A fab guest post today from Megan Brown my regular contributor from the U.S.A, about looking after your heirloom jewellery, whether it’s been handed down to you or brand new jewellery (from Bridal Designs of course!) that you are going to hand down to your family.
Does your family have a classic piece of jewelry? Maybe it’s a ring, necklace, bracelet or pair of earrings. It’s been in the family for years, and now it’s your turn to take it and pass it down.
If you’re not sure how to care for an older piece of jewelry, check out these tips on how to preserve it and keep it safe and clean.
To help your jewelry last for years, keep it away from soaps, shampoos, powders or lotions. Especially true for rings, these substances can cause residue build up and reduce the brightness of gemstones and metals. Avoid any physical activity such as the gym, spa, swimming or gardening while wearing your jewelry, as you run the risk of losing, damaging or dirtying it.
If your jewelry has stones, you should check often to be sure that the prongs or claws holding the stone in place have not been damaged, and ensure that the stone is not loose in its setting.
For bracelets or necklaces that rely on chains and links, you should check often to make sure that the links have not been worn thin due to daily wear and constant rubbing. Always rest the chains flat to keep them from bunching or knotting when storing. Have pearls re-strung every few years and be sure to have knots put between each pearl to keep them from scratching one another or scattering if the strand breaks.
If you are passing down earrings, always clean them with alcohol and avoid touching the stone with fingers. The oil from your fingers will wear on the stone’s brilliance if touched everyday for years. Be sure that the earring back fits snugly to avoid losing one during the course of the day.
Keeping your jewelry safe throughout the generations can include jewelry insurance, personal safes in your home and a little wisdom when traveling or moving. Store valuable jewelry in a safe location in your home, such as in a safe or in a discreet location. When traveling, always keep your jewelry close, or leave it at home altogether. Avoid putting it in checked baggage, which is too often lost. When moving, choose movers who you trust, and realize that many will not cover your jewelry in the event of damage or loss. Keep the jewelry with you during a move to ensure that it arrives safely.
Keeping your jewelry clean can be as simple as following a regular cleaning regimen. Cleaning most jewelry needs only gentle dish soap, a soft brush and warm water. You can clean the surface and then rinse. Clean often to avoid heavy build-up. Commercial jewelry cleaners are also great for less fragile stones. Avoid spraying perfume or body spray while wearing the jewelry to also help prevent build-up and wait several minutes to put on jewelry after putting on perfume. Wipe jewels with a damp cloth after wear to help prevent build up and avoid any extreme chemicals or hot water. Store your nice jewels separate from other pieces to keep them from collecting dirt, oils or sustaining damage.
When it comes time to hand down and take care of your family’s jewelry, you’ll be in good position to do your part!