What is Sterling Silver?

Posted by Ruhi Mehta on

What is Sterling Silver?

Sterling silver is an alloy containing 92.5 % of pure silver mixed with a small 7.5% hint of other metals. This property adds more features to the final Sterling Jewellery. It positively influences the quality of the Jewellery - makes it shinier, stronger and sturdier. It’s durable and an excellent silver jewellery choice for all.

Fine silver, for example 99.9% pure silver, is relatively soft, and malleable for many uses, including making most silver jewellery so silver is usually alloyed with copper to increase its hardness and strength. Sterling silver is prone to tarnishing. This is why you will sometimes see sterling silver referred to as '925 silver'. These percentages are the reason why sterling silver is often hallmarked with the numbers 925.

Buried in the earth's crust, silver has been recognized around the world as a precious and valuable metal. We have mined, worn and marveled at it since it was first discovered. Used initially for currency and intricate jewelry, silver has historically been a signifier of wealth and status — expressions like "born with a silver spoon in one's mouth" or "served on a silver platter" illustrate the metal's wealthy connotations.

Metalsmiths also had some problems with silver. Pure silver is an incredibly soft metal, and although it's beautiful, it isn't practical for items that see any kind of use, such as home goods or often-worn jewelry. To be functional, silver's malleability needed to be strengthened with another, stronger metal.

HISTORY:

No one knows for sure when the first silver alloy was created, but we do know that it was widely used by the 11th century. The Norman Penny, issued in Britain by William the Conqueror in 1083, was made from a silver alloy. In some of the coin's earliest designs, two small stars floated above the king's shoulders — in Old English, the word steorling translates as "like a little star," which is one possible origin of the word sterling.

When Europeans discovered the Americas, they also stumbled upon its rich silver mines. Central and South America rose as the largest silver-producing regions in the world, and silversmiths took advantage of the new market. After strengthening the silver with copper or another metal, artisans fashioned almost any item you can think of from sterling silver, including perfume bottles, utensils, medical equipment, jewelry and musical instruments.

 Today, sterling silver is one of the most commonly used metals in high-end and high-quality jewelry and accessories. But not just any silver alloy is labeled as sterling — true sterling silver must have a set amount of silver content.

It’s Important to Store It at A Suitable and Careful Place

One of the best things about sterling silver is that it allows you to enjoy every activity without having to worry about anything. You can freely wear it while bathing or washing hands and it will stay as it is, without any loss of shine. But, one thing that is extremely important to keep in mind is that very little thing like the place of storage of sterling silver jewellery can cause a life-long or permanent damage to it. Therefore, it is important to store it at the best-suited place.

Use a cloth pouch or a dedicated compartment to keep your sterling silver jewellery. This helps in preventing the jewellery from scratches or any other such damage. Avoid wearing it while swimming or from salt-water as the chemicals harm the sterling silver jewellery. Hair sprays and perfumes are also not good for the shine of the sterling silver jewellery. So, don’t forget to store it carefully at a safe place.


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