Handles made of wood or plastic hold the ferrule and the bristles.
brush handles are made of bamboo or twigs. People give relatively little
thought to brush handle length, but a handle that is too long or too short will
imbalance the hand as it travels across a surface. Use short-handled brushes
when you are working close to a surface and for detail work. Long-handled
brushes can counterbalance the brush tip and are better suited for expansive
areas without well-defined detail.
After using a brush, clean it thoroughly. A brush properly cared for will last
many years. Throw away brushes with crusted and curled bristles or reuse
them as disposable paste brushes. Do not trim brush tips and continue to use
them because the bristles will not respond correctly. In particular, keep the
area around the ferrule clean. Shape and store the brush after cleaning.
To clean, shape, and store brushes, follow this table:
Remove as much color as possible by initially rinsing brushes:
in water for water-based paints, and
in thinner or mineral spirits for oil-based paints.
Wet brush in lukewarm water after removing all color.
Lather palm of hand with mild face soap.
Stroke brush back and forth in hand.
Rinse thoroughly in clean water.
Shake excess water from bristles.
Shape bristles gently into original shape.
Store brushes with bristles up.
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