Today I’m going to talk to you about how to polish and maintain your silver. Now I’d like to talk to you about how to keep your silver looking beautiful once it’s polished. Once you have a piece of silver polished and looking beautiful and it’s going to be displayed in your home it will also be subject to tarnish again. This is unfortunate but there are various ways to protect that from happening. If it’s going to be used for eating off of or out of then you can’t put any protective coating on your silver.
Now if you have some decorative silver like the piece I have here or candelabras they can be lacquer coated which you can have done at a metal restoration facility to protect it. If you get your silver lacquered then you wouldn’t need to polish you silver again for another 20-25 years. However If the silver you want to protect is going to be used then you might want to consider a spray polish to maintain your silver once it’s polished by a liquid or paste polish to your satisfaction. This is a great way to lightly go over your silver and keep it in good condition. For silver that is to be contained in a cabinet or drawer you might want to consider silver protection strips which are chemically treated paper strips that go into a drawer or a bag and help slow tarnish. In addition to that there is a material called pacific cloth and silver and silver that need to be stored away can be put into a storage bag such as the one I have here which is made from pacific cloth. Pacific cloth is anti-tarnish and it will maintain your silver, keeping it tarnish free for a long time while in storage.
An important thing to remember is that you want to keep the air away from your silver so again for silver that is being stored; it can be inserted into a large plastic bag. At your local grocery store they sell oversized plastic baggies and if you take a piece of silver and put it in the bag for storage purposes then seal this bag, that will slow the tarnish because you’re keeping the air away from it. To hand polish your silver I’ll demonstrate by taking a piece of silver that is mildly tarnished and use a liquid silver polish on it. Then you just need part of an old cotton t-shirt for a rag. Pour a little polish onto the rag and place it over the tarnished area of the silver then massage it into the silver in circular motions. The tarnish will then begin to disappear and we are ready to grab our polishing cloth and buff it out gently so it restores it’s once brilliant shine. That’s how you would polish a piece of silver in good condition. Sometimes you’ll find old polish residue built up in the piece you are polishing. When it’s really caked in there and it’s sat for a long time then you may want to use a solvent such as turpentine to loosen it up some with your brush. If you’d like more information on all aspects of silver care just watch the videos in this series.