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Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Reader Question for the Community: Daily cutlery and special occasion silverware?


Reader Question for the Community:
Where do your readers find daily cutlery/silverware and special occasion silverware?  A friend asked me to help her purchase special occasion silverware because she admires our family set.  Our family silverware came over on a boat from Rotterdam in 1902, so I have no idea where to look.  We would also be interested in finding special occasion dinner sets or tea sets that could be passed down as heirlooms (since the family grows over the generations, the treasures are too few).  Many thanks for your kind time and attention. 

29 comments:

  1. If you are looking for Sterling Silver flatware, try Beverly Bremer's Silver Shop in Atlanta GA. She carries almost every pattern known to man and has new and previous owned.
    404-262-4099
    beverlybremer.com

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    1. Agree. Beverly Bremer is a terrific resource. The staff are encyclopedic in their knowledge and provide great assistance and never pushy. It's a pleasure to shop there.

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  2. Replacements Ltd in Greensboro NC has a good selection. You can check out the website to see what they have in stock.

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  3. Wonderful question. As my wife and I are both only children, we've known for some time that we'll be inheriting all the china and silver from both sets of parents. However, even knowing that, my father purchased for me, years ago, my own set of china to use for entertaining. It's a more masculine pattern called "Sports Page" by Noritake. At the time, everyone in the family thought him silly to buy such a set for me (I was 22, and everyone assumed - as a Millenial - that I'd never use it); however, in retrospect, I've used that more than any other china we own when we've hosted dinners for family and friends, and it's become a staple for Christmas dinner each year as well. That's all to say, I think investing in special china for your own children to have some day is a wonderful idea. Now that my father's gone, using the set he bought me all those years ago serves as a special way to pay tribute to him, and for me to continue to cherish his memory.

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    1. What a nice story. It sent me to Google to have a look. What a great pattern, nothing like I imagined. Enjoy it in good health.

      David J Cooper

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  4. You'd be surprised how much of this type of old product can be found on Ebay-USA . I've bought silverware from sellers on this site for 10 years now . There are numerous Europeans on there with products . One guy from Moscow has tons of silver and his shipping is very cheap . I've bought several candle sticks and flatware pieces of Marthinsen Tonsberg . Made a set up to more places with flatware from him .

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  5. Liberty TableTop.... made in USA. We had other sets the were not made here and were complete junk.... we purchased 2 complete sets .... Fancy and Everyday. They are the best sets that we have had in our 20 years of marriage...

    https://www.libertytabletop.com/

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    1. Thanks for tip. Just checked out website.

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    2. Liberty Pearl is very nice...

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  6. Actually, in our family the silver flatware — coin silver, mostly — was used every day. The reason was that there's hardly any need to polish it if it's used all the time.

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  7. Absolutely use it regularly to avoid the need to polish it! Many older jewelry stores seem to have old silver, likely brought in to be sold for its weight by younger folks who do not really care about such things. Old silver sets can be a bit of a bargain. Don't forget that there is no requirement that it all match!

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  8. Fish knives, of course!

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    1. How To Get On In Society, by John Betjeman

      Phone for the fish knives, Norman
      As cook is a little unnerved;
      You kiddies have crumpled the serviettes
      And I must have things daintily served.

      Are the requisites all in the toilet?
      The frills round the cutlets can wait
      Till the girl has replenished the cruets
      And switched on the logs in the grate.

      It's ever so close in the lounge dear,
      But the vestibule's comfy for tea
      And Howard is riding on horseback
      So do come and take some with me

      Now here is a fork for your pastries
      And do use the couch for your feet;
      I know that I wanted to ask you-
      Is trifle sufficient for sweet?

      Milk and then just as it comes dear?
      I'm afraid the preserve's full of stones;
      Beg pardon, I'm soiling the doileys
      With afternoon tea-cakes and scones.

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  9. My mother-in-law used her sterling flatware everyday as that was her only flatware. My husband even remembers using her sterling serving pieces to make mud pies out in their backyard as a child!

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  10. we have three auction houses here in New Orleans and inevitably every auction has a few sets of china, numerous sets of silver and miscellaneous silver items. As the younger generation inherits their parents' estates, those are often the first things to get jettisoned, as well as "brown furniture". -Scott

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  11. We use our sterling everyday, so no need to polish.

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  12. I use sterling Gorham Chantilly for special occasions and my every day stainless cutlery is Reed and Barton Country French. I purchase additional pieces when needed from Ebay.

