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Honored Contributor
Posts: 8,952
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Is Mexican Sterling Silver jewelry always marked?

My beautiful aunt had a friend who often bought her wonderful pieces of jewelry on trips to Mexico.

 

She would often say that she'd bought the pieces "on the beach", presumably from vendors there.

 

I've been gifted at least two lovely pieces that are not marked with .925 or other recognized silver numbers, but rather stamped with what possibly look like makers designs.

 

Short of taking them to a jeweler for identification, is there any way I could determine whether they actually ARE silver or not?

 

Neither of them respond to a magnet. Would I ruin them if I bought a test kit from Amazon?

Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,120
Registered: ‎08-10-2013

Re: Is Mexican Sterling Silver jewelry always marked?

Just take it to a jewelry store.

Valued Contributor
Posts: 539
Registered: ‎08-19-2011

Re: Is Mexican Sterling Silver jewelry always marked?

I can only tell you that the Mexican silver jewelry that I have is all stamped "925" and "Mexico", but I didn't buy them in Mexico.  It may be different if they were not intended for export.  Do they shine up when polished with a silver polishing cloth?  Of course, silver plate would as well.  Sorry, have no familiarity with silver test kits.  

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 7,739
Registered: ‎06-06-2019

Re: Is Mexican Sterling Silver jewelry always marked?


@Bookplate wrote:

I can only tell you that the Mexican silver jewelry that I have is all stamped "925" and "Mexico", but I didn't buy them in Mexico.  It may be different if they were not intended for export.  Do they shine up when polished with a silver polishing cloth?  Of course, silver plate would as well.  Sorry, have no familiarity with silver test kits.  


Same here.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 11,861
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Is Mexican Sterling Silver jewelry always marked?

@violann - I inherited a few pieces from Mexico that just have the artist's stamp on them- no numbers. I know they were bought from street vendors when I was a little girl.

 

 

 

 I also have one turquoise ring "I" bought from a shop in Nuevo Laredo when I was younger. It also has a stamp on it. I took it to a specialist who told me it was old and the stone has faded a lot. 

 

 

You might want to "call" @Kachina624 . She knows a lot about silver jewelry. I'm sure she can help you with some recommendations. Good luck!  Smiley Happy

Honored Contributor
Posts: 8,952
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: Is Mexican Sterling Silver jewelry always marked?


@Bookplate wrote:

I can only tell you that the Mexican silver jewelry that I have is all stamped "925" and "Mexico", but I didn't buy them in Mexico.  It may be different if they were not intended for export.  Do they shine up when polished with a silver polishing cloth?  Of course, silver plate would as well.  Sorry, have no familiarity with silver test kits.  


They do shine up with a Sunshine polishing cloth, although just one of the two "makes" tarnish. The other, a fairly heavy bracelet, seems to stay shiny with a slightly yellowish cast, which also shines up with the jeweler's cloth.

 

I had thought about the export question too.

 

Thank you all for the input!

Honored Contributor
Posts: 33,273
Registered: ‎08-19-2010

Re: Is Mexican Sterling Silver jewelry always marked?

I was just over in 'Handbags' telling folks to watch out for knock offs and black market pricey handbags. If it seems to good to be true means probably is.

Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,003
Registered: ‎05-02-2017

Re: Is Mexican Sterling Silver jewelry always marked?

 

 

Almost all silver jewelry is marked these days.  The only time I  really find unmarked items is if they are antiques. 

 

There is a metal called "alpaca," that is used a lot in Mexico.  It is actually made of nickel and other alloys.

 

It is used in a lot of the cheaper jewelry items.

 

I am not sure why it is so important for you to test the items with acid, as they could get damaged.  Silver jewelry from Mexico is not really that expensive either, unless it is an elaborate and heavy piece.

 

Just wear them in good health and enjoy them!

Respected Contributor
Posts: 4,398
Registered: ‎03-19-2010

Re: Is Mexican Sterling Silver jewelry always marked?

I passed on a rather expensive "sterling silver" piece in Mexico because there was no marking ..... too risky for their price.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 8,420
Registered: ‎03-21-2010

Re: Is Mexican Sterling Silver jewelry always marked?

I've been to Mexico.  Never buy anything on the beach.  People in the hotel warned me. Frequently you're cheated. Not really silver.  Better off buying from the hotel or a store.