Caring for your guitar -- how to keep it unblemished?

Very basic question here and as a guitar owner and casual player for over 30 years, you'd think I'd know better do people keep their guitars looking so pristine? I feel like despite almost a paranoid anxiety around chipping, denting, scratching my guitar, some little thing or another has happened to nearly every guitar I own--no, not nearly--ALL my guitars. 


I recently was blessed to be able to buy 3 french polish classical guitars in the last 18 months. I've lightly scratched a couple (despite using a "Kling-on" guitar protector) and believe it or not chipped (small, almost unnoticeable) one of my guitars when I tripped over my guitar stand!! I also wear a sleeve on the right hand and remove my watch/fitbit when playing. Still, it's to the point where I'm almost anxious to play because these guitars aren't cheap and I always manage to somehow mark them.


Now, all that said, I've recently watched a few concerts online and in not a few, I've noticed that some of the guitars look INCREDIBLY worn and scratched. Others, despite being a few years old (I often see the luthier name and age of the guitar in the verbiage included in the concert info), look amazingly untouched. 


How do people do it??

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  • Hi Stephen Darrell Oliver !

    My personal view: I don't (because I can't) ⚡😩 My beloved Paco Marin 30 Anniversario's top is in a horrible condition from intensive studying (especially gaining speed with Villa-Lobos #7, so many scratches on the upper half of the top due to relentless scales practice). So I definitely fall into the "INCREDIBLY worn and scratched" category. I might take it to Paco's workshop in Granada early next year to get the top redone though, then it will be (hopefully) shiny again, although I have some deep scratches in there (played a concert in a childrens' hospital and one boy tipped over my notestand which crashed into the top of my guitar)

    I think there's a lot of psychology involved: as long as your guitar looks pristine and untouched, you try to keep it that way. But as soon as the first blemishes happen, we get more and more careless. I think it comes down to the discipline of the first few months 🤓

    On that note though: we plan to have luthier come in for a livestream and talk about caring your guitar!

    Picture 1: The Notestand Tragedy

     Picture 2: The Evolution of the Villa-Lobos Scale

     Picture 3: The Temperature Crack Disaster (masterfully repaired by Hermann Hauser III, now invisible) 

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