Over the weekend, I was busy browsing in a nearby secondhand shop when I stumbled across a box filled with beautiful silver flatware and serving pieces that were just a bit past their heyday. The pieces would be perfect for holidays, and really, for any other time of the year worth celebrating with a good party. Although the pieces were beautifully ornate and decidedly cheap, I have to admit that I simply bypassed the whole lot because I could not bear to think about having to sit and polish each piece with stinky (and toxic) silver polish. Which, naturally, led me to come home, feel guilty about bypassing said silver pieces, and then research nontoxic ways to clean silver without having to huff any fumes.
Photos: Pottery Barn
Five Simple Steps for Green Silver Cleaning
Step 1: Wash all silver pieces in soapy water (to loosen any dirt and grime)
Step 2: Line a large pot with aluminum foil and place the silver pieces on top
Step 3: In another pot, mix about a quart of boiling water, ¼ cup baking soda and 2 tablespoons of salt.
Step 4: Pour the solution onto the silver pieces and let stand for about five minutes
Step 5: Rinse each piece with clean water and then hand dry with a soft, cotton towel