One of the key components of silver jewellery design is managing the inevitable tarnish of the metal and the level or speed at which your piece reacts to oxidisation.
What we love about Sterling Silver is the high lustre polish that we are able to achieve with the initial finish. However, as silver is quite a soft metal it is not practical for wear by itself.
The majority of Crooked Howlet Designs (CHD) pieces are cast in 925 Sterling Silver. "925" Sterling Silver represents 92.5% pure silver and 7.5% base metals. Silver is mixed (alloyed) with base metals to make the alloy more durable, but unfortunately this is where the tarnish comes from. The base metals in the 925 react with sulphur in the air or skin causing tarnish.
This can vary from person to person and in different climates or time of the year. The acidic levels in your skin will also determine the extent of the tarnish and in cooler, dryer climates or times of the year, tarnish will be less obvious. The list of reasons for tarnish, can be anywhere from heavy sweat, swimming pool and washing up chemicals to things such as antibiotics or pregnancy. Particular environments such as areas in New Zealand that have high concentrations of sulphur in the air, will greatly affect the Sterling Silver.
This may sound discouraging, however with a few simple tasks, you can keep you piece in looking good.
Try and avoid your piece coming into contact with chemicals such as dish washing liquid or moisturiser. We also recommend that you remove the rings to sleep, so if you sweat a little during the night, the ring will not be affected. Also make sure to give your ring a little rub down with the CHD polishing cloth!
With this knowledge, you'll be able to take better care of your ring, understand the nature of precious metals and all round appreciate how the ring matures and looks over time.
We also have a collection of 9ct Yellow Gold rings. These gold rings are significantly easier to look after and less complicated than the alloy of 925 Sterling Silver.
We cast all of our pieces right here in Marrickville Sydney, at the largest and most respected casting house in Australia and therefore the quality of alloys that CHD uses is of the highest standard. Our Casting House is one of the only casting houses who alloy their own metals which gives us even greater assurance of the quality and control over any issues that may arise.
As tarnishing is a battle for jewellers around the world, we have endeavoured to design and produce rings that not only lend themselves well to the effects of silver tarnish, but also age gracefully. With natural signs of wear, your ring will gain more authenticity and charm leading to a well-earned look.
If you have experienced anything out of the ordinary with your ring, we will be more than happy to check and see if there are any issues with the metal. Our team have no doubt, that working with you, you will be more than satisfied with your purchase.