Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Cleaning Gold and Gem Tutorial

Last week I wrote a guest post for my blogger friend, Sahi of BarelyVogue.  I thought I'd re-post today for those of you that missed it.  A little tutorial on cleaning your jewelry for the holidays.

Holiday parties and events are all about  sparkle and shine.  Make sure your "bling" does just that.  Follow these easy steps to bring out the best in your gold and gem jewelry.
 Gold jewelry does not tarnish, the dull look is from body oils, soap and lotions.  A few common household product will clean your jewelry for a bright shine.  
In a bowl, combine hot water with ammonia in a 6 to 1 ratio.  I used 1 1/2 cups hot water with 1/4 cup ammonia.  Add to that a few drops of dishwashing liquid.  Place your gold jewelry in this bath and allow to soak for about 20 minutes.
Using a toothbrush and wearing gloves, gently scrub each piece of jewelry.  Be sure to scrub around and under prongs.  Dirt gets caked under the stones so be sure to clean underneath for the light to pass through the stone.  That is what makes the stone sparkle!  Rinse well in clean water.  If you do not use a bowl, PLEASE close the sink drain.  I am not including a tutorial on how to retrieve a ring from the drain pipe!
This process will clean the dirt from your jewelry but if your pieces are scratched you will need to take them to a jeweler to be buffed.  Also, if stones are loose, make sure a jeweler fixes the problem.  By the way, make sure your good jewelry is cover by your insurance policy.  Keep appraisals in a folder for safe keeping.
Dry your jewelry with a soft cloth and admire the sparkle.  

If you have white gold, do not use ammonia.  Clean this jewelry with a paste of baking soda and water and scrub with a toothbrush.  White gold is plated with rhodium for that bright, white appearance.  If your white gold is looking a bit yellow, that means it is time to have the piece re-plated.  Take it to a reputable jeweler for replating.  The rhodium wears away over time with friction, lotions and soaps.  

I hope you are inspired to clean your jewelry so it looks it's best.  Take care of your investment.  

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for this post. It is a wonderful reminder. Your jewelry and your blog are looking good. Have a happy holiday and keep on blogging.


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