Considering that people use flatware every day, we sure don't receive much education about it or really even take much time in choosing flatware. Stainless steel versus silver plated, matching patterns, and why weight is important - many people have these questions and more about selecting flatware, but they just don't know who to ask. If you're one of those people, read further. This article covers some common questions about choosing flatware so you are sure to make the perfect choice.
Judging The Quality Of Flatware
Composition, thickness, strength, style, balance, artisanship, and the attractiveness of both the front and the back are all guides for judging the quality of flatware. Take all of these points into consideration when choosing flatware. In the end, good flatware fits comfortably in your hands and feels good in your mouth.
Stainless Steel Or Silver Plated Flatware?
Hard and tough, stainless steel is definitely the superior metal for flatware. It is low maintenance, hygienic, durable, resists oxidation at high temperatures, will not rust, and is resistant to stains and damage from fruit acids.
Silver plated flatware is hard, but less malleable than stainless steel, making decorating it with stamped or carved designs difficult. Intricate patterns in silver plate don't have the depth and richness as the same pattern in stainless steel.
The Best Composition For Stainless Steel Flatware
High grade 18/10 stainless steel is the best composition for flatware. The number 18 represents the amount of chromium included in the stainless steel. Chromium is the element that works to rustproof the flatware. The number 10 represents the nickel content of stainless steel flatware. Nickel gives the flatware its sparkle and luster.
Though 18/10 is the highest grade of stainless steel flatware, compositions of 18/0 are also a suitable and recommended composition for the dinner table. Flatware labeled as 18/10 contains nickel in addition to the chromium, which adds to the steel's resistance to corrosion. As a result of the world shortage of nickel, higher qualities of stainless steel flatware have become more costly in recent years. When properly processed, 18/0 chrome stainless steel can still meet and pass standard corrosion tests.
Weight Is Important
Many people don't realize that weight plays an important role in selection process. Weight provides you with a more substantial feel. A heavier flatware set also gives better balance, strength, and durability. However, the heaviest set of stainless steel flatware is not always the best set. Keep all of the aspects of good flatware in mind when choosing flatware.
Matching Your Flatware To Your China
Some people wouldn't dare have flatware that didn't perfectly match their china pattern and others believe it doesn't really matter. Actually, there is no right or wrong when it comes to matching your stainless steel flatware to your china pattern. It's a personal choice that relates to your style. Matching flatware and china pieces gives a more formal feel to a dinner party. Not matching your china and flatware can add a little personal style to the look of your table, just like mixing and matching your clothes gives you a personal style. It just comes down to the look you prefer.
What Style Of Flatware Is Best?
There is no best pattern or style. As with matching your flatware to your china, it simply comes down to personal preference. People who prefer a more contemporary look usually like stainless steel flatware with a matte finish. Choosing flatware with a highly polished and ornate design provides a more classic, formal look. There are patterns and styles out there to suit everyone.
Take your time shopping for flatware and compare prices to find the best deal. If you keep these tips in mind when choosing flatware, you'll pick a long lasting set perfect for you and your style.
Christine O'Kelly is an author for Gourmet Settings, an innovated company offering designer stainless steel flatware that fits any style. Their exclusive patterns and elegant designs ensure you'll find something you love when choosing flatware.