Upholding the highest standards possible in the craftsmanship of my hand crafted crystal and gemstone sterling silver beaded jewelry is extremely important to me. For this reason, I feel it's equally important that you know and understand the longevity of your handcrafted jewelry will depend on the care you give it.
Nearly every single piece of handmade jewelry that leaves the Crystal Allure Studio has Crystals by Swarovski incorporated into the design. I use Crystals by Swarovski because they are known for their purest quality, luminosity and clarity. The following few simple steps will help you enjoy the brilliance and dazzle of your handmade designer jewelry for years to come.
Caring for Handmade Jewelry:
Care: The single most important step you can take to preserve the beauty and longevity of your handmade jewelry is to clean your jewelry piece, each time, after wearing it, with a soft cloth before putting it away. This one step helps to remove the oils from your skin and debris picked up throughout the day and helps to prevent tarnish*.
Also remember to apply lotions, oils, perfumes, hairspray, and other products before putting on your handcrafted jewelry.
Cleaning: The safest method of cleaning most handmade jewelry, gemstone jewelry and jewelry made with Crystals by Swarovski is to use a soft, lint-free jewelry cloth. Some jewelry cloths have two sides; one for lint-free cleaning and one for polishing. Use the polishing side for any sterling silver components in your handmade jewelry.
If your handmade jewelry requires a little more cleaning (i.e., maybe you spilled something on the jewelry piece) you can use a mildly sudsy warm water, rinse with cool water, and pat dry with a soft cloth. As a general rule, do not soak your jewelry. It is especially important to not soak jewelry that contains soft opaque stones such as opal, coral, fluorite, lapis lazuli, pearls, turquoise, malachite, and onyx. Extended soaking may harm the polish on these stones, or may even cause discoloration. Instead, if it is needed, you can use a soft, moist cloth or even baby wipes to clean these stones.
Always remember handmade beaded jewelry and gemstone jewelry will need to be cleaned differently because of the presence of the beads, semiprecious gemstones and crystals. Generally, you should not use a jewelry cleaner or 'jewelry dips', as these can damage the finish, beads and stones.
It is also recommended that you do not dry sterling silver beads or components with paper towels or tissues because they can scratch the silver. Always use a soft cloth.
Damage Prevention: Take off jewelry before showering and never wear your jewelry while swimming, soaking in the hot tub, sunbathing or cleaning; exposure to chlorine, saltwater, sunlight and harsh chemicals can cause damage to your handmade jewelry. If you have an active lifestyle, take extra precaution in wearing your jewelry, as some gemstones can easily chip and become damaged. Do not sleep with your jewelry on as movement causes stress on all moving parts and they could easily get snagged on blankets.
Storage: When not wearing your handcrafted jewelry store it in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight. Never store sterling silver pieces in open air, as this will cause them to tarnish quicker. It is highly recommended that you store your sterling silver jewelry in airtight plastic bags to slow down the tarnishing* process (do not store pearls in a zip log bag). Store jewelry pieces separately to avoid scratches.
If you have any further or more specific questions about cleaning your Crystal Allure Beaded Jewelry or any handmade jewelry, please feel free to contact me.
The above information is general care and not to be assumed for the care of a specific piece of jewelry. If you have any doubts on cleaning your jewelry, contact me, your local jeweler, or clean at your own risk.
*Tarnish is a naturally occurring process of Sterling Silver called oxidation. Tarnish begins to appear as a golden tone, then quickly gets darker. Simply wearing your Sterling Silver jewelry will reduce the rate of tarnish, as body oils slow the rate of tarnish.
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