#1 Silverware & Flatware Buyer Las Vegas & Henderson
In Western culture, any preparation, serving, and eating that uses tools with a hand are called “cutlery.” The people who make and sell these kinds of items are called “cutler.” A city in England, Sheffield, became famous in the 17th century because of its massive production of cutlery in the industry. However, it is more popularly known as silverware or flatware in the United States. They often relate cutlery to knives and other related food cutting tools. Silverware basically means that those utensils contain silver in the making, while flatware came into usage only to emphasize that it is not made of silver.
In Western culture, the major items in cutlery are the knife, spoon, and fork. These three items made a debut on the tables together in the Georgian Era in Britain. It was derived from the word “cuteler” from Middle English which was also derived from an Old French word “coutelier” which means knife. The word’s earliest origins can be found in the Latin word “cutler” which also means knife.
What is the difference between silverware and flatware?
Since both are used in dining purposes, one cannot really distinguish the difference between the two. But each has a specific characteristic that makes them distinct. In general, any utensils like knives, forks, and spoons would fall under the flatware category. On the other hand, any utensil or product that is made out of silver would be marked as silverware. In other words, if your flatwares are made out of silver then those are categorized to silverware, and if not then it is flatware.
Now, unlike flatware, silverware does not only have utensils in its umbrella. As I have mentioned above, silverwares are the utensils and other household items that are forged using silver. Let’s take the silver platter as an example. It is made of silver so it would be counted as a silverware but you cannot call it flatware since it does not qualify as a utensil. Flatware is very specific. It is under a bigger variety called “dinnerware” which refers to the items that are used in setting up a dining table. Going on, this also goes for glassware which specifies the kind of glasses used for drinking different types of beverages like wine, cocktail drinks, and many more. This only narrows down that flatwares can be silverware, yet not all silverware are flatware.
Silver is known to have properties that can fight against bacteria, that is why it is often used in making utensils. The very same reason why restaurants and hotels all over the globe would invest in silverware for their fine dining. Also, silver is a soft metal that needs to be combined with other materials to make the product more durable. If you notice in pieces of jewelry or in silverwares, you will usually see marks that say “92” or “92.5” which means the silver content of that item. The remaining percentage is a combination of other metals to make silver hard and could last long as a utensil.
Why is it valuable?
Silverwares are one of those that usually get passed on from generation to generation. Since it is durable, it could be preserved for 100 or more years. In this era, silver has become rare that is why it is worth quite a fortune in the market. While most of the people who inherited those silver items already know the value it holds, they still do not sell it as they consider it an heirloom. Younger people don’t take much interest in keeping those heirlooms and would sell it off instead.
On the other hand, not all silvers are worth much. It would still be depending on the age of the silver, the manufacturer, its weight, design, and the current market return of silver in the market. The value will also be affected by how the material was made. If it would really interest you, you might as well get a professional opinion from a jeweler. As long as your silver is “sterling” which means it contains 92.5% silver, then it will hold an amount. But if it is silver plated, you better not waste your time. Right now, the price for silver is running around $17.59 per ounce, depending on the item, of course.
Going back, you should always remember that not all silver in color really contains silver in them. With the advancement of technology, there are various ways to silver plate items, however, this caused a thin application of silver only. Moreover, melting silverwares to harvest the silver in them is really not wise as it may diminish the value of the metal. Now, if you have sterling silver, you may get equivalent value for its condition. The better the state, the greater the value. If you are lucky, you may get a great deal in auctions or with some collectors.
Meanwhile, if you cannot get access to professional opinions about your item, research would also come in handy. How will you know if it is sterling silver or silver plated? Usually, items that are silver plated have marks like: “silver plate,” “plated,” “EP (Electroplated),” or “EPN (Electroplated nickel silver).” Also, if you could not spot a mark, then it would most likely be silver plated. Sterling silver items, unlike the former, always have their markings as proof of authenticity. Sterling flatwares and materials made in the United States are commonly marked with “sterling” or “ster”-which is the shortened version. But in other countries, they mark it with “925” which implicates that the item contains 92.5% of concentrated silver. Another rare mark is the word “coin” which shows that the pieces were forged from melted coins. This makes up to 90% silver composition of the item.
Before deciding to go to a jeweler, it will not hurt to do your research first. Try to look it up on the internet about the factors that you must consider to call your item valuable. As much as possible, try to browse different websites and find sets that are similar to yours. You may also want to check the current market value of silver. This will help you judge the material first. You may figure out the value somehow, without going to jewelers or collectors.