We make fine jewelry that's meant to last a lifetime. Unfortunately, improper storage is one of the most prominent reasons why jewelry becomes damaged. Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to ensure that your handmade jewelry is stored safely and prevent it from becoming tarnished.
Why is it Important to Properly Store Handmade Jewelry?
Have you ever dug through your jewelry box only to find your necklaces are entangled, or your handmade gemstone jewelry appears scratched and damaged? Or have you gone through your handmade jewelry only to find that several pieces have become tarnished?
Proper care and maintenance are the best way to make your fine handmade jewelry last forever. One of the most important things you can do to protect your jewelry is to store it properly. Doing so will help prevent your jewelry from tarnishing or becoming marred by scratches and other damage.
6 Essential Tips for Storing Fine Handmade Jewelry
There are many steps you can take to help your jewelry withstand the test of time. Here are seven essential tips for storing your fine handmade jewelry.
1. Clean Your Jewelry Before You Store It
While everyone knows that you need to clean your handmade jewelry regularly to help keep its shine, you should also get into the habit of cleaning your jewelry before storing it.
Jewelry can become tarnished and damaged from excess moisture and harsh chemicals, such as perfumes and lotions you wore with your jewelry. Taking the time to remove these chemicals and gently dry your jewelry after cleaning it will help protect it.
When cleaning your jewelry, the simplest solutions are often the best ones. Wash your jewelry in warm water with mild soap, but be careful not to leave jewelry submerged for long.
If you intend to use a jewelry cleaner, only use it on the jewelry it is purposed for. Some handmade jewelry, especially gemstones, can become damaged when using improper cleaners. When it comes time to dry your jewelry, do so promptly and with a soft, lint-free cloth.
2. Choose a Jewelry Box With Soft Lining and Dividers
There are many types of jewelry boxes to choose from, but take your time selecting the box that works best for the amount and type of jewelry you have. You should always select a jewelry box with a soft fabric lining to avoid materials that may scuff or scratch your more fragile pieces.
In addition, the box should have enough space and dividers to comfortably hold your fine handmade jewelry so that the various pieces do not touch. Not only can tangled jewelry be a mess to sort through, but jewelry can become damaged, especially where gemstones are involved.
If you travel often and intend to take some of your jewelry with you, it’s recommended that you acquire an appropriate travel case. Again, you want to make sure that you choose a case with a soft fabric lining to help protect your fine handmade jewelry.
3. Store Your Handmade Gemstone Jewelry Separately
Handmade gemstone jewelry needs additional care when storing. You must store gemstone jewelry separately and ensure that no gemstones touch one another.
Each type of gemstone has a Mohs Hardness Scale rating, with the diamond at the top of the scale. Gemstones with a higher hardness rating can scratch and damage gemstones with lower ratings, so it is essential to store precious gemstones carefully and separately.
4. Avoid Humidity and Extreme Temperatures
Humidity and extreme temperatures can quickly ruin fine handmade jewelry. Make sure that you keep your jewelry box in an area that isn’t humid and stuffy, like an attic, or drafty and cold, like a closet. It would be best if you keep your jewelry in a place that has a consistent room temperature to help protect it from damage.
5. Avoid Storing Handmade Jewelry in Direct Sunlight
Sunlight and heat can affect the way that your handmade jewelry looks. Not only can jewelry lose its shine, but its color and durability can be altered when stored in direct light.
For many pieces of jewelry, this can lead to further damage and diminish the value of the pieces. Furthermore, some handmade gemstone jewelry can be significantly altered by overexposure to light, including amethysts, topaz, pearls, and other delicate gems.
5. Avoid storing certain gems in super dry conditions.
If you need to store your opal away for a period of time, simply place it in a padded cloth bag for protection and store it away. For longer storage periods, place your opal in cotton wool with a few drops of water, then into a sealed plastic bag just to be safe.
With the proper care and storage methods, fine handmade jewelry can withstand the test of time. By following our six essential storage tips, you can protect your jewelry and keep it as beautiful as it was when you purchased it, for decades.
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