Estate Jewelry Cleaning Tips

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Caution: Before attempting to clean any item of Estate jewelry, it is always recommended that you bring it to your trusted jeweler for expert advice about cleaning each individual piece.

Maybe it's a vintage Retro-era pearl pin for your lapel. Or perhaps that colorful gemstone cocktail ring from the 70's that you've had your eye on for quite some time. Whatever the piece, you have finally made your Estate jewelry purchase and you couldn't be happier. Now all that's left to do is wear it and enjoy it, right?
Tips on cleaning estate jewelry:
Avoid ultra-sonic cleanings as these may be too harsh for some pieces. Organics, especially, like pearl and coral, will be damaged.
Purchase a pearl cleaner for pearls and only use this on your pearl jewelry. Also, wear your pearls frequently as natural body oils are good for gaining luster.
Store your vintage opal jewelry in a small jar with a damp absorbent cloth when you are not wearing it to control "crazing" (small cracks in the stone).
Avoid using a polish wheel as these will remove the patina from jewelry. Avoid all abrasives and home remedies as these could possibly scratch the item.
For emeralds never use the ultra-sonic cleaner. A liquid jewelry cleaner and soft cloth is fine
Another suggestion is that you bring your Estate jewelry to a jeweler periodically for an inspection. (Note: there never should be a charge for this.)
Check especially for loose prongs, which if undetected, can lead to a stone getting lost. How many times have you hit your hand on the granite countertop in your kitchen? Or dropped your earring on the tile floor? Every rough contact like this has the potential to loosen prongs, and that's how stones disappear. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!

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