Transforming Napkin Rings with Magnets and Rub ‘n Buff

It’s a rainy weekend here, perfect for a little indoor DIY project! This quick and easy project is one that I think will have some appeal for tablescape enthusiasts! Give your napkin rings a makeover, with the addition of magnets and Rub ‘n  Buff!

I’m also a bee-enthusiast and picked up a *swarm* of gold bee magnets a couple of years ago. They’re still available on Amazon, here. You may have remembered seeing them used on a Potting Shed tablescape previously, if not you can buzz over here, for a peek.

The brassy gold finish of the bees always bothered me a bit and I wanted to change them . . .Rub ‘n Buff to the rescue! If you’re not familiar with Rub ‘n Buff, it’s available in 12 wax-metallic finishes, ideal for antiquing, stenciling and other craft projects. I found Silver Leaf Rub ‘N Buff at Hobby Lobby, for around $6 a tube. Download Hobby Lobby’s mobile app to your smart phone so you can access their weekly 40% coupon when you shop.

Squeeze a small amount of Rub ‘n Buff onto your fingertip, soft cloth or dry short bristle brush. I’m dating myself but“a little dab’ll do ya”  just like in the Brylcreem commercial of the ’60s :)

Follow the manufacturer’s directions on the package and use in well ventilated area. I used disposable gloves and rubbed a small amount between my index finger and thumb before applying it to the magnets. Apply thinly with a gentle rubbing motion, as you can always go back and apply more.

I could have completely covered the bees, but I wanted some of the gold to show so I used a light hand, as a highlight with the silver, almost like dry brushing. Buff with a soft cloth or paper towel for some shine. It dries quickly, depending on how much you use and what you use it on. I transformed these magnets in under 2 minutes. Rub ‘n Buff is so fun to use that I’m itching to try on some bigger projects. It’s ideal to use on picture frame moldings, highlighting wood detailing on antiques, updating drawer pulls and hardware, light fixtures, lamps or almost any metal or painted wood surface.

The composition of your metal in your napkin rings will determine whether magnets will adhere to them as magnets will not adhere to all metals, like copper, brass or pewter. I’m looking forward to using this product the next time I want to makeover some napkin rings, using Rub ‘n Buff to transform the finish to Antique, Autumn or European Gold, Spanish Copper or Patina!

I hope you’ll come back on Monday as I’m joining my Monday Morning Bloom Friends where my napkin rings will put in an appearance on a table along with my flower arrangement.

I also found a way to incorporate the bee magnets into a flower arrangement using a bamboo skewer and binder clip!

Thank you for your visit! Sharing with:

 Between Naps on the Porch,
StoneGableConfessions of a Plate Addict, Worthing Court, Cedar Hill Farmhouse

  45 comments for “Transforming Napkin Rings with Magnets and Rub ‘n Buff

  1. katy
    February 17, 2019 at 6:20 am

    That’s a very neat idea…I want to try something like that. Thank you for showing how it’s done.

  2. Liz
    February 17, 2019 at 6:23 am

    You are the most creative person I “know”! Thanks for the tips and intro to Rub ‘N Buff!

  3. Granny Gay:)
    February 17, 2019 at 6:24 am

    Very clever, Mary…but I always find your creations to be that way….anxious to see your bee-u-ti-ful flower arrangement tomorrow..

  4. Joan Riker
    February 17, 2019 at 6:30 am

    So clever- I can’t wait to try this on a framed mirror. Thank you Mary !

  5. Rita C.
    February 17, 2019 at 7:27 am

    Love how those turned out, with the hints of both gold and silver. Thanks for the tips!

  6. February 17, 2019 at 7:38 am

    Very cool, they look great! And yep, I do still say ‘a dab will do ya’ myself Mary… Happy Sunday:@)

    • Kim
      February 17, 2019 at 7:47 am

      Mary, your napkin rings look amazing. Such a great idea, thanks for sharing.

