Silver jewellery is often some of the most beautiful in the world. Though it’s not quite as expensive as its counterpart in precious metals, gold, silver jewellery has definitely been on the rise in recent years, and you can find all kinds of original and inspiring creations across the internet. With artisan silversmiths and more established jewellery designers all wanting to get in on the action, how do you avoid disappointment when shopping for silver jewellery online?
Read the description
When you are planning on buying silver jewellery online, the first thing to do is read the description extremely carefully. Both gold and silver jewellery is extremely popular, so more unscrupulous sellers do try to take advantage of this fact, by using keywords to mislead buyers into thinking they are buying something they’re not.
As with gold, silver jewellery comes in a range of options, from pure, solid silver jewellery, to rolled silver or silver-plated. All three types are different – solid sterling silver jewellery is made completely with the silver metal. Rolled silver and plated silver are made by adding silver to the surface of a different base metal – usually something cheap. Both processes are different – silver plating involves dipping a metal surface in silver, to give it a silver finish. While it will look similar to pure silver when brand new, the silver plate will wear off very fast.
Rolled silver, by contrast, involves adding layers of silver coating to a metal. This is bonded much more strongly than the plating method and lasts longer – but it is still not the same as sterling silver jewellery.
Nearly all modern sterling silver jewellery will have a hallmark, so the description should state if it has this or not. If the seller does not describe a hallmark, such as in the case of antique jewellery, you can’t really be sure if you are buying a sterling silver item or not.
Look closely at photographs
Photographs are a really important way of judging a piece of jewellery. Not only do they show the style and design of a piece – they will also indicate the scale of an item, in relation to the proportions of your body, and most importantly, you can see if there is a hallmark or other symbol or not.
Most jewellery sellers will have a selection of photographs, including close up views from different angles and zoomed-in images. Examine them carefully to see if you can find a hallmark, and judge the quality of a piece, before you decide to buy it.
If you’re not sure, ask the seller
Before you commit to buying silver jewellery online, you should make sure that you are fully satisfied – the last thing you want is to buy something and find that you’re not happy with it! So if you don’t feel that the seller has provided enough information, don’t be afraid to ask for extra pictures, or additional information.
After all, the seller wants you to be happy with the item!