Jewelry is worn by millions of people every day, but few recognize how they can preserve their treasures by using some simple advanced planning and thought. Here are some basic guidelines to consider when wearing jewelry:
- Remove jewellery during tasks – When performing manual tasks, remove your jewelry to prevent physical damage or exposure to chemicals or cleaning fluids. Some tasks that should be avoided when wearing diamond jewelry include kitchen work, gardening, cleaning the house and other common tasks.
- Put jewellery on after applying makeup – Cosmetics, hairspray, perfumes and lotion can contain chemicals that can often damage jewellery. Putting jewellery on after applying these materials will limit exposure to jewellery and any potential damage.
- Don't wear jewellery in swimming pools and spas – Chlorinated water can react with the metals found in jewellery causing color changes and even structural damage. As a result it's a good idea to remove jewellery before entering the pool or spa.
- Contact sports and jewellery don't mix– Hard blows during sports can damage jewelry not to mention the people involved. All jewellery should be removed before play begins.
For those that wear jewellery regularly, keeping it clean and looking good requires regular effort. Here are some general guidelines that may help:
- Remove your jewellery before bathing: Remove all jewelry before showering or cleaning. Soap can cause a film to form, making it appear dull and dingy. By preventing the formation of this film you immediately reduce the occasions of servicing.
- Use jewellery polishing cloths for best results: Polish silver or gold with a jewellery polishing cloth for best results. You can use a svelte or an old diaper, but the professional cloths are the best. Use of tissue or paper towels can cause scratches because of fibers in these products.
- Clean your jewellery with care: Cleaning your own jewellery regularly can keep it looking good, but be careful. You can either purchase commercial cleaners from a jeweller or make a cleaning solution yourself. Rubbing alcohol can work wonders, but bleach can literally destroy jewellery so avoid it at all costs.
- Use warm water to clean jewellery: Using warm water is the best bet when cleaning your own jewellery. How water can cause reaction with the cleaning fluids resulting in discoloration and Sterling Silver is especially susceptible to this problem. Should this occur, this problem can be remedied by buffing and the application of a tarnish remover.
- Avoid cleaning damaged jewellery: Never clean any jewellery that is damaged, cracked or broken, since the additional handling is likely to exacerbate or worsen the problem. If you find that a piece of jewellery is damaged, it should be set aside for repair as soon as possible.
- Inspect your jewellery regularly: Just like anything else, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. When having your jewellery professionally cleaned, it's a good idea to have each item checked and inspected for any possible problems. Addressing signs of damage, or loose gemstones will prevent any further damage or loss and keep all of your pieces in excellent shape for years.
From time to time, it may be necessary to have a repair performed on your jewelry.
- Prevent damage to your jewellery: Prevention is the best way to prevent the necessity of repair, so a regular inspection is the best way to minimize potentially costly repairs. You can perform a simple inspection every two to three months to ensure that the condition of your jewellery is good and prevent a small problem from becoming a big headache.
- Look for reviews and referrals: When deciding on a jeweller to perform your jewellery repairs, look for reviews of their work and ask for referrals when appropriate. Furthermore, taking a few moments to ask questions of the jeweller is a wise investment that should pay off with a good jewellery repair experience.
- Jewellery repair pricing: When jewellery repair pricing is being quoted, it's wise to ensure that these figures are being quoted from a price book rather than off the top of someone's head. When a jeweller takes the time to publish their prices, it's clear that they have extensive experience and have thoroughly researched their investment of time and materials to complete the job correctly.
- Observe the jewellery take-in procedures: A clear description of how an item is to be repaired is the key to a successful repair. Closely observe the jewelry take-in procedure when the repair is being explained. The issues with each piece being repaired should be well-documented using descriptions and drawings to ensure that the repair will be done correctly the first time.
- Inspect your jewellery at pickup: When picking up your jewellery, it's important to thoroughly inspect the work performed. Before accepting the piece of jewellery, first make sure that it is the correct item. Next, make sure that the repair was performed as requested. Lastly, ensure that the entire piece was cleaned and polished. After all, this should be the expectation of every professional jeweller that performs jewellery repair.
Anyone that has a collection of jewellery can appreciate how difficult it can often be to keep it organized. To improve the enjoyment of your jewellery, we've assembled these suggestions that should keep your jewellery organized and orderly:
- Keep your jewellery secure: Store your jewellery in a container and prevent pieces from moving around. While fabric-lined jewellery boxes are ideal, this can be as simple as using a shoebox and pieces of fabric.
- Prevent your jewellery from tarnishing: Sometimes jewellery tarnishes when it's not worn, especially silver and gold. To maintain the luster of your jewellery, place silver anti-tarnish strips in your storage container to absorb the oxidants that discolour and tarnish jewellery.
- Inventory your jewellery: Unfortunately, jewellery can get lost or stolen. Taking a regular inventory can be incredibly useful when making an insurance claim or filing a police report. A photograph, a written physical description of each piece and its cost is ideal. Furthermore, store that information apart from your jewellery in the event it is taken too
- When travelling with jewellery, use a case: Carrying jewellery when travelling can be tough, so it's wise to use a travel case to protect your favorite pieces. Traditionally made of fabric or leather, a jewellery travel case can carry jewellery of all types and easily rolls up to a size that can be stored in most suitcases, makeup cases or business attaches. Clearly, a case like this is a good investment to protect your jewellery on the road.
Shipping jewellery can cause a great deal of concern due to its high-value nature. While there are a variety of carrier-specific guidelines, here are some general rules of thumb that you can use to safely ship jewellery:
- Use two boxes:An inner box to hold the jewellery and an outer shipping box.
- Carefully pack the inner box to prevent the movement of the jewellery
- Pack the shipping box with packing material to protect the inner box during shipping.
- Eliminate all information on the shipping box that refers to jewellery or a jeweler.
- Seal both boxes completely with tape.
- Insure the shipment.
- Require a signature on delivery.
- Don't use a drop box.