  7. Maureen E.
    February 17, 2019 at 7:55 am

    Thank you for introducing us to Rub-n-Buff. I’ve used a similar product in the past for antiquing, but it was in a little round container and would always dry up quickly after opening. I look forward to trying this!

  8. February 17, 2019 at 8:16 am

    That was a brilliant way to transform the look of the bees. I love rub ‘n buff. I’ve used it for years on various things. Looking forward to your floral creation on Monday!

  9. Emily
    February 17, 2019 at 8:17 am

    I love this idea…..You are so creative….Thank you….Do you ever stop by the habitat in Denver? We have silver napkin rings from time to time and lots of other silver plate for table décor….there is currently several sets of silverplate flatware and I see vintage flatware in your tablescapes often! Although I’m sure you have a wonderful stash in your collection!

    • February 17, 2019 at 8:28 am

      Hi Emily, it’s been a while since I’ve been to the ReStore in Denver. I donated a lot of my sponsored dinnerware there when it first opened. I need to stop in :)

  10. Cathy Pringle
    February 17, 2019 at 8:33 am

    Okay, you have outdone yourself! So clever & too fabulous! LOVE the inspiration! 😘

  11. Nancy Bailey
    February 17, 2019 at 8:50 am

    I LOVE this idea Mary. Thank you! What metal is used in the napkin rings you show? So many metals are not magnetic and I love the simplicity of this design.

    • February 17, 2019 at 8:53 am

      Hi Nancy, I have no idea what the metal composition is of these napkin rings. I’m assuming they have some nickel in them? You just have to experiment. I have another set of silver napkin rings that the magnets do not work on. Fun to play around with though 😀🍽

  12. February 17, 2019 at 9:04 am

    You are always inspiring us, THANK YOU!!!!

  13. franki
    February 17, 2019 at 9:29 am

    Gosh, those are the “bee’s knees!!” franki

  14. Patricia
    February 17, 2019 at 9:32 am

    Opened my mailbox this morning and immediately your post had me buzzing! Great embellishment

  15. Kris
    February 17, 2019 at 9:32 am

    What a wonderful and creative idea!! You never cease to amaze me with your creativity and talent for decorating. Always look forward to the next table arrangement or DIY project that transforms your house in to a home.

  16. Virginia
    February 17, 2019 at 9:36 am

    Thanks for another creative idea, I gave my silver napkin rings to my daughter so I am going to send this post to her. It could be a project for us to do together. I have some silver plated sconces in my parlor which are worn and missing some silverplating. Do you think Rub and Buff will work to restore them? I clean them about once a year with Mish’s silver polish would I need to reapply rub and buff after cleaning?

    • February 17, 2019 at 1:56 pm

      Hi Virginia, I definitely think you could use Rub ‘n Buff for your sconces after cleaning them. You might want to practice on a smaller project first :)

  17. June L. Hollingshead
    February 17, 2019 at 10:02 am

    What a neat idea for the napkin rings. I have the same set. Mine are from Pier 1 and I know they work with magnets.
    I have some small red heart magnets that came with some scrapbooking embellishments and they work perfectly, too.
    Looks like I’m off to purchase some bees this morning! Thanks for sharing. I am always giddy when you have a new post! In fact, I’m planning an Alice in Wonderland Mad Hatter Tea Party for May and have used a lot of your ideas! Thanks for sharing so graciously.

  18. February 17, 2019 at 10:14 am

    These are fabulous Mary! And I’ve not heard of Rub n Buff, but it sounds like a necessity for my craft stash! What a cute and brilliant idea!
    Jenna

  19. S C Williams
    February 17, 2019 at 11:00 am

    Love this idea! This made the bees look so much better with just a hint of gold showing. Enjoy your Sunday! Clara🐝

  20. February 17, 2019 at 11:09 am

    Wow!!!! I LOVE the project!!!…I am always looking for specific napkin rings and sometimes never find exactly what I am looking for….now these are exactly what I have been looking for!!!…Definitely my next project! Thanks Mary..you truly inspire us all!!!

