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Restoring Patina for Sterling Silver Flatware




I recently purchased some vintage sterling silver flatware on eBay for my daughter and soon-to-be daughter in law. Both of the sellers had evidently dipped the silver in one of those harsh cleaning baths because all of it has lost its patina and has a stripped look. I have been trying to find a way to re-patina it. Is this possible? I came across an article by a silversmith that mentions using liver of sulfur [on eBay or Amazon] to give jewelry a patina. Should I use that on the flatware? If so, can you advise me on how to use it?

Susanne Cannon
- Chicago, Illinois, USA
2003



I hardly believe this silver won't be completely tarnished in a month if you do nothing. But you can accelerate the process by storing broken up hard boiled eggs in with the silver in a plastic bag if you would like to use something milder and safer than liver of sulfur.

Ted Mooney, finishing.com
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha
finishing.com - Pine Beach, New Jersey
2003


After a long search at more places than I can count, I found the product Liver of sulfur at Dick Blick's art supply store. We mixed it with water and soaked the silver in it and then polished it and it looked much better. Then we put the flatware into soapy water to wash it and it all turned roughly the color of copper. YIKES! So, we got out our Maas Metal Polish and went to work and everything worked out perfectly. All of the pieces now look as if they have that lovely patina, with the carved flowers and other designs in the silver accented as they should be.

Susanne Cannon
- Chicago, Illinois, USA
2004

Ed. note: That was then. These days you can easily find liver of sulfur [on eBay or Amazon]


Thanks for the happily ever after, Suzanne!

Ted Mooney, finishing.com
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha
finishing.com - Pine Beach, New Jersey
2003




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