Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Caring For Your Investments...And Spending Your Money Wisely

The silver care instructions below come straight from Tiffany & Co.'s website...and is their best advice as long term experts.  In my opinion, no one knows more about silver than Tiffany's! Silver jewelry, silver flatware and hollowware for the table, and even silver corporate commission pieces are their specialty. Tiffany & Co. is known for their sterling and its high quality. Since the company was founded in 1837, silver has been a major part of the Tiffany story/brand!

If you watched the Super Bowl recently, you saw a very famous Tiffany & Co. silver piece. A beautiful design that is truly a modern "classic." 

Photos courtesy tiffany.com

Flatware and hollowware usually come later in life. They are not generally one's first silver investment. Many young women start out wearing sterling silver jewelry, because it is more affordable than gold...and it's plentiful these days. Silver jewelry is available in every mall kiosk and discount store, but what do you get for your money? Is it an investment piece or a throw away? Tiffany & Co. seems to realize the importance of this concept and makes even its designer silver jewelry (by Elsa Peretti and others) very affordable...and timeless. What you might buy and wear today, can be worn by your granddaughter in the years to come!

Tiffany & Co. also offers helpful hints to care for your silver...and if something is an heirloom piece, doesn't it deserve care?

Tiffany only uses sterling silver, one of the most beautiful and lustrous of all metals. With proper care, your silver will retain its beauty and character for many generations to come. 

The First Rule Of Silver Care
Sterling silver tarnishes, especially when exposed to salt air and products containing sulfur, such as rubber bands and some papers. However, silver that is regularly used typically needs less care, so Tiffany strongly encourages you to use or wear your silver every day. 

Washing Silver
Tiffany recommends washing silver by hand in warm water with a mild detergent. Because many food acids and gases in the air can have a corrosive effect, we suggest that you wash your silver immediately after use. Silverware, and especially knives, should not be left to soak in water. To avoid spotting, it is important to dry your silver immediately after washing. 

Polishing Silver
Use Tiffany silver polish or another quality brand. Some "dip" polishes contain harsh chemicals and should be avoided. Electrolytic cleaning (aluminum foil, salt and baking soda in a water base) is not recommended. 

Begin by using a soft cloth or sponge to apply the polish. Rub each piece gently but firmly lengthwise, using straight, even strokes. You may use a small brush (like a toothbrush with natural bristles) for decorative trim or borders. Wash in sudsy water, being sure to remove all the polish. Rinse well in warm water, dry thoroughly and buff gently with a soft cloth. 

Special Considerations
An "oxidized" finish is the deliberate blackening of crevices in the ornamentation of a silver object to make its decorative details stand out more clearly. Take care as this finish can be removed by overzealous cleaning and polishing. 

Storing Silver
Once cleaned and polished, silver must be kept dry and properly stored. Our Tiffany Blue flannel bags will protect it from abrasion and offer a degree of tarnish prevention. 

Bags made of "Pacific" cloth are also very effective in preventing tarnish. When storing flatware in flannel rolls, be sure it is absolutely dry. If the climate is humid, place a small packet of demoisturizing crystals (e.g., silica gel) inside the roll.

-Anne Forman, Classic Preppy contributor

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