door there is a tiny brass door knocker.

I’m not really sure where it came from.

It’s been there as long as I can remember.

Are you thinking?  Why?  Why do you have a door knocker on your door?

I wish I could tell you that I thought it up, but I’ve discovered that it’s actually brilliant.  And incredibly helpful for determining if the bathroom is already in use.

When we had the doors refinished, they refinished the hardware, too.

They took off the door knobs and the hooks and the brass plates and made them look shiny and new again.


Except the door knocker?

It still looked like this.

Kind of pitiful.

And sad.

And unbrassy.

Like all the shine had left it about a million knocks ago.

Here’s a close-up of the doorknob so you can see the look we were going for.

This is the original doorknob and when they shined it up, it brought out the most beautiful patina.

You can still see the age and there are dark spots here and there, but this doorknob?

It’s living its best life.

I tried everything to make the door knocker match.

I used brass polish.

And elbow grease.

And prayer.


It was not representing.

And then?

I remembered this.

I have used Rub’nBuff since I started wearing high heels and socks with my name on them.

It is one of the greatest gifts on the planet.  This tube is so tiny, but it has superpowers.  It can make almost ANYTHING look like metal.

It also can make metal look even metaler.

You just use the tiniest bit and cover your surface.

I typically apply it with a q-tip, cover the surface and then buff it off with a clean flour sack towel.

The first time I used it, I couldn’t believe how easy it was.  I had wood handles on a thrift store piece of furniture that I wanted to look like brass.  A little Rub’nBuff and the handles looked just like metal right before my eyes.

Rub’nBuff comes in different colors (and I’ve used almost all of them).  There’s silver leaf, copper, ebony, european gold and so many more.

Make sure you read all the directions and manufacturer’s instructions before using.

And now?

My door knocker?

It went from this.

To this.


And it took me under two minutes to transform it.

Here’s the new entrance to the bathroom with the doorknob.

And the shined up door knocker.

They match.

Bright and shiny and ready to party.

And tell jokes.

Like this one:

Knock, knock.

Who’s there?


Mustache who?

I mustache you a question, but I’ll shave it for later.

I had NOTHING to do with that joke.  The door knocker made me do it. 🙂

PS  Have you ever used Rubn’Buff before?  What’s your favorite project?

Want to know how to decorate your home for free?
Click here to get my FIVE BEST secrets.


  1. Image for Carrie Carrie

    "Knock Knock~ Who's there?~ Orange~ Orange who? Orange you glad I'm not telling you a knock knock joke!" HA HA HA....I've seen Rubn’Buff used before and have the product ideas tucked away in the worst filing cabinet EVER~ my memory~ for when I finally see a reason to try it!!!

  2. Image for Mercy Mercy

    Where did you find socks with your name on them?!? Spill it, girl! I’ve NEVER found anything with my name on it!

  3. Image for Eileen Eileen

    I have to remember that....the rub and buff and that corny knock knock joke. But, aren't they alll corny!!! haha

  4. Image for Cora Cora

    I've loved Rub 'n Buff for many years and just used it for some drawer pulls that I had planned on updating with bin pulls only to discover the hole spread was a weird measurement that nothing fit. I gave the originals a whole new look with silver Rub 'n buff. One word of advice - a little goes a long way, and it's easiest to use your finger to rub it in - but it takes a lot to get it off your skin, so use gloves.

  5. Image for Shelia Shelia

    Hi Karianne! I bought some rub n buff awhile back. I’ve seen it used on raised wood projects like on furniture. The possibilities are endless! It’s great stuff and I’m so happy your door knocker is shiny again! It looks great! 😊

  6. Image for Julie Julie

    Thanks so much Karianne, your post today is just what I needed! Wonderful mix of creativity, humor and brilliance!

  7. Image for Kris Kris

    I think somewhere in the archives of my mind, I knew that Rub N Buff existed, but I love seeing how well it worked for you. Oh, that door! Gorgeous!!!!

  8. Image for Celeste Celeste

    I used silver Rub n Buff on an ornate Victorian style mirror that was originally gold.(it was a cheap version, not an antique) I let some of the gold show through because I wanted an old patina look. Then I sprayed it with a sealer. Even though a little goes a long way, it took me quite a while to get in all the nooks and crannies of the mirror and didn't think my figures would ever be clean again.I didn't think of using a Q-tip! I love the final result. I don't think a lot of people think of this product, but you're right, it is a little bit of magic in a tube.

  9. Image for Rebecca M Rebecca M

    I've used this for many years! I've used it on metal wall decor, mirror frames, picture frames, metal legs on tables and chairs, I could go on and on! Fantastic stuff! I also use the silver buff and shine! You can't go wrong with this stuff!

  10. Image for Patricia Patricia

    I use Rub N Buff so much, it has a place in my kitchen junk drawer. Yep not stashed away with my copious craft supplies, but right in there with my black Sharpies, gum eraser, staple remover, Super glue and rubber bands! I last used it to revive the pitted and tarnished gold numerals on my mailbox and to bring the zing back to my doorbell.

  11. Image for Sandi Sandi

    Will definately be looking for this rub n' buff stuff! (Hobby Lobby?) I love the idea of a door knocker! Brilliant!

  12. Image for Lynn W Lynn W

    Somebody had a great idea for the knocker on the door :) I’ve used Rub N Buff on frames and urns when I want to add metallic highlight. Such a cool product!

  13. Image for Jo Jo

    I agree with you, this is one of the greatest things around. My mother was using it 50 years ago. I use the gold leaf on frames and other art projects.

  14. Image for Marjorie Marjorie

    Have never used this but I’m thinking of so many objects to use it on! Thanks for sharing your shiny idea!!!

  15. Image for Tori Tori

    I love Rub N Buff! I’ve used it in several ways, including on vintage metal hardware. If found I can control it better applying with a small, somewhat stiff, paintbrush - much like the texture of a brush with which you wax chalk-painted furniture, only smaller. You can blot your brush on a paper towel to get any excess off beforehand. It works great! Your door knocker now looks great with the rest of the hardware. 😍

  16. Image for Angie Angie

    Love this. We almost bought a house once that had a similar door knocker, it was so sweet and tiny and it was engraved “hustle”. I was so excited about that little piece of character and then it was sold at the estate sale and the appraisal didn’t go through so the sale fell through. I’ve always wanted to get one for our house now.

  17. Image for Adrienne Adrienne

    I haven't used it yet-but it's in my future! We just bought an old house and the previous owners painted all the lovely brass doorknobs with some kind of grey metallic coating. The house is telling me it wants it's brass doorknobs back, and I concur :) This was a perfect tip for me today!

  18. Image for Tara @ Stilettos and Shiplap Tara @ Stilettos and Shiplap

    I think you and I are besties and just haven't realized it yet. I was introduced to Rub 'N Buff much too late in life, I'm ashamed to admit. I have been making up for lost time however and using it every chance I get! I am fascinated with it. You still can't tell I have hardly used a drop of it and I've been putting it on everything. I told my hubby he better be careful where he chooses to take a nap from now on because he could well wake up with some new highlights or a lovely metallic sheen of some sort. :-D

Comments are closed.