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  13. Sets of 18/8 stainless are widely available - department stores, Bed, Bath & Beyond, Amazon. For sterling, I think it depends on the manufacturer. Our pattern is Towle Queen Elizabeth; Towle was purchased by Lifetime Brands years ago, and their site lists retail establishments around the country. Their sterling is only sold through smaller places, jewelers and stores that host wedding registries.

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  14. Our beater flatware is stainless from a restaurant supply. We have large, continental dinner settings and luncheon settings. It's heavy, tough, attractive, and still shining after more than a decade.

    Being an only of an only, I inherited sets of sterling (Gorham, Tiffany, and Frank Smith) and miscellaneous Georgian and American coin pieces. We haven't had to purchase much, but have had good luck rounding out settings and replacing pieces using Beverly Bremer, Replacements Ltd., the Antique Cupboard, EBay (many of the vendors mentioned also list on EBay), and live auctions (places like Skinner will let you set up notifications). We always cross shop.

    If you aren't 100% committed to a pattern, auctions are the way to go. Many beautiful patterns by good makers can often be bought near melt value at auction. And, you can feel proud that the splurge saved something of beauty from the scrapper you were bidding against.

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  15. Aren't they both the same thing? Personally, I prefer to use the silver for everyday use. I couldn't fathom only hauling it out for special occasions. What if I died before ever having an occasion special enough to use it?

    The only pieces I use on the table for special occasions are a set of China with a Christmas pattern. (I get a little stupid when it comes to entertaining around the holidays.)

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  16. I received my first set of Newbridge Silver dessert forks when I was 17, long before I set out on my own. 30 years later, I'm complimented every time I bring them out. My parents gave me one of their Cooper Bros, Sheffield caddies when I married. If special occasions means celebrating getting through the week, at least it's Wednesday, and we got take out and decided to put it on good china, then we use it for special occasions. Since COVID restrictions, we don't get to entertain as much, but that doesn't mean that the good stuff shouldn't get an outing from the dining buffet.

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  17. I was surprised as a teenager when my parents decided to retire their everyday plated silverware (the good stuff was for Christmas, Thanksgiving, parties, birthdays, etc.) They replaced it about 1965 with WMF Cromargan Old Pilgrim Stainless Steel made in Germany by W├╝rttembergische Metallwarenfabrik. At the time, I think, few people used stainless steel flatware for everyday. Now we use it all the time and I absolutely love it. I supplemented the original six place settings by finding extras on Replacements and Ebay. I cannot believe the price some of this old style German flatware commands. $89.95 for a single teaspoon--used too! But the balance and feel of the pieces is outstanding and they stand up well to everyday use and dish washing. What I sniffed at as a teenager is now one of my favorite things. Sadly the good stuff is still in storage.

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  18. I use Georg Jensen’s (Danish) ‘Pyramid’, for everyday, but would love to have their ‘Acorn’ silverware, however I don’t really entertain at home anymore.

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  19. Believe it or not I found a lovely set of silver plate at the local Salvation Army! Looks nearly identical to a set of family sterling that is currently owned by a sibling. Very little wear and tear on them too!

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  20. Years ago, I found a lovely set of fish knives in a little silver shop in Oxford. The proprietor’s name was Norm! No kidding. I was astonished. He’d never heard of the Betjeman poem, however.

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  21. No need to limit yourself. We have three sets--one inherited. We use them all when the mood strikes. Great for Sunday morning bacon and eggs as well as Thanksgiving dinner for 12. As others have noted, using it mitigates the need for polishing.

    A little unsolicited advice: don't put it in the dishwasher. I know people do, but the heat in the dry cycle is merciless.

    Also, when you hand wash and dry, let it air dry fully. Years of great use will result.

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  22. It isn't a good time to buy sterling silver settings right now since the price of silver is so high. Not as high as 1980 when the Hunt brothers tried to corner the silver market but still high.

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  23. You're absolutely right, @Anonymous at 5:08 AM. I checked recently to see how much one of my favourite silverware brands (Puiforcat) costs these days, and it is a whopping 1950 Euros for a 4-piece setting (dinner fork, spoon and knife, and tea spoon); that is more than $2300 per setting! Outrageous!

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  24. Exactly, anon5:08 and Ole Brumm. Silver is not quite at the 10 year high, but it's at the highest level since mid 2012.

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