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Heirloom Restoration: Christmas Ornament

Heirloom Ornaments

Heirloom Restoration

Before: Silver heirloom ornament covered with tarnish

A storehouse of memories

For those who celebrate the Christmas traditions, decorating a Christmas tree with ornaments is a fun and memorable way to enjoy the holiday season with friends and family. Just like other heirloom items, ornaments are a storehouse of special and personal memories. Each Christmas, when we pick up an ornament, we can transport ourselves back to another Christmas where significant and memorable events occurred. A new child, a promotion, a winter storm, or just a silly argument over where to put the ornaments on a tree. A million images flood the mind when we touch Christmas ornaments.

Heirloom Restoration of Chrismas Ornament

After: Heirloom ornament with 18kt Medici gold plating

A timeless tradition, a timeless finish

In many households, there is a tradition to give each family member an ornament every Christmas. The ornament usually has a date inscribed on it to commemorate that year. When the children grow up and move on, they take those ornaments and memories with them. The cycle of new family memories begin again while still connected to the past. The heirloom ornament featured here is made of sterling silver. Lustrous and nearly white in appearance, sterling silver makes an ideal metal for Christmas ornaments. It reflects all the colors on the Christmas tree. Silver will eventually tarnish leaving the surface which is dark and non-reflective.

The ornament shown here is a good example of tarnish acquired over many memorable holidays. The owner contacted us to explore the idea of electroplating the ornament so it would not tarnish again. During initial discussions, the owner was interested in having the item plated with 14kt gold as a means to brighten and re-fresh the ornament’s appearance.  It was our suggestion that they should use our 18kt Medici gold plating to brighten the appearance consistent with gold colors during the yuletide seasons.

As you can see from the photo, the gold plating completely transforms the character and nobility of the nativity design. We are sure that once it is placed on the next Christmas tree something magical will occur. The only thing this beautiful gold plated ornament lacks is some frankincense and myrrh.

 

Metal Arts Specialties

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