How to clean and care for antique jewellery

Antique jewellery is becoming more popular for collecting for its beauty and of course eventually to sell for a huge profit in the majority of cases, as such it is essential that every care is taken when it comes to the care and cleaning of your precious antiques. Of course depending on what the actual piece of jewellery is made of, will depend on what is used to clean the jewellery and how you should look after it. Different materials will also pose and present different problems with such as tarnishing, so here are some tips when it comes to cleaning and taking care of you antique jewellery.

If the piece is mostly made from gold then how you take care of it will depend largely on the karat of the gold, some gold is softer than others and so is more prone to tarnishing. This is due to other material being used with the gold and gold is a much softer metal. Gold items that have an high gold density are very hard to keep free from scratches and great care needs to be taken when it comes to the substances used for cleaning, abrasive substances need to be avoided at all cost when cleaning 24 karat jewellery and indeed any gold jewellery and if there are precious stones in the jewellery then this presents even more problems.

If you are going to be attempting to clean gold jewellery yourself rather than put it in the hands of a specialist antique jeweller then you should use a very soft toothbrush such as those sold with children and babies in mind and use nothing else but warm soapy water.

Silver jewellery can present problems too and care must also be taken when attempting to clean these pieces yourself. The same goes when it comes to storing pieces and it is best to wrap the pieces individually in old newspaper before storing away. However if you are going to be storing them away for any length of time then wrap them in acid free paper before wrapping them in newspaper.

It is also essential that you store silver in a cool dark and dry place and when it comes to cleaning and polishing silver jewellery then a very soft cloth with bring back the shine and remove any tarnish from the item. Great care should be taken with silver jewellery as if it is only silver plated this can be rubbed off to reveal the coating underneath which is not only very unsightly but also reduces the value of the piece.

Taking care of jewellery that has precious stones in it needs very careful handling as it is very easy to remove the casings holding the stones in place and which will eventually lead to the stones working loose and falling out which of course can destroy a wonderful and valuable piece .

If at anytime you are in doubt when it comes to cleaning and taking care of your antique jewellery then always seek the advice of an expert, some pieces especially those of particular value can have their value greatly reduced if the wrong care and cleaning methods are used.

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