  21. February 17, 2019 at 11:43 am

    Creativity abounds here at your beautiful blog! Thanks so much for giving us the details behind the gorgeous captures!

  22. Madonna
    February 17, 2019 at 12:06 pm

    Very cool and thanks for the clear tutorial, love the bees on a skewer. I wish we could all take a class with you. What could the title of the class be — Beyond the Potting Shed. . .or Having Fun With Whimsical Decor?? Please tell us. Thank you for the day brightener.

  23. Marie in AZ
    February 17, 2019 at 12:51 pm

    Bee-u-tee-ful! I venture to say if magnets won’t work on other metal napkin rings, there’s a metal-to-metal glue out there somewhere for just that purpose! Thanks for this great idea!

  24. February 17, 2019 at 3:16 pm

    My bee lovin heart is all a buzz with this idea. I recall your original use of these and thought it so clever. So is the new makeover. I’m eager to see your new table and the flower arrangement. I’ll buzzzz on over first thing tomorrow. Happy Sunday!

    • ellenstillabower@yahoo.com
      February 18, 2019 at 6:36 am

      Beeeeeautiful!! Good idea too!! I have used the Rub and Buff on other projects but I am very careful what I want to repurpose…BEEcareful!! Thanks for the idea!! 👍🏻❤️

  25. Camille Morgan
    February 17, 2019 at 5:58 pm

    Great idea!

  26. February 17, 2019 at 6:21 pm

    I have a friend whose husband raises bees. Bee napkin rings would make a perfect gift for her. Thanks for the great idea.
    Looking forward to Monday Blooms.

  27. February 17, 2019 at 6:44 pm

    Super cute idea, until love bees, and dishes… 😉

  28. February 17, 2019 at 6:46 pm

    Yikes, I said i too love bees, spell check changed it twice!

  29. Peggy Reed
    February 17, 2019 at 7:21 pm

    You are so creative. Everything you touch, turns to gold….or should I say silver….lol

  30. February 17, 2019 at 9:19 pm

    Great DIY, Mary! Rub-N-Buff is a staple at my house. See you in the morning!

  31. Sally Biondo
    February 17, 2019 at 9:45 pm

    Wonderful DIY! Thank you!😃

  32. Carol
    February 17, 2019 at 9:48 pm

    I never would have thought of this on my own. Now that you have explained and demonstrated your project so beautifully in your photos; my creativity has been inspired to look for all kinds of ways to use this. Thank you for sharing your talents. Your blog is one of my most favorite.

  33. February 17, 2019 at 10:19 pm

    I remember using Rub ‘n Buff on many, many things way back when! I forgot all about it. Also, I must say that I am SO excited about the top montage picture on your site. It is making me think of Spring! Love all the green.

  34. Cyndi Raines
    February 18, 2019 at 12:10 am

    I love the bees and your rub and buff technique. Last year after seeing your post, I ordered them for my silver napkin rings but they wouldn’t stay on like you mentioned, however they did work on a gold filagree set which worked out even better. I am getting eager to put out some spring things, but still too early. We are getting at least 3 more inches of snow right now. I’ll be buzzing by for your Monday post later today. 🐝

  35. Theresa Keller
    February 18, 2019 at 8:04 am

    I love bees too! & I am going to try the rub & buff on some old dark wood candlesticks, great ideas thank you!! Have a nice week.

  36. February 18, 2019 at 9:33 am

    Those napkin rings are so adorable! Thank you for showing us the how-to, Mary.

  37. Sherry
    February 19, 2019 at 3:04 pm

    I loved the bee napkin rings in your recent post and since I had similar silver rings I ordered the magnetic bees to make my own. What a beautiful and EASY transformation. I am so happy to have a way to make one set of rings look different. I am now searching for different magnets to try for yet more looks. Thank you for sharing!!

  38. February 21, 2019 at 8:15 pm

    Thanks, Mary. Some old products just need to be new again. Super product for quick fixes, anyone can use it, and comes in so many different colors/finishes. Thumbs up! Sandi

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