As popular as gold is, beautiful precious silver will always have a place. Naturally, silver is completely non-functional, too soft a metal to endure wear and tear; the solution is sterling silver, which uses 7.5 percent additional metals (copper most often) to give silver strength without diminishing its luster. Versatile sterling silver can be used to make everything from household items like cups, bowls, and flatware, to beautiful jewelry. And, what’s more, sterling silver is affordable, which is why we bring in so much of it at National Pawn and Jewelry in Fort Lauderdale.
You can identify high-quality silver by stamps on the products that indicate their precious metal content; these may be “sterling,” “sterling silver,” “ster,” or “.925” or “925.” (Those numbers indicate the percentage of actual silver, 92.5 percent.) These marks can help prove that something is genuine sterling silver, but, as they are not mandated by law, the absence of them doesn’t prove the opposite. If you think something is sterling silver but don’t see a stamp, ask an expert at a Fort Lauderdale pawn shop to assess the piece for you.
Even with the added metals, silver’s softness still makes it prone to damage, so item should always be stored individually in cloth pouches. If your jewelry box is lined, and has individual compartments, silver jewelry should never be housed with other pieces. Wearing and using silver often will prevent tarnish build-up, but if you do need to clean it, use only a polish intended for that purpose to avoid risk of damage; silver is sensitive to chemicals like chlorine or cleaning agents like bleach and ammonia. With proper care, you can cherish your silver for years to come.