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Storing sterling jewelry

I’ve been asked by a client for storage ideas for sterling jewelry,
particularly jewelry that’s worn regularly (as opposed to stored away
for long periods). This, with an eye for minimizing tarnish, of

I think she’d prefer something a little more organized/attractive
than my husband’s favorite solution - wrapping in scraps of flannel,
then tucked in plastic sandwich bags.

Any thoughts out there?
Linda Gasparini

3M’s anti tarnish strips…they have to be replaced after a few
months in airtight storage but they remove/absorb sulphurous vapours
that cause tarnish…your husband isn’t that far off…the best
plastic however is the type newspaper’s come in as opposed to
sandwhich bag plastics…the best a glass case with wood frame sealed
with acid free varnish, marine varnish or microcrystalline wax…do
not use a danish oil on the wood if building a case…and stains must
be sealed.the inside can be lined with anti-rust padding ( comes in a
roll, and covered with anti-tarnish felting - like jeweler’s pouches
are made from.It is available as yardage from conservator’s
suppliers. Ordinary jewelry boxes- particularly those made in china
from particle board covered with screen printed wood look
material…they are loaded with formaldehyde and promote tarnishing
once they start to give off gasses from the construction materials
which are as cheap as possible.handcrafted items are a bit better
and a simple 3M anti-tarnish strip in each drawer will do the trick
if the customer is conscientious about replacing them as needed. A
good polishing cloth ( like Selvyt, Sunshine or Moonshine cloths -
depending on the degree of abrasion the majority of the customer’s
jewelry collection can take- Moonshine is milder than sunshine, and
Selvyt has an embedded rouge that is iron based ( all red rouges,
even the newer water miscible types, contain iron oxides and in my
opinion aren’t the first choice, but in some locations they may be
the only “higher quality” cloth available in stores. All the cloths
i mentioned are available on line. ) should be part of the customer’s
maintenance instructions…rer

I got the idea from Prairie Fire Gems to go to the Good Will Stores
or ARC or whatever used place you have near and pick up old empty
Silverware Chests that are lined with Silver Cloth.

I have found three of them lately, one from each mentioned, and I
think it is going to be the gold mine for the silver mine! Absolutely
the best suggestion I have ever had. For two weeks I have had a whole
batch of silver bracelets, etc., in the first one I bought and things
are still shiny.

Got get em. Price was $2.99!!! Had to wash them and a little polish
and they are presentable in my studio!

Rose Marie Christison

Hello Linda,

I have a LOT of sterling jewelry. With regular wear, unless one
exposes the silver to sulphur-based products (like dandruff
shampoo!), tarnish only develops in the recesses. I wore a variety of
sterling jewelry into a natural hot springs and everything went
black. After a few days of continual wear, the tarnish wore off the
highlights… however, I digress.

I store my personal sterling in a jewelry box lined with Pacific
cloth, and covered with a loose piece of the same fabric. Between
show seasons, my sterling stock is sandwiched between Pacific cloth
and lives in drawers that are kept shut. An old silver flatware chest
is an excellent, easy-to-access storage solution. They can often be
found minus the flatware, at thrift stores for cheap.

The main thing is for the air, which contains sulphur compounds, to
pass through the cloth before reaching the silver. The classic and
best Pacific cloth is a brown thick flannel, 36"-39" wide, and
usually must be ordered. Google for sources online.

Stay shiny and happy,

Judy in Kansas, where I harvested enough strawberries for a batch of
delicious jam. Last year’s jam was dated May 15… 2012 is an early

Fire mountain gems has a great ten drawer organizer the she could use
with some anti tarnish papers


I use a Plano Tackle box from Wal Mart I put in the tarnish
retardant papers from Rio and the partitions are a great way to keep
organized. Barbara Blaschke

I have heard of some on this list getting non tarnish material and
making jewelry rolls out of it. I imagine they look like the travel
ones you can get.

Aileen Parmenter

“Tarnishing” is another name for “Oxidation”.

Keep the silver in a sealed plastic envelope, hand-squeeze as much
of the air out as possible before ‘packing away’. You won’t avoid the
oxidation, but you can keep it to a minimum.


To store my jewelry between shows I swear by pouches or boxes lined
with silvercloth. It has saved me a lot of repolishing. It’s
available in fabric stores. My mother even made some large bags from
it to store her silver hollowware.

Janet Kofoed

My mother recently moved to an assisted living apartment with her
rather large collection of silver jewelry. Because all of the staff
has access to her space even if the door is locked, we were worried
about the temptation to pick up a piece of jewelry here and there.

I bought two mirror-backed plexiglass wall-hung units with multiple
4-inch deep shelves and double-doors that key lock. I purchased them
from a supplier to retail jewelry stores. She is thrilled with them
because her jewelry looks beautiful and it is safe from petty theft.
Obviously, if someone breaks in and steals all, that’s another thing.

I keep everything polished and clean, so now I will put the 3M
thingies in.