Caring for your Bittersweets
Bittersweets New York jewelry is made with the idea that a beautiful piece of jewelry should last a lifetime, and then some! All pieces are solid castings; sterling silver, 10K, 14K, 18K, 22K gold and/or platinum. Both sterling silver, and gold tarnish, with gold tarnishing at a much slower rate under normal circumstances. The two main culprits for tarnish are moisture and air. In fact, a silver chain can go black right away with one swim in a salty ocean, or worn next to salty, sweaty skin. The best way to keep your jewelry sparkling, is by practicing preventative measures; Keep your pieces away from unnecessary moisture, like leaving your jewelry on when showering, or swimming. Store your jewelry in a dry place, not a bathroom, or kitchen shelf. A ziplock bag may not be the prettiest way to keep your jewelry shiny, but it certainly will do the trick. Not everyone can wear silver without getting that unsightly black ring on their skin. If you notice this happening to you, be mindful of lotions or any body products that would cause additional moisture or oil on your skin where your jewelry is in contact. The black on the skin is tarnish coming off of your silver, not plating that has worn off to expose "cheap" metals. We do not cast with anything but sterling and do not plate unless a specific request has been made by our customers for Vermeil or a rhodium finish.
Tarnish: The trick with tarnish is not to wait until it really sets in and turns black. It's much harder to clean, if not impossible with regular store bought silver cleaners. Hardware store silver cleaners will work fine, and a homemade batch of ammonia and water works nice on gold. A standard formula is 7 parts water and 1 part ammonia. If you cannot get your jewelry clean, as it is too blackened, just send us an email and let us know you're sending it to us for a cleaning. Please use a delivery confirmation and insurance. The instructions for shipping to Bittersweets are below. Please read and follow carefully. We will have your jewelry back within 3 weeks. If you would like a Bittersweets New York polishing cloth for your jewelry, please email us with information on the item that you have purchased with us. If it seems that a polishing cloth is the best way to clean your piece, we will send it to you at no charge.
Stones, pearls and settings. Please keep a close eye on your stone settings, clasps, and pearls. Anything that feels loose or doesn't seem quite right needs to be looked at. Please send us an email with your concerns. You can send your piece back to us to evaluate. We can advise you on the best way to prevent any further damage or loss and will replace clasps or re-string pearls at a small fee. Pearls will need to be re-strung if worn daily after about a year. Your pieces will be returned in approximately 3 weeks. Please follow our instructions on how to ship jewelry back to us in our "shipping" section of the policies.