(hint: the sun)
When I moved, most of my furniture was hand-me-downs from my parents, which was great because it saved me the money and nuisance of having to buy new stuff during a broke and busy time.
One item was a rolltop desk. I really like this desk, but it had that been-in-the-basement-for-decades odor. For almost two years, I tried putting various sweet-smelling items into the drawers. The result was that the desk and everything in it smelled like a yucky mix of must and flowery dryer sheets.
Then, I half-assedly tried gimmicky stuff endorsed by the internet. (Example: I put one drawer in the freezer with baking soda. When I took it out it didn’t smell. Until the next morning when it was unfrozen. This DOES NOT WORK.)
After extensive research, I cobbled together this week-long plan for killing that smell dead. Warning: this takes a lot of time and patience and sunny days.
Day 1: Wipe all drawers and the inside of the desk with a vinegar and tea tree oil mixture. (I had tried this method months earlier and the bad smells eventually came back — but it did something, if only temporarily.) Read more