As an ancient form of embellishing silver and gold, engraving is frequently used to personalise a silver piece. Hand-engraving silver gives the most elegant finish and brings depth and character. But if budget does not permit or there are multiple pieces to be engraved, we would suggest machine-, computer-, laser-engraving or photo etching as alternatives.
Rest assured we will advise on the best method for your needs when the occasion arises.
Langfords can engrave any pattern, motif, picture or text in any language and any typeface. Simple initials, from coats of arms or company logos can be added too, from any of 1500 font styles available. We can even engrave in Chinese, Russian or your own handwriting!
Prices for etching and engraving will be provided when we know exactly how it is going to be applied and the work will always be carried out within a guaranteed time frame. If for any reason your piece is unsuitable for engraving or etching we have a number of alternative ideas to enable you to personalise your pieces.
For a silver piece that requires multiple engravings, such as a trophy cup, we recommend making a separate plinth or base which not only brings additional prestige to a trophy, but also serves a practical purpose in that a silver band can be applied and engraved to record numerous names and dates.
Contact us and we will be happy to give advice on how engraving can enhance your silver or glass.
Presentation & Packaging
Perfect silver gifts demand perfect presentation. A treat for yourself or a gifts for others - you can ask for your order to arrive gift wrapped in a distinctive Langfords box. Online you can choose this option at the checkout. And if you are sending a gift, you may choose to include a gift card on which we will carefully print your personal message.
For more complex presentation needs - contemporary or traditional in style - we make custom cases or packaging in a variety of materials – including leather, wood, satin, velvet – according to your specific wishes or the needs that best complement the piece.
Valuations & Appraisals
Silver bought from Langfords can be supplied with a free silver insurance valuation if required. As LAPADA-registered valuers we provide valuations for insurance, probate and can assist and advise on the best way to dispose of your silverware. Our charges are £75 per hour and if there are numerous items to be valued, a house visit can be arranged and appropriate travel costs will apply.
Cutlery Matching Service
If you are missing pieces from your silver cutlery set, Langfords has an extensive stock of antique and old flatware patterns spanning more than 200 years. We produce both handmade and machine-made cutlery in almost every pattern made in the UK, France, Italy and Germany.
To help us make as perfect a match as possible it is always best to provide sample pieces, but we can work with good clear images, accurate sizing and details of the hallmarks and maker's mark(s).
In the event of damage to a piece of silver or silver plate, it is essential that an experienced, specialist silversmith undertakes any repair work. If you have silver in need of restoration, please contact us and we can advise the best way to have it repaired while crucially maintaining its value.
Collecting & Investing in Silver
Buying silver should always be a pleasure and selling should be as profitable as possible. Let us give you a few tips:
- Condition is one of the most important factors to consider when buying or investing in silver. If you choose the finest quality you cannot go far wrong. Condition is everything and people will always be prepared to pay for the best.
- Carry a hallmark book with you. Bradbury’s Book of Hallmarks is excellent and small enough to slip in your pocket or handbag.
- Buy from a reputable silver dealer. This is often the family-run jewellery shop in many towns. Buying from silver dealers belonging to LAPADA (London & Provincial Antiques Dealers Association) or BADA (British Antique Dealers Association) will afford you extra protection and confidence.
- A reputable silver dealer will always draw your attention to any restoration and this should be reflected in the price.
- Ensure the dealer gives you a receipt and a detailed description, mentioning any defects.
- Good silverware can be found at auction houses but you will not get the same consumer protection compared to buying from a silver retailer backed by BADA or LAPADA. When buying from an auction house caveat emptor (buyer beware) applies, placing the onus on you to recognise repairs and defects.
- If buying silver pieces at auction be aware that you will be charged commission of between 10% to 25% plus VAT.
- Retailers are obliged by law to show all prices including VAT where applicable, unless there is a clear sign stating VAT will be added later.
- Keep your insurance valuations somewhere safe, preferably with a bank.
- Photograph or video your silverware in situ, including close-ups of hallmarks and keep these with your valuations.
Selling Your Silver
If you have items to sell, we will gladly arrange an appraisal, give you a valuation and advise on the best way for you to sell your silver. Langfords may purchase your silver if it meets our criteria.
To establish the value of your pieces we would recommend obtaining some comparative price indications beforehand so that you have an idea of what they might fetch. If you would like to find out more contact Joel or Adam.
Shipping & Delivery
We deliver your goods anywhere in the country, indeed anywhere in the world – almost! We use Federal Express. For silver purchases of more than £1000 we will send them to you free of delivery costs. Langfords is not liable for any local duties and taxes at the final destination.
Langfords has a specialist silver insurance policy backed by Lloyds of London so you can be sure that any silver you buy from us is comprehensively insured wherever we send it.