Jewelry is one of the more popular gifts to give during the holiday season, and of course for Valentine’s Day – the next big holiday after Christmas and New Year’s. Besides pearls and diamonds, I am a big fan of silver jewelry. Silver is my signature look. Even my wedding ring is silver (with diamonds, of course).
When shopping for silver necklaces, earrings, bracelets and rings, here are a few tips to consider. First of all, silver is plentiful. So you can find all types of silver jewelry for all types of budgets. Sterling silver is the best quality and is widely used for fashion jewelry. (Plus, it’s my favorite.)
Because silver is so soft, it is commonly alloyed with another metal, but in order for it to be considered true silver, the jewelry must be made up of 92.5% silver or more. If the silver jewelry is described as “silver plated,” that means the piece is made of a layer of silver bonded onto another metal. Now, that doesn’t mean it is cheap. You may still want to purchase the piece. But it should be priced significantly lower than a sterling silver piece. So make sure you know what you are purchasing.
It is really important to keep silver jewelry polished, otherwise it just doesn’t look real. There is a difference between cleaning your silver jewelry and polishing it. Cleaning should only be reserved for those times when the jewelry is so old and dirty that the piece is simply not wearable. If you find yourself in this situation, you would be better off taking it to a professional jewelry to clean it for you. Contrary to popular belief, cleaning your silver with toothpaste is not a good idea.
What you can do yourself on a regular basis is polishing your silver jewelry to reflect the light. Use a jeweler’s rouge cloth, which is a very safe and easy way to keep your silver jewelry looking sparkling new. And store your silver jewelry in flannel, to keep it from tarnishing.