A sterling silver tea service is elegant and functional – and always a treasured item. With a little care and attention, its beauty will endure through generations. If you display your silver tea set on a table or in a glass cabinet for others to see and enjoy, the exposure to air naturally causes a built-up of tarnish, which can be easily removed. Therefore, on a regular basis, use a specially designed silver cloth or soft, pile-free rag to rub and polish your silver pieces and tray. This will help retard the onset of tarnish and keep your set brilliant with shine.
When you begin to see a build-up of tarnish, simply purchase a non-abrasive sliver polish, available in liquid or paste form. You can find a variety of brands at grocery stores, hardware retailers, department stores, specialty gift shops and even drug stores. To remove tarnish – dab silver polish on a clean damp cloth or sponge, spread the polish over tarnished areas, wait a few seconds and dampen your cloth again and rub using a circular motion, applying slight pressure as you polish. Rinse each piece with warm water. Dry completely using a soft, clean cloth. If there is excessive tarnish on your sterling silver tea set, then repeat the process until all the tarnish is removed. If you store your set, you can inhibit tarnish build-up by keeping it in an airtight place or using a special sterling silver storage bag or case. In addition, be careful not to expose your sterling silver tea service to chemicals or abrasives that will compromise the silver finish.