Silver (Sterling Silver) is a bright coloured, shining, malleable metal, which is renowned for its great versatility. It can be laminated to the point where it becomes transparent. The fact that it is an excellent conductor of electricity, and extremely sensitive to light, means that it is widely used in the electric and photographic industries. Due to its non toxic and antibacterial characteristics, it has also come to be used in the world of medicine: both as a surgical instrument and for orthopedic inserts. In recent years it has also been utilized in recipes of some of the most famous restaurateurs. Silver saucepans, in fact, transmit heat evenly over the surface of the pan thus bringing out the flavours of the various ingredients. However, it goes without saying that silver is best known for its importance in the world of jewellery. Since the 1990s, in fact, silver jewellery has witnessed a new boom, adapting to the demands of consumers (above all the young) whilst, at the same time expressing greater creativity and adherence to fashion. Jewellery in silver is protected from oxidization by rhodium plating.
Maintenance: in normal conditions silver is unchangeable, but if it comes into contact with hydrogen sulphide present in the air, it oxidizes. In areas where the atmosphere is polluted, it tends to take on yellow, bluish or even black reflexes, which can be got rid of by using the right products. Passing a damp cloth over the object every two or three days can help to prevent oxidization. Nearly all silver objects can be washed in the dishwasher – providing the washing up liquid used is not too strong. Certain objects should not however be placed in the dishwasher (for example knives made in antique style, and items with elements of wood, horn and plexiglas). Should there be persistent stains a cloth moistened with water and bicarbonate of soda can be used (or other specific products).
The venerable alloy of pewter is made of 92% tin, with copper and antimony to harden it and enhance casting. For many generations, English pewter’s tin content was Cornish in origin. Today, sadly, Cornish tin mining is no more.
Pewter rose in popularity during the Middle Ages, replacing wooden tableware in well-to-do households. Enduring and malleable, it acquires an attractive patina with age, and can be fashioned into almost any form desired. Unrivaled until the 19th Century, pewterware was exported to all the corners of the world during the grand days of the British Empire. It’s quiet dignity and venerable history makes it the material of choice for St. Justin’s noble jewellery and giftware.
Our pewter contains no trace of lead and all the materials mentioned above come from recycling in a percentage variable from 50% to 100 %.
Chains and details are made of surgical steel.
Care of your St. Justin pewterware could not be easier. Cleaning of your item is best done by washing it in warm soapy water, followed by thorough drying. A silver polishing cloth is all that is needed to maintain a high polish.
(Please note: Never place pewterware in a dishwashes, as the high temperatures and the chemicals in the cleaning agent will react adversely with the metal.)
Copper (pure element with the symbol CU) has always been one of the most important metals in all civilizations, second only to iron. Its use dates back to the earliest times of human history and its name, different in various parts of the world, accompanied us for millennia. A very soft metal, very heavy and flexible -it can be reduced to extremely thin foils, almost transparent- malleable, opaque but bright after polishing, copper is an excellent conductor of electricity and heat, hence its extensive use for the production of wire and cable, tableware and everyday objects. It is also widely used in metal alloys (such as brass and bronze) and, given its particular pink tones and its properties, even in the production of jewelry. Finally, it is largely known that copper has beneficial effects for human health, therefore is often used for therapeutic purposes.
Maintenance: copper is a metal that tends to oxidize in the course of time, especially in jewels, where it may alter due to the acidity of our skin. In addition to traditional methods, among which the use of salt and vinegar (or water, soap and ammonia), it is possible to buy practical cream products that clean and maintain copper polished.
NB: – All products in the South Africa collection are coated with a clear lacquer which makes them hypoallergenic.
Brass is an alloy of copper and zinc, the characteristics of which may vary according to the percentage of the two metals. Known since ancient times, it is used in various applications, such as mechanics, plumbing, electrical systems, musical instruments, and in countless everyday objects. Finally, due to its golden color and special resistance to oxidation, brass is much appreciated in the production of jewelry.
Maintenance: being an alloy not easy to alterations, brass rarely requires cleaning. If it is the case, besides traditional methods (such as washing it in warm soapy water, followed by thorough drying), certainly the most effective methods are those offered by the many specific products that can be bought in supermarkets and specialty stores.
Aluminum (chemical element with the symbol AL) is extracted mainly from mineral bauxite, is silver colored, flexible and very light. It is used massively and daily in many sectors of industry, from aeronautics to foundries, for frameworks and cars, and in the production of tools and appliances. It is used in alloys with other elements, such as copper, zinc, magnesium and manganese. It is a totally recyclable material and since the beginning of the last century has been a source of innovative products, besides having a low cost and a very low environmental impact.
Our line of handicrafts from Madagascar uses precisely this metal, melted and purified, to create necklaces, bracelets and earrings in original models.
Maintenance: aluminum is hypoallergenic, easy to deal with if it should oxidize coming in contact with PH acid skins (you can use to clean it products for silver and white metals), and very fun to wear.
Bronze is one of the oldest metal alloys (3500-1200 BC). Formed mainly from Copper -usually higher than 70%- and Tin, it can also be alloyed with Nickel or Aluminum.
Copper gives Bronze malleability, and Tin hardness. The percentage of the two primary metals also affects the degree of coloring: to a greater amount of copper, corresponds an intense yellow-gold hue; if it is present in lesser amounts, however, the yellow becomes clearer.
Its particular ease in melting, its fluidity and the beauty of its patina make Bronze a very interesting material in statuary, as well as in the creation of objects and jewelry since ancient times.
Maintenance: like all metals and alloys, Bronze can easily oxidize. For its care, besides various traditional methods such as lemon juice or vinegar mixed with water and ammonia, a good result is obtained using specific products available in any supermarket.