me begin this column with a very simple statement: "Silverplate"
may have "Decorative Value", but it has
very little "Precious Metal" Value.
common definition of Silverplate is that it is "flatware
or decorative accessories coated with a plating of silver".
And a very common misconception with Silverplate is that it has
value because it is "covered with silver". This
is simply not true because the precious metal value of the silver
coating is worth far less than the expense of recovering and refining
you need to look at Silverplate as a "Decorative Accessory"
rather than a "Precious Metal" asset.
are many forms of Silverplate including:
of these silvers may be more valuable than others, but all have
more of a "decorative" than "precious
metal" value. Silverplate has so many markings that books
have been written about them, but you should simply understand
that most Silverplate can be quickly identified by its markings
value of Silverplate items today is based upon several factors:
or Era: Is it 100+ year old Victorian Silverplate or a late
20th century wedding gift?
Is it a better-known or unknown maker?
Is it high-end & ornate, or plain & simple?
Is it a Coffee Pot, Tea Pot, Bowl or Coaster?
Is it mint & polished or dented & tarnished?
Is the younger generation interested in it today?
the value of most Silverplated items has been dropping in recent
years for a variety of reasons:
Times: Decorative Silverplated items simply don't fit in
with today's "Paper & Plastic" dining culture.
Work: Silverplate must be polished to keep it shiny
and few people today are interested in polishing silver on a
No Longer Used: Items such as Silverplated Punch Bowls,
Candelabras, Serving Trays, and Coffee &
Tea Sets are no longer in vogue and are rarely used when
Century Households: Most Silverplated objects were 19th-20th
century formal dining room accessories and the formal dining
room is simply not used as frequently today as it was in past
generations. As a matter of fact, many new houses today are
being built without a formal dining room what-so-ever.
Collectors: The younger generation, those who are setting
up households today, simply look at Silverplated items as "Dust
Collectors" and relatively few have interest in owning
bottom line is that since there is no real "Precious Metal"
value in Silverplate, and since there is far less interest in
Silverplate today than in years past, both interest and prices
have been falling quite dramatically in recent years.
you have to be very careful when dealing with Silverplate.
While things like Silverplated Serving Trays may have little
value today, Sterling Silver Serving Trays can be worth
many hundreds of dollars. So you have to understand how to read
the markings and be very careful that you don't throw out, or
sell too cheaply, your better items.
you need help sorting through your things to determine what is
Silverplate, what is Sterling Silver, what is Un-marked
Silver, or what is Pewter or other metal
help. Call to set up an appointment for us to review your items.