Sunday, November 7, 2010
Sterling Silver Patination.
I have inherited a rather healthy stock of family silver in a lovely old Rococo, accent on the first syllable please, pattern. Now that I am fortunate enough to entertain as I choose, I am now finding the family silver is lacking in hollow ware. What is more frightening is that the newer silver I have purchased on eBay lacks the mellow French finish and patina of the older family silver and sticks out like a read headed stepchild . Everyone knows that sterling is 92.5% [unless you are 1st mark Minerva French sterling at 95%] pure silver and the rest is copper. The copper on the surface is eventually worn off leaving a surface of pure silver. Also, it is sulfur in the vicinity that blackens the surface of silver. So, I washed and hand polished with baking soda five times to remove the surface copper, and then I placed two hard boiled egg yolks in a large plastic bag with the large round test serving bowl and VOILA! Like making Kim-chi, I almost buried it in the back yard but that was unnecessary. After a week and another finger polish it matches the rest of the collection perfectly. Time for a cocktail.