January is a great time to check in with your jeweler!
January 24, 2021
Many of our customers are surprised when we tell them they should get their jewelry professionally cleaned and checked at least every six months. "No one ever told me..." we hear on a daily basis, so we have to liken jewelry to other common "daily-life" items that require maintenance. The best analogy (and one we use most often) is your car. The harder you drive, the more miles and condition of the terrain, the more often you need to visit your mechanic to makes sure everything is functioning as it should. The type of car (jewelry) also makes a difference in how long, well and durably an item will wear (i.e. a corvette and a hummer will traverse a city and a mountain differently). As jewelry professionals, we try to educate customers on their purchases, letting them know the maintenance required for particular pieces.
Here are some helpful tips for extending the lifespan of your precious jewelry.
Take It Off
Be sure not to expose your jewelry to stresses of cleaning, chlorine or heavy lifting. Chemicals in cleaning products and in pools or spas can permanently damage your gold. Chemical damage leaves mountings susceptible to breaking down and putting your gems at risk.
The gym is not the place to show off your bling. Lifting or gripping tightly can bend your rings and bracelets and necklaces can catch and break on equipment. It is best to enjoy your jewelry when you and it will not be under stress.
Make good choices
It is important to choose jewelry that will suit your lifestyle and your needs. Consider the level of wear you intend for your pieces and work with a jeweler to best meet these needs. Smaller diamonds have smaller prongs and require more upkeep. Certain gems are more delicate and require special care. Fashion jewelry (non-precious metal) is made to last a fashion season, not a lifetime, so it is important to discuss your expectations with the jeweler.
Insure it, Wear it and Enjoy it
Gems don’t sparkle in the dark, so let them out of the jewelry box often. You should not have to wait for a special occasion to enjoy your jewelry. Wear your favorites to the grocery store, to the coffee shop, wherever they make you happy (as long as you’re not going to put them under too much stress – see tip 1). If you have items you do not wear, talk to your jeweler about having them reworked or redesigned into something you will enjoy. If you need an insurance appraisal, Ketterman's is happy to help with that.
Build a Relationship with your Jeweler
You should have your jewelry professionally cleaned and checked at least every six months. Your personal “level of wear” will determine if you need to do so more frequently. After cleaning, the jeweler should check over the mounting under magnification for any potential issues including loose gems and worn or damaged areas. If you notice or suspect damage, have your jewelry checked immediately.
Above, we have mostly been focused on maintenance for security of the stones and longevity of the pieces, but cleaning is important too! Is there anything you wear that you don't wash on occasion? Your jewelry is no exception. Regular cleaning removes the lotions, body oil, skin cells, perfume, and "other" that come in contact with your jewelry. There are safe at-home cleaners that can be purchased at your local jeweler to keep your items sparkling between your semi-annual visits. Making a habit based on annual traditions serves as an easy reminder. Some customers line up their visit to the jewel-spa with dental cleanings, others with their annual summer vacation (so Ketterman's can keep their pieces safe while they're away). Cleaning and checking only takes about 20 minutes and is complimentary at Ketterman's, so please, allow us to help you enjoy your jewelry to the fullest, and keep sparkling...Always!