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Silver has been revered and valued as a precious metal for more than 3,500 years, and even today it rivals gold in popularity among jewellery consumers. It is used in a range of products, from eating utensils (known as silverware) and ornaments to electronics, photographic film components and disinfectants. But it is perhaps most appreciated for its delicate beauty. Silver has a cool, elegant sheen that is a perfect match for dazzling gemstones and stunning artisan designs.

Unlike gold, silver does not oxidize (tarnish), and it is therefore very durable. It also combines well with a variety of materials, including leather, semi-precious stones and ceramics. Its versatility is reflected in the wide array of artisan-created jewellery pieces NOVICA offers, from the simple to the sublime.

Silver is a malleable metal, and jewelers use different alloys to make it stronger for jewellery. Sterling silver is the standard quality in the US and most of the world. This alloy is 92.5% silver, with the remaining 7.5% typically copper but sometimes other metals too. These additions improve the strength of the metal for durability and they also give it its distinctive silver color.

The purity of silver is measured in karats, with higher karat numbers denoting higher purity levels. Pure silver is too soft for jewellery, so it is combined with harder metals to create strong and durable pieces. This is why you will never see a piece of jewellery described as 100% silver; it is almost always sterling or above.

It is important to know what type of silver you are buying when making a purchase, particularly in the US where the silver standards are more relaxed than in other parts of the world. There are several ways to determine the silver content of a piece, and x-ray testing is one option. However, x-rays can be fooled by layered metals and certain types of plating, so wet chemical analysis is the most accurate method.

Despite its hardiness, silver is delicate and requires care to keep it looking as beautiful as possible. It can tarnish, but this is easy to rectify with readily available polishing products or do-it-yourself home methods. Storing silver in airtight containers will also reduce the amount of tarnish that develops. If you do have an issue with tarnish, there are many other options for cleaning and protecting your silver, including the use of jewellery pouches and storage boxes to prevent contact with other metals. This will help to protect your treasures for generations to come. Silver jewellery is a wonderful way to express your personality and style, while keeping it affordable. Browse NOVICA’s extensive collection to find the ideal silver pieces for you and your family. We are sure you will find something that you love. Shop now.