We sell many used and vintage pieces that have from light to heavy patina and tarnish on them. We leave the choice of whether to polish or not to the customer.
Patina is the overall uniform darkening that occurs from aging. Patina adds a richness to vintage pieces. How much patina you like is personal preference, there is no right or wrong.
Tarnish, on the other hand, is a thin dirty film that appears on silver as it oxidizes. Tarnish, in my opinion, should be remove regularly using a mild method, such as with a buffing cloth. Each of these pieces took about one minute to fully polish with a cloth.
Here is one of my favorite contemporary Hopi Man in a Maze bracelets (by Cyrus Josytewa) before buffing. Basically a dirty bracelet !
Hubby’s favorite buckle (Stanley Gene, Navajo) has some nice patina and also has tarnish. I’m on the fence with this piece – I actually think I prefer the overall patina but he volunteered it for an example. A buckle makes contact with a lot of surfaces so even after the tarnish is removed, the buckles still has its character scratches.
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