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Art & Antiques: Protect your jewelry to preserve your investment

Jewelry is a popular type of collectible. In addition to sprucing up an outfit, jewelry, precious metals and gemstones hold their value well in the antiques and vintage marketplace. When it comes to fine jewelry, protecting your investment goes hand in hand with proper storage.

With that said, storing these valuables is important. Gold and silver pieces can get scratched when stored next to other pieces in a jewelry box. These precious metals can damage fragile jewelry items such as pearls and shells, too.

Gold: Store gold pieces by themselves or in a felt- or velvet-lined box when possible. Gold necklaces should be stored hung by their clasp to prevent damage. Gold bracelets should be stored flat when possible. Bangles need their own storage boxes to prevent dents and damage, too.

Pearls: Always store pearls separately in a padded case or jewelry compartment. This will prevent damage to the soft cultured pearl’s luster surface. Pearls should be restrung as soon as you notice that the individual knots are getting stretched out or loose. You will lose the pearls if the string breaks — I guarantee it.

Gems: For gemstones set in rings, use ring holders that separate set stones and their settings from one another. This will prevent scrapes and scratches and retain a stone’s clarity.

Watches: Watches should not be stopped when stored. Let the watch run so you do not damage the battery or movement. Store watches flat and use a soft cloth to cover the dial and protect the crystal face when storing them.

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