I have a question that I know depends on many variables. It’s also a
question that I’m not necessarily expecting an exact answer to, but
I thought I’d ask nonetheless because maybe someone else has run into
My studio is in my home, and home is a vintage 3-flat building in
Chicago that was gutted/rehabbed about 3 years ago. My problem is
that I can clean and polish my metal until the cows come home
(primarily fine and sterling silver), but within a matter of a few
days, it gets this yellow/brown-tinged tarnish on it-and I’m a little
baffled because even the fine silver tends to tarnish just as quickly
and just as deeply yellow/brown as the sterling. --This tarnish is
really, really ugly.
I don’t have any chemicals exposed, my liver of sulphur is tightly
sealed and in a cabinet, there aren’t any other sulphur-containing
chemicals out, and nothing is leaking that I am aware of. I do
everything in my power to keep the indoor humidity level to a minimum
during the summer; and during the winter, I don’t have to do much
because the indoor humidity level tends to average about 36%–in
which case, I end up having to use my humidifiers (although I still
don’t over humidify). --This is the case now-low humidity (and in the
past it has gone lower w/out the humidifiers).
I store most of my pieces in a cabinet with another moisture
absorbing product, and those are usually fine, although, I’ve left
some other pieces out because I want to see just how tarnished they
will get over time. No matter the cleaning/polishing mode though,
this ends up happening to everything-even ready-made pieces I’ve
What is the deal here?! This is really annoying! Any ideas on what
might be happening? I am absolutely baffled. I’m thinking that maybe
it’s something in the building??? --The walls are oozing something?
Heat is radiant heat, and we have natural gas for cooking. Maybe
there’s something in Chicago’s air (ya think???).I’m not sure what
our pollution levels are in the area, but I guess that’s a
possibility. We live about three blocks from the lake, so maybe
that’s a factor too???
Thanks in advance for your thoughts and ideas.