myself grabbing for a favorite pair of silver earrings from time to time, only
to put them down again, regretting that I haven't taken the time to clean them.
So I figured it's high time for me to dig out these tips on caring for silver
jewelry that first appeared in the Winter 2009 issue of Jewelry Stringing.
I hope you find these suggestions to be as useful as I have.
remember: the higher the content of pure metal, the less likely it is to
tarnish. That's because it's the alloys, such as copper, in metals that
actually encourage tarnish. So, Thai silver (95 to 99 percent real silver) is
less prone to tarnishing than sterling silver (92.5 percent real silver) because
it has a higher silver content. Heed the following advice to hinder oxidation:
Keep silver jewelry in tightly sealed plastic
bags with moisture-wicking products, such as silica-gel desiccant (the packets
often found in shoe boxes), antitarnish tissue paper and strips, or even chalk
to reduce the exposure to oxygen and moisture.
To clean tarnished jewelry, rub it gently with a
soft, nonabrasive polishing cloth. Cloths made especially for this purpose can
be purchased in bead stores, jewelry stores, hardware stores, and more. When a
polishing cloth becomes dirty, buy a new one. Do not try to wash and reuse. Better
yet, have a spare on hand! Even consider having one you use just for jewelry
you take on your travels.