A Quick Guide to Silver Markings

Silver collectors enjoy showing off their beautiful items and collections. Whether you own antique hollowware or silver bar accessories, every piece of silver has a marking on it. This quick guide to silver markings will explain what they are and the variations between them.

Standard Silver Markings

A standard silver marking lets people know its purity. Sterling silver items have a trademark that reads “925” stamped somewhere on the piece. This number indicates that the item is 92.5 percent silver and 7.5 percent other metals. The reason manufacturers place standard markings on silver items is so that people know what they’re buying. It’d be heartbreaking if someone paid full price for what they thought was a sterling silver item, only to discover that wasn’t the case later on. These markings also ensure that pieces have met safety and legal requirements during production.

Date and Origin Markings

Some silver items have date and origin markings. These stamps tell owners when the piece was created and where it was manufactured. Not all silver accessories have these markings. However, they’re extremely valuable when it comes to selling. Typically, the older the item, the more money it’s worth. A date marking allows potential buyers to know how old the accessory is. Origin markings are also important in the seller’s market because silver is crafted differently around the world. A silver jewelry box that was made England may be worth more than one that was crafted in the United States.

Commemorative Markings

Sometimes, creators place commemorative markings on silver to look back on a special occasion. Commemorative markings tend to drive up the price because they make the item more unique. If you have a silver tray that was used 100 years ago to commemorate a holiday or historical event, it’s probably worth a pretty penny today. Please contact Nelson and Nelson Antiques about your collectible if you have questions about your item. If the commemorative marking is visible and the item is in good shape, you could get substantial cash for the piece.

Silver markings never take away from the beauty of an item. As this quick guide to silver markings has shown, these stamps often increase the pieces’ value. Sometimes, the trademark commemorates a moment in history. Other times, it allows buyers to see when the accessory was created. Most importantly, though, standard silver markings ensure that the items are safe to use and that they’ve met every necessary requirement.